Sugar Substitutes: Compare the Brands

Choosing a low-calorie sweetener used to be simple: pink, yellow, or blue. But new sugar substitutes have hit store shelves -- including "greener" sweeteners and sweetener combos -- all promising the sweet taste you love without calories. Get the skinny on the new sugar substitutes as well as longtime favorites.

Sugar Substitute Comparisons

Want to add something sweet without the worry of adding calories and carbs? The following slides show some of the most common brands of sugar substitutes. All can be used as tabletop sweeteners and in hot and cold beverages (one packet equals the sweetness of 2 teaspoons of sugar and has no calories).

Although these sweeteners provide 0 calories per serving, you should monitor your individual blood glucose sensitivity to any sweetener, especially if you eat multiple servings. Most contain very small amounts of carbohydrate from bulking agents (such as dextrose). Follow package directions for guidelines on baking or cooking with sugar substitutes.

Sugar Substitute: Equal Original

Sweetener(s) In It: Made of aspartame (a combination of two amino acids), and acesulfame potassium, a zero calorie sweetener that is 200 times sweeter than sugar. Also available are Equal Sucralose (made with sucralose), Equal Saccharin (made with saccharin), and Equal Next (made with aspartame and saccharin). 
For Baking? Yes, in manufacturer-supplied recipes and/or with recipe modifications suggested by the manufacturer.
Sold in Bulk? Yes
Cost: About $2.99/50-packet box (6 cents/packet)
Get More Info: Call 800/323-5316 or visit equal.com

Sugar Substitute: Ideal

Sweetener(s) In It: Made of xylitol, a sugar alcohol that is as sweet as sugar, and a small amount of sucralose, which is 600 times sweeter than sugar.
For Baking? Yes
Sold in Bulk? Yes
Cost: About $6.99/100-packet box (7 cents/packet)
Get More Info: Call 317/566-9750 or visit idealsweet.com

Sugar Substitute: Nevella with Probiotics

Sweetener(s) In It: Made of sucralose. Also contains probiotics, which are beneficial bacteria that support digestive and immune health.
For Baking? Yes
Sold in Bulk? Yes
Cost: About $9.99/200-packet box (5 cents/packet)
Get More Info: Call 317/566-9750 or visit nevella.com

Sugar Substitute: Wholesome Sweeteners Zero

Sweetener(s) In It: Made of organic erythritol, which is only 70 percent as sweet as sugar (you may need a bit more to replace sugar).
For Baking? Yes, in manufacturer-supplied recipes and/or with recipe modifications suggested by the manufacturer.
Sold in Bulk? Yes
Cost: About $8.99/35-packet box (26 cents/packet)
Get More Info: Call 800/680-1896 or visit wholesomesweeteners.com

Sugar Substitute: PureVia

Sweetener(s) In It: Made of rebiana, or Reb A (a high-purity extract of the stevia plant that's 200-300 times sweeter than sugar), and erythritol.
For Baking? Yes, in manufacturer-supplied recipes and/or with recipe modifications suggested by the manufacturer.
Sold in Bulk? Yes
Cost: About $2.99/40-stick box (7 cents/stick)
Get More Info: Call 800/824-2334 or visit purevia.com

Sugar Substitute: Splenda

Sweetener(s) In It: Made of sucralose, which is produced by a multistep process that starts with sugar. Sucralose is 600 times sweeter than sugar.
For Baking? Yes
Sold in Bulk? Yes, and it's available blended with white or brown sugar.
Cost: About $2.49/50-packet box (5 cents/packet)
Get More Info: Call 800/777-5363 or visit splenda.com

Sugar Substitute: Stevia In The Raw

Sweetener(s) In It: Made of stevia extract (rebiana), which is 200-300 times sweeter than sugar.
For Baking? Yes, in manufacturer-supplied recipes and/or with recipe modifications suggested by the manufacturer.
Sold in Bulk? Yes
Cost: About $2.99/50-packet box (6 cents/packet)
Get More Info: Call 800/611-7434 or visit intheraw.com

Sugar Substitute: SugarTwin

Sweetener(s) In It: Made of saccharin, which is 300-500 times sweeter than sugar.
For Baking? Yes
Sold in Bulk? Yes, in white or brown sugar varieties.
Cost: About $1.87/100-packet box (2 cents/packet)
Get More Info: Call 888/252-3786 or visit sugartwin.com

Sugar Substitute: SweetLeaf

Sweetener(s) In It: Made of stevia leaf extract (extracted using purified water), which is 200-300 times sweeter than sugar.
For Baking? Yes
Sold in Bulk? Yes
Cost: $4.99/35-packet box (14 cents/packet)
Get More Info: Call 800/899-9908 or visit sweetleaf.com

Sugar Substitute: Sweet'N Low

Sweetener(s) In It: Made of saccharin, which is 300-500 times sweeter than sugar.
For Baking? Yes
Sold in Bulk? Yes, in white or brown sugar varieties.
Cost: About $4.75/2 50-packet boxes (5 cents/packet)
Get More Info: Call 800/221-1763 or visit sweetnlow.com

Sugar Substitute: Sweet One

Sweetener(s) In It: Made of acesulfame-K, which is 200 times sweeter than sugar.
For Baking? Yes
Sold in Bulk? Yes
Cost: About $3.75/50-packet box (8 cents/packet)
Get More Info: Call 800/544-8610 or visit sweetone.com

Sugar Substitute: Truvia

Sweetener(s) In It: Made of rebiana (the best-tasting part of the stevia leaf, the manufacturer says) and erythritol.
For Baking? Yes
Sold in Bulk? Yes
Cost: $5.74/80-packet box (7 cents/packet)
Get More Info: Call 866/853-6077 or visit truvia.com

Sugar Substitute: ZSweet

Sweetener(s) In It: Made of erythritol and proprietary natural flavors to enhance the sweetness.
For Baking?: Yes
Sold in Bulk?: Yes
Cost: About $8.49/100-packet box (2 cents/packet)
Get More Info: Call 866/227-9338 or visit zsweet.com

Sugar Substitute: NutraSweet

Sweetener(s) In It: Blue contains aspartame and acesulfame-K (the K stands for potassium). Pink is a mix of acesulfame-K and neotame.
For Baking? No
Sold in Bulk? No
Cost: $2.39-$2.99/100-packet box (2-3 cents/packet)
Get More Info: Call 800/443-2767 or visit nutrasweetswirl.com

Spotting Sugar Substitutes

Sugar substitutes are used in diet drinks as well as some packaged foods, including select cereals, gums, lower-sugar products, and reduced-calorie foods. Check for sweeteners in the ingredients list.

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