Agave nectar, maple syrup, honey – really great unrefined sweeteners to use in baking. All definitely favorites of mine. But sometimes a liquid sweetener just isn’t the best way to go. It’s times like these I turn to turbinado sugar.
Turbinado sugar is an unrefined sugar made from sugar cane extract. To produce it, freshly cut sugar cane is crushed to squeeze out its juice. The juice is then evaporated and spun in a centrifuge, or turbine – hence the name – where the characteristic large crystals are born. This process keeps the sugar cane together from start to finish, so in the end, many of vitamins and minerals and natural molasses flavor it contains stay put.
Turbinado sugar is sometimes compared to brown sugar because of its light bronze color and rich coating of sweet molasses. Like brown sugar, it also tends to hold more moisture – which means moister baked goods for you! But whereas turbinado sugar’s golden hue and molasses layer are naturally occurring, brown sugar’s are…man-made! Brown sugar is actually just refined white sugar that has color and flavor added back to it. Sneaky.
Sugar in the Raw is a widely known brand of turbinado sugar and Wholesome Sweeteners makes one too. When baking with turbinado sugar, I just substitute it for equal parts refined white or brown sugar. You can sometimes tell the difference, but in a good way!
Have you ever baked with turbinado sugar?