Healthy Vegan Sweeteners

Once you become a vegan or raw vegan, you will seek out healthier alternatives for your sweeteners. There are healthy sweeteners that you can use.

When I ventured into the raw vegan world, I began using the sweeteners that were the most healthy ones. The longer I stay on this path, the more I realize that  I don’t need anything extra.

The longer you are on this path you will notice the same thing happening to you.  Until then, you will need some healthy alternatives to get you on your way.

Today I will share with you some vegan sweeteners that you will not feel bad about using.

Vegan Sweeteners

1. Agave nectar

2. Maple syrup

3. Dates/date paste

4. Coconut palm sugar

5. Lucuma powder

6. Carob powder

7. Mesquite powder

8. Stevia

9. Yacon syrup

10. Yacon root powder

*Raw honey

*Honey is listed, because some vegans, do use honey. Technically if a vegan uses honey he/she is not a vegan, because honey comes from a honey bee. But if you don’t care about that, then honey is also a good sweetener to use.

You don’t need to try every sweetener listed, but the most common ones are agave nectar, maple syrup, honey and dates/date paste.

If you are a raw vegan, you may steer clear of agave nectar or maple syrup because they are not raw. This may not be an issue for you.  It really depends on what you prefer. The other sweeteners that are listed can probably be found in the raw form.

There are some  good websites that you can visit to learn more about the items  listed above. Check out Nativa Naturals and Raw Food Pantry.

The best sweetener to use by far is fruit. I usually use dates or agave nectar. I’m trying to get away from honey. Look around and do what you think is best for you.

Your health is your wealth!

Image: Francesco Marino / FreeDigitalPhotos.net

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About the Author

Evelyn Parham started this site in 2010. She enjoys writing, reading, and dabbling in photography and video editing. Learn more about her here.

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Sites That Link to this Post

  1. What Does a Vegan Eat | May 11, 2011
  2. End Your Love Affair with White Sugar | February 18, 2011
  3. End Your Love Affair with White Sugar | February 16, 2011
  1. Ambika Mahajan says:

    Sugar is actually a deadly killer. The problem is we dont know where to stop.
    I wonder why Stevia finds a mention in your otherwise painstakingly compiled list at all.
    Thanks for the rest of the 9, though! 🙂

    • Hey Ambika!

      Sugar is a killer and it is addicting, that’s we it is hard to stop eating it.

      Stevia is mentioned because it is vegan. I actually tried to grow (herb) it myself, but was unsuccessful. The only sweetener I use currently is coconut palm sugar and I rarely use sweeteners.

      Thanks for stopping by!

  2. Vibrant says:

    P.S. Halloween is just around the corner- I’m sure most stores have already started stocking their shelves with candy – I cringe at the money spent on such a unhealthy unneccessary food item. Childhood obesity is huge.

    • Hi Vibrant,
      Yeah, I think the candy is already out. I’m so glad my daughter doesn’t like candy. Well, I guess if we start out not giving our children unhealthy foods, then they will more than likely not desire those unhealthy foods.

      You’re right about that!

      Take care,

      Evelyn

  3. Vibrant says:

    Hi Evelyn:

    It appears we are a sugar obsessed society – fruits are naturally sweet but very often we notice fruit products have natural and un-natural sugars added and for what? Sugar is not necessary – haven’t found any data to support it’s benefit in the diet. However lots of data to support the cons of utilizing sugar. I personally believe I have Candida- sugar is a big no no with this condition. Currently I don’t consume fruits or any types of sugar. After a while you notice you no longer have that craving- I use to periodically indulge in Jocalat Bars (mint or orange)- they are organic, naturally sweet with dates,etc and raw. I don’t even crave these anymore. Currently I taking a liquid vitamin and it is sweetened with fruit juices, stevia and agave. I’m desperately searching for a liquid vitamin/mineral that is not sweetened- or if so only with stevia. I believe Agave can be problematic. Does anyone know of a organic liquid/vitamin supplement that is unsweetened?
    Vibrant

    • Hi Vibrant,
      We sure do have a sugar obsessed society.

      Yeah, there is a good article out here about the dangers of sugar. Right now I can’t think of it off the top of my head, but it is by a lady. I’m sure you probably have run across it.

      That has happened to me. I no longer crave or need anything sweet. It took me a while to get that way, but I look at it as the body’s way of letting me know that I don’t always need something sweet.

      There is a good book by Dr. Cousens (Rainbow Green Food Living Food Cuisine) that takes one through phases to help get rid of the Candida. The first phase does not include any fruits at all. Only the vegetable type fruits. There are 3 phases and a person will gradually add fruits to their diet, but only after they have gotten the candida/yeast out of their blood. It is a good read and has a lot of helpful information.

