6 Amazing Brown Rice Syrup Substitutes

by John Staughton (BASc, BFA) last updated -

Brown rice syrup substitutes are important in the kitchen, particularly since this ingredient has risen in popularity in recent years.

Brown rice syrup is a dark brown, liquid sweetener derived from cooked brown rice. It can be used anywhere that sweeteners are called for. Unlike its high-fructose cousins, brown rice syrup contains only glucose sugar, which is considered marginally safer for consumption over the long term. Brown rice syrup is not a significant source of any vitamins or nutrients. There is some concern over the level of arsenic in diets that include a large amount of rice, but it probably won’t register in a few teaspoons of brown rice syrup. [1]

Brown Rice Syrup Substitutes

Our bodies do thrive on small amounts of sugar, so when you want to use sweeteners, but don’t have any brown rice syrup available, try one of these great natural substitutes that include honey, maple syrup, blackstrap molasses, table sugar, stevia, and fruit juices or purees.


Raw honey might be the best sweetener out there. It is packed with vitamins and minerals and is known to promote health. Local honey from your area may even reduce symptoms of pollen allergies. Honey is also slightly lower in calories than some other sweeteners. [2]

Close-up image of molasses in a bowl

Molasses in a bowl Photo Credit: Shutterstock

Maple Syrup

Maple syrup is another perfect sweetener straight from nature. Always buy 100% pure maple syrup, and avoid anything labeled ‘pancake syrup’, which is probably mostly corn syrup and artificial flavors.

Blackstrap Molasses

This thick, dark, and slightly bitter sweetener may be an acquired taste. Unlike refined sugar, which has zero nutritional value, blackstrap molasses is high in vital nutrients like iron, calcium, and vitamin b6. It contains just 15 grams of sugar per tablespoon – less than almost any other natural sweetener on the market. [3]

Table Sugar

We all have some refined white sugar in our pantries, and when it comes to certain baking recipes, there’s really nothing better. A sprinkle in your coffee or over grapefruit is okay, but moderation is key to avoid sugar-related conditions like obesity and diabetes.


With zero calories and zero carbs, stevia is a bit of a wonder. It’s totally natural and almost no side effects have been reported. It is much sweeter than sugar, so be sure to use it sparingly. [4]

Fruit Juice or Puree

Fruits are naturally sweet, and homemade juices and purees don’t need any additives. If you’re buying them at the grocery store, avoid anything with added sugars. Fructose is the sugar in fruit, so keep that in mind if you’re trying to reduce fructose in your diet.

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About the Author

John Staughton is a traveling writer, editor, publisher and photographer with English and Integrative Biology degrees from the University of Illinois in Champaign-Urbana (USA). He co-founded the literary journal, Sheriff Nottingham, and now serves as the Content Director for Stain’d Arts, a non-profit based in Denver, Colorado. On a perpetual journey towards the idea of home, he uses words to educate, inspire, uplift and evolve.

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