Ten Ways to Soften Brown Sugar 

 Originally Written: May 4, 2011

By  Hanna Trafford

Last Updated on May 4, 2011 by Hanna Trafford

This may have happened to you quite a few times. It did happen to me – and I think I am being careful how I store my baking and cooking supplies. I was just about ready to go and bake cookies  and my bag of brown sugar that I put into a basket of baking supplies instead of an air-tight container is rock hard. Not a huge problem, since I do know what to do – even when I need to soften it quickly. But it gave me an idea as to what to share with you today – just in case you find yourself in same situation.

Ten Ways to Soften Brown Sugar:

If you need to do it fast – like I did this morning:

1.       Place the hard sugar in a microwave safe container and put it in your microwave with a bowl of water beside it. Microwave for about 1 minute – then check it. If it still hard, repeat for another 30 seconds. Keep repeating this until your brown sugar is soft – but be careful not to melt the sugar!

2.       Place the hard sugar into a baking pan and put in the over at 250F – check it after about 5 minutes. If it is still hard, leave it in for couple more minutes and keep checking it until it is softened and ready to use

3.       Place the hard sugar in a plastic bag, Moisten paper towel (don’t make it dripping wet) and place it into the bag with your sugar. Microwave for about 30 seconds and then check if it is as soft as you need it to be. Repeat in shorter time periods if the sugar didn’;t soften on the first try. And again – be careful not to melt it!

 If you have time to soften your hard brown sugar:

4.       Place your hard brown sugar in an airtight container with a slice of bread on top. Close the container and let it sit overnight. If it didn’t soften enough, leave it in the container for another day or two – it will soften eventually.

5.       Sprinkle a little bit of water over the chunk of hard brown sugar, place it in an airtight plastic bag and leave overnight.

6.       Place the hard sugar into any container and cover it with moistened cloth (paper or cloth) and let it sit until it softens.

7.       Wrap the sugar in plastic or foil, place dampened paper towel over the top of it . Place in airtight container and let sit for at least overnight.

8.       Buy a clay disc that is being sold for the purpose of softening hard brown sugar – or if you have a piece of pottery handy, it will work as well. Soak the disc or pottery in water for about ½ hour, pat it with a towel to remove excess water, place it into airtight container with your hard sugar and let sit overnight.

9.       Place the hard sugar into airtight container with a few apple slices on top of it. Close the container and let it sit for a few days – then remove the apple slices.  

And this is the quickest way to get rid of the hard lump –

10.   Place it in a food processor or blender and pulse/chop until it is usable.

Hope this was helpful to you – please send in your comments, suggestions and experiences. Your input is always welcomed and very much appreciated

Hanna Trafford

Hanna is the mother of two grown sons Dan and Dusan Nedelko, and is also the Grandmother to Jax, Cohen and Mila. She is the lead editor of Mama Knows and is hoping to create an exchange of communications with other grandmothers, mothers and daughters - giving everyone the opportunity to learn and share about everything that is "Mama"

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  • Thank you for these tips, my husband used my brown sugar and left the cover off, of course I now have a solid block of brown sugar.

    I am off to try these tips to resoften it, wish me luck.

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