Rebaudioside A

Rebaudioside A (Reb-A) is a highly purified form of stevia that was approved by the FDA for use in 2008.

From: Culinary Nutrition, 2013

Add to Mendeley

SOFT DRINKS | Chemical Composition

K. Jorge, in Encyclopedia of Food Sciences and Nutrition (Second Edition), 2003

Stevia (Stevia rebaudiana Bertoni )

Stevia contains natural compounds, especially stevioside and rebaudioside A, that are estimated to be 150–400 times sweeter than saccharose. Used for centuries in parts of South America, stevia has been discovered in recent years by much of the calorie-conscious modern world. It is now widely and legally consumed by millions of people, from South Korea, Israel, and the People's Republic of China, but no country has done more to demonstrate stevia's dietary and economic potential than Japan, where the herb and its extract have been used since 1970s.

The Japanese, having subjected stevia extract to extensive safety testing and found it without health risk, now incorporate it in numerous food products, including soft drinks.

Read full chapter

Development & Modification of Bioactivity

A. Douglas Kinghorn, ... Zhonghua Jia, in Comprehensive Natural Products II, 2010 ent-Kaurane

As mentioned earlier in this chapter, two steviol glycosides, rebaudioside A (4) and stevioside (5), have commercial applications in various forms, and there is considerable interest in extending these uses further.39,43,53,54 Several additional sweet diterpene glycosides of the ent-kaurane type were isolated from two plant species, S. rebaudiana42,104–106 and Rubus suavissimus S. K. Lee (Rosaceae),107 in the 1970s and 1980s. Dulcoside A (18) and rebaudioside C (20) are the major constituents of the leaves of S. rebaudiana, but occur in somewhat lower yields (0.4–0.7 and 1–2% w/w, respectively) when compared with stevioside (5) and rebaudioside A (4).104–106 Other less abundant sweet principles of S. rebaudiana leaves are rebaudioside B (19),42 rebaudioside D (21),105 rebaudioside E (22),105 and steviolbioside (25).42 It is possible that rebaudioside B and steviolbioside are actually artifacts of extraction as opposed to being actual natural products. More recently, a ninth sweet-tasting principle has been obtained from S. rebaudiana leaves, namely rebaudioside F (23), which contains a β-xylose unit as part of the C-13 saccharide substituent.108 Rubusoside (desglucosylstevioside) (24) is the main ent-kaurene glycoside from R. suavissimus leaves (a sweet-tasting species originally published in the literature as Rubus chingii Hu107) and its sweetness potency was rated as 115 times sweeter than sucrose, but also with the perception of some bitterness and an unpleasant aftertaste.109 Additional ent-kaurene-type diterpene glycosides were isolated as minor constituents of R. suavissimus leaves, namely suaviosides A, B, G, H, I, and J (2732) and steviol 13-O-β-d-glucoside (steviol monoside) (26).109,110 However, their sweetness intensities have not been determined. No other species of the genus Stevia or Rubus appears to biosynthesize sweet-tasting ent-kaurene glycosides to any significant degree.21 Like stevioside (5), rubusoside (24) was subjected to extensive structural modification by the group of the late Professor Osamu Tanaka at Hiroshima University in order to improve on its quality of taste.20,44,48,49 Several ent-kaurene glycosides were isolated in 2002 by Yamasaki et al.111 from the Madagascan plant Cussonia racemosa Baker (Araliaceae), and one of these compounds, cussoracoside C (17), bearing a β-glucose unit at C-12, was stated to be sweet tasting, although its relative potency compared with sucrose was not documented.

