Sugar Swap

Replace Processed Sugar in your Diet with Medjool Dates!

We encourage everyone to reduce processed sugars from their diets for good health. Processed sugars can be high glycemic - causing unpleasant sugar spikes followed by energy crashes and increased inflammation.

Pitted Medjool Dates

While Medjool dates are high in natural sugars, they are low on the glycemic index thanks to a balanced amount of soluble fibre. Complex carbs found in Medjool dates are digested at a slower rate and sustained energy is delivered to the body over a longer period of time.

Added Benefit: Medjool dates have more than 500 times the antioxidants of plain white sugar!*

*Total Antioxidant Content of Alternatives to Refined Sugar. Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. 2009

Here’s the key to the Natural Delights Sugar Swap!

Master these two recipes and you’ll be able to replace processed sugar and sweeteners in a wide variety of your favorite recipes.

Sugar Dates Split Image
Medjool Date Paste

Top 5 Date Paste Applications

  • Muffin and Cake batters
  • Dessert fillings or flavourings
  • Jam on toast alone or with other fruits
  • Dip ingredient
  • Pudding ingredient


  • 2 cups Natural Delights Medjool dates, pitted and coarsely chopped (about 20 dates)

  • 1/2 cup very hot water


  1. As an excellent natural sugar substitute, spread this on bread or toast in place of jam. Also great served with a pork roast, ham or chicken.

  2. Place the dates and water in a food processor. Process until fairly smooth to make a coarse paste, or process longer to make a creamy paste, scraping down the sides as necessary.

  3. Store tightly covered in the refrigerator for up to 1 month.

Tip: To make a spiced date paste, stir together ½ cup of date paste and ¼ teaspoon of cinnamon, pumpkin pie spice or ground ginger.

Watch this how-to video from Natalie Thomas of "Feasting on Fruit"
Medjool Date Syrup

Top 5 Date Syrup Applications

  • BBQ sauces and marinades
  • Topping for ice cream and desserts
  • Coffee or tea sweetener
  • Syrup on pancakes or waffles
  • Cocktail mixer


  • 6 cups water
  • 4 cups Natural Delights Medjool Dates


  1. Bring the water and dates to a boil in a large pot; reduce the heat and simmer, covered, for 1 hour, stirring occasionally and pressing the dates with the back of a spoon. 
  2. Line a large colander with a double layer of muslin cloth, leaving an overlap of about 15 cm at the top. Place over a bowl that’s slightly smaller so that the bottom of the colander sits above the bowl. Carefully ladle or pour the dates and liquid into the colander. Press well with the back of a spoon to force the liquid into the bowl. Fold over the muslin and place a very heavy pot or bowl directly on the dates; set aside for 1 hour to drain. When cool enough to to handle, gather the excess muslin at the top and twist tightly to enclose the dates; squeeze the dates firmly to remove as much liquid as possible.
  3. Pour the liquid into a medium size saucepan and bring to a boil; reduce the heat to medium-low and simmer for 30 to 40 minutes or until the mixture has reduced to just slightly over 1 cup, stirring frequently. As the mixture reduces, lower the heat and stir frequently to avoid scorching. The syrup will thicken as it cools. Makes about 1 cup.