Sugar-free Simple Syrup (2 ingredients!) Great Corn Syrup Alternative and More

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This Sugar-free Simple Syrup comes together in just 5 minutes or less with no sugar, low or no carbs, and low or no calories! With so many great uses, this Keto Simple Syrup is sure to become a regular in your home.

Plus, you can use whatever low-carb sweetener you have–no need to run to the store!

Homemade syrup in a small mason glass jar
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What is Simple Syrup?

Simple Syrup (or “sugar syrup”) is a liquid sweetener that typically is used to sweeten cocktails and cold drinks. Since it’s a liquid, it’s easier to dissolve into cold liquids than a granulated sweetener is.

However, simple syrup is also used as an ingredient in baked goods and other desserts, can be used as a base for fancier syrups, and is sometimes simply drizzled as a glaze over desserts.

Typical Simple Syrup is super easy to make–you simply combine sugar and water in ratios between 1:1 and 2:1, heat in a pan, and then simmer for about 10 minutes ’til reduced by about half.

This Keto Simple Syrup is made basically the same way, but even easier. No need to simmer that for a long time!

How to Use This Sugar-free Simple Syrup

As I mentioned, typically simple syrup is used for things like alcoholic and other cold drinks. But there are so many other ways to use simple syrup. And of course you can use this sugar-free simple syrup in all of these fun ways too–you’ll just be doing them without the carbs!

Corn Syrup Substitute: This syrup is the perfect sub for corn syrup in all your recipes!

Coffee: Sweeten your cuppa (or your coffee substitute) without all the sugar – and it dissolves great!

Cakes: Simple syrup is often used on cakes to keep them moist–this keto simple syrup can be used on all your low-carb cakes (and cupcakes) to keep them moist without adding carbs!

Sweeten Desserts: Use this simple syrup in any dessert (like these Coconut Milk Mixed Berry Popsicles) as you would any other liquid sweetener.

Cocktails and Cold Drinks: Simple syrups are used in cold drinks to avoid issues of sweeteners not dissolving.

Dessert Drizzle: Drizzle this syrup on any dessert for a little extra sweetening power.

Dress Up Fruit Salad: Drizzle a bit of syrup on top of fruit salad to add sweetness and shine.

Homemade Infusions: Make blueberry, orange, basil, rosemary infused syrups for use in cocktails or mocktails–or simply use your imagination!

Candy Fruits / Peels: Use this simple syrup to candy fruit and peels.

Jellied Beans: What a fun idea to make a different kind of “jelly” beans.
Here’s how to do it.

pouring water into pot to make homemade keto simple syrup

What Sweeteners Can You Use for This Keto Simple Syrup?

You can make this Low-carb Simple Syrup using all kinds of sweeteners–

Monk Fruit / Erythritol Blend (like Lakanto)
Stevia Blend
Bocha Sweet

There are more options, but the above are some of the more common low-carb sweeteners.

Note: xylitol has some carbs and calories, so it should be used in moderation on a keto diet. The others listed above all work well for the keto diet.

For this syrup, I tried xylitol, Lakanto monk fruit blend, and a stevia blend. The first two worked out great, both in terms of taste and performance. The stevia syrup–not so much.

The xylitol simple syrup tasted really good, and xylitol is readily available and is one of the lower cost alternative sweeteners. However, since xylitol is really toxic to dogs in even small amounts, you might not choose to use it.

The Erythritol / Monk blend worked great. I used Lakanto, but you could use any similar blend. Get 20% off your Lakanto purchase using code wholenewmom.

I tried Stevia in the Raw and added some NuNuturals extract, but it still didn’t taste good. Blech.

putting low-carb powdered sweetener into pan to make simple syrup

Low-carb Sweetener Options and How Much to Use for Each

Depending on your the sweetener you choose, you might need to vary the amount.

Allulose dissolves really well, tastes a lot like sugar, and will not recrystallize. However, it’s a more expensive sweetener and not as readily available.

Xylitol dissolves well. You can use 1 cup, 1 1/2 cups, or 2 cups of xylitol for this syrup. If you take care when preparing the syrup (follow the instructions below to prevent crystallizing), you should be fine. I like the 1:1 recipe. It tastes and works great.

Erythritol will most likely crystallize if you use more than 1/2 cup of erythritol in 1 cup of water, so you’ll want to enhance the sweetness of the syrup with some additional stevia. You might also wish to use distilled water to prevent crystallizing, but I think quality filtered water (here’s my favorite water filter) is good enough.

Erythritol / Monk Blend (like Lakanto): This sweetener can crystallize easily, since it’s mostly erythritol. However, it’s sweeter so you might not need the added stevia.

Swerve: Swerve is similar to Monk / Erythritol. Will easily crystallize and no need to add extra sweetener.

