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Best Sugar for Coffee

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Coffee is a versatile drink and can be enjoyed in a multitude of ways.

From different cream and milk options, to different kinds of sugar and sweeteners.

People have different preferences with coffee, some like it black and others like it creamy and sweet.

Good thing there’s a lot of variations of sweeteners to choose from to make that perfect cup of coffee.

sugar variety in a cupcake molder

From sugar to natural sweeteners, explore these different options and pair them with all kinds of coffee.

People choose one form of sugar over another for numerous reasons such as health, nutritional or flavor preferences.

Adding sweetener to your coffee does enhance the flavor of the coffee for that rich coffee taste.

For people who prefer some sweetness in their coffee, here is a guide on the different coffee sweeteners you can choose from.

White Sugar

White sugar is probably the most popular and common sweetener used in coffee or tea.

White sugar is processed from sugar cane to remove the molasses.

It is a more processed form of sugar as the molasses is completely stripped out. There are many forms of white sugar such as granulated, powdered, and cubed.

The most popular form of white sugar for coffee is the regular granulated form.

White sugar has no great nutritional benefits and it has almost no impact on the coffee flavor other than to sweeten it.

Brown Sugar

brown sugar

Brown sugar is made by adding back the molasses to the regular white sugar during processing. This in turn makes the quality of this type of sugar more moist and prone to clumping.

Due to the molasses present, brown sugar has a more complex and heavier flavor that blends really well with coffee.

It has a deeper and richer flavor than refined sugar with a natural and earthy flavor that tastes great in coffee.

Brown sugar has a higher mineral content due to the molasses as it contains potassium, calcium, titanium and magnesium.

Brown sugar has equal health risk factors as white sugar. Both sugars are not recommended for diabetic patients or for people who want to lose weight.

Raw Sugar

Raw sugar is similar to brown sugar with the difference that the raw sugar has not been processed into white sugar.

Raw sugar has not gone through any type of processing and it is the most natural sugar that you can find.

Its texture is more rough and it has a lighter flavor than brown sugar.

Raw sugar is not just sweet but it boasts a lot of flavors and only has a minor impact on the flavor of the coffee when combined.

It has a slightly darker taste than brown and white sugar.


There are various natural sweeteners that are perfect for a hot or cold coffee.

These are natural sweeteners that go well with coffee and at the same time give you numerous health benefits.

Let nature give you its sweetness for your cup of coffee. There are a lot of healthier and more natural alternatives to sweeten that cup of coffee and enhance its flavor.

Here are different types of natural sweeteners for your coffee.


Stevia is extracted from the South American stevia plant.

It is a healthy sweetener and a great substitute for sugar that isn’t artificial. Stevia is a plant-based sweetener that provides benefits that derives from those plant products such as added antioxidants.

It is 300 times as sweet as sugar so a little bit goes a long way.

Stevia has zero calories and is perfect for people trying to lose weight and those with diabetes.


honey and honeycomb

Honey is a very popular sweetener for tea and it also tastes good in coffee.

Produced by bees, honey is a natural form of sweetener.

Honey has more calories than sugar but it does contain many minerals and vitamins that your body needs.

Honey can aid in digestion, has antioxidants and is full of antimicrobial and antiviral compounds.

It also doesn’t leave you with a sugar crash and does not increase your hunger like sugar does.

It is a great alternative to sweeten drinks, desserts and meals. Honey has a light and clean taste which gives your coffee a pleasant taste.

It adds a nice and rich sweetness in your drinks.

Agave Nectar

Agave nectar or syrup is completely natural since it comes from a cactus.

It contains a high amount of fructose and it is acquired by processing several species of agave.

Agave nectar is great for coffee as it cuts through the bitterness of coffee rather than adding to it.

It balances out your coffee as it has a mild caramel flavor, slight bitterness and some vegetal tones. The bitterness of the agave nectar is more noticeable in lighter roasts and less distinct with dark roasts.

The taste of the agave nectar is somewhat between honey and molasses.

Agave nectar is sweeter than sugar and has a bit more flavor. It also has a low glycemic index and is good for diabetics and other people with insulin sensitivity.

Maple Syrup

Maple syrup is nutritious and a healthy natural sugar alternative.

Maple syrup is a sap which comes from maple trees, hence the name. Known as a sweet and delicious addition to your pancakes and waffles, it is also good with coffee.

Maple syrup contains some antioxidants and has numerous nutritional benefits such as calcium and magnesium.

Sweeten that delicious cup of coffee while also improving your health.

Maple syrup contains some delightful caramel notes with a very woodsy maple flavor taste.

It has a smoothness which complements coffee well.

Maple syrup is high in glycemic index and calories so moderation is key.


Molasses is a product of sugar production which is a more natural sweetener than table sugar.

Although it is less popular due to its deep and earthy flavor and it may take time to get used to. Molasses also has antioxidant properties. It has a bold and deep flavor with a syrupy texture.

Give yourself time to adjust to this sweetener and you would find it delicious and enjoyable.

If you want to try this type of sweetener for your coffee, put a little at first and add slowly until you’ve reached your desired taste and sweetness.

Mix and match these different sweeteners to whatever you prefer for that perfect cup of coffee. You may find that some that are great with hot coffee are not as suitable for iced coffee and vice versa.

Here are some basic kinds of coffee and the preferred type of sweeteners you can use. 

For Hot Coffee

Most sweeteners are easy to add to hot coffee.

So either dry or liquid sweeteners would be suitable for hot coffee.

Dry sweeteners such as sugar dissolve quickly in heat.

almond milk cold brew

For Cold Brew

Honey is great for cold drinks such as cold brew or any other liquid sweeteners.

Although if you really like dry sugar for your cold brew coffee, you may as well create a simple syrup by dissolving the sugar with water in a pot over medium to low heat.

You can now add the syrup to your cold brew for that added flavor and sweetness.

For Iced Coffee

Liquid sweeteners such as honey, maple syrup or agave nectar are ideal for iced coffee as it blends well in cold drinks.

Dry sweeteners such as sugar do not dissolve properly in cold drinks.

If you do want to use dry sweeteners such as sugar, it is best to sweeten your iced coffee before you chill it.

Final Thoughts

Everyone has their different tastes and preferences so find a suitable sweetener choice that is perfect for you.

Try different sweeteners to different types of coffee.

Try the agave nectar to coffee that has a bit of a floral taste, regular white sugar to that classic tasting coffee and brown sugar or maple syrup to those bold and dark roasts, anything goes!

Experiment until you find the perfect combination for you so you could enjoy your personalized delicious cup of coffee.