Healthy Homemade Maple Syrup - Healthy Dessert Recipes at Desserts with Benefits

This Healthy Homemade Maple Syrup tastes just like maple syrup, except it’s sugar free, low carb and nearly calorie-free!  It’s perfect for topping pancakes, waffles, oatmeal, yogurt and more, the possibilities are endless!

Healthy Homemade Maple Syrup - Healthy Dessert Recipes at Desserts with Benefits

I’m the kind of person who likes to have dessert EVERY. NIGHT.

Like, before, during or after dinner, I want dessert.

Last week I was craving pancakes for dinner and the only way I can eat pancakes is with pure maple syrup (of course).  I kind of douse it on my pancakes, but that’s probably not the best idea at nighttime, right?  While pure maple syrup is pure and all natural, it’s still sugar.

And all that sugar before bed doesn’t sit well with me.  I get suuuper hyper for hours (no one wants to see that…) and then I can’t sleep because of it (and I don’t really need that when I have classes or exam(s) the next day)

Healthy Homemade Maple Syrup - Healthy Dessert Recipes at Desserts with Benefits

So, I found the solution — Healthy Homemade Maple Syrup!

Healthy Homemade Maple Syrup - Healthy Dessert Recipes at Desserts with Benefits

Yeah, I know this didn’t come pouring out of a maple tree, but just like maple syrup from a tree, this DIY version is all natural, fat free, gluten free and vegan.  It tastes just like pure maple syrup, but without the calories, sugar and carbs.  What does that mean?

PANCAKES FOR DINNER!  I can finally have my beloved pancakes that I crave so much  :)

Another reason why I wanted to make my own “maple syrup” was because I simply adore that sweet maple-y syrupy goodness.  Not only to top pancakes, but to pour over single-serving microwave cakes, boring oatmeal and sometimes even added to smoothies.  I love maple syrup so much that I almost considered buying a bottle of Walden Farms or Torani maple syrup…


Yeah, I love it so much I was about to pour a bottle of aspartame, artificial Splenda, artificial food coloring, caramel coloring, artificial flavoring and preservatives into my body.  No thanks, I’d rather have my all-natural maple syrup.  It’s sweetened with stevia instead of empty-calorie white sugar or high fructose corn syrup, so you can feel good about chugging serving this.

Healthy Homemade “Maple Syrup” (sugar free, low carb, fat free, gluten free & vegan)

Prep Time: 5 minutes

Cook Time: 10 minutes

Total Time: 15 minutes

Yield: 4+1/4 cups

Serving Size: 1/4 cup

Calories per serving: 8

Fat per serving: 0g

Healthy Homemade “Maple Syrup” (sugar free, low carb, fat free, gluten free & vegan)



  1. In a large bowl, whisk together 2 cups of the water, maple flavor and lemon flavor.
  2. In a small bowl, whisk together the stevia in the raw, xanthan gum and salt. Slowly whisk this into the wet ingredients WHILE WHISKING.
  3. Once all is incorporated, whisk the entire mixture vigorously while pouring in the remaining cup of water.
  4. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate overnight.
  5. The next day, pour the mixture into a blender or food processor and puree until completely smooth.
  6. Pour into pretty serving jars, tightly seal and refrigerate to store.


**2 tsp makes a VERY thick syrup. If you want a thinner syrup, typical to regular pure maple syrup, just use 1 tsp of xanthan gum. Personally, I just like SUPER THICK syrups, not thin and drippy sugar water, so I use 2 tsp ;)

This recipe is: fat free, sugar free, low carb, gluten free and vegan!

Here is a nutrition label comparison between regular pure maple syrup and the Desserts with Benefits Healthy Homemade Maple Syrup:

Healthy Homemade Maple Syrup nutrition label - Healthy Dessert Recipes at Desserts with Benefits  Healthy Homemade Maple Syrup nutrition label - Healthy Dessert Recipes at Desserts with Benefits

Wow, that’s a pretty big difference.  Technically, my recipe contains 8 calories per 1/4 cup but the label maker rounds it up.  But seriously, that’s like nothing  😉

BRING ON THE [enter meal here]!!

For now, that’s [OATMEAL].  Who knows, tonight it will probably be [PANCAKES]… or [WAFFLES]…  or [SINGLE-SERVING CAKE].

