Sweet-tooths, take heart. There’s never been a better time to explore the world of low-sugar baking and natural sweeteners. Maple, molasses, honey and more are not only more wholesome alternatives to processed white sugar, but they can also add new dimensions of flavor to cookies, cakes, and other treats. But don’t just take our word for it. Two beautiful and informative new cookbooks by baking pros Joanne Chang (of the beloved Boston bakery Flour) and Shauna Sever (of the popular blog Piece of Cake) demonstrate how cutting back on refined sugar can be an act not of deprivation, but pure deliciousness. Still skeptical? Here are five recipes to prove it.

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