The Fresh Loaf

A Community of Amateur Bakers and Artisan Bread Enthusiasts

barley malt syrup

bindifry's picture

barley malt syrup

i bought some of this & have only used it in recipes that call for it.  my questions:

-can i use it in any bread recipe that does not call for it?

-is it a good substitution for honey/molasses?

-what are your experiences using it?

-what is the difference between diastatic & non-diastatic?

-do you prefer powder or syrup?


jaywillie's picture

Yes, you can use barley malt syrup as a substitute for honey or molasses. However, its relative sweetness is significantly lower than either of those -- it's about half as sweet as either. So to get the same sweetness, you'll need twice as much, which of course impacts the total liquid in your recipe/formula. You may like things less sweet, so the relative sweetness is not a drawback, just a fact. (See And each of those obviously brings their own flavor profile to the mix.

I believe that no barley malt *syrup* can be diastatic. All enzymatic activity of the barley malt is killed by the temperatures used to create the syrup. Barley malt *powder* can be either, also based entirely on the heat used to process.

I have used both syrup and powder, and each is appropriate in individual cases. I prefer the sweetness and flavor of other sweetener options, so I rarely use barley malt syrup as a substitute in that way. But I do occasionally see it and use it in bagel recipes, although my favorite bagel recipe (Reinhart) uses diastatic malt powder.