Maple Syrup vs. Honey: What’s The Difference Between

crazy by Editorial Staff | Updated on March 12th, 2023

Reducing our intake of refined sugar is becoming more and more common as we attempt to create better substitutions and become more conscious of what we put into our bodies. Honey and maple syrup are two of the most often used substitutes for refined sugar. 

Many people like to include honey and syrup in their regular diets. However, most consumers of these two sweeteners prefer to use them in significantly different ways.

maples vs honey

This is because syrup and honey are made in quite different ways. Although both of them are sweeteners, they may also be added to a variety of dishes.

Maple Syrup vs. Honey Chart

FeatureMaple SyrupHoney
SourceExtracted from the sap of maple treesProduced by bees from flower nectar
FlavorSweet with a distinct maple flavorSweet with a floral taste
ColorRanges from light amber to dark brownRanges from clear to dark amber
NutritionalHigh in manganese and zinc, low in vitaminsContains antioxidants and enzymes
CaloriesApproximately 52 calories per tablespoonApproximately 64 calories per tablespoon
Glycemic IndexModerate (54)High (58-83 depending on type)
UsagePancake/waffle topping, baking ingredientTea/coffee sweetener, baking ingredient
AvailabilityPrimarily produced in North America and AsiaAvailable worldwide

Are syrup and honey the same?

The answer to this question is a bit complicated. Both honey and syrup are sweeteners that come from plants. However, bees make honey from the nectar of flowers, while the syrup is made by boiling down sap from sugar maple trees. So, while they both come from plants, the process of making them is pretty different.

What is syrup

Syrup is a manufactured commodity. Various natural ingredients, like sugar cane, maple trees, and even corn or rice, are used to make the syrup’s base, but manufacturing is where the finished product is made. 

While it is true that syrup may also be used in various recipes, this is less frequent than syrup as a topping on various foods. For example, waffles, pancakes, and french toast are drenched in butter and syrup.

What is maple syrup

men's black long-sleeved shirt

Maple syrup is a popular sweetener made from the sap of the sugar maple tree (Acer saccharum) and has a distinct flavor that is often described as sweet but also slightly bitter. Maple syrup is usually made in Canada, the United States, and China. It can be used as a substitute for sugar in baking and making beverages. This syrup was made by boiling the sap until it became thick and colored a light amber or brown.

Maple syrup is used in many foods, including pancakes, waffles, ice cream, and French toast. It is also used in cookies, bread, and oatmeal. It is a popular ingredient in marinades and barbecue sauces. And let us not forget maple syrup in coffee.

What is honey

honey jar with honey comb

One of the most often used substitutes for sugar in beverages and on various sweets and meals is honey—a dense material produced by nature and created from honeybees and flower nectar. 

Nearly 80% of honey’s composition is sugar, but it also includes several excellent minerals and vitamins. In addition, it may be used to heal sore throats, skin wounds, and even the common cold because it is packed with antibacterial and antiviral substances. Also, honey with coffee is a great way to enjoy your morning cup of joe.

Maple syrup vs. honey


Honey is created by honey bees who collect nectar from flowers, whereas pure maple syrup is formed from the sap of maple trees. They are nutritionally distinct even though they are both sticky, sweet substances with a similar texture and viscosity.

Calorie count

Compared to maple syrup, which has 52 calories per tablespoon, honey has 64 calories. While the difference isn’t significant when comparing tablespoons, it becomes significant when utilizing larger amounts, as in baked foods.

Sugar levels

The quantity of sugars in the two also varies. 13.5 grams of carbs may be found in pure maple syrup. Most of the 12.4 grams are complex sugars in the form of sugar. In contrast, honey has 17.4 grams of carbs, 17.3 of which are fructose. In addition to having a lower glycemic index of 54 than honey’s 58, maple syrup is a more complex sugar than honey.

Fat content

Honey doesn’t contain fat, which gives it a nutritional edge over maple syrup. However, maple syrup has relatively little fat—only 0.1 grams per tablespoon.


More calcium, magnesium, potassium, iron, copper, zinc, and manganese are found in pure maple syrup than in honey. These are all excellent minerals for your body because they support a stronger immune system, aid in cell growth, and preserve the health of red blood cells.

Honey and maple syrup are equivalent in selenium and phosphorus content. However, maple syrup is better suited to low-sodium diets due to its lower salt content.

Antioxidant content

Antibacterial and anti-inflammatory antioxidants are abundant in maple syrup.

Honey is renowned for having a variety of antioxidants, too, including phenols, which have been associated with reducing blood clot risk and enhancing blood flow.

  • Appearance: Maple syrup is a golden brown color, while honey is a light golden color.
  • Taste: Maple syrup is sweeter than honey, with a slightly more complex flavor.
  • Texture: Maple syrup is thicker than honey.
  • Origin: Maple syrup is made from the sap of maple trees, while honey is made from the nectar of flowers.
  • Nutrition: Maple syrup contains more sugar and calories than honey. It also has more minerals and antioxidants.
  • Cost: Honey is cheaper


What is the shelf life of maple syrup?

Unopened maple syrup can survive many years if kept in the right container. Products made from maple supposedly have a shelf life of one year. However, maple syrup keeps in the refrigerator for about a year after opening.

Is honey vegan?

It’s a hotly debated subject, but many vegans don’t view honey as vegan-friendly because bees generate it.

Is maple syrup vegan?

Since it is made from plants rather than animals, maple syrup is vegan.


Honey and maple syrup have advantages and downsides, and their fat and calorie contents are comparable. However, both have the advantage of including antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals.

Another issue is the difference in flavor, with maple syrup tasting somewhat woodsy and honey being more flowery. Regarding sugar and fructose levels, maple syrup is the better choice because it has a lower glycemic index. Maple syrup and honey are preferable to refine white sugar, but maple syrup is healthier overall.

The two most popular natural sweeteners on the market are maple syrup and honey. They are both considered healthier choices than sugar, but which is better?

They both have their unique benefits and drawbacks, depending on what you are looking for.

When it comes to natural sweeteners, there are two main options: honey and maple syrup. Both of these have their unique benefits and drawbacks. Honey is an excellent choice for those looking for an antibacterial sweetener, while maple syrup contains antioxidants that can benefit the body. However, honey is also high in fructose, while maple syrup contains more sugar. Ultimately, it is up to your preference which of these two natural sweeteners you choose.

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Disclosure: No compensation or free products were received in exchange for writing this review.


Editorial Staff

The editorial staff at Crazy Coffee Crave is a team of coffee enthusiasts & Baristas who enjoy the one thing we all think about as soon as we get up in the morning. Trusted by thousands of readers worldwide.