Barley malt syrup is the star of the show when making bagels, sauces, pretzels, and bakery products. It decreases yeast consumption and makes the dishes more delicious.
However, there are circumstances where you simply don’t like the flavor of the barley malt syrup or may not find it anywhere near you. Well, in that case, your best solution is to find a suitable alternative for it.
Yet there are only a few alternatives that can prove worthy of being used as a substitute for the barley malt syrup. It is because not all sweeteners are similar to it in consistency and texture!
So, what is the best barley malt syrup substitute? The best barley malt syrup substitute is honey, as it is a great cost-effective option that mimics the consistency and flavor of barley malt syrup. Other substitutes include brown rice syrup, molasses, Korean rice syrup, agave syrup, golden syrup, maple syrup, coconut syrup, sugar syrup, maltose, and date syrup.
If you are not sure which substitute to use for which dish, please continue reading. We will give you an overview of the best barley malt syrup substitutes!
What Is Barley Malt Syrup?
Barley malt syrup is a type of sweetener extracted from the barley grains by passing them through a complex process. It begins with sprouting barley and ends with the slow heating of barley in brewing vessels to prepare the syrup.
This sticky and thick syrup adds a lovely nuttiness to the recipe along with the right sweetness. It has become a popular choice among many people in recent times as they prefer to replace white sugar with barley malt syrup.
Can You Find Substitutes For Barley Malt Syrup?
You may think that the distinguishing taste of the barley malt syrup makes it difficult or almost impossible to find a substitute for it.
But no, some sweeteners can act as a perfect substitute for barley malt syrup. They can imitate or even have similarities with the features of barley malt syrup.
Please note that you won’t get the same taste with these substitutes. However, they can blend well with other sweet dishes in the place of barley malt syrup.
The 11 Best Barley Malt Syrup Substitutes
Keeping the taste, texture, and consistency in mind, we have come up with the 11 best barley malt syrup substitutes. These include:
Honey is a thick sweet liquid extracted by honey bees from the nectar of flowers.
It is one of the best substitutes for barley malt syrup. Moreover, it is also one of the most common sweeteners. So, you can find it almost everywhere!
Why Choose Honey As A Barley Malt Substitute?
Honey is a cost-effective option as you can get it at a much lower price than barley malt syrup. Additionally, apart from the sweetness, the consistency of honey resembles barley malt syrup too.
Even though honey doesn’t replace the nutty flavor as seen in barley malt syrup, its floral flavor is still an excellent substitute option.
However, note that honey offers two times more sweetness compared to barley malt syrup. So, if you use it in your recipe, remember to reduce its quantity by half.
2. Brown Rice Syrup
Brown rice syrup is a sweetener extracted by breaking down brown rice through fermentation. It is made by the action of enzymes on cooked rice.
This breaks down starch into smaller sugars and filters out impurities. It is also sometimes referred to as rice syrup or rice malt syrup.
Why Choose Brown Rice Syrup As A Barley Malt Substitute?
Brown rice syrup is an excellent substitute, just like honey and molasses. It is a vegan as well as a healthier alternative that can add sweetness to your dishes without any extra calories! Total win-win, right?
Here, brown rice syrup is a bit less sweet. So, while you are using the brown rice syrup add a little more of it than the recommended quantity of malt syrup.
Molasses is a thick sweet syrup created as a by-product of sugar production. It is extracted from crushed sugar cane or sugar beets. Hence, it is suitable as a sweetener too.
Why Choose Molasses As A Barley Malt Substitute?
Molasses and malted barley syrup have many things in common. Many people often confuse and compare these two as well for their similarities.
So, you can substitute barley malt syrup with molasses in various dishes. It has a strong and sweet flavor with the right thickness and viscosity like barley malt syrup.
Molasses is also an excellent replacement for the barley malt syrup for bagels and other baked goods.
Now, you can mainly find three available molasses: mild molasses, blackstrap molasses, and dark molasses.