So let’s see this Healthy Homemade Maple Syrup in action, shall we?

Healthy Homemade Maple Syrup - Healthy Dessert Recipes at Desserts with Benefits Healthy Homemade Maple Syrup - Healthy Dessert Recipes at Desserts with Benefits Healthy Homemade Maple Syrup - Healthy Dessert Recipes at Desserts with Benefits

Now where’s my spoon…

Labels: 5-Ingredients-or-Less, DIY, Fat-Free, Gluten-Free, Low-Carb, Maple, No-Bake, Nutrition-Label, Sugar-Free, Vegan

5 Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. Pingback: Desserts With Benefits: Healthy Homemadee Maple Syrup, sugar free, gluten freee | Vegan Coyote on March 4, 2014
  2. Pingback: Desserts With Benefits on March 25, 2014
  3. Pingback: Protein Pancakes with All-Natural Maple Syrup | Fat Loss Challenge on September 23, 2014
  4. Pingback: Apple Pie French Toast (E) | Pray. Work. Eat. on November 18, 2014
  5. Pingback: Banana and Egg white Pancakes! | travelingfig on April 18, 2015

Comments (63)

  1. Ellen: March 4, 2014

    Is lemon flavor the same as lemon juice? Or is this like lemon extract?

  2. dessertswithbenefits: March 4, 2014

    It’s similar to a lemon extract, except it doesn’t have any alcohol in it. Lemon flavor is much more mild and natural in flavor, and does not need to be “baked out.”
    This is the one I used:
    I’ll add the link to the recipe, thanks!

  3. Ellen: March 4, 2014

    Also, how long can this be stored for? And does it taste the same if substituted in recipes for regular maple syrup? I have a bottle of sugar-free syrup but can’t bring myself to use it knowing what ingredients are in it! I’m so excited to make this!!

  4. dessertswithbenefits: March 4, 2014

    It keeps really well since it doesn’t require cooking. It just has to be refrigerated in a sealed container or squirt bottle with a cap. I haven’t tried it in recipes, I just used it for topping pancakes, waffles, yogurt, oatmeal and fruit… this syrup is much thicker (because that’s my personal preference with syrups), so I’m not sure how it would work as a substitution for pure maple syrup :/
    I sure hope it would work though! :)

  5. Gorgeous pictures and that syrup sounds divine on EVERYTHING! I love your creative recipes, Jessica!

  6. dessertswithbenefits: March 5, 2014

    Awww thanks Annie!!
    It’s seriously good on oatmeal… YOM. Love your recipes too :)

  7. Nadja: March 6, 2014

    Is there something you could use instead of Xanthan Gum?

  8. dessertswithbenefits: March 6, 2014

    Sadly, I’m not 100% positive of a good substitute… because this syrup doesn’t require cooking, starches wouldn’t be a good replacement because they would taste grainy and muddle the flavor. Agar agar and gelatin also wouldn’t work because those require heating/boiling to dissolve and thicken. The only thing I can really think of is my Homemade Metamucil. You wouldn’t need a lot, probably 1 tablespoon? You might need more, but make sure not to add too much because it will get slightly thicker overnight :)
    Oh, and flax and chia just came to my mind! You can try making a big batch of “flax eggs” or “chia eggs” (1/3 cup ground flaxseed/chia + ~1 cup water), let that gel overnight, strain through a fine mesh strainer, discarding the seed meal and keeping the gel substance. Then make the recipe from there :)
    I haven’t tried this either, but according to Wing it Vegan, it sure looks like it would work! Plus, those ingredients are easier to find.
    Hope this helped!

  9. Gina: March 6, 2014

    Hi, this looks so good. Can I use lemon juice if I dont have lemon flavor? Would it still taste ok if I just left the lemon flavor out completely?

  10. dessertswithbenefits: March 6, 2014

    I haven’t tried using lemon juice instead, but I’m sure it would work! Just make sure to use the bottled stuff (preferably organic) because it has been pasteurized and will keep for a longer period of time. I tried a sample taste of this without the lemon flavor and found that it needed a lil somethin somethin… sometimes maple can taste a bit flat, so the lemon helps brighten up the overall flavor. Don’t worry though, you don’t taste any lemon… That would be gross, haha :)
    Storebought sugar-free maple syrups often contain citric acid, but I didn’t have any on hand and assumed most people wouldn’t either (it’s usually something only professional cooks have).
    So, you can start off the recipe without the lemon, give it a taste, and add some if you think it needs it. Hope you like it!

