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Need alternative to Lea and Perrins or sauce w/out HFCS

just picked up a bottle of Lea and Perrins Worcestershire at Whole Foods only to discover HFCS is the 2nd ingredient! perhaps i wouldn't mind if it was the last ingredient but 2nd must mean there's quite a lot of it in there. is there an alternative? i use a 1/3-1/2 cup in my meat loaf and that's also quite a lot. thanks!

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  1. There's an Annie's Naturals version of worcestershire sauce available that doesn't have HFCS. Or you can make your own:


    Basically the non vegetarian version has anchovies in it.

    Also, if you know someone who lives in Canada, or the UK they can send you some sans HFCS.

    1. My bottle of L&P lists HFCS as third, after molasses. Admittedly it is several years old, so proportions may have changed. In a 5g serving, 1g is sugar(s)

      1/2c of Worcestershire sounds like a lot - is that the primary source of salt and flavor in the meat loaf? How many pounds of meat? There are plenty of meatloaf recipes that don't use any Worcestershire (or even ketchup).

      If you want to get Worcestershire like flavors from scratch you need something tart (vinegar, tamarind paste), something sweet (molasses or other sugary poison), something savory and salty (anchovies, fish sauce, soy sauce).

      4 Replies
      1. re: paulj

        paul, the lea and perrins recipe for meatloaf uses 1/3 cup of the sauce to 2# ground beef. http://www.leaperrins.com/recipe/lea-...

        1. re: paulj

          My bottle of L&P lists HFCS as third, after molasses. Admittedly it is several years old, so proportions may have changed. In a 5g serving, 1g is sugar(s)
          Then my bottle must be truly ancient, it lists "corn sweeteners", the fourth ingredient, after water, vinegar and molasses.

          1. re: kmcarr

            OK I'M WRONG! i just looked at my bottle and it is in fact the 3rd and not the 2nd ingredient. sorry for the error. but being the 3rd ingredient is still pretty high for me....

            1. re: trolley

              But what are the lower ingredients? Salt, tamarind (a very tart fruit), anchovies etc.

              Being 3rd does not mean that 1/3 of the product. May be the split is 1/2, 1/4, 1/8, 1/16,...

              Admittedly for some people any HFCS is too much ...

        2. Not the same thing but I use Maggi sauce and Worcestershire sauce interchangeably. It taste like a blend of soy sauce & beef bullion and is great for boosting meaty flavors. Can be found in Asian markets in the soy sauce aisle.

          1. hey, here is the original secret lea and perrins recipe. maybe you'll have to cut down on the volume just a little, though!

            """But even with all the ingredients there is no guarantee you would be able to make the sauce as what makes it distinctive is the way it is made, which is still a secret.'
            Two years ago, Worcestershire Sauce topped a poll of British ingredients that have had the biggest impact on the food industry.
            The chef Marco Pierre White claims the sauce allows him to create 'the most delicious sauce in the world to serve with beef'.

            Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/femail/foo... """"

            7 Replies
            1. re: alkapal

              L & P Worcestershire Sauce is, indeed, an iconic ingredient here.

              FWIW, contents here are malt vinegar, spirit vinegar, molasses, sugar, salt, anchovies, tamarind extract, onions, garlic, spice, flavouring.

              1. re: Harters

                the original includes cloves, lemon essence, peppers & pickles, too. interesting. the original recipe does not include onions or garlic. (plus, would an olde english company use garlic, the stuff that the frenchies adore?! ;-).

                cloves are one of those long-used but rarely thought-about ingredients in so many things.

                1. re: alkapal

                  yes garlic was brought to the UK by the Romans so it's been around a long time. It can easily be grown in England anyhow.

                  1. re: smartie

                    but i thought the english didn't LIKE garlic, despite the roman importation of the garlic agriculture. i thought they believed the odor hid the smell of rotten meat.

                    those romans sure were stinky folk, huh? from garum to garlic. yippee!

                    1. re: alkapal

                      We love it - as smartie points out, it's been grown here for nearly 2000 years and has often featured in our cuisine. Not so much in traditional northern dishes as it is not to easy to grow in our harsher climate - I think it struggles in areas where it's too cold for grapes (our most northerly commercial vineyards are in the English midland counties).