      I agree with you about Agave being problematic. I don’t know of any liquid supplement that is not sweetened. If I run across one, I’ll let you know.

      Thanks for stopping by and leaving a comment!

      Take care,

      Evelyn

  4. bitt says:

    In my opinion, honey should not be listed as a vegan food. It’s just not, in the definition of vegan. If someone is eating honey and vegan they are straying from their veganism. I don’t care if they do, I just wish people wouldn’t label honey as vegan. It’s an animal product.

    Secondly, agave nectar can be found raw. And sometimes yacon and coconut sugar are heated beyond 115 but maybe only up to 200 degrees. I’ve done a fair amount of research on sweeteners.

    • Hi Bitt,
      I understand where you are coming from.

      Yep, we all know that honey is not a vegan product (that’s why I included the note), but it is far better to use that then to use white processed sugar. People have to gradually move away from things and it takes some longer than others. If people who are vegans choose to incorporate honey in their diet, then I have no problem with it and I also don’t think of a person as straying away from their veganism. Why? Because eventually the longer a person is vegan they will move away from honey anyway. I know many people who have done that, but it took them time to transition. It is a gradual process for some people!

      I personally don’t like using any sweeteners. I believe the true sweeteners are plant-based and unprocessed. Technically most if not all of the sweeteners packaged in a bottle are processed to some degree. Whole fruit is the ultimate best vegan sweetener of them all. Unprocessed, straight from nature! I’m moving to that point, because I don’t use sweeteners that much anyway. I use them very sparingly, if at all.

      It is good to know that you’ve got some research under your belt on this topic, maybe you can provide a guest post on the topic to enlighten us even more. 😉

      Thanks for stopping by and take care,

      Evelyn

  5. kelly says:

    Carob powder sounds promising. Yacon powder is recommended by David Wolfe. Stevia is only good is nothing else is added to the powder.

    Raw Honey (although rich in natural enzymes), Agave Nectar and Maple Syrup are not recommended because of its fructose and HFCS content.

    I will need to look more into Lucuma powder and Mesquite powder.

    • Evelyn says:

      Hi Kelly,

      I didn’t know that about Stevia.

      Raw Honey, agave nectar and maple syrup may be high in fructose and possibly not the best, but they are far better than eating white sugar or unclean sweeteners.

      I think the longer people are on the vegan road, they will not use sweeteners that much. And when sweeteners are used, the amount will be significantly reduced.

      You can find out more about lucuma powder and mesquite powder at sunfood.com.

      Thanks for stopping by and chiming in!

      Take care,

      Evelyn

  6. Olusola says:

    Dont know what to say about this…. Its totally nice. Keep it up

  7. Erich says:

    Hi,

    few minutes ago a got a RT from this topic.
    I’m not a (raw)vegan (1 week in month we(me and my family) live vegan (Liver Cleaning) also we always look for replacements of sugar – most times we take honey. Thx for sharing.

    kind regards
    Erich
    P.S. hope my English is not to bad. I’m from Austria so English is not my native language

    • Evelyn says:

      Hi Erich,
      Thanks for stopping by and commenting!
      That’s cool about you and your family eating vegan for 1 week. Honey is a lot healthier than white sugar.

      Don’t worry about your English…I understood every word! 😉

      Take care,

      Evelyn

  8. Agave is my #1 go to right now. I use it for everything. Before that I was using maple syrup. Before that, sadly I was using honey, but I didn’t know any better.

    The Sweetest Vegan
    Telling the truth that vegans make mistakes, early on and throughout

    • Evelyn says:

      Hi Sweetest Vegan,
      Welcome and thanks for commenting!

      What I like about Agave is that the taste is neutral and it does make for a good sweetener.

      Thanks for sharing,

      Evelyn

  9. Will says:

    Hi Evelyn,

    Although I’m not vegan ( yet!) , I am a vegetarian who’s moving in that direction a little more every day. Always loved honey rather than sugar in drinks and often think of Winnie The Pooh when opening a jar.

    “I eat my peas with honey, I’ve done it all my life,It makes the peas taste funny, But it keeps them on the knife”.

    Cheers

    Will

    • Evelyn says:

      Hi will,
      It is good that you enjoy honey instead of sugar.

      Never heard of anyone eating peas with honey. I can see how it would help them stay on knife. 🙂

      Thanks for sharing,

      Evelyn

  10. Vibrant says:

    Thank you so much for “sharing”. I have always been passionate about health and wellness. However – it has been a journey to understand how to achieve optimal health. There is no substitute for good health- btw I started dry skin brushing – and I know I have found something good for me.

    • Evelyn says:

      Hi Vibrant,
      You’re welcome! It is truly a journey. It’s a never ending learning journey! 🙂 Amen…not substitute for good health!

      That’s good to know about “dry skin brushing and I’m glad you like it!

