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sherribabee

Anyone baked with Splenda?

19 posts in this topic

I'm curious as to how it tastes and works overall for most baking.

Also, can you use it when doing things like beating egg whites and such, or should you just stick to granualted sugar?

Thought I'd ask the experts before I start experiementing. :biggrin:


Sherri A. Jackson

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I'm no expert, but I've given it a try. Here is what I have found: there is almost always a discernible taste when using Splenda. Those that haven't tried it may not identify it easily and I wouldn't say it is disgusting--just VERY Splendaish. Also, Splenda is not able to provide bulk or carmelization to foods. Therefore, I have not been able to get a good butter cake going because it is impossible to cream Splenda and butter (or eggs) to anything resembling a good structure. Also, for example, cookies don't brown or get the nice carmelized edges because Splenda has a different chemical structure than sugar. I have found it much easier to bake items in which the sugar is used only as a sweetener rather than a structural component: panna cotta, maybe a flourless chocolate cake, pie, etc.

I recently purchased Stevia to try to alleviate the Splenda aftertaste, but that one is even more clearly lacking the structural components of sugar. I haven't tried it yet.

The Splenda website has some recipes, but if you are looking for low carb cooking, they don't usually apply. Good luck!

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I'm no expert, but I've given it a try. Here is what I have found: there is almost always a discernible taste when using Splenda.

Thanks for the input. :biggrin: I've only used Splenda in my coffee, but my step-mom really likes to cook with it (she's only used the Splenda-specific recipes though).

I don't think I'll bother, I was just looking for a way to cut a few calories out of my tasty desserts, but if it doesn't *work* like sugar and tastes weird, it's probably not worth it to experiment too much.

OK, probably shouldn't get lazy and cancel my gym membership just yet. :blush:


Sherri A. Jackson

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I've used Splenda to make ice cream (I know, not baking, but I try). I've found that the aftertaste that is sometimes experienced with non-sugar sweeteners is greatly reduced when the dessert is frozen. My diabetic friend was enthralled, and I've got to say, it wasn't half bad.

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I am constantly trying to make products with Splenda and other sweeteners. I work in a private club and the members are always worried about their weight and the GM has been on a diet as long as I have worked there. I find the taste a little hollow and it doesn't work well with things that need sugar for texture. I have tried stevia, but I thought it was awful. The best thing I have made with Splenda was an apple pie, I am sure the spices covered up any unusual taste. I also make brownies but the texture is sort of springy not fudgy. I really don't like making pastry without sugar, I don't think baking should be sugar and calorie free, it wasn't meant to be. I think people should just eat small portions and enjoy it. Have you seen the new study results that state dark chocolate is good for your heart? My mother always believed you should eat anything you want, just in moderation. I second that.


check out my baking and pastry books at the Pastrymama1 shop on www.Half.ebay.com

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Have you tried DiabetiSweet? I just bought some so that I can try some of Fendel's ice cream recipes. It looks just like sugar, and tastes pretty close. I rarely use plain sugar (I take my coffee black), but I tried some in tea and did not notice any bad tastes. (Other than the tea. :biggrin: ) I just tried a half-teaspoon full. It's pretty close in texture to sugar, but a little softer. Somewhere between regular sugar and confectioners sugar. Not as sweet, i didn't notice any particularly bitter aftertaste.

I'm not exactly sure how this fits into a low-fat low carb diet. It's got 9 calories a teaspoon -- which is pretty close to real sugar. And 4.4 grams of carbs -- which I think is also pretty close to real sugar. However, the carbs are all "sugar alcohols". I think that makes a difference.


Edited by Stone (log)

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I've used Splenda as a replacement for about half the sugar in a flan recipe (not for the caramel, obviously, just the custard itself) and also to replace half the sugar in a bread pudding recipe with perfectly edible and tasty results. No funny aftertaste to me, but perhaps that's because I only used it to cut down on the amount of pure refined sugar in the recipe, and not as a total replacement.


Katie M. Loeb
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It's difficult to substitute for sugar in baking recipes, because the sugar is responsible for so much of the structure and color of the product.

That said, there will be a cookbook coming out sometime in the future for people who have had stomach stapling; while the author acknowledges that Splenda cannot offer the same structure as sugar, she does include a few recipes for desserts and baked goods using Splenda. The title of the book is Extreme Measures, the author is Susan Nunziato Leach, and the publisher is HarperCollins. It should be out before the end of the year, I think.

Personally, I find Splenda too sweet, and would have to cut back to less than 1 to 1 if I used it in cooking.

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I'm with Suzanne on this one. I tried a bunch of sugar substitutes (Splenda, Sommersweet, Stevia) that tasted funny to me, were cost prohibitive to use 1-for-1, were way too sweet, or just plain didn't work.

