Condiments That Pack More Sugar Than You Think


Ever picked teriyaki hen over General Tso’s and prided your self on resisting the fried possibility? Nixed the oil-based French dressing in your salad for a “lite” poppyseed dressing? Liberally unfold your sandwiches with honey mustard as a wiser swap for mayo?

Before patting your self on the again for selecting what you suppose is the more healthy condiment, take a minute to think about the choice could have saved you grams of fats—but it surely stuffed that void with one other ingredient: sugar. So many bottled condiments are loaded with the stuff; listed beneath pseudonyms resembling high-fructose corn syrup, molasses, or cane syrup, sugar sneaks its method into essentially the most surprising dipping sauces, spreads, and dressings.

Time to get savvier concerning the sugar we’ve unknowingly been including to our meals. We’re breaking down 9 condiments that pack a shocking quantity of the candy stuff. Since we expect there is a distinction between the urged serving measurement and the way a lot we’re actually layering on, we broke it down by urged servings versus actuality. And do not miss our ideas for retaining your consumption in verify, so your condiments aren’t crushing your eat-less-sugar objectives.

1. Ketchup

A normal ketchup bottle will let you know 1 serving is a tablespoon, and it packs 4 grams of sugar. But who actually consumes a measly tablespoon with their basket of fries or grilled cheese? IMO, no person. We’re all simply placing away at the least 2 servings of the stuff every time we use it, so if we’re being sensible, we’re consuming a minimal of 2 tablespoons—that is 8 grams of sugar.

Sugar per serving

Suggested: 1 tablespoon = 4 grams sugar
Reality: 2 tablespoons = 8 grams sugar

2. Sriracha

Finding out sugar is listed 2d on the ingredient checklist behind that iconic rooster emblem is a heartbreaking second. The diet label innocently states there’s just one gram of sugar per serving, however most Sriracha lovers use greater than a teaspoon at a time, so yeah, that is not sensible.

Sugar per serving

Suggested: 1 teaspoon = 1 gram sugar
Reality: 3 teaspoons = 3 grams sugar

3. Barbecue Sauce

Sugar content material in barbecue sauce modifications primarily based on the model, however it doesn’t matter what selection you’re utilizing, it’s a fairly good wager it’ll have at the least 4 to six grams of the candy stuff per one-tablespoon serving within the type of sugar, high-fructose corn syrup, and/or molasses. But inform us the final time you used lower than 1 / 4 cup of barbecue sauce to baste a hen breast, marinate a steak, or slow-cook pulled pork. That’s lots of tablespoons—and lots of sugar. But dang, it’s tasty.

Sugar per serving

Suggested: 1 tablespoon = 6 grams sugar
Reality: 2 tablespoons = 12 grams sugar

4. Mayonnaise

Most manufacturers of mayo proudly declare they include 0 grams of sugar per serving, however the elements clearly present sugar is concerned. What offers?! Annoyingly sufficient, in accordance with food-labeling legal guidelines, a product might be marketed as having no sugar if there are lower than 0.5 grams of it per serving. So whereas the producers aren’t technically breaking the foundations, they’re nonetheless being kind of sneaky, particularly for anybody who’s avoiding all the sugars. So for those who’re including greater than a tablespoon (hen salad, anybody?), you’re including at the least 1 gram of sugar. No, it’s not the tip of the world, however it might probably sneak up on you.

Sugar per serving

Suggested: 1 tablespoon = 0 grams sugar
Reality: 2 tablespoons = 1 gram sugar

5. Sweet Relish

Given its identify, it’s no shock candy relish is a sugar-laden condiment. A tablespoon serving comes with a hefty 3 to 4 grams of it, typically due to high-fructose corn syrup—one thing to think about earlier than you begin dolloping beneficiant spoonfuls of it onto your scorching canine. Then once more, for those who’re consuming a scorching canine, you most likely aren’t monitoring added sugars and processed elements in that second.