      Thanks for stopping by and sharing!

      Take care,

      Evelyn

  11. Aaron says:

    That’s quite a list. Half of them are new to me. I am really interested in the coconut palm sugar, especially since the links said it’s one of the most nutritious sweeteners. Plus I have a bias towards all things coconut. I just hope I can find some locally. Thanks for the helpful info.

    • Evelyn says:

      Hi Aaron,
      Thank you for stopping by and commenting! 😉
      I have a bias toward some things that are coconut too. I enjoy a good Thai coconut though.

      Someone in the comments mentioned date sugar. You may want to check into that too.

      You’re welcome and take care,

      Evelyn

  12. Sudeep says:

    I am not sure but in India we have a sugar product made from sugarcane called as Jaggery or Gur . Its easily available in North America and actually more healthy than even brown sugar.

    • Evelyn says:

      Hey Sudeep,
      I forgot all about sugarcane! Some people use the juice to make things sweet too. I saw some at the Farmers Market and they were also juicing it for customers.

      Sugarcane is also a good alternative!

      Thanks for sharing! 🙂

      Take care,

      Evelyn

  13. Christianna Pierce says:

    My favorite sweetener is natural Date Sugar. It is made from organic dates that are dehydrated and ground into a coarse powder. Simple and fairly wholesome 🙂

  14. HealthyOpal says:

    Great list, I would like to add the Raw honey is a good choice if it’s organic. Is it healthy if it’s not organic, most likely but I can’t help but wonder what effects it can have long-term.

    Many beekeepers use chemicals to treat their hives; Also, you have to factor in that the beehives might be close to crops that are treated by chemicals. Not only are the honeybees are collecting the chemically treated nectar, it’s being processed into honey at their hive.

    A contributing factors to Colony Collapse Disorder seems to be the chemicals that are being sprayed on crops. Interestingly the beekeepers not affected are the organic beekeepers. I know some companies have spoken out saying this (spraying crops with chemicals) isn’t the case, but it’s hard to believe when you see entire bee colonies being wiped out simply because they have the misfortune of being to close to a chemically treated crops.

    One of my bee buddies had all her hives wiped out a few years ago. She just happened to live close to a produce farm. They used pesticides to treat their crops. She eventually moved her hives to another location, because of that. She’s one of many, that this has happened to, when that’s your livelihood it can be devastating.

    I’m fairly active within a few online bee communities, and this is one of the topics we’ve discussed. I’m looking forward to getting my hives this coming spring. I’m trying to do my part in helping with the struggling honeybees.

    Thankfully I live in a small community, there are no chemical crops within a three-mile radius (actually the chemical free factor extends much further than that) so that pleases me. Honeybees travel up to three miles to gather honey for their hives.

    For now my future honeybees and, the honey they produce should be organic. Naturally, I won’t be using chemicals on their hive. In fact, I don’t want their honey, simply want them for pollination.

    • Evelyn says:

      Hi HealthyOpal,

      This is quite interesting! Whenever I purchase honey, I make sure it is raw and organic. I didn’t know all of this that you have shared.
      I learned a lot. Sounds like a great post in the making. 🙂

      Best wishes with your hives!

      Thanks for sharing and stopping by!

      Take care,

      Evelyn

  15. Loi Laing says:

    I love Stevia too and you can purchase raw agave 🙂

    • Evelyn says:

      Hi Loi,
      Thanks for passing through!

      I’m not a fan of Stevia, but I know it is a good vegan sweetener. I just can’t get past the after taste. If I can do that, then, I would consider trying it again.

      I know there is suppose to be raw agave on the market, but there have been questions about it truly being raw. The temperature during processing is what people question the most. That is why I didn’t say that it can be purchased raw. I’ll have to do more research on that one. 🙂

      Thanks for sharing,

      Evelyn

  16. S. Ali Myers says:

    I FULLY endorse Stevia. O calories and absolutely natural. You also do not need that much because it is sweeter than sugar! Stevia has been used in the East for decades. Nice list!

    • Evelyn says:

      Hey Ali,

      Stevia is good, but I just can’t get past the after taste. I even tried growing some of my own, but I am never successful. I will keep trying though. 🙂

      Thanks for chiming in!

      Take care,

      Evelyn

  17. Wayne Howard says:

    I’m not a vegan in other shape or form, but I just wanted to comment about the Honey. I like using honey because it not only tastes good but it is high in antioxidants and other stuff that treats your body well.

    It is my #1 choice when I need to sweeten something up. Cheers!

    • Evelyn says:

      Hey Wayne,
      Honey does have some awesome benefits. For starters, it is a good source of B vitamins…especially the bee pollen.

      Glad to know that honey is you first choice. It is a lot healthier than going for white sugar.

      Take care,

      Evelyn

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