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Frosting Substitutes for Powdered Sugar

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Have you ever noticed how certain pastries and doughnuts have a dusting of snow-like powder on them? Powdered sugar is the gorgeous sprinkling you see sprinkled on those prepared confections. You’re undoubtedly a huge fan, and many others are, too, because to the sweet and smooth flavor it lends to baked goods.

Powdered sugar may be used in a variety of dishes, including sweets and frostings. Yet, as delicious as powdered sugar tastes and feels, it contains a lot of sugar and should be replaced with a healthy solution. It’s also conceivable that you’ve ran out of powdered sugar and are looking for a fast and simple substitute.

The good news is that there are various alternatives for powdered sugar when you need it in your recipes. How these possibilities function is a whole other story. To get the finest outcomes in your frosting-making endeavors, you must become acquainted with the proper application procedures and quantities.

What is Powdered Sugar?

Powdered sugar is a finely crushed sugar that is made by grinding granulated sugar. It is also known as confectioners sugar, 10X sugar, or icing sugar. When quick-dissolving sugar is needed in industrial food preparation, powdered sugar is the go-to product.

The most common finenesses of powdered sugar are XXX, XXXX, and 10X; theoretically, the more Xs powdered sugar has, the finer its particles are. Powdered sugar often includes between 2 and 5% of an anti-caking agent, such as maize starch, potato starch, or tricalcium phosphate, to absorb moisture, decrease clumping, and improve flow. Caking happens as finer particles absorb more moisture.

While powdered sugar is often created in factories, it is possible to make a replacement by grinding regular granulated sugar in a coffee grinder or crushing it by hand in a mortar and pestle. It is typically used by home chefs to make icing, frosting, and other cake decorations. It is also widely used to provide a subtle sweetness and decoration to baked goods.

Powdered Sugar Nutrition Facts

Uses of Powdered Sugar in Frosting Recipes

Powdered sugar, often known as confectioners sugar, is used in many frosting recipes because of its smooth smoothness. It also has a sweetness similar to granulated sugar, and its slight texture gives a smoother mouthfeel, giving off the sensation that you’re eating powder.

Powdered sugar, with its finer particles, is great for crafting smooth-textured sweet dishes. As a result, it is naturally the sugar of choice for frosting, icing, and dusting baked products.

Powdered sugar is used in the following recipes:

  • Frosting with chocolate buttercream
  • Decorator icing
  • Caramel icing
  • Frosting made with coconut oil
  • Cream cheese icing
  • Sugar cookie icing
  • Cinnamon roll icing
  • Frosting made using cool whip
  • Frosting made with vegan coconut milk
  • Frosting with caramel buttercream
  • Vegan vanilla icing
  • Frosting with lemon buttercream
  • Banana butter icing
  • Frosting for Brownies
  • Doughnuts with homemade frosting

Substitutes for Powdered Sugar in Frosting

Powdered sugar may be used in a variety of ways to improve the taste and appearance of baked goods. Its tiny particles make it a popular choice among bakers since it produces smoother final goods than most other alternatives. In general, it has a fantastic flavor, comparable to granulated sugar, and few people would not like that in their dishes.

Despite its pleasing flavor and visual appeal, powdered sugar is not the healthiest substance. Too much powdered sugar, or any sugar, may be harmful to one’s health. Also, it may not always be readily accessible for usage, necessitating the consideration of other options. The following are some alternatives to using powdered sugar in frosting recipes:

Dry Milk Powder

Dry milk powder is sugar-free, making it a far healthier substitute for powdered sugar in frosting recipes, particularly when nonfat dry milk powder is used. Dry milk powder reduces sugar and calorie intake, making it excellent if you have health concerns about using powdered sugar.

One cup of powdered dry milk (skimmed), half a cup of Splenda or similar sugar-free sweetener, and one cup of cornstarch are all that is required to produce this alternative. These components should be mixed to a very fine consistency in a blender or similar appliance. Since milk powder absorbs more liquid than powdered sugar, adding a little additional liquid is recommended to guarantee uniformity. This replacement option may be used in lieu of powdered sugar in a 1:1 substitution ratio.


Xylitol is a sugar alcohol that may be used to replace powdered sugar. It is prepared from grains, fruits, and vegetables and contains sugar-like crystals of varying sizes, as well as powdered variants. Xylitol powder works well in most powdered sugar recipes. It has the benefit of being calorie-free, as opposed to regular sugar.

