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When baking and making edible creations, choosing the right kind of sugar for the task is crucial. In this post by Great Harvest Bread Co., you will learn about different types of sugar as well as some of their basic characteristics.

Have you ever wondered about the different types of sugar there are? When it comes to baking, choosing the right type of sugar for your creation is important as it may alter the outcome of your baked goods. In this article by Great Harvest Bread Co. in Newtonville, you can learn about different types of sugar and their characteristics. If you want to know more about the topic, keep reading!

Let's Learn a Little Bit about Sugar

All sugar is made by first extracting sugar juice form sugar beet or sugar cane plants, and from there, many types of sugar can be produced. Through slight adjustments in the process of cleaning and crystallizing, sugar of various crystal sizes provides unique functional characteristics that make the sugar suitable for different foods and beverages. Sugar color is primarily determined by the amount of molasses remaining on or added to the crystals, giving pleasurable flavors and altering moisture. Heating sugar also changes the color and flavor. Some types of sugar are used only by the food industry and are not available in the supermarket.

Granulated sugar

Let’s start with granulated sugar, the most common type of sugar used for cooking and baking. This is the “standard” sugar, the one that most people are referring to when talking about sugar. Also called table or regular sugar, it is finely granulated to be ideal for bulk handling and also be less susceptible to caking or lumping/hardening. This is the sugar most people use for their baked goods as well as for sweetening their morning coffee.

Brown Sugar

Brown sugar is actually refined sugar but with an amount of molasses added in. There are usually two types of brown sugar, light brown sugar and dark brown sugar. What makes the two different is the amount of molasses added they contain. This is another very common type of sugar used for baking and is usually loved because of its slight caramel taste.

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Powdered Sugar

Powdered sugar is also a baking favorite and confectioner's favorite. It is highly used for decorating, Dustin, frosting, and more, as it is versatile and easily dissolves in liquid. Powdered sugar is granulated sugar that is finally made into a light and airy powder. It also has a small amount of cornstarch added to prevent the sugar from clumping.

Sanding Sugar

This type of sugar is very commonly used for decorating as it has the characteristics of being in the form of bigger crystal structures that allow for a different look than powdered or granulated sugar. Its large grains make it quite unpracticed for being used in baking recipes, reason to why this type of sugar is normally only used for decorations and giving baked goods a great finished look.

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Coconut Sugar

Coconut sugar has become more popular in the last years due to its properties. It is used as a substitute from normal cane sugar and is made from the snap of a coconut palm tree. It is considered to retain more nutrients as well as a fiber called inulin, believed to be good for our health, thanks to its less intense conversion process.

Baker’s Special Sugar

This type of sugar, as its name suggests, is used for making baked goods and pastries like cookies and donuts. It has very fine crystals and is actually made for the baking industry. This is a type of sugar that we often consume in a lot of baked goods that we buy. Bakwr's special sugar is sugar you won’t find in the supermarket. It is also used in some recipes to create a fine crumb texture.


Muscovado is a quiet unrefined sugar variety. It has the characteristics of being moist with a deep brown color, and with a great molasses flavor and level. This type of sugar adds a very rich and special flavor when used for baking and is also used in products like barbecue sauce and savory marinades. It is quite stickier than more refined varieties of sugar, reason to why it isn’t the most used in traditional recipes.

Enjoy amazing baked goods and freshly made bread by going to your local Great Harvest Bread Co. bakery. Enjoy some amazing recipes with your family by visiting your local bakery in Newtonville, MA. For more information, call 617-928-1162.

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