  11. Ellen: March 12, 2014

    Okay… I ordered the ingredients I didn’t have and made this last night. It’s delicious and totally works as a healthy substitute! I think next time I’ll add a little less stevia though as two tsp made it just a tad bitter, but still good!

    Have you ever made this with any other extracts or flavors or are you considering doing so? I’m thinking chocolate, raspberry, butterscotch would be great! Thanks for such a great and easy recipe :)

  12. dessertswithbenefits: March 12, 2014

    YAY I’m glad you got a chance to make the recipe! Sorry if the stevia was bitter, I’ll make another batch soon and see how much I can reduce it (I think 1 tsp might be too little, so maybe 1.5 tsp?)
    Oh, and you’re WAY ahead of the game, Ellen! I’m not gonna lie, I think I’ve made about seven flavors of this syrup 😉 Each one is a little different though (so for example, for the strawberry syrup, I needed to add more lemon to bring the flavor out, along with some natural red food coloring). They’re all pretty similar though, and easy. I was going to get the posts ready during spring break (next week, woohoo!) because this week is packed with exams and assignments :(
    But yes, other flavors are coming soon 😉

  13. Jody Dake: March 20, 2014

    Could you use glucomannan instead of xantham gum? It is a healthy natural thickener and filler, and is used in LOTS of the Trim Healthy Mama recipes. I would also be using the pure powdered Nunaturals stevia, would it still be that much? Thanks, this sounds de-lish, and I am excited to try!

    Always Experiencing Him,

  14. dessertswithbenefits: March 20, 2014

    Jody Dake-
    I don’t have any experience with glucomannan so I can’t be sure, but from what I’ve read I’m sure it will work out just fine!
    Hope you like the recipe :)

  15. mallory: April 8, 2014

    does this taste like actual maple sryup? i have tried making homemade stuff in the past of it and wasnt a fan!

  16. dessertswithbenefits: April 9, 2014

    I thought it did! But, it really depends on the maple flavoring you use. There are artificial ones out there that might taste too strong and “chemically” … and there might be some that taste watered down.
    This is the brand I use:

    If you try out this recipe, I hope you like it better than the previous ones! :)

  17. Heather Rennie: April 15, 2014

    if using the extract (vs stevia in the raw) what brand do you use? i find they can vary in their sweetness

  18. dessertswithbenefits: April 15, 2014

    For recipes that require no cooking I like using NuNaturals. The flavor and sweetness feels “rounded out” to me compared to my usual #1 preference, which is SweetLeaf. Add 1+1/2 tsp first, give it a taste, and add any more from there if you feel like it needs it :)
    Hope you like the syrup!

  19. Gina: July 11, 2014

    HI, I finally was able to make this, and it tasted really bitter. Do you have any suggestions on how to adjust the taste to be more sweet?
    Thanks so much!!

  20. dessertswithbenefits: July 11, 2014

    Oh no! I’m sorry it tasted bitter :(
    Did you use Stevia in the Raw or liquid stevia? And if you used liquid stevia, what brand? Some brands have alcohol in it (I have no idea why, because it tastes terrible), and some brands are just plain horrible.
    Also, did you use natural maple flavor or artificial? Sometimes that can make or break a recipe.
    Let me know!

  21. Gina: July 11, 2014

    Thanks for the response! I used SweetLeaf SteviaClear Liquid Stevia, vanilla. I also used artificial maple. Should I maybe use less stevia next time?

  22. dessertswithbenefits: July 13, 2014

    Wow, I’m surprised SweetLeaf’s vanilla stevia was bitter! I’ve never had that experience with mine. Maybe reduce the amount a little bit, to 1+1/4 or 1+1/2 tsp.
    I would also recommend using natural maple flavor, like the one linked to in the recipe:
    If you used McCormick’s artificial maple, it contains alcohol and sulfiting agents, which may have caused the bitter taste.
    I hope this helps!