Rebaudioside A (4) has a branched trisaccharide unit at C-13 and is sweeter and more pleasant tasting than stevioside (5), with a C-13 sophorosyl disaccharide moiety. Removal of the C-19 sugar unit of rebaudioside A, so as to produce rebaudioside B (19), results in a less potently sweet-tasting compound. Rebaudioside C (20), having a terminal glucose unit at C-13 replaced by rhamnose, is not only less sweet than rebaudioside A (4), but is somewhat bitter. Sauvioside A (27) is unusual among the ent-kaurane sweet glycosides in that it contains no C-16, C-17-exomethylene group. Sauvioside B (28), which differs from rubusoside (24) only in the presence of a C-9 hydroxy group, has only half of the resultant sweetness potency (Table 1).19,109

There is now a very large technical and patent literature on S. rebaudiana and its sweet steviol glycoside constituents. This information refers principally to methods for the purification of these substances, procedures for taste improvement, and biological test results.

Read full chapter

Artificial sweeteners

In Meyler's Side Effects of Drugs (Sixteenth Edition), 2016


Stevia species are members of the family of Asteraceae (qv). Stevia rebaudiana contains steviol glycosides, such as stevioside and rebaudioside A, used as artificial sweeteners and 100–300 times sweeter than sucrose [14,15].

Steviol glycosides have been reported to have mutagenic effects in some bacteria in vitro, but the results have been variable and are thought not to be relevant to daily use of stevioside as a sweetener [16].

In a multicenter, double-blind, randomized, placebo-controlled study, 106 Chinese subjects with hypertension aged 28–75 years were given stevioside 250 mg or placebo tds for 1 year [17]. After 3 months, the mean systolic and diastolic blood pressures in those who took stevioside fell significantly: systolic from 166 to 153 mmHg and diastolic from 105 to 90 mmHg, and the effect persisted for the whole year. There were no significant changes in lipids or glucose and no adverse reactions. In a similar 2-year study in 174 subjects by the same investigators, mean systolic pressure fell from 150 to 140 mmHg and diastolic pressure from 95 to 89 and there was a reduced incidence of left ventricular hypertrophy [18].

However, in a Brazilian randomized, placebo-controlled study in patients with previously untreated mild essential hypertension crude stevioside 3.75 mg/kg/day for 7 weeks, 7.5 mg/kg/day for 11 weeks, and 15 mg/kg/day for 6 weeks had no significant effect on blood pressure compared with placebo; there were no major adverse reactions during the trial [19]. In a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled, study in subjects with type 1 diabetes, subjects with type 2 diabetes, and subjects without diabetes and with normal/low normal blood pressures who were randomly allocated to stevioside 250 mg tds or placebo and were followed for 3 months, systolic and diastolic pressures, glucose, and glycated hemoglobin (HbA1c) were not altered; there were no adverse reactions [20]. In a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled study of the stevia glycoside rebaudioside A 1000 mg/day for 4 weeks in 100 individuals with normal and low-normal blood pressures aged 18–73 there was no change in blood pressure or heart rate [21].

Read full chapter

Stevia as a Putative Hepatoprotector

E. Ramos-Tovar, P. Muriel, in Liver Pathophysiology, 2017


The leaves of Stevia rebaudiana, a natural sweetener, contain more than 30 different steviol glycosides, of which stevioside (STV) and rebaudioside A are found in major proportion. The main chemistry structures of glycosides found in stevia are diterpenes with strong antioxidant and antiinflammatory properties. Most liver diseases involve nitrogen and oxygen free radicals that attack macromolecules such as lipids, proteins, and nucleic acids for the production and perpetuation of hepatic damage. Moreover, inflammation is a characteristic of acute hepatic damage and when it persists over time, chronic liver damage is established and fibrosis ensues with the consequent production of cirrhosis. Therefore, the well-known antioxidant and antiinflammatory properties of stevia make this medicinal herbal, mainly used to treat diabetes, an excellent therapeutic strategy to fight liver disease; in fact, some evidence demonstrates its actual beneficial effects on liver damage. However, this area remains almost unexplored and deserves further basic and clinical investigation.

Read full chapter

Stevia Glycosides

Gerrit J. Gerwig, ... Johannis P. Kamerling, in Advances in Carbohydrate Chemistry and Biochemistry, 2016

7.7 β-Glycosyltransferase Glycosylation Systems Using UDP-Sugars

Only a few studies concerning the modification of steviol glycosides, using β-glycosyltransferases in combination with nucleotide sugars as donor substrates, have been reported.

