How frustrating is it when you start making things from scratch to avoid plastic packaging, then find that the ingredients only come in plastic too? Brown sugar presented a real problem for me in the beginning. I could not find it in bulk and I could not find it out of a plastic bag. What the hell was so different about this sugar, I thought to myself one day. So I decided to find out. Now that I know what it is, I’m a bit embarrassed that I had no clue, but I’m also thrilled to have an easy, zero waste solution to share with you (admit it, you don’t know what brown sugar is either).  Are you ready to have your mind blown? Brown sugar is made by mixing molasses into white sugar. THAT’S IT!

Now go forth and make as much as you like. Get your sugar in a paper bag (or bulk if you are lucky enough to have this option) and try to find molasses in a glass jar with a metal lid, and without a tamper-proof seal. Try to find a way to reuse this packaging before you recycle it. Just remember the ratio of 1 – 2 tablespoons of molasses for each 1 cup of white sugar. If it is dark brown sugar you need, just add a bit more molasses. Now you have the ability to make it to your liking. Store in an airtight container and enjoy as needed.

Making brown sugar
Step 1. Mix 8 tablespoons of molasses into 4 cups of white sugar.
Making brown sugar
Step 2: Mix well.
Homemade brown sugar.
Homemade brown sugar.
Store brown sugar in an airtight container.
Step 3: Store brown sugar in an airtight container.
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18 thoughts

  1. Well that is awesome! I thought it had been cooked. I had this on my shopping list but guess what……I have molasses in a tin can so that’s a win. Shame golden syrup comes in plastic bottles now. Look forward to your tips for that! 🙂

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    1. I needed golden syrup a while ago and was really disappointed to see that it had been switched to plastic. I kept looking and eventually found it in a tin. I think it’s one of those things that if I see it plastic free, I’m just going to get it then and there and keep it in the pantry just incase. I usually just use honey now for things like ANZAC biscuits.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Totally! To start with I thought it was just me having no clue but when I mentioned it to people they said they had no idea either, so definitely had to share 😄

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  2. Get. Out. Shut. The. Front. Door.

    Mind. Blown

    I did not know that. I’d prefer to make things at home if I could too and we’re slowly cutting out most sugars where possible but still! Get. Out.
    Also, I think the golden syrup is in a tin for a short duration from what I can see, an anniversary thing? Hope not.

    Also…you’ve reminded me I want to buy loose tea again for just this reason. And apparently Madame Flavour is from Gippsland. I didn’t know that till I read one of her packages. I’m wondering if she’d somehow consider loose tea? But it’s all recyclable I believe, or pop in the ground worthy apart from the boxes? Which could be used to grow seedlings wth. Anyway…pov made in a factory elsewhere….I’ll leave you alone now.

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    1. Hehehe, love your reaction Fiona. Pretty much sums up mine. Isn’t it amazing we don’t know this. I actually don’t know of Madame Flavour but I am interested now. I get me tea loose from a store in Warragul.

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      1. They’re a boxed tea in Coles and Woolworths. I was amazed that she was there. I only bought it for the first time the other day.
        Which store there? I used to get mine in Bairnsdale but the store is no longer there. I’m not sure if anyone else does tea

        Tooradin has a bulk goods store that I think you may have written about? We saw them in the local paper. We’re taking a round trip to the shops to look into it and I was hoping they did teas. Otherwise I idea where I could get it….

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  3. Yep, I think the Tooradin store does have tea. Not a huge selection but it does have some. That’s the only place I can get flour, rice, sugar, etc in bulk. The store in Warragul is String and Salt.

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  4. Wrong! As far as I know brown sugar is the cane sugar product before the molasses is spun out of it. By buying white then adding molasses you might be saving plastic but you are contributing to the production costs and energy spent eg electricity to separate the two only to add it back together. Try again me thinks!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. You make make a valid point about energy etc, Chris. But my understanding is that there is a difference between natural brown sugar and commercial brown sugar which has had the molasses added back to the White sugar in specific quantities. Therefore, by doing this at home, in place of buying commercial brown sugar you are not contributing any extra energy. Sounds like natural brown sugar is the way to go if you can get it in bulk. Or no sugar at all, as some people prefer. It’s another example of the silly and confusing food system we have.

      I love learning from other people and expanding the way I think about issues. Thank you for your comment.

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