Sunday, March 08, 2009

Agave Nectar

When it comes to sweetening your tea, there are many options available today, from sugar cubes to honey, brown sugar to maple syrup, artificial sweeteners to stevia. One sweetener that has only recently come into my personal radar is Agave Nectar, a sweetener that is derived from the Agave plants.

Photo from Wild Organics Website

This has become my favorite sweetener for my tea. It is a little sweeter than honey, so I don't need quite as much, and not quite as sticky (or slow to drizzle!) so I can use it quickly, and without all the mess that often accompanies honey. There are several different varieties of Agave Nectar available: light, amber, dark, and raw. I prefer the raw when I can find it, and when I can't I prefer the amber. The darker amber nectar has a very subtle caramel flavor to it, which I find quite a delightful addition to my tea. I have also used the light nectar, and the flavor is more neutral.

Also new to the market are flavored Agave Nectars, including Amaretto (yum!), vanilla, cappuccino, Irish cream and hazelnut flavors. I haven't yet tried these flavored Agave Nectars but, I may just have to check my local Whole Foods market the next time I stop in for my weekly supply of carrots...

Until recently, I could only find Agave Nectar at my specialty markets (such as Whole Foods and Trader Joes) but during last week's grocery excursion, I was happy to find Agave Nectar available at my local you-bag-it-yourself-and-save grocery store -- in both light and amber varieties! Now I won't have to make a special trip to the specialty markets just for Agave Nectar (and the aforementioned carrots). Of course, I'll still have to make a trip for the carrots, since the discount grocery store doesn't carry my favorite organic, with the greens still attached carrots.

You'll find the Agave Nectar in the same aisle you'd find honey... so check out your local market for Agave Nectar the next time you're shopping and try a drizzle of it in your tea! It's the perfect vegan alternative to honey, and has a lower glycemic index than white sugar, is allergen free, and it doesn't crystalize quickly the way honey does! It's the perfect alternative sweetener!


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Lanee' said...

Sweet! i'll have to keep an eye out for some of that.

Stephanie said...

GREAT post!! I love love love agave's so FRESH and sweet! And that brand pictured, Madhava, is my favorite brand of agave. I recommend that people try it at least once. :)