  23. Heidi: July 22, 2014

    This looks fantastic! The only caveat is that the maple flavoring your link goes to contains malt extract which has gluten, so it’s not actually gluten-free. It would be pretty tiny traces though, so maybe harmless? Just a heads up.

    Wondering if you’ve ever tried erythritol instead of stevia? I don’t care for the licorice-y flavor of stevia and I have erythritol on hand. Just not sure how much to use.

    Thanks! :-)

  24. dessertswithbenefits: July 22, 2014

    Thanks Heidi! For some reason, new bottles of the alcohol-free Maple Flavor (from Frontier brand) don’t contain malt extract anymore. I remember I bought a bottle a few years ago that had it, but the two bottles I have now don’t. It doesn’t list malt as the ingredients on the Amazon listing either (, so I think it’s a new thing?
    If you have celiac disease or a gluten allergy, definitely be aware of this flavoring! Thanks for the reminder Heidi :)
    I haven’t tried erythritol yet, because I’m afraid of it turning out gritty or giving that chilling effect on the tongue… but, I’ve heard that Swerve erythritol doesn’t do that! If you want to try Swerve out, I would recommend using 1 cup at first. Give it a taste and add more if you feel like it needs it (you might need to add up to 2 cups).
    I hope this works out for you, good luck! Hope you like the recipe :)

  25. Whitney: July 31, 2014

    Hi there! I just made your recipe, (thanks for posting) and I halfed it. I am knew to this and wondered, if that made the nutrition panel half for the 1/4 cup since the servings were less? Would it still be 3g Carbs for 1/4 cup? My son is on the LGIT diet for epilepsy and this helps him enjoy foods that he used to enjoy. Thank you thank you thank you for making a little boys sacrifice easier!

  26. dessertswithbenefits: August 2, 2014

    Thank you so much for making the recipe! :)
    Even though you halved the recipe (provided below) the nutrition label will stay the same.
    1.5 cups Water
    1 tbs Maple Flavor
    2 drops Lemon Flavor
    1 cup Stevia in the Raw (or 3/4 tsp of Stevia Extract)
    1/2 tsp Xanthan Gum
    1/16 tsp Salt

    I also want to point out the Stevia in the Raw isn’t very low-glycemic, it’s just sugar-free. If you want a low-glycemic maple syrup, I would recommend using the stevia extract. To enhance the flavor, I would try out the vanilla-flavored stevia or English toffee-flavored stevia. I use SweetLeaf because it’s organic and alcohol-free :)
    I hope this helps! And I hope your son enjoys the maple syrup! He’s so strong :)

  27. Linnea: August 17, 2014

    I really want to make this recipe and just wondered if i could use erthylitol instead of stevia?
    And can i use lemon essence or does it have to be lemon flavor?

  28. dessertswithbenefits: August 22, 2014

    I haven’t tried this recipe using erythritol instead of stevia so I can’t be sure. I’m afraid the erythritol might crystallize, especially in the fridge, so I wouldn’t recommend it.
    As for the essence instead of flavor, I’m not sure. I’ve never used lemon essence before… is that stronger than typical flavors/extracts? If so, I would recommend starting out with 1 drop, whisk it, give it a taste, then add another drop if you feel like it needs it.
    I hope you like the recipe!

  29. christie: September 9, 2014

    so nobody has asked about splenda as a substitute for stevia… since i’m looking for something low glycemic, i’d be having to get sucralose drops. i use splenda all the time, (usually in powdered form though), and i’m not at all familiar with the flavor of stevia. can you think of any reason why splenda wouldn’t be a good option?

  30. dessertswithbenefits: September 9, 2014

    I don’t use Splenda anymore because I try to stay away from sucralose and aspartame and the like :)
    I used to use Splenda a lot before I started eating healthier, but when I turned to Stevia in the Raw I actually came to like the flavor way more!
    I’ve never used sucralose drops before so I’m not sure how that would taste in this recipe, but I do know that the Stevia in the Raw and liquid stevia extract taste good :)

  31. christie: September 9, 2014

    LOL, it seems like stevia is a flavor that people always describe as ‘getting used to’… kinda like ‘developing a taste’ for beer or something 😉 i generally don’t put my taste buds through the torture of learning to like something! but yeah, i do understand the caution surrounding splenda, but i’ll probably never give it up… so today i’ll go shopping for liquid splenda and xanthan gum. never used that before either!