Sugar per serving

Suggested: 1 tablespoon = 4 grams sugar
Reality: 2 tablespoons = 8 grams sugar

6. Honey Mustard

Many individuals select honey mustard as a lower-fat different to mayo and suppose it’s completely wholesome as a result of, you realize, there are antioxidants in honey. Honey as a source of dietary antioxidants: structures, bioavailability and evidence of protective effects against human chronic diseases. Alvarez-Suarez JM, Giampieri F, Battino M. Current medicinal chemistry, 2014, Jan.;20(5):1875-533X. So it’d come as a shock that in most business manufacturers, honey is listed method down on the ingredient checklist, nicely after each high-fructose corn syrup and sugar. Sugar counts can creep as much as 3 grams per tablespoon, that means this condiment simply packs at the least 6 grams of sugar if you smother your meal with the candy stuff.

Sugar per serving:

Suggested: 1 tablespoon = 3 grams sugar
Reality: 2 tablespoons = 6 grams sugar

7. Light or Fat-Free Dressing

Many gentle or fat-free dressings pile on the sugar (plus different hard-to-pronounce elements) in an effort to exchange the flavour and consistency that the lacking fats would provide. Light or fat-free dressings can have 3 (ranch), to five (raspberry French dressing, poppyseed), to even 6 (Thousand Island) grams of sugar per two-tablespoon serving—which might simply be doubled or tripled if you’re drizzling it onto your salad or sandwich.

Sugar per serving

Suggested: 2 tablespoons = 6 grams sugar
Reality: 3 tablespoons = 9 grams sugar

8. Teriyaki Sauce

Bottled teriyaki sauces use plain sugar, cane syrup, or high-fructose corn syrup to get that candy taste that cuts the saltiness from the soy. Depending on which model you utilize, you could possibly be placing away 2 to 7 grams of sugar per tablespoon. If your native take-out restaurant is utilizing bottled sauce to make your favourite teriyaki dinner, you’ll be able to wager it is utilizing greater than a tablespoon at a time (that is why it tastes so good).

Sugar per serving

Suggested: 1 tablespoon = 7 grams sugar
Reality: 2 tablespoons = 14 grams sugar

9. Hoisin Sauce

A preferred condiment for meat and stir-fries, hoisin sauce can also be a land mine relating to sugar content material. Sugar seems first or 2d on most bottled variations’ ingredient lists, which explains why a single tablespoon can simply include 9 or 10 grams. Yikes.

Sugar per serving

Suggested: 1 tablespoon = 10 grams sugar
Reality: 2 tablespoons = 20 grams sugar

How to Keep Sugary Condiment Consumption Under Control

Now that you simply’re completely freaked out about how a lot sugar is lurking in these bottles, relaxation assured these condiments don’t essentially need to be eradicated completely (that will be so unhappy). Just being conscious of what they include might be sufficient to make you choosier about if you use them. For instance, for those who’re having fun with a uncommon afternoon at a ball sport and desire a scorching canine with relish, go for it, guilt free. But you might wish to suppose twice about that sizable “drizzle” of ranch in your each day salad.

Here are some extra ideas for retaining these sugary condiments to an affordable minimal.

1. Control amount.

Most condiments have a serving measurement of 1 or 2 tablespoons. If you don’t wish to give them up, strive sticking to these parts. Eyeballing serving sizes might be 1 technique to maintain your self in verify. Think of a tablespoon as roughly the dimensions of your thumb tip and use that reference as a information when squeezing out your condiment of alternative. It takes a little bit of observe, but it surely’s higher (and extra sensible) than toting round a measuring spoon for each meal.

2. Find smarter swaps.

Explore different methods to taste your meals that substitute or at the least reduce down on the sugar-laden condiments. Regular Dijon mustard has a pleasant kick that you simply’ll by no means get from honey mustard. Salsa (verify the elements for added sugar) generally is a enjoyable technique to high salads. Slather your sandwich with hummus as a substitute of mayo. Several herbs and spices can lend delicate, pure sweetness with none sugar in any respect.

There are loads of no-sugar options on the market, and experimenting with them could make you are feeling extra such as you’re including to your choices, as a substitute of taking away from them.

3. DIY it.

If you’re feeling artful, make your individual lower-sugar model of your favourite condiments—particularly if you realize you’re going to be utilizing greater than a single serving at a time. Most do-it-yourself condiment recipes are literally fairly easy, use actual meals elements, and include little to no added sugar. Try this roasted red pepper dip that actually takes 5 minutes to get you began.

(Editor references)

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