Brown rice syrup is a liquid sweetener made from boiled, enzyme-treated whole grain brown rice. It has become a popular substitute for high fructose corn syrup in organic foods, for honey in vegan products, and is available for use in home baking. It is about half as sweet as sugar.

Health considerations

Brown rice syrup contains trace amounts of a variety of minerals, 55 to 75 calories per tablespoon, and has a high glycemic index. It is typically 45% maltose, 3% glucose, and 50% soluble complex carbohydrates. One study found that organic brown rice syrup was a source of arsenic. Foods containing organic brown rice syrup contained more arsenic than equivalent products without organic brown rice syrup, including an organic infant formula with up to six times the total arsenic concentration ccepted in drinking water.

Keep in mind

Many companies regularly test arsenic levels in their products; consumers can contact companies to request information about arsenic content.

May be found in

Sold as is, breakfast cereal, infant formula, energy bars, granola bars, granola, cookies, cakes, rice based beer


The University of Sydney
The Globe and Mail
Environmental Health Perspectives
Brown Rice Syrups

Alternative Spellings and Names

Rice syrup, rice malt, brown rice (malt) syrup, high maltose brown rice syrup

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