  32. Julie: September 28, 2014

    Could you heat it up? I love warm syrup over pancakes.

  33. dessertswithbenefits: September 29, 2014

    I haven’t tried heating up the syrup, but that sounds like a great idea! Yummy, warm syrup and PANCAKES! *drools*
    I wouldn’t recommend microwaving it, in case that might change the flavor. I would recommend heating the syrup on the stove over low heat.
    I hope you like the recipe!

  34. Jordan: October 20, 2014

    Does this recipe require lemon for it to taste good? Also can I use lemon extract you can buy from walmart? Thanks for the recipe! I’ve been trying to find healthy syrups but can’t find any. Also can the maple be an extract from walmart as well?

  35. dessertswithbenefits: October 20, 2014

    The lemon is there to brighten up the overall flavor (kind of like how storebought syrups use citric acid). I’ve never used lemon extract or maple extract from Walmart so I can’t be sure. If either of them have alcohol in it, then I wouldn’t recommend it… you might be able to taste alcohol or bitterness in the syrup.
    These are the flavors I use:
    I hope this helps! I hope you like the recipe :)

  36. Jordan: October 20, 2014

    Thanks for the response, I was wondering how it tasted without the lemon, also would lemon juice work or freshly squeezed lemons?

  37. dessertswithbenefits: October 21, 2014

    The lemon isn’t really a huge component of the recipe, you don’t taste it, it’s just there to lift up the overall flavor :)
    You could probably use lemon juice, but only use a small amount, like a 1/4-1/2 teaspoon.
    I hope this helps!

  38. Sophia @ Fit Healthy Girl: November 12, 2014

    Hello! This looks like a great recipe! :) I was just wondering… would glucomannan work in place of the xanthan gum? I am a THMer ( who likes to use glucommanan to make syrups and gravies. 😉

  39. Sophia @ Fit Healthy Girl-
    I’m sorry, I don’t have any experience with glucomannan so I can’t be sure… though, if you use to as a thickener to make syrups and gravies, I’m sure it’ll work here! I tried googling it but didn’t have much luck in finding the answer. Some say glucomannan and xanthan gum are interchangeable. I hope that’s true!
    I hope you like the recipe Sophia! I’m crossing my fingers it works out for you :)

  40. Olivia: November 14, 2014


    I’m from England and use Truvia, a calorie free sweetner made from the Stevia Leaf. I’m assuming this is different from Stevia in the raw and Stevia Extract? would it not work?

    I made your sugar free jam using Truvia and it didn’t turn out very well so I wonder if it was that?


  41. Olivia-
    Yes, Truvia is different than Stevia in the Raw.
    Truvia is 2x sweeter than Stevia in the Raw, it’s heavier in weight and it’s in granulated form. Stevia in the Raw is light and in powdered form, so it dissolves easily.
    The stevia extract I use is liquid and 1 tsp of it has the sweetness of 1 cup of sugar or Stevia in the Raw. 1 tsp of stevia extract is as sweet as ~1/2 cup Truvia.
    I hope this Helps Olivia! :)
    PS: Did the jam recipe not work because it was too sweet? Or did it not set?

  42. Olivia: November 17, 2014

    Thank you for your reply… very informative!

    I used rasberries for the jam recipie and it set perfectly but it just had a funny taste. I did try it again though with strawberries and it was lovely so it must have been the fruit. Just another question… do you know if this recipie would work if i were to use frozen berries defrosted?

    I made this syrup last week and had to throw it away… I think the extracts i was using had alcohol in them as it tasted very chemically… I will have to buy the products you reccommend and try it again.

    love your website by the way. Thanks again.

  43. Olivia-
    Yeah, it might have been the raspberries. Not sure why they would make such a difference compared to strawberries though! I’m sure defrosted berries would work just fine too, just make sure they’re completely defrosted so you can as much liquid from them as possible :)
    And yes, extracts with alcohol almost never taste good in no-cook applications. I think I tried using lemon extract once in a pudding recipe and it tasted like I added ethanol instead… blegh!
    Anyways, I hope you get to try the recipe again with alcohol-free ingredients… and I hope you love it! :)

  44. Sophia @ Fit Healthy Girl: November 22, 2014

    Woohoo! This syrup is great! :) I used 1/2-1 tsp pure stevia extract instead of the stevia in the raw.
    ^ This kind is the best! :)

  45. Sophia @ Pray. Work. Eat.: November 22, 2014

    This is my new blog! ^ ^
    I might post a pic of this delicious syrup on my new Apple Pie French Toast recipe. :)

  46. Sophia @ Fit Healthy Girl-
    Yay I’m so glad you liked the maple syrup recipe! Thanks for making it :)

  47. Paula: November 25, 2014

    I am attempting to make a stevia sweetened pecan pie. Do you have any idea how this syrup would work for baking in a pie?

