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How To Make Date Syrup

This is a method more than a recipe – you can easily use more or fewer dates – the key is to pay attention to the general ratio of dates to water, the volume of water as it cooks, and most importantly the taste.
Course Condiment
Cuisine Middle Eastern
Keyword date syrup, make date syrup, natural sweetener
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 35 minutes
Yield 8 servings
Calories 166 kcal
Author Beth Lee

Ingredients

Equipment to have on hand:

  • cheesecloth ideally, but just a fine mesh strainer will work too
  • fine mesh strainer
  • medium saucepan
  • big bowl that strainer fits over

Ingredients

  • 20 medjool dates pitted
  • 3 cups water

Instructions

  1. Put the dates and water in a medium saucepan on medium high heat to bring to a boil. Then turn the heat down to med low and allow the mixture to simmer. If you see foam appearing on the top, skim it off (same thing you do when making soup stock or jam). Using a wooden spoon, mix occasionally and smash the dates with the back of the spoon. After about 15 minutes of simmering, take it off the heat and let it cool.
  2. Now set your strainer lined with cheesecloth on the top of the bowl and pour the mixture through. Use the wooden spoon to coax much of the liquid out of the dates. Then wrap the cheesecloth around the date mixture and wring it out as you might a wet rag. The liquid will keep coming. Don’t leave any behind.
    Straining the date syrup
  3. At this point, I was left with about 1 2/3 cup of sweet goodness. Give it a taste to get an idea of the sweetness. Mine was yummy but too thin and not quite intense enough yet. I poured the liquid back into the pot I was using (but cleaned) and brought it back up to a boil. Then I reduced the heat to medium low to maintain a low boil and reduced it down to about ¾ cup of liquid. This took about 20 minutes. You don’t need to be standing over it the whole time – put a timer on and check it every five minutes or so. If you note on a spatula at the start how high the liquid is when you dip it in, you can use that spatula to get a sense of how much you have reduced as you boil it down. Or, just use your taste buds and eyeballs and a spoon. When it starts to coat the back of a spoon, it’s getting thicker. When it tastes more intensely sweet, it is reduced. I stopped at a syrupy consistency – it tasted just like liquid dates, exploding with sweet flavor in my mouth. So I took it off the stove, let it cool, and bottled up the liquid goodness, storing it in the fridge for safe keeping.