How to Keep Brown Sugar Soft: Tips and Tricks

How to Keep Brown Sugar Soft

Have you ever reached for a bag of brown sugar only to find it rock hard and impossible to use? Don’t worry; you’re not alone. Brown sugar has a tendency to turn into a solid mass if not stored properly. But fear not, because in this article, we will reveal some expert tips and tricks on how to keep your brown sugar soft and ready to use whenever you need it. So, let’s dive right in!

How Does Brown Sugar Harden in the First Place?

Brown sugar hardens when it loses its moisture content. It consists of granulated sugar with molasses added, and the molasses is responsible for its soft and moist texture. When exposed to air, brown sugar begins to dry out, causing the molasses to harden. But worry not, there are several methods you can try to restore its softness and keep it that way.

Proper Storage Techniques for Soft Brown Sugar

  1. Use an Airtight Container: The most crucial step in preventing brown sugar from hardening is to store it in an airtight container. This will help to maintain the moisture and prevent it from drying out.
  2. Add Moisture: To revive hardened brown sugar, you can try adding a slice of bread or apple to the container. These natural moisture providers will help soften the sugar over time.
  3. Seal with a Ziplock Bag: Another effective trick is to transfer the brown sugar to a resealable plastic bag, pressing out any excess air before sealing it.

Quick Fixes for Hardened Brown Sugar

  1. Microwave Method: If you need soft brown sugar quickly, place it in a microwave-safe bowl with a damp paper towel or a moistened slice of bread. Microwave it in 20-second intervals, checking and stirring in between until it softens.
  2. Oven Method: For larger quantities of hardened brown sugar, preheat your oven to 250°F (120°C). Place the sugar in an oven-safe dish, cover it with aluminum foil, and heat for 5-10 minutes until it softens.
  3. Using a Moist Cloth: Wrap the hardened brown sugar in a moist cloth or paper towel and put it in a microwave-safe container. Heat it in the microwave for 20-30 seconds, and the steam generated by the cloth will help soften the sugar.

Prevention is the Key

Now that you’ve learned how to revive hardened brown sugar let’s shift our focus to preventing it from hardening in the first place. Here are some handy tips to help you keep your brown sugar soft and usable for extended periods:

  1. Store in a Cool Place: Keep your brown sugar away from heat sources such as stoves and ovens. Store it in a cool pantry or cabinet to maintain its softness.
  2. Add a Marshmallow: Placing a marshmallow in the brown sugar container can help retain moisture and prevent hardening.
  3. Keep It Moist: To maintain the moisture content, you can use a terra cotta brown sugar saver. Soak it in water for 15 minutes, pat it dry, and place it in the brown sugar container.

Other Handy Tips

  1. Freeze and Thaw: If you have excess brown sugar that you won’t be using for a while, consider freezing it. Thaw it before use, and it will retain its softness.
  2. Use the Sugar Regularly: Regularly using your brown sugar helps prevent it from hardening. So, don’t shy away from baking those delicious cookies or adding a sprinkle to your oatmeal.
  3. Avoid Moisture Absorption: Be cautious when storing brown sugar near sources of moisture like the sink or refrigerator. Moisture can cause the sugar to clump together and become unusable.


By following these expert tips and tricks, you can ensure that your brown sugar stays soft and ready for any culinary adventure. Remember, proper storage in an airtight container, adding moisture, and using quick fixes when needed can revive hardened brown sugar. Additionally, practicing prevention techniques such as storing in a cool place and using moisture retainers will help you maintain its desirable consistency. So say goodbye to rock-hard brown sugar and enjoy the soft and crumbly texture whenever you need it. Happy cooking!

Abbas Jahangir

I am a researcher and writer with a background in food and nutritional science. I am the founder of, our reputable online platform offering scientifically-backed articles on health, food, nutrition, kitchen tips, recipes, diet, and fitness. With a commitment to providing accurate and reliable information, we strive to empower our readers to make informed decisions about their health and lifestyle choices. Join us on's journey toward a healthier and happier lifestyle.

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