Are you looking for vegan honey alternatives or for a vegan honey substitute that taste like the real thing? Wondering do vegans eat honey?
In this article I will be sharing a full list of the absolute best options when it comes to replacing honey in your diet.
Honey is a very easy product to replace in consistency as many syrups have a similar feel as honey does. But some replace the taste of honey better than others if that is also a factor for you.
So, keep reading to find out how to replace the honey in your diet with a more vegan friendly option. You have 5 amazing vegan options to choose from!
Do Vegans Eat Honey?
This question is not nearly as cut and dry as most questions on veganism are since the topic of honey is all over the place.
It is typically believed that honey is not considered to be vegan, but many vegans will actually make an exception to still eat it.
This is a sore topic to some, but I will admit that I also consume honey even though I follow a vegan diet. I do this because I only buy local honey and because I believe that beekeeping is necessary in many ways.
Whether or not you consume honey on a vegan diet will be up to you. It is one of those questions that just doesn’t have a complete straight answer.
If you do decide to try to avoid buying honey, these options are great replacements!
Best Vegan Honey Alternative
In this list of vegan honey alternatives we will be talking about 5 options in particular. I believe these options to be the best replacements for honey because of their taste or consistency.
The good thing is that honey is generally one of the easier substitutes to make in your diet. Since it is mainly just a syrup that can be replaced with a similar syrup. Unlike products like meat or eggs.
These substitutes can be used in any way that you would normally is honey in your diet. Whether that be in cooking, baking, deserts, or used to sweeten drinks.
In each section I will talk about how good of a honey substitute each option is. So that you can better decide which replacement is best for your needs.
Read till the end for some inspiration on how to use your vegan honey replacements!
- Related: Best dairy-Free Milk Alternatives for Vegans
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Agave nectar comes from the agave plant and makes possibly the best vegan honey alternative that you could choose from!
This is because agave nectar is light in color and mild in flavor. With a few bright notes of flavor that are slightly similar to honeys flavor profile.
This makes it a great replacement in just about anything as it will not overpower other flavors. It makes an especially lovely addition to a cup of hot tea or drizzled over a dessert!
Just keep in mind that agave nectar is ever so slightly thinner in consistency than honey is. And that the darker types of agave will produce deeper flavors. The light agave nectar is the most similar in color and taste to honey.
This agave nectar is one of the best brands if you want a pure and healthier sweetener option.
Maple syrup is a very common vegan honey substitute though it is very different in contrast to flavor.
Unlike honey, maple syrup has a very distinct flavor that is instantly recognizable. It also has a deep enough flavor that it can be tasted in baked goods, desserts, and hot drinks.
Because of these reasons, maple syrup would not be my first option when it came to substituting honey. But it is still a popular option that many choose as maple syrup has such a pleasing flavor.
If you don’t mind the strong maple flavor and dark color, maple syrup is a very healthy option when it comes to substituting honey.
One thing to keep in mind is that maple syrup is considerably more expensive. So, it isn’t a good option if you are on a budget or need to use a lot of it.
This maple syrup brand is very affordable while still giving you a good quantity of syrup to use in your cooking and baking!
Simple syrup is another excellent option when it comes to vegan honey alternatives as it is very mild in flavor and can have a similar consistency.
You can easily make a simple syrup at home by boiling sugar and water together which will result in a clear syrup with no distinct flavor.
You could add a bit of lemon juice to it to add a slight tang similar to the flavor of honey. Giving it some character which will be closer to honey than otherwise.
This is a great option if you are in a pinch and need a fast vegan honey alternative for a recipe.
It is not as healthy as some of the other options and shouldn’t be used in excess as that can end up being a lot of white sugar.
But it is a good option if you need a fast replacement and you don’t have access to the other options. It works well in many recipes and can be cooked longer in order to produce a more realistic honey consistency.
Just be careful of crystallization. The addition of lemon juice should help to prevent sugar crystals from forming in the syrup.
Cane syrup is very similar to simple syrup except that it is sold in stores instead of being made at home.
It is also made with pure cane sugar instead of white table sugar which makes it ever so slightly healthier.
This cane syrup is a thick and amber colored syrup that has a slight caramelized flavor. It isn’t too strong, but it might interfere with other very mild flavors.
This makes a good substitute in baking, desserts, or as a sweetener for drinks. Just don’t expect it to imitate the flavor of honey because it definitely won’t be able to.