Incubation of acceptor substrate rebaudioside A (11) with UDP-Glc as glucose donor and a β-glucosyltransferase UGTSL2 (produced in yeast) as biocatalyst showed a partial bioconversion (Scheme 14), yielding three products, namely, rebaudioside D (13) and two other components, denoted rebaudioside M2 (104) and rebaudioside D2 (105) (Table 835,36,206,207) (ratio A:D:M2:D2 = 49:24:6:21).35,206 Clearly, the C-19-ester-linked Glc(β1- residue is an acceptor for Glc(β1-2)- and Glc(β1-6)-elongations, including branching, affording linkage isomers of rebaudioside M (21) and D (13) (Table 1). The rare Glc(β1-6) residue has been found in rebaudioside L (15)26 and in rebaudioside A2 (12),33 although present in the C-13-acetal-linked oligosaccharides (Table 1). Incubation of acceptor substrate rebaudioside A with UDP-Glc as glucose donor and β-glucosyltransferase UGT76G1-R11-F12 (produced in E. coli) as catalyst showed a partial bioconversion by introduction of a Glc(β1-3) residue at the Glc(β1-C19 site, affording rebaudioside I (14) (Tables 1 and 8) (A:I = 77:23).26,36 Interestingly, with both β-glucosyltransferases only the C-19-ester-linked Glc(β1- residue functioned as an acceptor, not the C-13-acetal-linked trisaccharide Glc(β1-2)[Glc(β1-3)]Glc(β1- moiety.

Scheme 14. Bioconversion of rebaudioside A (11) into rebaudioside I (14), rebaudioside D (13), rebaudioside M2 (104), and rebaudioside D2 (105).

Bovine colostrum β-1,4-galactosyltransferase has been tested as a biocatalyst for the β-galactosylation of stevioside (5) and steviolbioside (4) using UDP-Gal as galactose donor.207 In both cases, the terminal Glc residue of the C-13-β-sophorosyl disaccharide could be elongated with a Gal(β1-4) residue in high yields of 81% (106) and 95% (107) (Table 8), respectively. The synthesized galactosylated products showed improved sweetness and decreased aftertaste.

Recently, to improve the organoleptic properties of steviol glycoside products, an efficient (78%) enzymatic conversion of stevioside (5) into rebaudioside A (11) was reported, using recombinant UDP-glucosyltransferase UGT76G1 from S. rebaudiana, together with the sucrose synthase AtSUS1 from Arabidopsis thaliana.208 The latter enzyme was used to catalyze the generation of the glucose donor, UDP-glucose, from sucrose and UDP. In a similar way, stevioside was converted to rebaudioside A using recombinant Saccharomyces cerevisiae, in which UGT76G1 was overexpressed as the whole-cell biocatalyst in a glucose-containing medium. The addition of citrate regulated the yeast metabolism toward enhanced synthesis of UDP-glucose.209

Read full chapter

Chemical Ecology

Kunisuke Izawa, ... Motonaka Kuroda, in Comprehensive Natural Products II, 2010 Stevioside

Several ent-kaurenoid diterpene glycosides with steviol as a common aglycon have been isolated from Stevia rebaudiana, which is native to subtropical and tropical South America and Central America.23–27 Among the glycosides, stevioside is the most abundant followed by rebaudioside A. Stevioside is 140 times sweeter than sucrose, while rebaudioside is 240 times sweeter. Rebaudioside A has a better quality of sweetness. In Japan, stevia sweeteners have been produced commercially and are widely used in food products such as soy sauce, pickles, and boiled fish paste. Steviol glycosides are stable enough to remain sweet in processed foods.

