How do you make demerara sirup?

What is demerara sirup?

Demerara sirup is a type of natural sweetener made from demerara sugar, which is an unrefined cane sugar with a large grain and pale to golden color. Demerara sugar has a caramel flavor and aroma. When dissolved in water and reduced into a thick syrup, it makes a popular sweetener due to its complexity of flavors compared to regular white sugar.

Demerara sirup has a rich, buttery, caramel-like taste due to the molasses content still present in the sugar. It can be used as a topping for pancakes, waffles, oatmeal and other breakfast foods, and as a sweetener for coffee, tea, and cocktails. The large sugar crystals give the sirup a crunchy, coarse texture.

What ingredients do you need to make demerara sirup?

The ingredients needed to make basic demerara sirup are:

– Demerara sugar – Use preferably organic, unrefined demerara sugar. The sugar crystals should be golden brown in color.

– Water – Filtered or spring water is best. The purity of the water allows the flavor of the sugar to come through.

– Cream of tartar (optional) – A tiny pinch of cream of tartar can help prevent the sugar from crystallizing during the cooking process.

– Spices (optional) – Spices like cinnamon, vanilla, nutmeg, cloves or ginger can be added for extra flavor.

That’s it! With just sugar and water, you can make a simple demerara sugar sirup. Feel free to experiment with additional ingredients, but the base only requires two components.

What is the ratio of sugar to water for making demerara sirup?

The ideal ratio for making demerara sirup is:

– 1 cup of demerara sugar
– 1 cup of water

This 1:1 ratio allows the sugar to fully dissolve and thicken into a rich, viscous sirup consistency as the water evaporates during cooking.

Some people prefer a thicker, more concentrated sirup and use less water. Just note that too little liquid may cause the sugar crystals to seize up and crystallize.

If making a large batch, maintain a 1 cup sugar to 1 cup water ratio. For example, for 2 cups sugar, use 2 cups water. Increase the ingredient amounts equally to scale up the recipe.

Adjust the sugar and water amounts to your taste and preferred thickness, but the 1:1 ratio is a good starting point for homemade demerara sirup.

Step-by-step instructions

Follow these steps to make basic demerara sirup at home:

1. Gather the ingredients

You’ll need:

– Demerara sugar
– Water
– Optional: small pinch of cream of tartar
– Optional: spices like cinnamon, vanilla or ginger

2. Combine the sugar and water

– Add 1 cup of demerara sugar and 1 cup of water to a medium saucepan.
– If adding any optional ingredients, stir them in now.

3. Heat the mixture

– Place the saucepan over medium heat on the stove.
– Bring the sugar and water to a gentle simmer, stirring occasionally to help dissolve the sugar.

4. Simmer and reduce

– Once simmering, reduce heat to maintain a gentle bubble.
– Allow the mixture to simmer for about 15-20 minutes. It will slowly thicken into a sirup.
– Swirl the pan occasionally but avoid over-stirring.

5. Check consistency

– After 15-20 minutes, check the sirup’s consistency.
– It should coat the back of a spoon and be thick, but still pourable.
– Allow it to reduce further if you want a thicker sirup.

6. Remove from heat

– Once the desired consistency is reached, remove the saucepan from the heat.
– The sirup will continue to thicken slightly as it cools.

7. Pour into a jar

– Carefully pour the hot demerara sirup into a clean glass jar or bottle.
– Allow it to cool fully before sealing.

And that’s it – you now have a tasty homemade demerara sugar sirup to use as a sweetener! Enjoy its deep caramel flavor on breakfast foods, in drinks, and more.

Tips for making perfect demerara sirup

– Use good quality, organic demerara sugar for the best flavor.

– Filtered or spring water allows the sugar’s flavor to shine.

– Heat the mixture slowly at first to help the sugar fully dissolve.

– Don’t let the sugar burn or scorch, which can impart a bitter taste.

– Swirl the pan rather than over-stirring to prevent crystallization.

– A touch of cream of tartar can help inhibit crystallization too.

– Simmer patiently until reduced to the desired consistency.

– Be careful when handling the hot finished sirup to avoid burns.

With a little care, you can make smooth, delicious demerara sirup at home!

How long does demerara sirup last?

When stored properly in a sealed container, demerara sirup can last for several months. The high sugar content acts as a natural preservative.

Here are some tips for getting the longest shelf life from your homemade demerara sirup:

– Use clean, sterile jars or bottles. Wash thoroughly before use.

– Allow the sirup to cool fully before sealing in containers.

– Pour the sirup while still very hot into containers – this helps sterilize them.

– Ensure the sirup is fully covered by leaving a little headspace.

– Seal the containers with an airtight lid.

– Store in a cool, dark cupboard. Avoid exposure to light and warmth.

– Refrigeration can extend the shelf life further to 6-12 months.

– Freezing is also an option for long term storage. Leave headspace in the container before freezing.

– Look for any signs of mold, crystalization or “weeping” before using. Discard if any are present.