Brown Rice Syrup
I have not been able to get my hands on any of this brown rice syrup to try out for myself, but it seems to be a very common vegan honey alternative.
It has a similar consistency if not a little runnier. Though the color is a light brown which could change the color of baked goods or desserts.
Most people say that brown rice syrup has a lightly nutty flavor that is reminiscent of butterscotch. Making it not the best replacement for honey if your focus is on flavor.
It is also less sweet than the other options mentioned which does make it the healthier option if that is a concern to you.
Vegan Honey Brands
If you are looking for a substitute that is very close in comparison to honey you could also try out some vegan honey brands.
There are several brands that are vegan friendly and create vegan honeys made to replicate and replace the real thing.
These would be worth trying if you are removing honey from your diet but still crave the taste of honey. Or if none of these other options have quite satisfied your honey cravings.
Blenditup Bee Free honey seems to be the most popular brand of vegan honey. Though it is considerably more expensive than the other options on this list.
Why Vegans Avoid Honey
The biggest reason why those following vegan diet may avoid honey is because honey farms might not properly care for their bees.
This concern boils down to facilities that smoke their bees in order to keep them relaxed. As well as whether or not they are getting the nutrients that they need once their honey has been harvested.
Another reason why vegans might not eat honey is because of their principles. Because it comes from living creatures they might prefer to not eat it in their vegan diet.
This is why the question of do vegans eat honey is so complex. Because it really comes down to how the individual feels about consuming honey.
If you don’t want to give up honey but worry about the well fair of bees, tr contacting a local bee farmer. Small, family owned companies will most likely take better care of their bees.
How to Use Vegan Honey Alternatives
Using these vegan honey alternatives is very simple in comparison to many other vegan substitutes. It doesn’t require any extra work from you.
These syrups will all work wonderfully in the place of honey, it just comes down to your personal preference. And whether or not the different flavors will bother you.
The only thing that I believe could interfere with any recipes could be the fact that many honey substitutes are just slightly thinner in consistency. Though this still shouldn’t be much of an issue. If you are worried that it will, just decrease the amount of syrup slightly.
These vegan honey substitutes do great in baking whether that be in cakes, muffins, cookies, etc.
They will all provide natural sweetness and a bit of moisture. Just keep in mind that certain options might impart a brown color or a mild flavor.
Related: Amazing Vegan Baking Substitutes
Another common use for honey is acting as a binding ingredient in recipes like energy bars, protein balls, and granola.
This is because honey is very sticky and can hold drier ingredients together.
Substitutes like simple syrup, cane syrup, and some honey brands might be able to work in much the same way. Helping to hold dry ingredients together as honey would.
Some other recipes that call for honey are candy recipes that lean more towards natural sweeteners.
Candy making is tricky, but you could try to replace honey in recipes with simple syrup, maple syrup, cane syrup, or corn syrup.
Just be careful of crystallization as honey helps prevent sugar crystals from forming in candy recipes.
Agave would be a great option to experiment with in candy making, as it has the most similar flavor to honey.
The most common use of honey is as a sweetener for drinks or drizzled over the top of certain foods.
Any of these vegan honey alternatives would fit this use nicely, though I would recommend using the simple syrup and cane syrup sparingly.
You can sweeten tea or coffee or drizzle these syrups over pancakes and waffles!
What is The Best Vegan Honey Alternative
It is hard to say exactly which option is the best alternative to honey. They all have good qualities in their own ways that might appeal to one person and not to another.
personally, I would say that the agave nectar is the closest replacement for real honey. It has the color and a very similar flavor, though it has a thinner consistency.
It tastes about the same as honey when added to drinks or drizzled over food.
In terms of consistency, I would say that cane syrup has the closest consistency to honey.
The replacement that you choose will depend on what is most important to you. Taste, appearance, or consistency.
Vegan Honey Alternatives Conclusion
I hope that this article has been helpful in offering the options available when substituting honey in your diet.
Honey is an easy ingredient to substitute and you have many options available to choose from. These honey substitutes can be used from baking to drizzling over desserts to adding to a hot drink. Any way that you would use honey, these substitutes can be used in the same ways.
It is a very easy animal product to replace for the most part. And you won’t even miss it when you start to use these vegan honey alternatives.
Let me know in the comments what your favorite honey replacement is. Or if like me, you make an exception for honey!