The leaves of Rubus suavissimus S. Lee (Rosaceae), which is found wild in Guang Xi province in China, show potent sweetness and are used as a drink (sweet tea; tian-cha). Rubusoside has been isolated as a major sweet component from the leaves.28 This compound has the same aglycon structure as stevioside but with one glucose less and can be obtained from stevioside by enzymatic transformation. Rubusoside is 130 times sweeter than sucrose. A comprehensive review of stevioside has been published.29

Read full chapter

Extraction Techniques and Applications: Food and Beverage

F. Temelli, ... L. Comin, in Comprehensive Sampling and Sample Preparation, 2012 Stevia Glycosides

Stevia rebaudiana Bertoni, or Stevia, a plant native to Uruguay, has received a great deal of attention in the last decade for its use as a sweetener. S. rebaudiana contains a variety of unique glycosides, the most important of which are stevioside and rebaudioside A. Stevioside has a sweetness 300 times greater than that of sucrose on equal weight basis, which means the white, odorless crystalline powder has potential as a low calorie sweetener.114 In fact, rebaudioside A was granted GRAS status in 2008 by the FDA for its use as a sweetener in a variety of food products and as a tabletop sweetener, formulated to provide 30 mg of rebaudioside A per gram of finished product.115 Later in 2009, formulas with purified stevia glycosides with rebaudioside A and stevioside as the principal components received GRAS status as general-purpose sweeteners in foods, excluding meat and poultry products and infant formulas, at levels determined by current good manufacturing practices.116 Stevioside is a glycoside with a glucosyl and a sophorosyl residue attached to the aglycone steviol, which has a cyclopentanonhydrophenanthrene skeleton,114 as shown in Figure 10. For obvious structural reasons, stevioside would not be a compound of choice when considering SC-CO2 extractions; however, it was investigated.117

Figure 10. Chemical structures of: (a) stevioside and, (b) rebaudioside A.

Stevioside can be extracted using hot water leaching of the stevia leaf, using a Soxhlet apparatus.117 Stevioside and rebaudioside A were extracted using SC-CO2 with or without the addition of ethanol–water as co-solvent.117 Stevioside extraction was significantly influenced by temperature and co-solvent addition, but not by pressure. The highest extraction yield was obtained at the highest temperature investigated (80 °C), and at ethanol co-solvent level of 20%. Rebaudioside A extraction was only affected significantly by ethanol co-solvent addition, with levels above 10%, resulting in the highest solubility.117 The highest yields, 41.10 mg g−1 stevioside and 18.80 mg g−1 rebaudioside A, were obtained at 25 MPa, 80 °C using 20% co-solvent. For traditional extraction methods, when water was used, the extract contained 41.96 mg g−1 stevioside and 22.53 mg g−1 rebaudioside A, whereas when ethanol was used the values were 33.76 mg g−1 and 14.84 mg g−1, respectively. Therefore, for stevia glycoside extraction, SC-CO2 modified with ethanol is certainly viable in terms of the yields obtained.

Read full chapter

Hazards and Diseases

M. O'Mullane, ... G. Stanley, in Encyclopedia of Food Safety, 2014


The term steviol glycosides refers to mixtures of compounds extracted from the leaves of the plant Stevia rebaudiana. Several of these glycosides have the property of intense sweetness. Two of the major steviol glycosides contributing to the sweet taste of stevia extracts, namely, stevioside and rebaudioside A are reported to be 100–400 times as sweet as sucrose.

Purified stevia extracts have a long history of use as sweeteners in some countries (e.g., Japan), whereas regulatory approval of steviol glycosides in Europe, the USA, Australia, and New Zealand has been relatively recent. Steviol glycosides were approved as food additives in the USA, Australia, and New Zealand in 2008 and in Europe in 2011. Steviol glycosides are permitted in a large variety of foods and beverages over a wide range of maximum permitted levels. For example, in Australia and New Zealand, maximum permitted levels range from 50 (in fruit and vegetable juices) to 1100 mg kg−1 (in sugar confectionary).

