Here's What You Can Substitute For Molasses

Dig through your pantry and hiding somewhere shoved in the back is likely a jar of molasses. The sticky sweet substance is a staple ingredient in many recipes, whether you're baking gingerbread cookies at Christmas or whipping up a tangy barbecue sauce for your next backyard cookout. Molasses is made during the sugar-making process — juice is extracted from the sugar cane and boiled down to sugar crystals. The dark syrup that's left behind after the crystals are removed is molasses (via Southern Living).

Maybe you've run out of molasses or maybe the jar that you've had for years (see above) has expired or dried up. Regardless, you don't have to run out to the store in a panic if you need molasses for a recipe you're making — there are a few easy substitutes you can use instead, and you probably have at least one of them in your kitchen. Here's what you can swap out for molasses.

You can use maple syrup or brown sugar

One of the most common substitutes for molasses is maple syrup. That makes sense, as it's simply another — albeit slightly different — type of syrup, so it shares a similar texture and flavor. Food 52 says you can use a 1:1 ratio when replacing molasses with maple syrup. However, the culinary site recommends looking for the darkest syrup you can find to best imitate molasses and to keep in mind that maple syrup is much thinner than molasses, so you may need to reduce the amount of syrup if you find it makes your batter too watery.

The Spruce Eats says you can also substitute brown sugar or even white sugar for molasses if you're in a pinch. Use a 3/4 cup of densely packed brown sugar per cup of molasses or 3/4 cup of white sugar mixed with water per cup of molasses. Other options include honey or corn syrup, as well.