If you’re looking for alternative ways to sweeten your coffee, one method that may appeal is maple syrup.
While coffee purists argue that the only way to truly appreciate the full flavor of coffee is to drink it black, the brew definitely benefits from a little added sweetness, and maple syrup is a natural sugar.
But does maple syrup in coffee work? Let’s dive in a little deeper.
Can You Mix Maple Syrup With Coffee?
Maple syrup is a liquid sweetener, like honey or agave syrup, so it’s actually fairly easy to mix into black coffee.
It’s a little thicker than simple syrup, so you may have to stir your coffee a little more to make sure it dissolves evenly into your favorite coffee, but it dissolves more readily than granulated sugar.
Maple Syrup Isn’t All The Same
Another thing to keep in mind is that there are many types of maple syrup. It’s also important to note that pancake syrup and maple and two different things. Pancake syrup is largely sugar and corn syrup.
Pure maple syrup is something different altogether when compared to pancake syrup. It falls into one of a few different grades, depending on a few different factors:
Some regions further break maple syrup into categories based on a variety of factors. In general, though, Grade B is stronger in flavor and darker in color, while Grade A is lighter in flavor and color.
The differences come down to factors like when in the season the producer harvests the sap, the way in which it’s processed, and to a lesser degree how long it’s cooked for.
Most experts agree that the darker syrup isn’t always the best choice for putting on pancakes or waffles, but it’s great for baking. The darker the syrup, the stronger the flavor.
If you just want a hint of flavor when you sweeten your coffee, opt for Grade A, and if you want a stronger taste in your coffee, go for Grade B. The right choice is entirely up to you and your taste.
Pure Maple Syrup In Coffee
The main reason that some coffee lovers like to put maple syrup in coffee is for the taste.
The flavors typically include notes of butter, and a rich, natural sweetness that sugar doesn’t have.
Even brown sugar doesn’t have quite the same flavor. The flavors of maple syrup are distinct and can be powerful, but they also blend well with those of coffee and milk.
Many seasonal lattes and coffee products in autumn and winter incorporate the rich taste of maple syrup into their recipe, either on its own or combined with other flavors.
Maple and spice go extremely well together, as well as maple and vanilla, and maple and brown sugar in coffee.
Starbucks and some other coffee shops offer a maple-flavored latte as part of its fall and winter season signature coffee drinks.
Related Read: Starbucks Latte Flavors
Make Your Own Maple Latte
If you want to make your own maple coffee at home, here’s one simple recipe:
Maple Coffee Latte Ingredients
- Hot, strong black coffee (we like espresso, but you can also use french press or cold brew if you want to make an iced coffee)
- Milk of your choice
- 1-2 Tablespoons of maple syrup
- Optional: pinch of cinnamon, pinch of ground cloves, pinch of nutmeg
Related Read: Cinnamon In Coffee
The proportions vary a little depending on what kind of coffee you use.
For espresso, 1-2 shots are fine, with french press or cold brew, 6-8 ounces of coffee is just about ideal.
- Combine maple syrup and spices in the bottom of your cup or mug
- Pour in the coffee, stirring well to dissolve
- Pour milk into a microwave-safe jar and heat in a microwave for 30 seconds to 1 minute
- Put the lid on the jar and shake it for about the same amount of time to work up a good foam
- Pour the milk and foam over your coffee to combine and enjoy
Note that if you want your coffee iced, you can skip the step in the recipe of heating the milk in the microwave and instead just pour it directly into the maple coffee mixture.
This recipe is a perfect cup of autumn coffee, sweet and aromatic from the spices and syrup, and it’s good hot or cold.
There are simpler recipes for making maple coffee. Still, a homemade maple latte is delicious and decadent and illustrates one of the main reasons people put maple syrup in coffee: it’s one of the tastiest natural sweeteners!
Maple Syrup Vs Sugar In Coffee
Another reason that many people like to add maple syrup into their coffee is because there is some nutritional value to it.
Granulated sugar is a neutral sweetener, but there isn’t much else to it beyond relatively empty calories because it’s so refined.
On the other hand, Maple syrup has a little more going on, as many natural sweeteners do. But is maple a healthy alternative to sugar?
Because maple syrup isn’t refined, it retains some of the nutrients and minerals from the sap. Among other things, one tablespoon of maple syrup has:
- Calcium (13.4 mg)
- Potassium (40.8 mg)
- Iron (0.2 mg)
- Zinc (0.8 mg)
- Manganese (0.7 mg)
These amounts may not seem like a lot, but for just one tablespoon of the natural sweetener, it’s quite a bit.
The amount of manganese in that serving is a third of the recommended daily allowance for just one cup of maple coffee.
In addition, maple syrup has less sugar per tablespoon than table sugar; while the difference is small, maple has 12.1 grams of sugar per tablespoon, while refined sugar has 12.6.
Maple is also lower on the glycemic index, which implies that it elevates blood sugar levels more slowly than refined sugar, which can be helpful for coffee lovers looking to manage those levels.
Finally, maple syrup is a potential source of antioxidants, withone study finding 24 different compounds in samples of the natural sweetener.
However, it’s important to remember that maple syrup is still a major source of sugar and that over-consumption of any sugar can negatively impact your health.
Adding maple syrup to your cup of coffee is one way to add more flavor to your mug and some character to your brew.
Whether you choose to add spices or just enjoy the aromas and taste of butter and sweetness combined in your coffee recipe, maple is an excellent choice.
The potential health benefits of maple and its nutritional value as a natural sweetener are an added plus–as long as you consume in moderation.
So stir some maple into your favorite coffee with your milk or half and half, and enjoy your brew.