What are the main differences between sugarcane jaggery, rapadura, and panela?

Jaime Soto
  • What are the main differences between sugarcane jaggery, rapadura, and panela? Jaime Soto

    Jaggery, rapadura and panela are very similar ingredients according to their Wikipedia articles. However, jaggery can be made from not only sugarcane but also palm sap.

    Is there a difference between sugarcane jaggery, rapadura, and panela? The jaggery article implies they are the same thing, the rapadura article does not mention jaggery or panela, and the panela article implied that rapadura is the same as panela but not exactly the same as jaggery:

    Common Spanish names: chancaca, papelón, piloncillo, panocha, rapadura, atado dulce or empanizao. In India and Pakistan a similar product is made which is called gur or jaggery. In Brazil, it is known as rapadura.

    I am most familiar with panela and have replaced it with Mexican piloncillo without noticing a big difference. I would like to know if I could easily use panela or piloncillo instead of jaggery in a recipe.

  • If your question is if we can, the answer is yes. Rapadura = brown sugar tablet. The brown sugar is very similar to panela and jaggery.

    The difference is the source of raw material, and the origin of the country where it is processed obtain the sugar. Jaggery is in Asia, brown sugar and panela or rapadura in many Latin American countries.

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