With proper storage techniques, homemade demerara sirup easily keeps for 3-4 months. Enjoy its sweet complexity before it expires!

Substitutions for demerara sirup

If you don’t have demerara sirup, there are a few possible substitution options:

– Maple syrup – Has a similar rich, caramel-like flavor. Use an equal amount.

– Honey – Another naturally sweet substitute. Can use freely, adjusting to taste.

– Molasses – Adds deep, bittersweet flavors like demerara’s slight molasses tones. Use sparingly.

– Brown rice syrup – Made from brown rice, it mimics demerara’s buttery taste. Use a 1:1 ratio.

– Corn syrup – Lacks complexity but matches thickness. Use 25% less than the demerara sirup amount.

– Granulated white sugar – Can substitute 1 cup sugar + 1/4 cup water, simmered into a sirup. Won’t replicate the flavor.

– Other brown sugars – Look for organic muscovado or turbinado sugar to make your own brown sugar sirup.

Get creative with substitutions like maple, honey or molasses to mimic demerara flavors. In a pinch, simple sugar sirup can work too.

How to use demerara sirup

Demerara sirup is delicious drizzled over all kinds of morning treats and breakfast foods:

– Pancakes and waffles – The sirup soaks into stacks of fluffy pancakes or crispy waffles.

– French toast – Drizzle over slices of cinnamon-dusted French toast.

– Oatmeal – Sweeten a bowl of oats and add texture with demerara sirup.

– Yogurt parfaits – Layer yogurt, fruit and granola in glasses, drizzled with sirup.

– Granola and muesli – Sprinkle over your homemade or store-bought granola.

– Porridge – Swirl into porridge along with fresh fruit, nuts and spices.

It’s also great in coffee and tea:

– Sweetener for coffee – Add to your morning brew or iced coffee instead of regular sugar.

– Chai tea latte – Mix into chai tea concentrate before heating up with milk or non-dairy milk.

– Sweeten iced tea – Stir in 1-2 tablespoons per glass of refreshing iced tea.

Use demerara sirup for cocktails and mocktails:

– Old fashioned cocktails – Mix with liquor like bourbon or rye and bitters.

– Whiskey sodas – Flavor simple whiskey and soda water drinks.

– Mocktails – Sweeten and add depth to fruit juice mocktails.

– Sweeten punch or lemonade – Add punch to any fruit punch.

The applications for demerara sirup extend beyond breakfast and beverages:

– Baking – Use as a sugar replacement in recipes for cookies, cakes, muffins, etc.

– Glazes and sauces – Brush on meat, mixed into barbecue sauces, or swirled into yogurt sauces.

– Fruit salads – Drizzle over fresh fruit salads.

– Oatmeal cookies – Use as a substitute for brown sugar in oatmeal cookie recipes.

– Smoothies – Blend with yogurt, fruit, and ice for a touch of sweetness.

With its unique rich, buttery, molasses-like flavor, demerara sirup can enhance all kinds of foods and beverages. Get creative with using it in your morning coffee, stacked pancakes, homemade baked goods, and more!

Health benefits of demerara sirup

While high in natural sugar, demerara sirup does have some potential health benefits compared to regular refined white sugar:

– Has a lower glycemic index – It impacts blood sugar less drastically due to the presence of molasses.

– Higher in minerals – Demerara retains some iron, calcium, potassium and other trace minerals.

– Contains antioxidants – Melanoidins formed during sugar processing have antioxidant effects.

– No artificial additives – It’s natural and unrefined, unlike many commercial sweeteners.

– Nutrient retention – There are small amounts of B vitamins, magnesium, and chromium.

– Prebiotic effect – May support beneficial gut bacteria due to inulin content.

– Less processed -White sugar undergoes more intensive chemical processing and refining.

Of course, demerara sirup should still be used in moderation due to its high sugar and calorie content. But it does have some advantages over heavily refined white sugar options.

When you have a craving for something sweet, demerara sirup provides more nutrients and health benefits than white sugar. Try using it in your favorite baked goods, breakfast foods, drinks and other treats.


Demerara sirup is an easy way to add sweetness and depth of flavor to foods and beverages. With a rich, butterscotch-like taste, it enhances everything from morning pancakes to cocktails. All it takes is some demerara sugar and water slowly simmered into a thick, golden syrup.

Look for good quality, organic demerara sugar and filtered water. A 1:1 ratio of sugar to water makes the base, then simply simmer until reduced by half into a luscious syrup. Add spices if desired. Cool, bottle and refrigerate or freeze the sirup to extend its shelf life.

Drizzle demerara sirup over oatmeal, use it to sweeten tea, incorporate into baked goods, or mix into smoothies. Its complexity of flavor is perfect for sweetening or topping all kinds of treats. And while still high in sugar, it does have some nutrition compared to heavily processed white sugar.

Whip up a batch of homemade demerara sirup and enjoy its rich caramel notes and versatility in both sweet and savory applications. Your morning coffee, stack of pancakes and favorite cocktails will all thank you!

Leave a Comment