Feb 8, 2013

Grow your own sugar

Oh yeah I live in the north east and sugar cane is just not right for up here. But I would love to be able to have a sugar plant in my garden....well WOW I can.

The good old fashion sugar beet! Surprisingly it is the same sugar we get from sugar cane!

Once upon a time pre commercial take over, everyone grew their own sugar.

You plant the sugar beets in the early spring and just as they look...they grow like carrots do. You harvest them in the fall.

How to make the sugar (keep in mind this does take time)

  • Clean your beets really good..and slice them small bits or you can even shred  them.
  • Put them in a pan and add water (just enough to cover them)
  • Cook over medium heat till tender. (think mash potato tender)
  • Once tender strain ( cheese cloth or towel are best because you can squeeze more of the water out of the beets, but you can use a regular strainer)
  • Save this sugar water!!(You can stop right here and ferment the water for Rum!)
  • Left over beets you can eat or can.

Next step is to simmer the sugar water over a low to medium heat till it turns to a brown molasses substance.....Make sure to stir frequently during this process! Once it is at this molasses stage take it off the heat. (at this point you now have a honey substitute!)

Let this cool and put into storage jars or containers.


Over the next few month (yes months!) this will crystallize.. make sure to check on it time to time to just brake it up.
Or you can just cheat and keep cooking on low till it crystallizes...But it does lose a little of its yummyness.  But it is still sugar!!

And there you have it home grown sugar!! A renewable source of a very important staple!

Now it is just like your store bought sugar, but because it is all natural it does not caramelize like cane sugar does.

A few other things about the sugar beet

  • Sugar beets attract wild live. (especially deer so in prepper talk that means meat attractor) 
  • Uridine which is in the beets helps with depression.
  • It can be converted into fuel (which BP is already doing in some places)

PDF Popular Science article about sugar beets Click Here

PDF of ever thing you ever wanted to know about Sugar Beets ...way to much info but who knows. It is a 500 pager.
Click Here

Song for this post has to be Def Leppard Pour Some Sugar


  1. Great tip! LOL on your song selections!!! ;-)

  2. Making your own sugar would be great. Beet sugar and cane sugar come from two different sources--beets and sugar cane. The chemical compound is the same. But, beet sugar has an off taste. Plus, beets are Roundup Ready, meaning that Roundup residue is in the sugar. Sugar cane is not sprayed with the pesticide Roundup. Some people have no preference in the taste. Some people are not afraid of Roundup. But, if anyone wants to make sugar from beets, I am sure there are ways to not use Roundup on a small crop. I might eat sugar from a small farmer of beets if I knew he did not use Roundup. Commercial beet sugar farmers do use Roundup. I never buy sugar that does not say "Cane Sugar" on the bag.

  3. Linda....you are right! But we are talking about home gardens, survival gardens. I know when you say "roundup" your talking about Monsanto. For those who do not know what linda is referring to I posted a monday movie about it.. http://urbanprepperchick.blogspot.com/2013/01/monday-movie_21.html

    Monsanto is one reason so people prep. And one reason many have started home gardens.

    But for this post it is for the purpose of a shtf situation and or sustainability not mass production.

  4. And one more thing, she is right sugar beet sugar does have a tab bit of a different taste than store bought mass produced sugar but very little difference. You can go to a health food store and get an organic sugar beet sugar and do a taste test prior to committing to planting it in your garden. I personally am planting it because I want a plant I can make sugar out of if the shtf, and sugar cane would not grow here right.

  5. Yes, I acknowledged the small farmer. I am not against beet sugar, just store-bought beet sugar. I know that during WWII, beet sugar ws all that was available to some people who could not wait to get cane sugar because it tasted better. Of course, there was no Monsanto Roundup then,I suppose.

    I thought it was important people know what is in some sugar on the market or even later if all they can get is commercially-grown beets to make their sweetener.

    The way I hate beets, I am not sure I could ever use beet sugar, even if it were pure. I found a good sale on sugar. However, after my usual inspection of any bag of sugar that does not say 'cane sugar' on the front of the bag, it did not say what kind of sugar it was. That meant it was not cane sugar but beet sugar.

    Beet sugar can change the taste of baking and just does not taste the same as cane sugar.

    Your are right about it being for a shtf situation, I just did not want people to unknowingly start eating beet sugar from the store shelves.
    If I could, I would use honey, stevia, or cane syrup.

  6. New Surety Company by 2nd 2 None Bail Bonds
    Looking to become a Bail Bondsmen? Well now you have the ability to have the leading Bail Bonds Company in Florida to guide you. 2nd 2 None Bail Bondsmen CEO is one Florida’s brightest Bail Bonds Marketers. Burrow’s Surety has all the perks and the experience to back you up and make your Bail Bondsmen Business a success. Growing rapidly since it’s premiere Burrow’s Surety is the only choice for a Bail Bondsmen that has the desire to be successful.
    5640-1 Timuquana Road
    Jacksonville, Florida 32210
    Office: (904) 240-0053
    Facsimile: (904) 592-6601
    Email: 2nd2nonebailbonds@gmail.com
    Website: www.2nd2nonebailbonds.com