                      1. re: Harters

                        I bet Culpepper's Herbal and Mrs Beeton used garlic in their recipes

                        1. re: smartie

                          Certainly Hannah Glasse's book from 1747 includes garlic in recipes. And it's use is bound to have been further popularised after the French Revolution when many chefs (and their employers) escaped to Britain.

            2. French's Worcestershire, available in most grocery stores, does not have HFCS. I switched a while ago and find it completely indistinguishable from Lea & Perrin's. It has the added advantages of coming in a more user friendly bottle, and being less expensive (at least where I shop)>.

              7 Replies
              1. re: qianning

                Is this list wrong or is corn syrup different from HFCS?
                French's Worcestershire Sauce
                Distilled Vinegar, Molasses, Corn Syrup, Salt, Water, Spices, Caramel Color, Anchovies (Fish)Natural Flavor (contains Soy)Tamarind Extract and Garlic Powder.

                1. re: wolfe

                  Corn Syrup is different from HFCS.

                  1. re: dmckean

                    So HFCS is corn syrup on steroids, so to speak, but why is it worse than other sugars?
                    "High-fructose corn syrup is created when corn syrup undergoes enzymatic processing that produces a sweeter compound containing higher levels of fructose."

                    1. re: wolfe

                      The enzymes used are stabilized in the product but your stomach acids destroy the stabilizers and the enzymes go back to work converting other sugars and starches into fructose inside your body.

                      1. re: dmckean

                        Citation please.

                        The specific enzyme which converts glucose to fructose is xylose isomerase (also known as glucose isomerase). It is very expensive to produce so in the industrial process it remains fixed to a solid substrate and the glucose syrup passes over it; in other words it is transferred to the final product.

                        Other enzymes which are used earlier in the process to convert cornstarch to glucose are simply mixed into the liquid, but these are the same enzymes used in producing simple corn syrup (glucose only syrup). Further, all of these products under some degree of purification after conversion; any remaining enzymatic activity would be miniscule at best.

                        1. re: kmcarr

                          Do you mean "not transferred" to the final product?
                          "While inexpensive alpha-amylase and glucoamylase are added directly to the slurry and used only once, the more costly xylose-isomerase is packed into columns and the sugar mixture is then passed over it, allowing it to be used repeatedly until it loses its activity."

                          1. re: wolfe

                            Yes wolfe, thanks for the catch. I did mean that the xylose isomerase is NOT transferred.

              2. I'm not sure I'd be all that worried about HFCS in a fermented product.

                1. You could try Pickapeppa, or "Jamaican ketchup." It's a bit hard to describe the flavor. Wiki says it's akin to Worcestershire or A1 but sweeter and mellower, which I agree with, but there's a definite spicy kick in it,. I just checked my bottle, and there's no HFCS in it, but you may want to double-check at the store, since I got mine in Jamaica. (I tend to doubt they make a separate import version, but I could be wrong.) You should be able to find it at Whole Foods or even the local mega-mart.

                  I use Pickapeppa generously in my meatloaf, and I've gotten a lot of compliments.

                  1. My A-1 Steak Sauce lists corn syrup as an ingredient, but no high fructose corn syrup. While Worcestershire and A-1 don't taste exactly alike, for me they're "close enough for government work." And they're both what the English call "brown sauce."

                    3 Replies
                    1. re: Caroline1

                      Interesting. I've always used worcestershire as an ingredient, and A-1 as a topping for not-so-perfect- beef. And a perfect dip for french fries.

                      What do you use them for, specifically as interchangeable?

                      1. re: Caroline1

                        They taste completely different and are two completely different consistencies. I would say they are not interchangeable. Worcestershire sauce is not an English Brown Sauce and A-1 barely fits in compared to the way the English ones taste. A-1 and HP Brown could be considered similar but they taste very different from one another. HP has a lot more depth to it in my opinion and is less sweet

                        1. re: MVNYC

                          I just looked at a bottle of HP at Cost Plus World Market. Among the ingredients was 'glucose-fructose (from wheat)', i.e. HFWS.