Bocha Sweet: I haven’t tried this sweetener. It’s pricey, but I think a 1:1 ratio of this sweetener to water (or more) should work for this recipe.

Stevia Blend: Stevia will dissolve fine but again, I really didn’t care for the results. Use about 1/8 cup of this for each cup of water.

Splenda: You can also make a simple syrup from Splenda, but I don’t use this sweetener due to some health concerns. If you want to try it, you could use 1/2 cup for every cup of water.

Can You Freeze This Syrup?

Yes, you can but it won’t freeze completely due to sugar lowering the freezing point. The product will be mushy and not completely solid. The shelf life will be somewhat longer, however.

Does Simple Syrup Need to Be Refrigerated?

Since this syrup has no added preservatives, and water is known for being a breeding ground for bacteria, it’s best kept in the fridge but it will only last for about a month.

Simple syrups made with a 2:1 sweetener to water ratio should last about 2 months in the fridge due to the higher concentration of sweetener, but the higher the sweetener concentration, the more likely you are going to end up with crystallization.

Pouring syrup from a jar to another glass jar

How to Prevent This Syrup from Crystallizing

As I mentioned, the allulose and xylitol syrups shouldn’t crystallize easily, but it’s still possible. If you want to go the extra mile to prevent this from happening, here are some tips to help.

Add the sweetener and water to the pot slowly to prevent granules of sweetener ending up on the sides or edges of the pot.

Use a pastry brush to push any granules into the mixture while heating.

Use a clean container to store the syrup with no traces of granulated sweetener.

Don’t stir the mixture once it’s simmering.

Add acid: adding a dash of an acid (cream of tartar is great for this) to the mixture can help prevent crystallizing.

This recipe is so simple. Enjoy the ease and flexibility!


Homemade syrup in a small mason jar

Sugar-free Simple Syrup

This Sugar-free Simple Syrup is so easy to make! Perfect for use in cold beverages, desserts, for keeping cakes moist, and so much more.
5 from 5 votes
Print Pin Rate
Course: Seasoning
Cuisine: Dairy-Free, Gluten-Free, Grain-Free, Keto, Low-Carb, Sugar-Free, THM:S, Vegan
Keyword: keto simple syrup, low-carb simple syrup, sugar-free simple syrup
Prep Time: 1 minute
Cook Time: 4 minutes
Total Time: 5 minutes
Servings: 8
Calories: 1kcal


  • 1 cup water
  • 1/2 – 1 cup low carb sweetener (see information in post about sweetener options and amounts.)
  • 1/16 teaspoon xanthan gum (optional; for thickening)
  • pinch salt (optional, for added flavor)
  • dash vanilla (optional, for added flavor)
  • dash stevia extract powder or a few drops of liquid stevia (optional; for added sweetness)
  • dash cream of tartar (or other acid; to prevent crystallization.)


  • Blend sweetener in a blender / food processor until finely powdered.
  • Add cream of tartar, if using.
  • In a small pot, combine the water and the low carb sweetener(s).
  • Heat over low heat and stir.
  • Allow the mixture come to a simmer.
  • Once simmering, add the optional xanthan gum, salt, and vanilla, if using.
  • Cover and let simmer, stirring occasionally until the sweetener is dissolved and the syrup is the desired consistency.
  • Remove from the heat and cool completely before using.


You shouldn’t have too much trouble with crystallization of this syrup, but if you’d like to take added precautions, here’s what to do.
Add the sweetener and water to the pot slowly to prevent granules of sweetener ending up on the sides or edges of the pot.
Use a pastry brush to push any granules into the mixture while heating.
Use a clean utensil to stir the mixture.
Use a clean container to store the syrup with no traces of granulated sweetener.
Don’t stir the mixture once it’s simmering as this can cause sweetener to drift onto the sides of the pan.
Add acid: adding a dash to 1/4 teaspoon of an acid (like cream of tartar) to the mixture can help prevent crystallizing.
Simmer with a lid on.  Condensation while simmering will help pull any crystals back into the mixture.


Serving: 2tablespoons | Calories: 1kcal | Carbohydrates: 1g | Sodium: 2mg | Net Carbs: 1g

Nutritional information is provided as a courtesy and is merely an approximation. Optional ingredients are not included and when there is an alternative, the primary ingredient is typically used. We cannot guarantee the accuracy of the nutritional information given for any recipe on this site. Erythritol carbs are not included in carb counts since they have been shown not to impact blood sugar. Net carbs are the total carbs minus fiber.

I’d love to hear how you use this low-carb simple syrup in your home!

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Recipe Rating



  1. 5 stars
    I’m looking forward to trying this as a base for a zero-calorie lemon-lime soft drink. I plan to add the simple syrup to carbonated water (made with a SodaStream), then add freshly-squeezed lemon juice and lime juice. Can’t wait!