Then I came across Whey Low. You use it 1-for-1 in baking, it's not nearly as sweet as some of the others and it's also not nearly as expensive. The only correction you make in your baking is to reduce the oven temp by 25 degrees since it browns quicker than sugar. They sell a powdered version, granular, brown (kinda tan, but the taste is there) and a version for ice cream. It's been ok'd for diabetic use, but they also have a version for even stricter diabetes limitations (a little loose on my facts here...forgive me).

I've baked cakes with it. I've caramelized it. I made Italian meringue with it. It basically works just like sugar, but you need to tweak your temp a bit. The only thing I'm not crazy about is using it for non-baked items. It stays a bit grainy in a mousse or whipped cream. I suspect that's the reason for the ice cream version, but I tried that and it was still a bit grainy and when not cooked, seemed sweeter than if I had used regular sugar.

Anyway, I think the stuff is great and you can read more about it at www.wheylow.com. I've gone through more than 15 pounds of the stuff already, mostly playing around and casual baking, and I keep coming back for more. The other junk is still sitting in the cabinet.

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Holy cow! The first ingredient listed for Whey Low is sucrose. Second is fructose. I'm mystified as to how that could possibly be low-glycemic. I'd love it if it were, but how???

I'm intrigued, but it's hard to believe...

As for baking with Splenda (I found this thread late)... ugh. I've had lousy luck. It's excellent in cheesecakes and dismal in brownies and cookies. I made "molten chocolate cakes" with a liquid form of it, and they were like a rubber sponge. Mixed half-and-half with Diabetisweet, though, granular Splenda seems to work ok in the little cakes. Haven't tried the mix in brownies yet. I noted some of my experiences in my blog.

Off to go research WheyLow...

fendel


Edited by fendel (log)

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"Anyone baked with Splenda?"

I'd be scared to.

Bruce

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I hate the taste of Splenda straight -- like someone else here, I find it tastes "hollow" -- but mixing it with either erythritol or another xylitol works extremely well for me. Because the erythritol is granular, it creams well with butter (gets enough air in), and the two sweeteners together taste just like sugar to my tongue. I haven't yet tried meringues -- I'd think that would be the real clincher.

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I think that people need to balance their food choices. Baking with splenda makes dessert a less enjoyable experience, and you are still consuming calories. Why don't you plan in your week or day for those calories? Flour has calories, as does everthing else (except water). I don't cater to "dieting" people as a pastry chef. I believe that dessert can be a part of your life- just not everyday and all the time.

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My concern is less about calories than about carbohydrates. It's been made extremely clear to me that my health depends on my monitoring them fairly closely. While I don't make many sweets -- mostly because I don't much want them -- I like to invite people over to dinner, and dinner guests expect dessert. So my choices are making something and not eating it -- which you, as a professional may be able to do, but I, as a semi-professional eater, have a lot of trouble with -- or working to make something tasty that I can share with my guests. I guess the third alternative is saying the hell with it and eating the sugar. God knows I do that plenty, but I always pay for it, and I would prefer not to do so, if I have the choice.

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And this works for diabetics, how?

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I think that people need to balance their food choices. Baking with splenda makes dessert a less enjoyable experience, and you are still consuming calories. Why don't you plan in your week or day for those calories? Flour has calories, as does everthing else (except water). I don't cater to "dieting" people as a pastry chef. I believe that dessert can be a part of your life- just not everyday and all the time.

I applaud this attitude, but there are people with health problems for whom it will not work.

I'm not saying that you have to cater to them, but recognize that they do exist.

Bruce

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I think maybe different people are more sensitive to Splenda. I made a Splenda cheesecake and a few people raved about it while others agreed with me that the aftertaste was pretty strong. I've thrown away many a batch of baking experiments because the metallic, bitter finish just took away from the overall enjoyment. Meanwhile, other people rave about the stuff.

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I certainly realize people with health concerns DO exsist. My sister has juvenile diabetes. (and has lived with it for 40 years) I'm saying that people need to be very careful about singling out refined sugar as the enemy. Fruit juice and fruit are also things to be very careful of. Pasta, white rice, flour etc... You can make room for a "real" dessert if you are careful with your diet.

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I certainly realize people with health concerns DO exsist. My sister has juvenile diabetes. (and has lived with it for 40 years) I'm saying that people need to be very careful about singling out refined sugar as the enemy. Fruit juice and fruit  are also things to be very careful of. Pasta, white rice, flour etc... You can make room for a "real" dessert if you are careful with your diet.

I totally agree. I can't speak for diabetics or Atkins people, but for people casually watching calories, a small piece of the real thing is much better than a big wedge of some rubbery, crappy dessert substitute.

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