Blackstrap molasses is a byproduct of sugar cane’s refining process. Sugar cane is mashed to create juice. It’s then boiled once to create cane syrup. A second boiling creates molasses.

After this syrup has been boiled a third time, a dark viscous liquid emerges known to Americans as blackstrap molasses. It has the lowest sugar content of any sugar cane product.

The wonderment of blackstrap molasses is that it’s unlike refined sugar, which has zero nutritional value. Blackstrap molasses contains vital vitamins and minerals, such as:

  • iron
  • calcium
  • magnesium
  • vitamin B6
  • selenium

Blackstrap molasses is touted as a superfood. While it’s no miracle cure, it’s a rich source of several minerals.

Everyone knows that calcium is needed for strong bones, but not everyone knows the importance that magnesium plays in growing them.

Blackstrap molasses contains both calcium and magnesium, so it can help you guard against osteoporosis. About 1 tablespoon of blackstrap molasses provides 8 percent of the daily value for calcium and 10 percent for magnesium.

Adequate levels of magnesium are also crucial in preventing diseases like osteoporosis and asthma along with others that can affect your blood and heart.

People with anemia — a condition where your body doesn’t have enough red blood cells — often feel tired and weak. One type of anemia is caused by a lack of iron in the diet.

Blackstrap molasses is a good source of iron. About 1 tablespoon of blackstrap molasses contains 20 percent of the daily value for iron.

Bananas may be king when it comes to potassium, but blackstrap molasses is also packed with it as well. In fact, one tablespoon of some blackstrap molasses brands can have as much potassium as half a banana, which is about 300 milligrams per tablespoon.

Potassium is touted as a good way to ease muscle cramps after workouts. However, there’s another muscle that might benefit from the mineral: the heart. In people with hypertension, In people with hypertension, taking a potassium supplement may help lower blood pressure.

What’s more, eating a potassium-rich diet might help lower the risk of stroke. The mineral may also prevent or manage fluid retention.

Along with providing your body with important minerals, blackstrap molasses has been used to remove the frizziness in bleached, permed, or colored hair.

While pouring the sticky syrup directly into your hair is a pretty bad idea, it can be mixed with warm water and applied to the hair for 15 minutes. It can also be combined with other hair-healthy ingredients like your daily shampoo or coconut milk.

Shop for blackstrap molasses online.

Blackstrap molasses by itself might be a bit difficult to swallow. After all, it’s very thick, slightly bitter, and doesn’t tend to go down well without some form of liquid. Using it in these applications might help you get some in your everyday diet.

Pour a warm drink

Add a tablespoon of blackstrap molasses to hot water and drink warm or cold as a dietary supplement. If you need some more flavor, add it to tea or lemon water.

Use in place of regular molasses

Try mixing blackstrap molasses into baked beans in place of brown sugar or molasses.

You can also use it as a basting glaze on:

  • chicken
  • turkey
  • other meats

Blackstrap molasses cookies are also a delicious idea. You don’t have to save them for the holidays. That slightly spicy flavor is a welcome warm-up.

Make energy bites

The thick, sticky nature of blackstrap molasses can come in handy for energy bites or “breakfast cookies.” It helps hold the ingredients together and provides a hint of just-right sweetness.

Take it as a “supplement”

A spoonful of blackstrap molasses straight can also give you a quick boost. If you have a hard time getting the thick syrup down, just keep a glass of water handy. Consider it your daily multivitamin.