Saturday, February 26, 2022

Can You Make Golden Syrup? Yes! #recipe from @MysteryMacRae

Lyle’s Golden Syrup is an elusive ingredient here in the Midwest. It’s available online, but where’s the fun in that? Golden syrup—say it slowly and it sounds like a really top-shelf ingredient, one without equal. I, for one, always say ‘golden syrup’ with complete reverence and taught my children to do the same.

I know golden syrup from my time living in Scotland. According to British bakers, there’s no good substitute for it. Sure, you can approximate it by mixing light corn syrup with a tad of molasses or treacle, but let’s be real (and possibly snooty?) and say that substitutes just are not the same, because whatever you use will impart its own flavor—and that flavor is not golden syrup.

Or we can be practical, versatile cooks and say that honey or maple syrup will be a perfectly lovely variation for any recipe.

Still, I’ve pined for golden syrup for many years now, and finally discovered that you can make it yourself. That sort of removes the mystique, so I won’t talk about mine with any sense of reverence, but isn’t the color gorgeous?  

You can see a tin of Lyle’s Golden Syrup in Sheila Connolly’s recipe for Treacle Tart. She also used golden syrup or a substitute in Lemon Treacle Slice and Chocolate Biscuit Cake.

My next post, on Saturday March 12th, will use my homemade concoction in Golden Syrup Steamed Sponge Pudding (which I have to make before then—so I’ll do it tomorrow when it’s blustery outside. MMmmmm, steamed pudding.)


Golden Syrup



1 ¼ cups water 

4 cups sugar

2 tablespoons lemon juice

(note - the pictured quantities are not accurate measures) 


Put sugar and water into a saucepan. Stir to combine.

Bring to a boil, stirring regularly to prevent burning until the sugar is dissolved. Stir gently to prevent the sugar water from splashing up the sides of pan and crystalizing there. (I failed at that. Next time I’ll try a gentle whisk.)

When the mixture is boiling, gently stir in the lemon juice. Reduce the heat to very low so that it simmers gently. Continue gently simmering, uncovered and without stirring, for 40-60 minutes, until the syrup is a beautiful, rich, golden color.

Turn off the heat, let your liquid gold sit for a few minutes, then pour the hot syrup into a glass jar and let it cool completely before closing the jar with a tight sealing lid.

You can store the syrup at room temperature for several months, although mine is in the refrigerator.

Makes about 3 cups of syrup.

Tips: If your syrup is too stiff, reheat it and add a bit of water. If it’s too thin, reheat it and caramelize the sugar a bit longer.

Something poisonous is coming March 1, 2022!


About Argyles and Arsenic – book 5 in the Highland Bookshop Mysteries:

After 93 well-lived years, Violet MacAskill is ready to simplify her life. Her eccentric solution? She’ll throw a decanting and decluttering party at her family home—a Scottish Baronial manor near the seaside town of Inversgail, Scotland. Violet sets aside everything she wants or needs, then she invites her many friends in to sip sherry and help themselves to whatever they want from all that’s left.

But a murder during Violet’s party leads to a poisonous game of cat and mouse – with the women of Yon Bonnie Books playing to win.

Available for pre-order in hardback and e-book from your locally owned independent bookstore, Barnes & Noble, and Amazon. Or ask your public library to consider ordering it.


The Boston Globe says Molly MacRae writes “murder with a dose of drollery.” She’s the author of the award-winning, national bestselling Haunted Yarn Shop Mysteries and the Highland Bookshop Mysteries. As Margaret Welch, she writes books for Annie’s Fiction. Her short stories have appeared in Alfred Hitchcock Mystery Magazine since 1990 and she’s a winner of the Sherwood Anderson Award for Short Fiction. Visit Molly on Facebook and Pinterest and connect with her on Twitter  or Instagram.




  1. Yummy! Thanks for the recipe.
    2clowns at arkansas dot net

  2. Aren't you the clever one?!

  3. Did you know there's a "Treacle Well" (treacle being another name for golden syrup) outside a church in north Oxford? Well, it's true, and I saw it when I was there some years ago:

    1. I love that! I wish I'd seen the well when I was there. Golden syrup is, I think, light treacle. Dark treacle is more robust, but depending on what you're making, I'm sure they can be substituted one for the other. I've used dark molasses in pumpkin pie. Yum!

    2. Is there a printable version of the recipe? 🙃

    3. Oh, good question. Not from the post, but if you'd like one, I'll be happy to email it to you. And maybe I'll see how Cleo puts the button for a pdf of her recipes in the posts. That's handy!