Also known as ‘sugar leaf’ or ‘sweet leaf’, stevia is a plant that belongs to the sunflower family. Native to Central and South America, it has been proven that it is a safe, natural, calorie-free sugar substitute which is used to sweeten a number of foods and beverages. Although stevia is said to be up to 300 times sweeter than sugar, it is considered a ‘no calorie’ sweetener.
The sweet-tasting components in stevia sweeteners occur naturally, making them a good option for those who prefer naturally-sourced products. Stevia is commonly sold as liquid drops, granular stevia or tablets. From all these options, most people prefer using granular stevia as it closely resembles the texture of regular sugar.
Try Different Stevia Brands
Some people prefer using certain stevia brands over others, so in the pursuit of the ideal sugar substiturte for you, it may be a good idea to experiment with different granular stevia brands to find out which one you like best. According to reviews, some brands have much more noticeable aftertastes than others, which means that you can choose whether you like that or not.
Combine Stevia With Another Sweetener
To minimize the aftertaste of some stevia extracts, try combining them with another sweetener like erythritol. A lot of people recommend using a mix of granular stevia and erythritol to improve the final taste, to reduce the intensity of stevia as well as to ensure there is no aftertaste.
Do the Taste Test
Stevia is known to work best in no-bake recipes that you can easily taste and see whether you like them or they need to be modified. This includes homemade ice cream, chocolates, salad dressing and no-bake cookies. Add a little bit of stevia to replace some of the needed sugar, taste it, and then add more stevia if necessary. Stevia is also great for sweetening smoothies, tea and other beverages. In baked goods, it can be used in recipes that aren’t hugely dependent on the texture properties provided by sugar, such as a crustless pumpkin pie.
If you’ve been looking for a simple hack to curb your sugar cravings so that you can lose some kilos, stevia might be just it. There is conclusive evidence that sugar substitutes can help hamper a person’s sweet tooth and keep them from overeating sweet goods. You can freely use it as part of a well-balanced diet to help satisfy your sugar needs without consuming unnecessary calories.