Ask Peggy

What is the nutritional value of Splenda?

DEAR PEGGY: I like to revamp recipes by using Splenda sugar substitute. When these experiments receive thumbs-up approval, I'd like to recalculate the recipe's nutrition information. If the only change I make to a recipe is the Splenda (1/2 cup Splenda for 1/2 cup sugar), how do I figure the nutritional values? —A.J., Wilmore, Kentucky

Congratulations for experimenting in the kitchen! Sugar substitutes are a great way to cut back on calories and carbohydrates. For instance, 1/2 cup of granulated sugar contains 387 calories and 100 g carbohydrate. In comparison, 1/2 cup Splenda offers 48 calories and 12 g carbohydrate. That's a savings of 339 calories and 88 g carbohydrate!

To calculate the nutritional information for Splenda, see the package label and multiply the serving size to reach the amount you're using (1/2 cup per your example). Then, multiply the other numbers on the label by that same factor.

To calculate nutritional values for all of the recipes you create yourself, consider purchasing Bowes and Church's Food Values of Portions Commonly Used by Jean Pennington and Judith Douglass. It offers nutritional information on thousands of ingredients.