                          The CA label is similar

                      2. From what I've been able to glean from the internet, you're unlikely to consume enough HFCS in the L&P recipe to be of much concern. The thought seems borne out by a Chowhounf thread, in fact:


                        The people who need to worry about HFCS are those who eat a lot of packaged, processed foods, esp. sodas.

                        17 Replies
                        1. re: Bada Bing

                          L&P sauce is the finest. Aged anchovies and tamarind. So they've put some HCFS in there... big deal...downing a single can of Coke slaps that feared 45-55 suc/fruc mix into the gut. Eat an apple and get over the fructose thing. Avoid it as you would sugar, but do not denigrate it as some roaring monster. The problem lies in the uninformed consumer who chugs that stuff daily in the form of sodas. Ask for water, America. Reduce our health care bill, by not sluggishly slurping yourself and your sodas into incognisant diabetes. .

                          French's W sauce rather than L&P? My God. French's hasn't aged anything, ever. L&P in the early English 1800's was based on aging... barrels left and almost forgotten in their basement, that they rediscovered, that had ripened to the ecstatic L&P that we enjoy today.

                          1. re: FoodFuser

                            I can assure you aging does not necessarily mean better.
                            Very gray wolfe.

                            1. re: wolfe

                              But ahhhh...yes... Aging matters, be it an artisan soybean miso, a seasoning marriage, or a happily ripening cheddar.

                              Me being of that age where the sprightly bounce of youth is but a treasured memory, I have an appreciative spot for things that are well aged, my Lea and Perrins among them.

                              Aging was the key to their original business. God bless the stave-splitting coopers in our history and the effusive congeners in their many oak barrels.

                              Tap this link, then "ctrl F" to tag "1838". That was the year that L&P discovered the majesty of their tentative medium upon aging. A fun story... not just for us old farts.


                              1. re: FoodFuser

                                I know the story another case of short time memory loss. However more important is this news flash I just saw which is pertinent to this thread and I thought I'd better print it before I forget it.
                                "High fructose corn syrup — an ingredient in everything from soda to ketchup to pickles — has such a bad reputation that the Corn Refiners Association (CRA) wants to change the name of the popular sweetener to “corn sugar.”

                                1. re: wolfe

                                  "Corn sugar". A perfect shift of moniker from the more inscrutable name.

                                  I hope that others can enjoy the history of the sauce. There is beauty in slow amalgamation.

                                2. re: FoodFuser

                                  Seriously...people need to stop freaking out and get over minute uses of HFCS in condiments, it's not a big deal. Give that L&P Worcestershire a taste...does it really taste sweet to you? No, it's not really a sweet sauce. You can down a whole bottle of it and in terms of sugar you'd be better off than if you had drank a small glass of OJ. (Which is - guess what, PACKED with fructose.) The salt in a bottle of L&P will kill you way before the sugar does.

                                  1. re: joonjoon

                                    i think it's good that people freak out over highly processed foods like HFCS whether small or big amounts. true, you probably get more sugar from oj and what about ketchup? it's a diabetics nightmare. but change can never happen if no one speaks up and just accepts the given. so gimme a break joonjoon!

                                    1. re: trolley

                                      I agree with you trolley. It's not small amounts of HFCS (or corn sugar as we'll soon know it by), it's small amounts of the damn stuff in everything, and large amounts of it in everything else, and the inclusion of it in products that don't need it whatsoever, from the moment you toast your bread or eat your cereal in the morning to your bedtime snack. It is insidious, invasive, it is the kudzu of corporate food. It is an accumulative thing. It truly is a nightmare both for those who already have diabetes and for those at risk of developing it.

                                      1. re: morwen

                                        Would it make any difference for a diabetic if manufacturers used sugar instead? As noted the non-US formulations of L&P still have molasses and sugar. Many condiments have a mix of sour and sweet. Isn't bread, of any sort, a problem for diabetics?

                                        I suspect that a person with diabetes will have problems with processed food (including most condiments) regardless of whether they live in the USA (with with spread use of HFCS), Japan, or Europe (where corn based sweeteners are limited).

