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Canning -- Miscellaneous

Can Splenda be used to preserve food?

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Granular Splenda does not provide preservative properties like sugar. There has not been any published research work with using sucralose in the canning of fruits at home. If one uses Splenda instead of sugar, our best assumption at this time is that the texture and color preserving aspects of sugar syrup won't be there. The expectation is that the result would be like canning in water except for the additional sweetness contributed by the Splenda . The USDA fruit canning directions do allow for water canning, as there is adequate preservation for safety from the heat and not sugar. There should be no reason why Splenda cannot be used in these heat-processed products, as it is heat stable, but some people do notice an aftertaste in other products, so it's possible it might change in flavor a little over storage time. In other cases, where sugar is important, like some preserves or pickled fruits, it is not recommended that substitution of Splenda be used for sugar if the product is to be canned for shelf stability. Splenda cannot be used in traditional Southern preserves, like fig, peach or pear preserves, which are whole or uniform pieces of fruit in a very thick sugar syrup. (These preserves are not jam or pectin gel products.) Sugar is required for the preservation of these products as published, with very short boiling water canner processes. Without that sugar, they also become like fruit canned in water and the longer fruit canning process times would be needed. You could use Splenda as the optional sweetener in a jam or jelly made with a no-sugar needed pectin, such as Mrs. Wages? Lite Home Jell Fruit Pectin or Ball No-Sugar Needed Pectin. With these low-methoxyl pectins, no sugar is required at all. Sugar substitutes can be added as desired simply for flavor. The package inserts with these pectins give instructions on when to add the sugar substitutes (usually after all the cooking, right before filling the jars). We have not yet tried Splenda with these pectins with an extensive variety of fruits, however. We have developed three recipes using Splenda and they are on our website, www.homefoodpreservation.com. They are quick pickled sweet cucumber slices, pickled beets and pickled cantaloupe. They are under the How do I....Pickle category, as well as National Center factsheets, http://www.uga.edu/nchfp/publications/nchfp/factsheets.html. There are some freezer jam recipes at this manufacturer's website, although there is a qualification that the site is intended for Canadian users only: http://www.splenda.ca/en/recipes/preserves/. Source: Original FAQ posted at http://128.192.83.157/faq/FAQ_home.php

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