Maple syrup being poured
The Mushroom Variety You Can Use In Place Of Maple Syrup
By Nico Danilovich
Maple syrup is incredibly versatile in the kitchen, working well for breakfast dishes like bacon and waffles as well as lunch-to-dinner dishes like stew. The only problem is that it can be expensive, but thankfully, there exists another natural American product that can substitute for maple syrup.
Candy cap mushrooms feature a surprisingly strong flavor (and smell) like that of maple syrup, making them a perfect swap — just use them in moderation so that your dish doesn’t end up bitter. This is because candy caps share with maple syrup a chemical compound known as sotolon, which gives that sweet flavor.
If you live in the Pacific Northwest, you can go forage for candy caps yourself, which grow on the mossy bark of oak and pine trees. If you’re located elsewhere, you may be able to find them at a specialty store or (most likely) online, but be aware that they can sometimes go by the name “curry milk caps” and that they can cost about $20 per ounce.