How do I Choose the Best Erythritol Sweetener?

Brandon May

Erythritol, a naturally occurring sugar alcohol found in plants such as vegetables and fruits, is used as a zero calorie sweetener in various foods and beverages. An erythritol sweetener will not raise blood sugar or insulin levels, making it a safe alternative to sugar for those with diabetes or those watching their sugar intake. Many health food stores sell this product for baking and cooking, yet sometimes this type of sweetener doesn't contain pure erythritol, but a mix of erythritol and another sweetener or bulk additive. It is important when choosing an artificial sweetener containing erythritol that one looks at the ingredient list to make sure the product contains pure erythritol and no fillers.

Erythritol sweetener should not be given to animals.
Erythritol sweetener should not be given to animals.

Various erythritol sweeteners on the market are usually sold in bulk by the pound or are sometimes available in convenient packets to sweeten beverages. These sweeteners can be found online and at most health food stores, but it is important to first investigate the ingredients in the product to determine its true makeup. Erythritol should be the only ingredient listed on the label to ensure that the product is pure, and not a blend of different fillers or bulk additives. It is important to stay away from any erythritol sweetener that uses dextrose or maltodextrin as a filler if one has trouble with sugar, because these two fillers are actual sugars and will raise blood sugar and insulin levels.

Erythritol sweetener may be used as a zero calorie sweetener in beverages.
Erythritol sweetener may be used as a zero calorie sweetener in beverages.

Another important aspect that most consumers look for is if the sweetener is certified organic and made without the use of pesticides or chemicals. This is seen as important for many consumers who choose to consume healthier alternatives, but it is also optional. A sugar alcohol like erythritol is usually extracted from plant sources, so pesticides should be relatively low or non-existent. If uncertain about any chemical additives during processing, it is best to contact a manufacturer directly.

Most erythritol sweeteners are safe to use for all people, as they do not react or behave the same way as other sugar alcohols. Any sugar alcohol in excess can induce laxative-like properties, yet erythritol only causes this response in a small number of people. Some people may be more sensitive to erythritol's effects than other sugar alcohols, so when consuming an erythritol sweetener for the first time, it is recommended to start with small doses. It is not recommended to feed any item made with a sugar alcohol to animals.

Some natural foods stores sell erythritol for use in cookies and other baked goods.
Some natural foods stores sell erythritol for use in cookies and other baked goods.

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Discussion Comments


I have used stevia as a natural sweetener for a few years. This is sweeter than sugar and only takes a little bit to sweeten things up.

This comes in liquid and in powder which is sold in packets. The packets are convenient to keep at work and in my purse, but I like to use the liquid when I am at home.

There is also a vanilla flavored liquid that is wonderful - a great replacement for liquid creamer in my coffee.

When I was having a lot of headaches my chiropractor thought it might be from aspartame side effects. He recommended I try the stevia, and my headaches went away.


The natural sweetener that I am most familiar with is xylitol. This ingredient is used as a sweetener in the natural toothpaste I use.

It took me awhile to get used to using a toothpaste like this and it didn't seem very sweet at first - I guess that was the point.

Now that I am used to it, when I use a regular toothpaste, it seems way too sweet.

There is a lot of sugar in most toothpastes. That is why many kids like to eat it and swallow it than use it to brush their teeth with.

I don't think all sweeteners are the same though. I haven't had any xylitol side effects, but some people have side effects when they use sweeteners like this.


I am trying to cut out sugar from my diet, but when I tried erythritol, I didn't care for it.

It isn't as sweet as sugar, so you have to use more to get the sweet taste you are looking for. I also found that it didn't dissolve in liquid very well.

When I was trying to stir it in a glass of tea, it took forever for it to completely dissolve. Once it was dissolved, it wasn't as sweet as I was expecting and I had to add more and stir all over again.


If someone has trouble controlling their blood sugar, having sweetener options other than sugar is a good thing.

I have used an erythritol sweetener called Zsweet in the past. I have never noticed any kind of erythritol side effects when I have used products like this. Most of them work the same way, and I haven't found one that I like any better than any of the others.

These can be used to bake with or sprinkle on food. What I like best about sweeteners like this is they don't have any calories and don't raise my blood sugar levels.

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