Amount to Replace 1 cup Sugar:
Barley Malt 1 - 1 and 1/4 C, reduce liquid by 1/4 C
Brown Rice Syrup 1 - 1 and 1/4 C, reduce liquid by 1/4 C
Date Sugar 2/3 C, reduce liquid by none
Fruit Sweeteners 1 C, reduce liquid by 1/4 C
Honey 1/2 C, reduce liquid by 1/4 C
Maple Syrup 1/2 - 1/3 C, reduce liquid by 1/4 C
Molasses 1/2 C, reduce liquid by none
Stevia 1 tsp, reduce liquid by none
-Courtesy of All About Sweeteners, by National Cooperative Grocers Association
I have had the best luck baking with honey, maple syrup and date sugar. The only thing I don't like about maple syrup is that often the end product tastes too mapley. If I make carrot muffins or a banana cake, I want them to taste like carrots or bananas, not maple. Honey seems to be the most well-rounded natural sweetener and changes my recipes the least. Honey is also excellent for making candy. However, keep in mind that as sugar has approximately 750 calories per cup, honey contains about 990 calories per cup. That's 240 more calories per cup, and for those looking for sugar alternatives AND reduced calorie cooking, don't count on honey helping you out!
Has anyone had any luck baking with Stevia? I have not. I sometimes sprinkle some in my tea but that is the extent of my Stevia usage. There are many variations of Stevia out on the market today. I've always used the powdered, dried leaf. It's green and not processed. Some of the new Stevia products out there are white powders which look just as processed as white sugar. Any thoughts on this before I do my own investigating?
-Sugar/Honey calories information provided by: Sweet & Sugarfree, by Karen E. Barkie pg. 144
By the way, Sweet & Sugarfree is an older book, published in 1982, but a great one for naturally sweetened recipes--mostly baked goods, desserts and sauces. The author is a big fan of using fresh fruits as a sweetener.
On a strange side note, one of the books in the Suggested Reading section at the back of Sweet & Sugarfree includes a book titled Sweet & Dangerous: The New Facts about the Sugar You Eat as a Cause of Heart Disease, Diabetes, and Other Killers. This book was published in 1972!