Due to their comparable sweetness levels, large xylitol crystals may be broken into smaller crystals in a food processor and then used as a 1:1 substitute for powdered sugar. Cornstarch may be used for the consistency and feel that powdered sugar provides, but it is not required.

It should be noted that xylitol might cause meals to dry out faster than powdered sugar. Since xylitol does not caramelize as soon as sugar, baked goods sweetened with it dry out much faster. With the usage of xylitol, more fluids is required.

Powdered Coconut Sugar

Powdered sugar may be replaced with ground coconut sugar and arrowroot powder. This sugar alternative is less sweet and has a lower glycemic index, making it healthier than powdered sugar. Because of its delightful caramel taste, many people choose coconut sugar over traditional powdered sugar.

One cup of coconut sugar and one spoonful of arrowroot powder are required for this alternative. The coconut sugar and arrowroot powder combination should be well mixed using a 1:1 ratio replacement for powdered sugar.

Coconut sugar complements a wide range of dessert and baked goods recipes. If you don’t have a sweet tooth but yet like the flavor of caramel, coconut powder is the finest solution.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Can I use white sugar instead of powdered sugar for frosting?

Sugar, either granulated or caster, may be used in the frosting, and coarse sugar will help your icing sugar blend more evenly. It makes sense to use granulated sugar if you have it, but caster sugar works just as well.

Can I use brown sugar in place of powdered sugar?

Brown sugar, which is white sugar with molasses added, will not work well since it is too sticky to deal with like powdered sugar.

How is frosting different from icing?

Icing is lighter than frosting but not as light as a glaze. Icing is often made with powdered sugar and a liquid such as water, milk, or juice and may be drizzled or spread. Frosting has a coarser texture and less shine than icing.


Now, when you don’t have powdered sugar in your recipes, your favorite frosting sweets won’t suffer. Instead, our proposed alternatives operate in a variety of ways to accomplish the same goals as powdered sugar in frosting.

Try one or more of these healthier frosting delights to avoid the negative consequences of excessive sugar intake. To attain consistency and outcomes, it is also critical to apply them in the proper manner and proportions.


What can I use instead of powdered sugar for frosting?

Use dry milk powder as a powdered sugar substitute for a similar texture but with significantly less sugar. Mix 1 cup dry milk powder with 1 cup cornstarch, add sweetness if desired, and use in the same quantity as powdered sugar.

Can you substitute sugar for powdered sugar in frosting?

“This indicates that a cup of powdered sugar contains more sugar than a cup of normal sugar.” Apart from inconsistencies in quantities, ordinary sugar does not dissolve and combine as well in recipes like frosting and icing. The result will be a gritty, unattractive texture.

Why do you need powdered sugar for frosting?

Powdered sugar: Utilizing powdered sugar is vital since it dissolves without the need of heat. To manufacture your own, place granulated sugar in a blender or food processor and pulse until the sugar is fine, fluffy powdered sugar. Milk, water, or half-and-half are all acceptable options. Add enough to get the desired glazing consistency.

Can I substitute honey for powdered sugar in frosting?

3 cup honey for every 1 cup sugar… then follow the instructions below to ensure that your recipe still rises… 2-2 Since honey and sugar are not similar components (honey is a liquid while sugar is dry; honey is sweeter than sugar, etc.), there is no magic ratio for replacing honey for sugar, but as a general guideline, use 1

How do you convert granulated sugar to powdered sugar?

4 cup powdered sugar may be used for 1 cup granulated sugar, but the recipe’s success is dependent on how you use the sugar. Powdered sugar may be made from granulated sugar by combining 1 cup granulated sugar and 1 teaspoon cornstarch until a fine powder is formed. 1 3

How much granulated sugar is equal to powdered sugar?

4 cups powdered sugar. Weight, not volume, is a more precise (and simpler) approach to replace the sugars. If a recipe asks for 1 cup powdered sugar (4 ounces, or 113 grams), use 4 ounces granulated sugar instead. In general, 1 cup of granulated sugar is suggested for 1 3

What type of sugar is often used for frosting?

Powdered sugar, also known as confectioners’ sugar, is finely crushed granulated sugar that has been blended with a little quantity of cornstarch to avoid caking. This is the sugar that is typically used in frostings, glazes, and the white coating on doughnuts that will very certainly be all over your face and hands after the first bite.

How to make glaze icing without powdered sugar?

There are a few alternatives to using powdered sugar to create icing. One method is to combine confectioners’ sugar, condensed milk, melted butter, and vanilla essence. Another method is to use brown sugar and melted butter.

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