How to Soften Hard Brown Sugar

Kim Conte

This weekend I set out to bake the aforementioned chocolate chip cookies—only to discover that my brown sugar was rock hard!

Has this ever happened to you? I didn't want to waste an entire box of sugar so I did some research to find out if anything was to be done. Turns out hard brown sugar is totally salvageble... actually offers 10 ways to soften brown sugar. Most involve leaving the sugar overnight with a few drops of water or dampened paper towel. OVERNIGHT? I needed the sugar immediately!

I ended up sealing the brown sugar in a microwaveable safe plastic bag with a moistened paper towel and microwaving in 20-second increments until the sugar became soft. It totally worked, in about two minutes! I just had to keep checking to make sure I didn't melt the sugar.

Other things you can do it you need the sugar immediately:

  • Put the sugar in container and microwave with a small bowl full of water beside it.
  • Put sugar in baking pan and warm in oven (at 250) until sugar is soft.
  • Blend sugar in food processor or blender until soft.

Do you have any tips for how to soften hard brown sugar?

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