Sugar to Honey Conversion Chart

EXACT CONVERSION CHART: Sugar –> Honey When Baking!

I may receive a commission if you purchase through links in this post. I am not a doctor; please consult your practitioner before changing your supplement or healthcare regimen.

The first major step many of us take toward wellness is eliminating sugar. In my own health journey I clung to sugar for as long as I could– lots and lots of ice cream. I had a rash on my face that many of our customers still remember. I get comments occasionally (that make me laugh inside), “I haven’t seen you in so long. Your skin looks so good.” Ha ha ha. Apparently my skin issue was rather noticeable.

When I finally released my grip and eliminated sugar my rash went away immediately. I am sad to think how many people go to dermatologists (and receive pharmaceutical or steroidal topical creams) for skin issues when diet will often heal a variety of rashes, (including my daughter’s eczema) and begin to heal the root cause.

What else went away immediately upon eliminating sugar from my diet? Arthritis! It started in my 30s. I’d wake up with my fingers bent and crooked. I couldn’t straighten them; and they were painful to touch.

Although I had this symptom for over a year before giving up sugar, it was completely gone, never to return, upon eliminating sugar.

(There were other issues that resolved as well, including candida overgrowth.)

So, basically, sugar is a downfall for those of us with autoimmune issues. For those of you who are healthy and symptom-free, sugar is still something to enjoy in moderation. Substituting in whole food alternatives is healthful for everyone. (If you continue to have sugar in your diet, just make sure it’s organic evaporated cane juice, rapadura or sucanat [not white sugar like C&H]. These are less refined, more natural forms of sugar and are not genetically modified.)

One way to eliminate, or reduce sugar intake, is to substitute in honey. If you have old favorite recipes you’d like to convert, below are guidelines and a helpful chart!

How to Sub Honey when Baking

When baking with honey, there are a few characteristics that make it different than baking with sugar.

Here are the 3 main differences:

  1. Honey browns more quickly in the oven or even in the frying pan (like with pancakes). The solution is baking honey-sweetened batters at a lower temperature.
  2. Honey is heavier, denser and wetter than sugar. Increasing the quantity of leavening just slightly helps to counteract this.
  3. Honey is sweeter than sugar AND has a stronger flavor. Decreasing the amount of honey in a recipe that originally called for sugar will prevent your baked good from being too sweet or tasting too strongly of honey, which doesn’t allow other flavors to come through.

Below are the conversions to help you make adjustments. As you’ll notice, there is also the instruction of potentially reducing the liquid in a recipe. This refers to pancake-like recipes that often call for milk. Because honey makes baked goods wetter, it is helpful to reduce milk or other liquid ingredients to compensate.

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Sugar to Honey Conversion Chart
EXACT CONVERSION CHART: Sugar โ€“> Honey When Baking!
Author: Megan
  • 1/4 cup sugar--> 3 T. honey reduce oven temperature by 25 degrees
  • 1/3 cup sugar--> 3 T. + 1 tsp. honey reduce oven temperature by 25 degrees
  • 1/2 cup sugar--> 1/3 cup honey add 1/4 tsp. baking soda, reduce potential liquid by 1 T., reduce oven temperature by 25 degrees
  • 1 cup sugar--> 3/4 cup honey add 1/2 tsp. baking soda, reduce potential liquid by 1/8 cup (2 T.), reduce oven temperature by 25 degrees
  • 2 cups sugar--> 1 cup + 6 T. honey add 1 tsp. baking soda, reduce potential liquid by 1/4 cup, reduce oven temperature by 25 degrees


Here’s the pin able chart for easy reference.

One way to eliminate, or reduce sugar intake, is to substitute in honey. If you have old favorites recipes you'd like to convert, here's a helpful chart!

For those on healing diets, or those who try to protect their stomach ph, increasing the quantity of baking soda is optional.

Or here’s a link to my cookbook and videos. The cookbook is called EAT BEAUTIFUL: Grain-free, Sugar-free and Loving It and has lots of honey-sweetened recipes!

