6 Easy Ways on How To Soften Brown Sugar

Soften Brown Sugar
Here's how to soften Brown Sugar in five difference ways. Use a damp paper towel and microwave, bake in a 250 degree oven for 2 minutes, use a piece of terracotta clay stone, use a slice of bread, or use an apple slice. These methods will rehydrate the brown sugar and loosen up the hardened clumps. 

With the holidays just around the corner, everyone is browsing their pantry inventory to ensure they have everything needed to make those traditional delectable meals and desserts. 

However, it is easy to overlook lumps and clumps in a bag of brown sugar and isn’t noticeable until you are ready to start baking. Luckily, there are multiple ways to get this hard mass back easily and quickly to its original sandy-sweet self. 

How to Soften Hard Brown Sugar

When you are preparing to bake with brown sugar, your brown sugar must be in its softened loose state. It is to make sure it mixes and blends into the batter evenly and effectively. 

Working with hardened brown sugar can be such a pain and make baking complicated. Anyone who has ever tried this knows. However, there are different solutions you can try to soften brown sugar making it usable again. 

The best way to quickly soften brown sugar includes:

  • Zapping it in the microwave
  • Using a terracotta cut-out
  • Place it in the oven
  • Throw in a slice of bread
  • Add an apple slice or two

How to Soften Brown Sugar Quickly

How To Soften Brown Sugar

To soften brown sugar quickly, you can use the microwave or the oven method; both of these options are perfect for getting you on your way when you are ready to bake. 

How to Soften Brown Sugar in the Microwave

Is there nothing you can’t do with the microwave? Seriously, it is impressive how much this simple modern appliance can do and extremely fast. 

When it comes to softening brown sugar, tossing it in the microwave is going to give you loose, delicious brown sugar granules in no time at all.

Place a hardened lump of brown sugar into a microwave-safe bowl with a damp paper towel sitting on top.

Only let it cycle for short periods at a time, maybe 10-15 seconds at the most, taping or poking it with a fork until it is back to its crumbly self.

The tricky part here is not overdoing it. If you place the sugar in the microwave for too long, it’s going to get too hot and melt. (Note: Hot sugar will burn you)

How to Soften Brown Sugar in the Oven

Soften Brown Sugar in the Oven

Don’t have a microwave? No worries, you can do the same thing right in your oven. All you need to do is place the brown sugar into an oven-safe bowl and stick it in for about 2-3 minutes at 250°.

How to Soften Hardened Brown Sugar (More Great Ways)

If you have some time before you need to use the brown sugar, there are other great ways to soften it that do take more time but work just as well if not better.

Purchase a Terracotta Brown Sugar Saver

Terracotta is a great way to maintain moisture, which is why so many people choose these pots when planting flowers. To use this option to soften your hardened brown sugar, you can purchase a premade terracotta cut-out designed for this specific occasion, or you can use a piece of a terracotta planter (making sure it is clean, of course.)

Take the terracotta piece and soak it in a container of water for at least half an hour. Then remove it from the water and place it on a paper towel and pat it completely dry. After that, throw it into your brown sugar bag and allow it to work its magic.

This process will work within 1-2 hours. You can also throw a terracotta piece into your containers once your brown sugar is open and moisten it every so often to keep it fresh for a long time.

Try a Slice of Bread

Bread is not only great for making a slice of delicious, creamy, buttered toast but can also be very beneficial when trying to soften brown sugar. 

You see, a regular slice of sandwich bread will start releasing its moisture as it starts to go stale; when doing this in a container full of brown sugar, it will moisten the granules, getting it back to a softer state within an hour or so. 

Utilize An Apple Slice

Just like the bread, placing a piece of an apple inside your brown sugar bag or container can help soften it, helping to break apart hard sugar clumps and allowing it to become moist again. It happens after the apple starts to rot, releasing its moisture into the bag.

Top Brown Sugar Container

Top Brown Sugar Container

The best way to keep your brown sugar from drying out and clumping up is by storing it in a proper air-tight container. Here are some of the best containers we could find.

  1. Prep Solutions by Progressive (Best Runner Up)
  2. Rubber Maid Air-tight Food Storage Container (Budget-Friendly)
  3. OXO Good Grips POP Container (Best Over-All)
  4. Hemmet Brown Sugar Canister (Best Under $10)

How to Soften Brown Sugar FAQs

What Do You Look for in a Brown Sugar Container?

To keep brown sugar soft and prevent it from clumping, you need to purchase an air tight container. This will keep it moist and prevent it from drying out.

What Type of Canister is Best for Keeping Brown Sugar Fresh?

Any canister with a good seal is adequate for brown sugar. However, many people prefer the Tupperware or plastic versions and glass containers for easy storage purposes.

What Can You Do to Prevent Brown Sugar from Hardening Inside Canisters?

The best way to prevent rock hard brown sugar is by placing it in an airtight canister. You can also purchase terracotta products to place inside the container, maintaining moisture plentiful.

Summing Things Up

It can be frustrating, going to grab your brown sugar to start baking your favorite dessert, only to find it loaded with hardened clumps. Hopefully, after reading this article, your nerves will be calm, knowing there are many ways to refresh your food and bring your brown sugar back to life.

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