                                        1. re: paulj

                                          when i was diabetic i couldn't eat most breads, asian foods, oatmeal, non whole wheat pastas, fruit (except apples). the thing about diabetics is that there's no exact science. i did well eating california pizza kitchen salad and pizza. who would of thought that would work? some sugars spiked my blood and some worked well. agave spiked my blood sugar but foods with some plain sugars were ok. some days i had high blood sugar and and some days i was surprisingly reading low. all i know is that HFCS spiked my blood sugar way high. just going with what worked for me which won't necessarily work for another diabetic.

                                          1. re: paulj

                                            No, really it doesn't. Sugar is sugar in almost any form and as trolley says, diabetes is a very individual disease. For example, carrots send my blood sugar racing, but sweet potatoes don't. I find no difference in my sugar numbers whether I eat whole grain products or white flour products, but many diabetics do better on whole grains. A little bit of sweet combined with a protein seems to work for me.
                                            Ultimately, what my bitc..uh beef... is, is that food manufacturers (including those producing "natural"/"organic"/"healthy" products) feel the need to add sugar in whatever form to just about everything, and HFCS in particular because it's cheap, even in products that don't need added sugar. Look at jarred pasta sauces for example. Yes, there are commercial pasta sauces without sugar in the ingredients list but you have to look diligently to find them. The vast majority of them contain sugar or HFCS, often about midway through the list. The standard whole wheat, rye, or pumpernickel breads on the shelf in stores or used in restaurants are so loaded with sugar that the bread actually tastes sweet and pastry-like, definitely not like bread. The addition of sugar in whatever form to just about everything processed, store bought, restaurant
                                            made has to be a major contributing factor to many of the increased incidents of diabetes, heart disease, and obesity and associated diseases in the population today. I also believe it is perverting our perception of how food should taste and creating a craving for and dependency on sugar in general. The second part that irks the hell out of me is that HFCS is made from GM corn which as far as I know was never approved for human consumption. It was approved as animal feed. In my opinion there has never been enough study into the long term ramifications of GM plant consumption on humans or animals, or through animals to humans, let alone an unbiased study by independent researchers. The studies were done by the corporations creating and promoting GM seeds (and all the products needed to grow GM seeds) and approved by government officials with direct corporate food/agricultural ties and affiliations. But GM plants/foods and all the attendant issues surrounding them is a whole 'nother thread/rant.

                                          2. re: morwen

                                            Morwen, good points, and well presented.

                                            I hope that the clause about HCFS and Kudzu felt really good to write ("It is insidious, invasive, it is the kudzu of corporate food"). It nailed it.

                                            On quiet mornings of misty dew, in those meadows and woodlands where kudzu is encroaching, you can hear the pulsing hiss of its tapered tip, just growing.

                                          3. re: trolley

                                            I wonder if this L&P meatloaf is symptomatic of a broader problem, a heavy reliance on processed ingredients in every day cooking?

                                            The 'best by' date on my (nearly full) bottle of L&P is 2004! I bought a 2-pack sometime before that, and finally finished the 1st bottle last year. It is my favorite steak sauce, but I only use a splash here, a splash there. That's why I was surprised to read of using 1/3c at a time.

                                            Trying to avoid HFCS can be healthy, not because it is worse than other sweeteners, but because it is widely used, and the name stands out in ingredients lists. But be careful that you don't just substitute one sweetener for another. One 'trick' that organic and natural foods manufacturers use is to use multiple types of sweetener (honey, evaporated cane syrup, brown rice syrup, agave syrup, etc). This gives the sweetness that customers want, while moving all the sugars further down the ingredients list.

                                            1. re: paulj

                                              It shouldn't be considered unusual that a product with this history should last somewhat longer than the "best by date."
                                              "Looking to make space in the storage area a few years later, the chemists decided to try it again, discovering that the sauce had fermented and mellowed and was now palatable."

                                    2. re: FoodFuser

                                      the reason i'm truly careful with sweeteners is b/c when i was pregnant, i had gestational diabetes. right now i'm working on my diet (exercise too) to avoid developing diabetes in the future. i also make the meatloaf for my toddler who loves the taste of the sauce in his meatloaf (made it w/out it once and he hated it). b/c of the GD during pregnancy i have to be careful with his diet as well and really try not to feed him too much sugar. so honestly, it's not much HFCS and since we don't drink sodas or consume too much other sugar on a daily basis but i have to be careful.