    Here are a few questions for you:
    1) At what point in the process do you add the acid?
    2) Would citric acid work?
    3) How much is a “dash of acid?” Is it 1/8 of a teaspoon?
    4) Do you stir until dissolved with no heat or with heat? If with heat, what heat level do you recommend? (e.g. “medium”)
    5) Do you reduce the heat once it starts simmering?
    6) Approximately how long in minutes do you let it simmer?

    Thanks again for the recipe! Hope it works!

    1. Hi Danielle! Sorry for the delay. I just edited the post to address most of your questions. Thanks for asking them. I’m sorry there were a number of things that should have been spelled out better and it’s possible I had my assistant help with putting the recipe in and it wasn’t done right – I forget! Anyhow, it should be more clear now.
      I think citric acid should work.
      A dash is typically 1/8 teaspoon but most people don’t measure. There’s info about how much you can use in the post now.
      Let me know if you need more help and thanks for reading and asking good questions!

  2. 5 stars
    I make a simple syrup that is amazing and it uses bocha sweet at 50/50 like you said.. i also add monk fruit juice concetrate (not extract). This tastes like real sugar. Instead of monk fruit juice concentrate you could also use stevia/monk fruit extract but it won’t be as great but still really good. It really is a game changer. I need to try this recipe with erythritol at the ratio you mentioned because that would be cheaper but bocha sweet has superior qualities than erythritol in most instances aside from maybe trying to make a baked good crispy.

    1. Oh nice!!!! I actually haven’t used bocha sweet yet. I would like to! I haven’t been doing as much baking these days but it sounds amazing. So you’re saying the baked goods are crispy w/ the bocha sweet?

    1. Hi Karen. Good question. Others can work as well, but I just put the info in the post for you. Thanks for asking!

      1. 5 stars
        Sorry that was confusing.. Bocha sweet makes them soft like allulose, erythritol baked goods can get crispy. I don’t have much interest in baking but my wife does however this syrup is amazing for cocktails, desserts.. when we buy seltzers we can make them taste much better with a few squirts. Great in marinades and asian sauces.

        1. No problem! I am clearly not a baking aficionado. I used to do so much but not so much anymore. I’ve been hyperfocused on our health and just life stuff which has been crazy w/ lying previous homeowners and contractors and trying to undo the damage. Some of our journey is here.
          We make our own seltzer – I should do a post about that :). I’d love to know what marinades and asian sauces you do…I need to get more innovative in the kitchen soon :).

  3. I’ve been desperate for a way to make sugar free simple syrup, but have been frustrated with the way it crystalizes with Lakanto. Looking forward to trying your tips and ratios in an effort to prevent this! One thing that I like to do is infuse simple syrups to make different flavors (i.e. lavender buds or a cinnamon stick). How do you think adding these items in would impact crystallization?

    1. Hi there! Are you thinking you will still try the Lakanto to do it and just try to use the tips I offered? The erythritol is tricky. I think it’s possible that the other things will make crystallization more likely since the sugar can latch on to other particles, but maybe you should add them after the heating? Sorry I’m not an expert at this!

      1. Since I typically keep Lakanto on hand, I’d prefer to use that but am certainly open to suggestions. Doing a slower, cooler infusion is an idea worth exploring.

        1. Hi there. I keep Lakanto here and xylitol and I have allulose too. If you really want to skip the crystallization you need to try another sweetener for sure but the erythritol can work if you work at it. Hope that helps and hope it works for you!

  4. 5 stars
    Finally a post with tips to prevent crystalizing!!! I’ve been having this problem and searching for ways to prevent it for quite some time. Thank you!

  5. Hi, I’m about to try making xylitol syrup now … why do you grind the sweetener first? Won’t it dissolve even if not ground?

  6. Hi the brand is stevia sweet ingredient erythritol 99% steviol glycosides (1%) from stevia plant Excess consumption may have laxative effect

    1. Hi there. I talked about crystallization in the post–it’s a common issue with a lot of sugar-free sweeteners. Sorry about that! You can try another sweetener under the section that talks about crystallization or follow the instructions about how to avoid crystallization. Hope that helps!

  7. 5 stars
    One of my family members was diagnosed with diabetes this year. It has been a tough learning curve for me adapting cooking and lifestyle. I make a sugarfree ketchup that calls for corn syrup, and this works beautifully in it. I feel like the whole family is benefitting from the changes we are making. I had some granulated Lakanto monkfruit sweetener on hand, and I used about 3/4 cup to make the syrup here for ketchup. The consistency is just right.

    1. Hi Dodi – wow that is so great to hear that it turned out that well! LOVE the creativity. I’m happy to help however I can–I have another sugar-free recipe coming up soon – hopefully tonight or tomorrow.
      If there’s anything I can help with at all, please let me know.