Read full chapter


M.B.A. Glória, in Encyclopedia of Food Sciences and Nutrition (Second Edition), 2003

Stevia Sweeteners

Stevia rebaudiana Bertoni (Compositae) is a herb native to Paraguay but cultivated in South-east Asia, Japan, Paraguay, Brazil, Israel, and USA. Stevia sweeteners are extracted from the dried leaves, clarified and crystallized. The sweet constituents of stevia include eight diterpene glycosides: stevioside, steviolbioside, rebaudiosides A, B, C, D, and E, and dulcoside A, which collectively are 100–300 times sweeter than sucrose. They are similar in structure in that a steviol aglycon is connected at C-4 and C-13 to mono-, di-, or trisaccharides consisting of glucose and/or rhamnose residues, as shown in Figure 5. Stevioside is the major constituent, whereas dulcoside A and rebaudiosides A and C are the other main components. Stevioside is 300 times sweeter than sucrose (Table 1). It shows a sweetness profile similar to that of sucrose, except that it has an unpleasant, persistent, menthol, and bitter aftertaste. However, the development of new cultivars, derivatization and incorporation of cyclodextrin, l-histidine, potassium phosphate, glucono-δ-lactone and maltose in formulations has eliminated undesirable aftertastes. Rebaudioside A is more stable, sweeter, and has a better taste profile than stevioside. The remaining diterpene glycosides are not as sweet as stevioside.

Stevioside is a white powder, highly soluble in water, ethanol, and methanol, and is nonfermentable. When heated at 100 °C for 1 h, solutions of stevioside at pH 3–9 show little loss in sweetness and no change at 22 °C for 5 months. However, considerable decomposition occurs at pH 10. Some degradation of stevioside and rebaudioside has been observed in carbonated beverages acidified with phosphoric and citric acids during storage at 37 °C. Heating at 60 °C for 6 days has resulted in 0–6% loss of sweetness. Exposure to 1 week of sunlight does not affect stevioside, but results in 20% loss of rebaudioside A. The high stability of stevioside makes it a suitable sweetener for cooked and baked foods and for beverages.

Stevioside suppresses the growth of oral microorganisms, and both stevioside and rebaudioside A provide very few calories. In Paraguay, S. rebaudiana is used for the treatment of diabetes because of its hypoglycemic activity. Studies have suggested that stevioside is not toxic, mutagenic, or teratogenic in a number of animal species. In addition, the product has been used for more than 10 years in South America and Japan, but there are contradictory reports on the in-vivo metabolism to steviol, which is mutagenic for Salmonella typhimurium TM677.

Stevioside is available in three purity ranges: crude extract, and 50% and 90% purity. Since 1970, stevia sweeteners have been used in a wide range of food and beverage applications in Japan, including soft drinks, candies, chocolate, chewing gum, icecream, yogurt, jam, pudding, and table-top sweeteners. It is commonly used in combination with sucrose and fructose and also with other sweeteners such as aspartame, cyclamate, and acesulfame-K, but not with saccharin. It is currently approved for use in Japan, Taiwan, and Mercosur. An acceptable daily intake of stevioside for humans of 7.94 mg per kilogram of body weight has been suggested.

Read full chapter

Diet and Disease: Healthy Choices for Disease Prevention and Diet Management

Jacqueline B. Marcus MS, RD, LD, CNS, FADA, in Culinary Nutrition, 2013

Adjusting Recipes and Meals for People with Diabetes

Like cooking and baking for people with cardiovascular disease, adapting favorite recipes for diabetics requires scrutinizing ingredients and techniques and experimenting with different products and cooking methods. In some cases, taste and texture will hardly be affected. In other instances, changes to the original recipes may be significant. Sugar and fat substitutes do not taste the same or react the same way to the ingredients they mimic. Using real ingredients but less of them, just like heart-healthy cooking, is also a good strategy for diabetic cooking.

Portion size is critical because it reduces calories, and fewer calories may help blood sugar management. However, smaller portions may look insignificant on a plate. That is where the use of fresh and cooked vegetables with only 5 grams of carbohydrates per serving comes in. Free foods (such as salad greens) with virtually no calories come in handy.