We recommend using blackstrap molasses as it’s the most suitable one. It has the right amount of sweetness, excellent and thick consistency, and a very similar color.
Keep in mind that molasses has more sweetness than barley malt syrup. So, ensure that you reduce the quantity to keep the sweetness in check.
4. Korean Rice Syrup
Did you know that Korean rice syrup is actually a traditional recipe made with barley?
This thick and viscous syrup is an indispensable part of any sweet dish in Korean cuisine. Korean food uses this syrup for the finishing glaze and for adding some lovely sweetness too!
Why Choose Korean Rice Syrup As A Barley Malt Substitute?
Korean rice syrup is a close alternative to barley malt syrup as it consists of rice and barley malt powder. The flavorful, sweet, and earthy flavor of the Korean rice syrup substitutes the nutty flavor of barley malt syrup very well.
Korean rice syrup offers just the right amount of sweetness. So, we recommend using it in the same quantities as barley malt syrup.
5. Agave Syrup
Agave syrup is a type of natural sweetener obtained from different species of agave, especially blue agave, commercially.
Why Choose Agave Syrup As A Barley Malt Substitute?
The consistency of the Agave syrup is similar to that of honey. However, it is slightly thinner.
The agave syrup is substituted for barley malt syrup for its color and sweetness. The color is quite similar and the sweetness as well. Moreover, this syrup best substitutes the barley malt syrup in baked goods.
So while using it you can replace the recommended quantity of barley malt syrup according to the recipe with your agave syrup.
6. Golden Syrup
Golden syrup is a thick syrup made from simple ingredients like water, sugar, and citric acid. This syrup forms an integral part of all traditional British desserts. Hence, it is commonly popular in the UK.
Why Choose Golden Syrup As A Barley Malt Substitute?
Golden syrup can replace barley malt syrup because of its sweetness. It adds a buttery caramel flavor to the dish as well which is a good twist.
Golden syrup has more sweetness than barley malt syrup. So, when you substitute it for the barley malt syrup, add less than the recommended quantity according to the recipe.
7. Maple Syrup
People extract maple syrup by boiling sugar maple saps into a thick syrup. Maple syrup is one of the best barley malt substitutes for all kinds of dishes. However, it is particularly well-suited for desserts.
Why Choose Maple Syrup As A Barley Malt Substitute?
Maple syrup has a sweet taste similar to that of malted barley syrup due to its flavorful and deep nutty taste.
The maple syrup consistency is slightly thinner compared to barley malt syrup consistency. But you can substitute the given quantity of barley malt syrup with the maple syrup while using it.
8. Coconut Syrup
Coconut syrup is extracted from the sugar coconut saps through a complex commercial process. It is a caramel-colored natural sweetener with a taste similar to brown sugar.
Why Choose Coconut Syrup As A Barley Malt Substitute?
Coconut syrup is a good substitute for barley malt syrup while making ice-creams, pancakes, and cakes because of its overall taste. It also adds a tropical nutty flavor to the dishes along with the sweetness.
You can substitute the recommended quantity of barley malt syrup with coconut syrup according to the recipes.
9. Sugar Syrup
Sugar syrup is a thick viscous syrup that is made by boiling the mixture of sugar and water until the sugar is dissolved. You can use either white or brown sugar to make the sugar syrup.
Why Choose Sugar Syrup As A Barley Malt Substitute?
Sugar syrup is the most commonly used substitute for barley malt syrup due to its sweetness and the forever availability of sugar in the household.
However, when you are substituting barley malt syrup with sugar syrup use half of the recommended quantity according to the recipes. It is because sugar syrup is sweeter than barley malt syrup.
Maltose syrup is a thick sweet syrup made from starch by following an elaborate complex process. It is the healthier version of sugar syrup.
You can consider using it as an alternative to the barley malt syrup when you don’t have any other option.
Why Choose Maltose As A Barley Malt Substitute?
