9 Muscovado Sugar Substitutes to Sweeten your Desserts and Savory Dishes

Muscovado Sugar Substitute

Although muscovado sugar is not the most popular type of sugar, it is still widely used in bakery, sweet and savory recipes in Europe. There are also several savory dishes that call for this sugar. 

If it has its special place in your kitchen then you may love to know some muscovado sugar substitutes to replace it whenever you run out of it. 

Best Muscovado Sugar Substitutes

1. Brown Sugar (Light or Dark)

As mentioned above, brown sugar can  be used to substitute muscovado sugar in many recipes. You can use it in baking, bread doughs, desserts, sauces, savory dishes, hot drinks and other beverages as well as several alcoholic cocktails.

Since both have brown color, you can use them interchangeably in chocolate cakes. Brown sugar has a less aromatic flavor than muscovado sugar and it is lighter in texture and milder in taste. It has a rather caramel-like flavor than toffee.

Muscovado sugar, in its turn, is less refined than brown sugar. As for the availability, regular brown sugar is more affordable and easier to find. The darker the color the higher level of molasses it contains. 

2. Piloncillo

Piloncillo is a Mexican type of brown sugar. It’s an unrefined whole cane sugar mostly sold in pressed forms of cones, blocks, or loaves. It comes with a caramel-like flavor. It is considered to be healthier than regular sugar.

It is used both as a sweetener and as a spice. When substituting it with muscovado sugar you may crush it, especially if you use it in a bakery or as a spice. 

You can use piloncillo to sweeten many dishes and drinks including ice-creams, sweet desserts, cakes and coffee. It melts quite easily and there is no need to crush it for hot meals and drinks. 

3. Demerara Sugar

The next comes demerara sugar. It is made from sugarcane and comes with a crunchy texture. This sugar is a perfect substitute for muscovado in baking, especially in cookies, crumbles and biscuits. It has a light brown color and rich combination of flavors including molasses, caramel and toffee. 

4. Molasses Sugar

Molasses is a dark-colored liquid sugar made of refined sugarcane and sugar beet. It is sweet like other sugars but has a kind of smoky and robust flavor which makes it different. 

You can use it to replace muscovado in many recipes but it has a stronger taste and flavor which should be considered in ratios. Since muscovado contains high content of molasses, it is quite similar to molasses in its beneficial properties. 

You can use them interchangeably almost in all recipes where the form of the sugar doesn’t matter. 

5. Turbinado Sugar

As for turbinado sugar, it’s an unprocessed sugar with a prominent crystyle-like texture. It has a light brown color and mild caramel flavor.

If you want to get a caramelized taste for your dish, then this is the perfect choice. It also melts quite easily in hot desserts and drinks and is widely used with coffee. You can use it in savory dishes too. 

6. Jaggery

Jaggery is an unrefined type of sweetener produced from sugarcane of palm. It comes with a different taste and flavor than the majority of other sugars and sweeteners.

It has a sweet winy flavor and tastes like brown sugar or molasses. Jaggery has a golden color. It is mostly popular in India and you may find it in Indian stores. 

You can choose jaggery to replace muscovado sugar in sweets as well as use in savory dishes as a spice. It perfectly balances the taste of savory dishes. 

7. Palm Sugar

Palm and muscovado sugars come with a similar color. Palm sugar is made of the sap in coconut palm trees and has a wide usage in culinary. This sugar offers a mild caramel taste and is generally less sweet than muscovado and other brown sugars. 

It is an awesome choice for sauces, spicy and savory dishes where you need a sweetener to balance the taste. However, you can use it in desserts and sweets too, if you are looking for a less-sweet alternative to muscovado. 

8. Sucanat Sugar

Choose sucanat sugar instead of muscovado especially for savory dishes. Sucanat is a less-processed sugar with brown color and mild caramel-like flavor. It is used in bread doughs, pastries, sauces, spicy dishes and beverages. 

Perhaps the only disadvantage of sucanat is that it is hard to find in common grocery stores. You may purchase it online. 

9. Granulated Sugar

Also known as white sugar or regular sugar, granulated sugar can be your last replacer of muscovado from this list. It is easy to find, but it differs from muscovado in color: granulated sugar is white.

It is made of refined sugar cane and is considered to be an all-purpose sugar. You can use it both in sweet and savory dishes. 

Compared to muscovado sugar, granulated sugar offers a milder flavor and taste. It has a clean sweet taste and can be used instead of muscovado in 1:1 ratio. 

FAQs on Muscovado Sugar

What is Muscovado Sugar?

Muscovado sugar or the so-called “raw” or unrefined cane sugar comes with natural molasses. Depending on the level or processing it can be either light brown or dark brown.

This sugar has a kind of moist texture and tastes like toffee. You can find it in specialty stores, supermarkets as well as in bread stores. 

Can you substitute muscovado sugar for brown sugar?

While they are not the same they can be used interchangeably. Muscovado sugar is a type of brown sugar.

However, there are some differences between the two. Compared to brown sugar, muscovado sugar comes with a higher molasses content and stronger taste. It is also dense in texture. 

Is muscovado sugar healthier than regular sugar?

Muscovado sugar is an added sugar like regular sugar and there is not much difference between the two.

Why is muscovado sugar more expensive than white sugar?

Like most types of brown sugars, muscovado sugar isn’t produced everywhere, that’s why when imported it has a higher price tag than white sugar or regular sugar. 


Depending on the color of your dish you’d better choose the muscovado sugar substitute that’s the most suitable for the end-result. We offer both brown-colored and lighter-colored sugars including white sugar.

However, if the color doesn’t matter, then choose whichever you want. There is also a liquid version of sugar and the choice is up to you. 

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