  48. Paula-
    That’s a great idea Paula! I never thought about that! Hmmm… I sure hope it’ll work but I haven’t tried it. If you give it a shot, good luck! :)

  49. Lindsey: December 5, 2014

    What is maple flavor? Does it contain any additives of unhealthy ingredients? Same with lemon extract?

  50. Lindsey-
    Maple flavor is just like vanilla extract, but maple-flavored instead! It is 100% natural and alcohol-free.
    Maple flavor ingredients: Glycerin, water, and natural flavors.
    The lemon flavor is use is 100% natural and organic.
    Lemon flavor ingredients: Organic sunflower oil and organic lemon oil.
    Hope this helps!

  51. bella: December 19, 2014

    I tried making this with arrowroot powder, thinking it would come out the same. Overnight in the fridge it remained liquid and thin. I found my xantham gum, and added two tsp and whipped in in the vita mixer, and it whipped into a thick pudding! Im crossing my fingers and leaving it in the fridge to see what happens tomorrow.

  52. Bella-
    Sadly, starch doesn’t replace xanthan gum here. The starch and xanthan gum together will increase the thickening of the syrup. If yours turned into a pudding, I would recommend adding some more water, maple flavor and stevia to thin it out. Hope this helps! :)

  53. Beth: January 23, 2015

    I used half truvia and half stevia and it turned out great! I also used 2 drops lemon essential oil instead of lemon flavor. I heat it in the microwave and pour over thm waffles or pancakes! YUM! How could u make other flavors? Thanks Jessica!

  54. Beth-
    Yay I’m so glad those substitutions worked out for you!! Good idea with the Truvia, I think I’ll try that next time :)
    I have a lot of other syrup flavors on the blog too:
    Cinnamon Roll
    Pumpkin Spice
    Vanilla Bean
    Hope you like the recipes!! :)

  55. Wendy: February 4, 2015

    Why does it look so grainy and muddled?

  56. Wendy-
    It looks grainy but it isn’t, it’s smooth just like syrup! :)

  57. Alisha: March 16, 2015

    I have Young Living lemon oil…could I use that? How much would you recommend?

  58. Rhonda Calvert: May 22, 2015

    I have a question. I have tried SO many sugar free syrups and just can’t stand the lemon taste. I don’t want my maple syrup to taste citrusy! Does your recipe have the lemon taste that I want to avoid? Thank you. (I am new to your website).

  59. Rhonda Calvert-
    I personally didn’t taste any lemon, because that would just ruin the flavor of maple to me, but everyones’ tastes are different. You can always omit the lemon flavor or even replace it with almond extract if you’re sensitive to lemon! 😀

  60. Priscila: June 4, 2015

    Hi I was just wondering, does it have a bitter taste to it? Because ive used stevia in some recipes and it doesn’t really do a good job at substituting sugar because of the ending bitter taste :(. What brand of Stevia do you use the to make this?

  61. Priscila-
    I didn’t detect any bitter taste from the stevia! Make sure to use a good brand though, and make sure that it’s alcohol-free. I use SweetLeaf or NuNaturals. I hope you like the recipe! 😀

  62. Susan: June 20, 2015

    I made a batch of this and it worked great as a substitute for honey/maple syrup with to make homemade granola, and I loved it on sweet potatoes, too.

    I also made a salted caramel version! Basically the same formula only caramel flavor and extra salt (I may experiment with butter or butterscotch extract with the caramel, too.)

  63. Susan-
    Oh wow, I’m so happy to hear that!! I wasn’t sure how it would work in recipes, but I’m glad it worked in your granola 😀
    And SALTED CARAMEL?? That’s genius! I want that on my pancakes ASAP!

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