After making a chocolate zucchini bread this morning (recipe to follow), I was inspired to research how I could make it just a little better (e.g. swap whole wheat flour for the white flour, swap something else for the white sugar, etc.) While researching, I found organic whole cane sugar. I actually found it by seeing it in a recipe which led me to a blog post on Simple Organic. This post is very informative, also providing how to substitute brown sugar and powdered sugar.
Sweeteners can get confusing. I actually use an organic "evaporated cane juice" sugar but it's still basically processed white sugar. I assumed it was a slightly better choice than let's say C&H brand sugar? But now that I've found organic whole cane sugar, I'm switching. This sugar is simply dehydrated organically-grown sugar cane. Its crystals remain rich in minerals, trace elements and vitamins. White sugar is highly processed including being cleaned with phosphoric acid, calcium hydroxide and then filtered through bone char.
It's easy to be fooled by sweeteners. After reading the post on organic whole cane sugar, I learned that "raw" sugar isn't any better than white sugar either. So grabbing that packet of "sugar in the raw" over the white packet for my hubby's coffee all these years was of no benefit. Oh well. That leads me to the world of misleading packaging and advertising but that's another post.
In terms of price, this is yet again another item that's going to cost us more. But being that we don't use lots of sugar, it won't be hard to incorporate into our budget. I've been paying $2.99 for a 24 oz. package of organic sugar. The best price I found (online) for organic whole cane sugar is roughly $4.35 per 24 oz. package by purchasing it in a bulk pack of six. A six pack would likely last six months or more depending on the time of year and how much I'm baking. You could also split it with a friend, three packs each which would lower the initial spend.
I personally think this is worth the extra couple of dollars. To know me is to know that I am picky about what we spend extra money on so when I think it's worth it, you may too. I bake breads (banana, zucchini, etc.) regularly to replace packaged snacks so improving my recipes with ingredients such as organic whole cane sugar, 100% whole wheat flour and flax seeds is important. I'm serving these to my family on a regular basis, it needs to be full of good stuff.