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Perfect Homemade Corn Syrup Substitute

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My Perfect Homemade Corn Syrup Substitute is a candy-like sauce that cooks up to be super thick, full-bodied, and sweet just like real corn syrup.


Hi Bold Bakers!

In true Bold Baking Basics fashion, my Corn Syrup recipe is for an ingredient I never came across when baking in Ireland. Corn syrup is a common baking ingredient in America, but if I saw a recipe using corn syrup back home I knew I couldn’t make that recipe.

So, my recipe is for all of you Bold Bakers that don’t want to use corn syrup, for those who simply cannot find it, and for those who like to make it all from scratch. While this recipe for homemade corn syrup is not an exact recipe for corn syrup, it is the perfect substitute.

What are substitutes for corn syrup?

Making this corn syrup substitute could not be easier. Made of only sugar, water, cream of tartar, and lemon juice, this candy-like sauce cooks up to be super thick, full-bodied, and sweet just like corn syrup.

[ Need more substitution ideas? How about how to Substitute Eggs! ]

There are other corn syrup substitutes out there like rice syrup, golden syrup, and glucose syrup — which are easier to find in Europe. That said, all of these substitutes do not yield the same color and texture as my homemade sub. If you’re looking for a corn-free corn syrup substitute, this is hands down the most effective one.

Is glucose syrup the same as corn syrup?

Yes, corn syrup is in fact a variety of glucose syrup and my substitute is as well. Again, the major difference here is that mine is made with no corn what-so-ever, no artificial ingredients, or stabilizers.

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How can I use Corn Syrup?

Use my Corn Syrup Substitute to make Homemade Marshmallows and even Rolled Fondant.

How long does this corn syrup substitute last?

As this substitute has no preservatives it will last for up to 3 months.

While that’s not the same shelf life as store-bought corn syrup, it’s still quite a long time. This means that once you make one batch, you can almost always have this on hand for all of your cooking and baking needs that call for corn syrup.

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3.89 from 51 votes
Perfect Homemade Corn Syrup Substitute
Prep Time
5 mins
 

My Perfect Homemade Corn Syrup Substitute is a candy-like sauce cooks up to be super thick, full-bodied, and sweet just like real corn syrup.

Course: Ingredient
Cuisine: American
Author: Gemma Stafford
Ingredients
  • 2 cups (16oz/450g) sugar
  • 3/4 cup (6floz/170ml) water
  • 1/4 teaspoon cream of tartar (there is no substitute for this)
  • 2 teaspoons lemon juice*
  • a pinch of salt
Instructions
  1. In a heavy bottomed saucepan, over medium heat, add the sugar, water, cream of tartar and lemon juice.

  2. Once the sugar dissolves, turn down the heat and let the syrup simmer steadily until it reduces significantly and becomes a thick syrup that drips off your spatula slowly. This will take roughly 15 to 20 minutes. You can test if it's ready by putting a drop on a cold plate and placing it back in the fridge for 10 minutes. If it is really thick once it's cold then it is ready. To be even more exact, you want it to reaches 230°F on a candy thermometer. 

  3. Remove from the heat and put the pot in a bowl of cold water to cool it down quickly. Once the syrup cools down completely use as directed in your recipe. 

  4. You will end up with roughly 1 1/3 cups (14oz/398g) of corn syrup substitute. Store in an airtight container at room temperature for 3 months. 

Watch the Recipe Video!

Recipe Notes

*The lemon juice prevents the sugars from crystallizing once stored. 

 

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Meet Gemma

Hi Bold Bakers! I’m Gemma Stafford, a professional chef originally from Ireland, and I’m passionate about sharing my years of experience to show you how to make game-changing baking recipes with over-the-top results! Join more than 1 Million other Bold Bakers in the community for new video recipes every week!

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128 Comments

Write a Comment and Review

  1. Andreina on August 13, 2019 at 8:56 am

    Loved this recipe …..my merengue to cover up the cake was delicious and BEAUTIFUL. THANK YOU

    • Gemma Stafford on August 14, 2019 at 4:00 am

      Thank you Andreina, I appreciate your kind review,
      Gemma 🙂

  2. Tracie Rye on August 12, 2019 at 8:33 pm

    Hi Gemma. I have just made this but I just couldn’t get it to the point where it dropped off the spatula. I gave up after 50 minutes. It seems ok and tastes ok but it is more of a golden colour. So it still alright? Or have I burnt it?

    • Gemma Stafford on August 12, 2019 at 8:39 pm

      Hi Tracie,

      So what sounds like happened is it caramelized a little before it really set. Sometimes this can happen if it simmers too fast and rapidly.

      Once the corn syrup set did it set hard? or is it drippy and pliable?
      Gemma.

      • Tracie Rye on August 13, 2019 at 4:58 pm

        Hi Gemma thanks for your reply. I just checked it now and it’s very hard. I guess I need to start over. Thanks for the help. Second time lucky.

        • Dan H. on August 14, 2019 at 6:16 am

          Second time was a charm for me. The mistake I made was that I forgot to adjust for altitude as I am 3000 feet above sea level. Subtracted one degree for every 500 feet, so subtract 6 degrees from 230F and it worked perfect. Thanks Gemma

  3. Corinne on July 26, 2019 at 7:16 pm

    Do you think this would work with any of the sugar substitutes like truvia, xylitol, or erythritol?

    • Gemma Stafford on July 28, 2019 at 6:40 pm

      Hi Corinne,

      Because I personally I haven’t tried this I couldn’t say for sure if those sub would work. This isn’t a very versatile recipe so be careful.

      Sorry I couldn’t be more help,
      Gemma.

    • CJ on July 31, 2019 at 5:15 pm

      Hi Corinne, have you tried it with a sugar substitute? I have been trying to find a sugar free alternative to glucose for awhile.

  4. Nandita on July 18, 2019 at 11:16 am

    Hi can we use these for making modelling chocolate

    • Gemma Stafford on July 18, 2019 at 7:04 pm

      Hum, you know what I have zero experience with modeling chocolate. I hope someone else can help because I’m unfortunately the wrong person to ask.

      Sorry I couldn’t be more help :/
      Gemma.

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