Maltose offers a sweet and neutral flavor. Hence, there is no risk of spoiling your dish due to overpowering flavors. It also has a beautiful color like that of a barley malt syrup.
Now, even if maltose is less sweet than sugar, it is still sweeter than barley malt syrup. So, you have to use less than the given quantity according to the recipes when you are substituting barley malt syrup here.
11. Date Syrup
Date syrup is a sweet syrup extracted from the dates of the palm trees through a complex process. It has become popular and made available everywhere only in recent times even though it’s as old as honey.
Why Choose Date Syrup As A Barley Malt Substitute?
You can use date syrup as a substitute as it’s almost as sweet as barley malt syrup. So, when you are substituting barley malt syrup with the date syrup ensure that you add a little bit more than the recommended quantity.
Keep in mind that date syrup offers a bit darker color than barley malt syrup.
Things To Consider Before Choosing Any Barley Malt Syrup Substitute
Now, there are many substitutes for barley malt syrup. You need to consider certain factors before you make your choice:
Type Of Dish
There are chances that some substitute sweeteners may be the best combination for some dishes and not so better for other dishes.
So you have to take into account the type of dish when choosing a substitute for barley malt syrup.
It ensures that the substitute provides you with the best results and closest outcome to barley malt syrup. For instance, Molasses are suitable for bakery items.
There are various alternatives to choose from for the barley malt syrup. Some are costlier and less available than others.
For instance, date syrup is commonly available in the Middle East but may cost more in the US. So, keep the cost factor in mind.
The barley malt syrup is a healthier alternative to white sugar. So, try to avoid sugar syrup.
Most of the alternatives to barley malt syrup have only a little or no variation in their calories when compared to barley malt syrup. Moreover, some are also vegan and gluten-free.
Now that we’ve gone over some of the absolute best barley malt syrup substitutes, let’s take a look at a few related questions on the subject!
Which is the best barley malt substitute for bagels?
Honey is the best alternative for bagels since it substitutes barley malt syrup in its color, consistency, and viscosity.
Another reason why honey is the best-recommended substitute for barley malt syrup for bagels is its easy availability everywhere around you.
It’s even healthier than the other alternatives of barley malt syrup because it is gluten-free. Honey may not taste as nutty as barley malt syrup but its original taste is good enough.
Which is the best barley malt substitute for baking?
There are many substitutes for barley malt syrup. Still, the best one is molasses. Molasses is ideal for baking in place of barley malt syrup due to various reasons:
Both molasses and barley malt syrup have a very similar color. So, when you’re baking, you won’t find a lot of differences in the dish’s color. This will keep the appearance of the dish intact.
Molasses have a pretty similar texture and consistency to that of barley malt syrup. This won’t affect your baking measurements or cause consistency-related problems.
Molasses has more sweetness than barley malt syrup. Yet, you can use it by changing the measurements slightly. Simply add the molasses slowly and taste the batter or dough. If the sweetness is less, you can add more.
Is malt syrup the same as barley malt syrup?
Both barley malt syrup or malt syrup mean the same thing. Both of them are extracted from barley grains which adds a pleasant nutty flavor to the dish along with the sweetness.
Moreover, they are also very famous now as they offer fewer calories than sugar and taste excellent as well.
Is barley malt syrup bad for you?
Barley malt syrup is a healthier version of sugar. But when consumed in larger quantities, it may be harmful to your health and cause obesity, diabetes, and heart disease.
You can avoid the excess consumption of barley malt syrup either by reducing the intake of it or by substituting fruit pulp with barley malt syrup.
Reducing the amount of sugar intake is very difficult in today’s world. So you can substitute your sugar with fruit pulp.
If the recipe calls for this natural barley malt syrup and it is not available in the kitchen, you can always buy it online. But if you are in immediate need of barley malt syrup, then you can go for a substitute.
There are various alternatives as discussed above to choose from. So you can choose an alternative to the barley malt syrup based on your dish, taste, and preference, and cost!
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