Draw an imaginary line through the center of the lunch or dinner plate and then another line that dissects one-half of the plate into two sections. One of these sections (about one-fourth of the plate) should be filled with whole grains, such as cooked brown rice or quinoa, or starchy vegetables, such as corn, peas or root vegetables. The other section (also about one-fourth of the plate) should be filled with lean protein foods, such as lean meats, seafood, skinless poultry or tofu.

The other one-half of the plate should be filled with nonstarchy vegetables, such as broccoli, carrots, cauliflower, mushrooms or tomatoes, fresh fruit and/or free foods that are low in carbohydrates, such as cabbage, cucumbers and salad greens. One cup of dairy skim milk and a small whole-grain roll or a small piece of fruit (if calories and carbohydrates permit) round out this imaginary plate [29]. Figure 9-1 shows a healthy diabetic plate that is also the composition of MyPlate, recommended by the ADA as a guide for building a healthy plate.

Figure 9-1. The healthy diabetic plate.

Source: [30]. OptumRx. MyPlate planner.
*The FDA allows the designation of “calorie-free” if there are 5 calories or fewer per serving [31,32]: The caloric value of a product containing less than 5 calories may be expressed as zero or to the nearest 5 calorie increment (i.e., zero or 5 depending on the level). Foods with less than 5 calories meet the definition of “calorie-free” and any differences are dietarily insignificant. (US FDA Regulation # 21 CFR 101.9 (c) (1))

Bite on This: sugar substitutes in cooking and baking

Under normal conditions, sugar is recommended before the use of sugar substitutes in cooking and baking. This is because sugar has many essential functions. Sugar provides color, sweetness, tenderness and texture, to name a few.

Under exceptional conditions, such as diabetes, sugar may need to be reduced or eliminated in recipes. In some recipes, sugar can be reduced by one-fourth to one-third without altering the taste or texture. Fruit juices and frozen fruit juice concentrates may be used for natural sweetening. But even natural sweeteners may be too high in carbohydrates for some diabetics, depending on their daily carbohydrate requirements.

That is why sugar substitutes and sugar-free products provide options. They contain zero grams to a few grams of carbohydrates and some have little to no calories with little effect on blood sugar. Sugar substitutes and sugar-free products can be useful tools in both carbohydrate and calorie management—essential for both people with diabetes and people who are overweight or obese.

The safety of sugar substitutes has been questioned throughout the years. To date, six artificial sweeteners have been approved by the FDA. These include aspartame, acesulfame-K, neotame, saccharin, sucralose and tagatose. They have not been indisputably shown to initiate or promote disease. Rebaudioside A (Reb-A) is a highly purified form of stevia that was approved by the FDA for use in 2008.

Regardless, no artificial sweetener should play a major role in a diabetic diet or weight-loss diet. Sugar substitutes contribute very little to a diet and then tend to replace more nutritious foods if used excessively. It is best to check the labels or contact the manufacturers for any questions about their use.

The following are the most common sugar substitutes (and their brand names) used in product development, cooking and baking.

Acesulfame K or Ace K (Sweet One or Sunett)

Description: Acesulfame K (“K” is for potassium) is a calorie-free artificial sweetener that was discovered in 1967. It is 180 to 200 times sweeter than sucrose.

Cooking and baking applications: Unlike aspartame, acesulfame K is stable with heat, even in moderately acidic or basic conditions. It can be used in baking and in products that require a long shelf life.

Limitations: Acesulfame K is often blended with other sweeteners, such as aspartame or sucralose, to offset its slightly bitter aftertaste.

Equivalents: 1 packet of Sweet One = 4 calories; 1 packet of Sweet One = 2 teaspoons of sugar (30 calories or 7.5 grams of carbohydrates); 12 packets of Sweet One (48 calories) = 1 cup of sugar (774 calories or 193.5 grams of carbohydrates)

Aspartame (Equal)

Description: Equal is a calorie-free artificial sweetener that contains aspartame, dextrose and maltodextrin. These ingredients break down into amino acids in the body. Equal is about 200 times as sweet as sucrose. It was first sold in the United States in 1982.

