Maple syrup is a popular pancake topper and sweetener, but how much syrup actually comes in a typical plastic jug? Let’s take a closer look at the standard maple syrup container sizes and how many servings they contain.
Typical Maple Syrup Container Sizes
Maple syrup jugs typically come in a few standard sizes:
- Small: 8 oz
- Medium: 12 oz
- Large: 24 oz (1.5 pounds)
- Extra Large: 32 oz (2 pounds)
- Gallon: 128 oz
The most common size sold in grocery stores is 24 oz, which is about 1.5 pounds. The 24 oz or 1.5 pound jug is a good compromise between having enough syrup on hand without it going bad before you can use it all.
Servings Per Maple Syrup Container
To estimate how many servings come in a maple syrup jug, you need to know the typical serving size. According to the USDA, the standard serving size for maple syrup is 1⁄4 cup or 4 tablespoons.
Using this serving size, here is how many servings come in each standard jug size:
As you can see, the typical 24 oz or 1.5 pound jug contains about 24 servings of maple syrup. Of course, if you use more or less syrup per serving, the number of servings per container would go down or up.
Cost Per Serving
To figure out the cost per serving, take the total price of the maple syrup jug and divide it by the number of servings inside.
For example, let’s say you buy a 24 oz or 1.5 pound jug of maple syrup for $12. With 24 servings inside, the cost per serving is:
$12 (total cost) / 24 (servings) = $0.50 per serving
This means each 1⁄4 cup of syrup costs about 50 cents. Compare this to the cost per ounce – $12 for 24 oz is 50 cents per ounce. This shows that the standard 4 tablespoon (1⁄4 cup) serving size is a good baseline for calculating maple syrup costs.
Maple Syrup Storage
Once open, maple syrup can last up to a year in the refrigerator. To prolong its shelf life, store maple syrup in a tightly sealed container in the fridge. If it starts growing mold, it has gone bad and should be discarded.
Unopened maple syrup can last up to 2 years stored in a cool, dark place. After opening, maple syrup usually lasts about 12-24 months in the refrigerator before going bad.
Maple syrup can also be frozen for longer term storage. Frozen maple syrup can keep for up to 2 years without losing flavor or going bad.
Uses for Maple Syrup
Maple syrup isn’t just for pouring over pancakes and waffles. Here are some other ways to use it:
- Sweeten oatmeal or porridge
- Make maple granola or trail mix
- Bake into desserts like maple cookies, pies, or cakes
- Whisk into dressings or glazes for vegetables
- Sweeten or flavor smoothies
- Use in marinades for grilled meats like chicken
- Stir into plain yogurt or cottage cheese
- Drizzle over roasted sweet potatoes
- Mix into coffee or tea as a sweetener
Maple syrup provides a sweet flavor along with antioxidants and minerals like zinc and manganese. It’s a natural way to add sweetness to many recipes.
Maple Syrup Nutrition Facts
Maple syrup contains some nutrients and minerals, though not as much as maple syrup. Here are the nutrition facts for 1⁄4 cup (4 tablespoons) of pure maple syrup:
- Calories: 217
- Fat: 0g
- Sodium: 9mg
- Potassium: 200mg
- Carbs: 54g
- Sugar: 52g
- Calcium: 26mg
- Iron: 1mg
- Manganese: 230mg
- Zinc: 1mg
As you can see, maple syrup is high in sugar – over 50g per serving. However, it provides some minerals like manganese, potassium, calcium and zinc.
Maple Syrup Grades
Maple syrup is graded by color and flavor, with lighter grades being more delicate in flavor:
- Grade A Light Amber – Very light color and mild maple flavor. Good for drizzling.
- Grade A Medium Amber – Slightly darker with a richer maple taste. Good all-purpose grade.
- Grade A Dark Amber – Much darker with a more robust maple flavor. Best for baking.
- Grade B – Very dark with a strong maple flavor. Used for cooking as it has a more pronounced taste.
Lighter maple syrup is produced earlier in the maple syrup harvesting season. Darker syrup comes from sap harvested later in the season.
All grades have similar nutrition though darker syrups may contain more minerals. From a health perspective, lighter and darker maple syrup grades can be used interchangeably.
Organic vs Non-Organic Maple Syrup
Both organic and non-organic maple syrup come from maple tree sap. The main differences are in the standards used for harvesting and processing the sap:
- Organic – Maple trees cannot have certain pesticides used on them. The maple sap must be gathered and processed using organic practices.
- Non-organic – There are no restrictions on pesticides or chemicals used. Processing standards are lower.
That said, all maple syrup grades contain a similar nutrition profile. The choice comes down to your personal preferences around organic certification and sustainable harvesting methods.
A standard 24 oz or 1.5 pound jug of maple syrup contains about 24 servings. Each serving is 1⁄4 cup or 4 tablespoons. The cost per serving is around 50 cents based on typical maple syrup prices. Look for Grade A Medium Amber syrup as an all-purpose option. Store maple syrup in the refrigerator after opening to maximize freshness.