Substituting Agave Syrup for Karo Syrup in Recipes?

Around this time of year I like to make homemade popcorn balls for my Dad. The syrup recipe I have always used calls for light corn syrup, (such as Karo). However recently I found an all natural sweetener called agave nectar. It's about 70% as sweet as sugar, but has a very low glycemic count, so it's much healthier. Since my Dad is diabetic, this sounds like a better/healthier option for the popcorn ball syrup.

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I checked online for recipes using agave instead of Karo, and the only recipes I find call for almond butter as well. I assume this is a substitute for butter, but I'm not sure I want to have them taste like almond butter. Does anyone happen to have any experience using agave nectar in a recipe for popcorn balls successfully? I am looking to keep the end result pretty much like the ones I have been making, but healthier. Thanks in advance for any suggestions.

By donna napolitan from San Diego, CA

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December 9, 20090 found this helpful

Here is your situation. To make the popcorn balls the syrup has to be cooked to a certain stage usually based on temperature. It's going to concentrate the syrup to about the same amount as a corn syrup, which will decrease it's sugar content benefit, but it still probably works differently in the body, so you still get that benefit.

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You need to find out how hard to make it [hard/soft ball stage criteria] which can be determined by temperature or testing in cold water. That info will be in any recipe.

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October 29, 20100 found this helpful

What You Need:

1/2 cup water
1/2 cup agave
1-1/4 cup sugar
1 teaspoon salt
1/4 cup margarine (I like Earth Balance)
1 teaspoon vanilla
8 cups popcorn, popped

What You Do:

1. In a pot, mix the water, agave, sugar, and salt. Heat on low until mixture is warm. Remove from stove and stir in margarine and vanilla.
2. Place the popcorn in a large bowl. Pour the mixture over popcorn and stir until combined.
3. Roll into balls with greased hands and let cool. Serve!

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December 30, 20190 found this helpful

The corn sirop stops the sugar from crystallizing. Agave May work. I am going to try it.

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