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My Sweet

March 24, 2015
Jaggery: a traditional sweetener derived from the sap of the palmyrah palm flower makes for a superfood sugar alternative by SugaVida. (Photos by Browneye/Shutterstock)

Refined white sugar is a cruel mistress. She pulls you in with sweet claims and leaves you with toxic results.

Try making the switch to SugaVida ($14 for 8.8 ounces), a new sugar alternative that is organically certified and is now rolling out in stores across the country and online.

Even though this sweetie is showing up to the party with a new name, it’s been around for a long time. You might know SugaVida as jaggery, which is often used in Southern and East India, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka, Indonesia and several African countries. Derived from the sap of the palmyra palm tree, SugaVida is harvested sustainably (without cutting down trees) in Southeast India while supporting local producers and biodiversity in farming communities.

Sugavida muffins

Test out SugaVida with the yummy gluten-free clementine almond muffin recipe below.

SugaVida has a low glycemic index, doesn’t raise blood insulin, and is a plant-based source of the hard-to-get vitamin B-12 along with calcium, iron, magnesium, zinc, sodium and phosphorus. The flavor brings to mind a mild caramel with a slight nutty kick. It’s a great alternative to stevia, which can leave a bitter aftertaste, and is more neutral tasting than coconut sugar. Plus SugaVida can be used in both cold and hot drinks and for baking.

New studies are even claiming that it has anti-inflammatory and anti-arthritic effects and can reduce blood cholesterol levels. But don’t take that as a sign to go buck wild, remember this is still a sweetener. We’re for moderation in all things (except for vegetables).

Gluten-Free Clementine Almond Muffins




05 min


30 min


1 cup + 1 tablespoon organic butter

¾ cup of SugaVida

4 organic eggs

Zest of 2 organic clementines and juice of one organic clementine

2 cups ground organic almonds

½ cup organic gluten-free flour

½ teaspoon sea salt

1 teaspoon ground cinnamon

1 teaspoon mixed spice


Heat the oven to 350F degrees.

In a bowl beat the SugaVida and butter together until light. Slowly add the eggs one at a time until well mixed. Add the zest and juice and gently fold in the rest of the ingredients to make a smooth batter.

Pour into muffin wrappers and bake for 30 minutes or until a knife comes out clean.

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