Cooking and baking applications: Equal can be used in hot or cold beverages and in recipes where sugar is primarily used to sweeten. Equal loses sweetness when it is used at high temperatures for long periods of time. It can be incorporated into a recipe at the end of cooking.

Limitations: People who have phenylketonuria (PKU), a rare genetic condition in which the body cannot metabolize phenylalanine (an amino acid and component of aspartame), should not use this sweetener.

Equivalents: 1 packet of Equal = 4 calories; 1 packet of Equal = 2 teaspoons of sucrose (30 calories or 7.5 grams of carbohydrates); 24 packets of Equal (96 calories) = 1 cup of sucrose (774 calories or 193.5 grams of carbohydrates)

Saccharin (Sweet ’N Low)

Description: Saccharin is 300 to 500 times sweeter than sucrose. It was first synthesized in 1879 from hydrocarbon derivatives.

Cooking and baking applications: Saccharin is used to improve the taste of many diet foods and beverages. It is often blended with other noncaloric sweeteners to minimize its bitter aftertaste. Sweet ’N Low can be used in cooking and baking applications without losing much of its sweetness because it is heat-stable. A baking version, a liquid, and a brown sugar blend are available.

Limitations: The bitter aftertaste may be eliminated in prepared foods by combining saccharin with another sweetener (or a little sucrose in recipes).

Equivalents: 1 packet of Sweet ’N Low = 4 calories; 1 packet of Sweet ’N Low = 2 teaspoons of sucrose (30 calories or 7.5 grams of carbohydrates); 12 packets of Sweet ’N low (48 calories) = 1 cup of sucrose (774 calories or 193.5 grams of carbohydrates).

Brown Sweet ’N Low contains 20 calories per 1 teaspoon. One teaspoon of Brown Sweet ’N Low = ¼ cup of brown sugar; 4 teaspoons of Brown Sweet ’N Low = 1 cup of brown sugar

Stevia rebaudioside A or Reb-A (Truvia, PureVia, SweetLeaf)

Description: Stevia rebaudioside A is extracted from the leaves of a South American plant. Only the highly purified form of stevia (Reb-A) is approved safe by the FDA. Stevia is 250 to 300 times sweeter than sucrose. It is found in baked goods, candy, chewing gum, desserts and as a tabletop sweetener.

Use in cooking and baking: The Reb-A form of stevia is heat stable and can be substituted for sucrose in baking.

Limitations: Reb-A has less of an aftertaste than the sweetener that is derived from the whole leaf, which leaves a licorice taste.

Equivalents: 24 packets of stevia Reb-A = 1 cup of sucrose; each stevia brand recommends its own sugar-to-stevia ratio. Some brands sell stevia in liquid or bulk form.

Sucralose (Splenda)

Description: Sucralose is a chlorinated sugar that is 600 times sweeter than sucrose. It is used in beverages, frozen desserts, chewing gum and baked goods, among other applications.

Cooking and baking applications: Unlike other artificial sweeteners, sucralose is stable when heated and can be used in baked and fried recipes. For every 1 cup of Splenda used in cakes, add ½ cup of sifted nonfat dry milk powder and ½ teaspoon baking soda to the dry ingredients. For every 1 cup of Splenda used in muffins and quick breads, add ½ teaspoon of baking soda and 1 to 2 tablespoons of honey or molasses for flavor and moistness. A Splenda-sugar blend is available that helps to create moistness, sweetness and volume. It acts more like 100 percent sugar because it helps products brown, rise and spread.

Limitations: Splenda may not work well in certain cake recipes that rely on sugar for structure. Finished recipes that contain Splenda may require refrigeration.

Equivalents: 1 packet of Splenda = 3 calories; 1 teaspoon of Splenda = 1 teaspoon of sucrose (30 calories or 7.5 grams of carbohydrates); 1 cup Splenda = 1 cup of sucrose (774 calories or 193.5 grams of carbohydrates). If the half-sugar blend or half–brown sugar blend is used, replace 1 cup of sucrose with one-half cup of the blend.

Read full chapter