Eat Beautiful 5 Video Bonus Package with Book face left

Comments 35

  1. Thank you so much for this wonderful resource Megan. Pinning because I know i will need it later.

  2. This is great, and such an awesome resource for those who are trying to heal from gut dysbiosis. I love that there’s hope for people who are afraid of relinquishing “all sugar” while healing, and that they can still indulge in a well-deserved
    treat now and then. Thank you for sharing Megan!

    1. So glad to, Raine. ๐Ÿ™‚ I know that for me sweets were essential in the early stages of healing. Honey was my friend! (And still is, but not with the same necessity or intensity.)

  3. This is SO helpful! I have always struggled with getting the right amounts of honey in some of my recipes when I substitute. Definitely won’t be making any horrible honey missteps anymore. ๐Ÿ˜‰

  4. I rarely use sugar…..I use honey in my tea. I don’t bake a lot, but when I do I’ll consider using honey instead of sugar.

    1. Spray whatever measuring utensil that you are using with a little cooking spray before you use it and that will help it to come out easier.

    2. Yes, filling your measuring cup with a preferred oil first (and then pouring the oil back into its original receptacle), and then putting the honey in will allow the honey to come right out when you pour. ๐Ÿ™‚

    1. Hi Sarah, you can probably sub in the honey for any sugar in the recipe 1:1. That’s what I’d do. Be aware that the loaf will brown more quickly before the inside is fully cooked. So lower your oven temperature about 1/2-3/4 of the way through baking, when the loaf starts to darken. Also, the honey will possibly make the loaf less stiff. So consider, if needed, chilling the dough before braiding it, so it holds its shape. Good luck!

  5. Hello! In addition to GAPS protocol, I follow Ayurvedic medicinal recommendations which includes NOT heating honey past 105ยฐ F. Can I use maple syrup in recipes like this one as a substitute for the honey?

  6. Refined table sugar is sucrose, which is a disaccharide of glucose and fructose. Your body metabolizes sucrose into its base sugars when it’s consumed. Honey is mostly glucose and fructose, with some maltose (disaccharide of glucose and glucose), some sucrose, and some water content. For nutrition purposes, honey and table sugar are nearly identical.

      1. Yep, that’s just the chemical formulation of honey. Heat treatment kills any botulism spores that may be in a batch of honey, but it doesn’t change the chemical composition. What’s more, is that since honey is easily digestible, it is quickly metabolized and spikes your blood sugar in much the same way that eating raw table sugar does. In fact, there’s not much difference between eating a tablespoon of honey, and a tablespoon of high-fructose corn syrup.

      2. The main deal about heating honey is that it destroys all the other benefits of the honey…i.e ..the pollen in the honey…but it still sweetens…& heat does alter the chemical structures of compounds…as far as the changes which occur to the sugars in honey upon heating, I am not 100% sure.

    1. It is true they are chemically similar but the GI (glycemic index) numbers are quite different. Honey has a lower GI and therefore does not cause the same spike in blood sugars. The enzymes that the bees put into honey when they are making it ensure that we are able to break down the sugars in our stomach where as refined cane sugar reaches the small intestine before it can be processed and is straight to the blood stream.

  7. I suffer from thyroid disease and now Hashimoto’s and have to remove gluten and white Foods sugar flour from my diet. We live in the south and we drink sweet tea I usually put two thirds of a cup of sugar ,the kind you mentitled above. I have to give it up and I always have raw local honey in my kitchen. How much honey would be equivalent to the 2/3cup?

    1. Hi and thanks for the great question. In your case, I’d consider putting in a combination of honey and stevia. With thyroid health, cutting back on all sweeteners that affect our blood sugar levels is a good idea. I’d use 1/3-1/2 cup raw honey, and then add stevia, to taste, to get it to the right sweetness overall. This will be better for your hormones, and also not overwhelm your tea with the honey flavor. ๐Ÿ™‚

    1. Post

      Hi Colleen, any potential liquid in a recipe: So this means if the recipe calls for milk, you would remove 2 tablespoons of the milk. This does not include oil. This rule doesn’t apply to all recipes because all recipes don’t have a liquid included.

  8. I’m making blueberry jam and am concerned about the baking soda bubbling up while the jam is boiling. Do I have to use the baking soda?

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