When replacing sugar fully or partially with stevia powder it seems that baked goods like biscuits do not spread as much and are often dryer. Is there anything that can be done to make the dough with stevia behave more like dough with sugar when baking?


Not really, unless you go for a different carbohydrate with physical properties similar to refined sucrose. And if you are removing the sugar for dietary reasons, you're probably not winning anything by doing the substitution.

Artificial sweeteners and stevia are just that - a sweetener, not a sugar. They can only be successfully used as a substitute where table sugar is used as a sweeteners. For example, they work well in a coffee or a homemade lemonade.

In baking, sugar is not used primarily to make the batter sweet, in fact it often makes it too sweet for my own taste. Its purpose is to provide structure. It has unique physical properties it shares with other short carbohydrates, but not with non-sugar sweeteners. You cannot substitute sugar for something which is completely unlike sugar and expect to get the same result.

If you are very adventurous, you can try using soluble fibre in place of sugar. But it's hard for a home cook to 1) get a supply of it, and 2) tweak a recipe such that it works well enough texturewise.

If my assumption is wrong and you are not counting calories, it becomes easier. Adding pure glucose or fructose will produce a recipe which still needs a tweaking, but can potentially be made similar to a sugar-containing one. Then you should also leave out the stevia, because it will make the bisquits overly sweet.

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  • My goal is to reduce sugar intake as well as calories. Can you add more info on how would soluble fiber help the texture? I have Konjac powder which is mostly soluble and insoluble fiber, but it thickens and soaks up water so I don't see how it would allow the dough to spread more when baked. – DominicM Jan 8 '15 at 16:03
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    No, you can't use just any fiber, they all have different properties. You will have to find the right one to use, and the right proportion. And nobody can predict what is the right one. You'll need both the knowledge about fibers and their baking properties, and a ton of experimentation. Basically, starting from zero, you'll need dozens or even hundreds of hours to get a given recipe right - and it still won't be the same as with sugar. I mentioned it for completeness, because it is a theoretical possibility, but I don't think that it's a worthwhile route to take. – rumtscho Jan 8 '15 at 16:13
  • Yes, I agree it's not worth it, I was looking for a way to improve the consistency at least a little with minimal effort. – DominicM Jan 8 '15 at 17:20
  • Xanthan gum and psyllium husk powder are 2 soluble fibers which are fairly easy to find, at least here in the US. They would certainly help retain the moisture and provide the structure that sugar would normally do. – NSGod Jul 14 '19 at 19:27

I've successfully used apple fiber with paleo brownies. Where 1/3 cup of honey was called for, used about 1/2 that amount of the apple fiber with powered stevia to taste.

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