                                      since i mix the stuff into the meatloaf mix i might try french's or look for some alternative today at the store.

                                      1. re: trolley

                                        I don't think alternative sauces like Frenches will have substantially different amounts of sweetener, whether HCFS, corn syrup, sugar, or molasses. L&P, at least in the quantities that I use, is not sweet. Sauces like A1 have much more of a sweet character.

                                        But there are meat loaf recipes that don't call for any added sugar or sugar containing sauce.

                                        1. re: paulj

                                          The nutritional data on both sauces show 5 calories per tsp. which means 1 gram of sugar giving 4 of the calories.

                                  2. As to L&P versus the anchovy-free un-aged cheaply made Frenches:

                                    (A conversation held at 5000 feet elevation twixt old Humphrey Bogart and Walter Huston and the bandits they meet:).

                                    "French's? We dont need no stinking French's! While we praise French's mustard and sharp yellow tang, it's Worshershire cousin is pallid and plain!." Mustard?... Badges? "

                                    Lee and Perins, however they have shited to market forces of cheaper avaiabily of sweetener, still packs their product in a paper covered dark brown bottle, to keep it fresh from degradation by sunlight. French''s, unaged, does not,.

                                    5 Replies
                                    1. re: FoodFuser

                                      french's "worcestershire" has no anchovies? how is it worcestershire, then?

                                          1. re: alkapal

                                            Checking back with "my bad" and a 'hap's mea culpa. But read on you'll see that it's sort of a sorta'

                                            The Feds, in their regs, don't require the percent, of 'chovies included, nor the time of ferment. So Corp gives just tad, less fermented, might add, of the fish that gives force with the flavor it adds.

                                            When I tasted the French's 'bout ten years ago, I was checking fish sauces, fermented... where go?"

                                            Since the 'choves are a part of the depth of LP, I had wondered if French's could match it. Not Be.

                                            Now just checked corp ingrede's and have seen that indeed they declare some anchovie, but late from the lead.

                                            I implore you to choose with two sips side by side. It will not take you long for your tastes to decide.

                                            That gave me good course to spit French's as "Wrong"!

                                            They may have some 'chovies, but they don't age them long.

                                            1. re: FoodFuser

                                              hey, i'm not gonna buy french's just to spit it out! ;-). i have enough L&P for another couple of years....

                                    2. That does sound like a huge amount of L&P regardless of what's in it. How about weaning your toddler off it gradually? Just reduce it by a tablespoon each time you make it til you get it either down to a level you're comfortable with or even none at all. I've never used it in meatloaf. Mine has things like vinegar and mustard in it. No ketchup either.

                                      1. Try HP sauce -- a brown sauce from the UK. It's a little like an A1-type sauce, but the flavor is far better.

                                        An imported foods aisle or a British foods purveyor should have it.

                                        1. Come buy some in Canada. My L&P sauce list ingredients as: Malt vinegar (from barley), spirit vinegar, water, refiner's molasses, sugar, anchovies, tamarind extract, onions, garlic, spice and natural flavour.

                                          That being said, I don't think it's worth fussing over the minute amount of evil HFCS it would add to your diet. Anyway, I get the whole "corn is evil" thing, but I don't understand why people demonise HFCS so much and yet embrace products like agave syrup and honey.

                                          3 Replies
                                          1. re: SnackHappy

                                            Here's the Canadian nutritional label. Off hand it looks like the same amount of sugar


                                            1. re: paulj

                                              Well, if you look closely at that picture, you'll see that it claims 1g of sugar per tablespoon (15ml) instead of the 1g per teaspoon (5ml) of the US version. But that actually doesn't jive with the label on my bottle which claims 1g per tsp.

                                              Anyway, I fail to see your point. I never argued that the Canadian version contained less sugar. I only tried to point out that it was HFCS-free.

                                              1. re: SnackHappy

                                                I was more interested in whether the sweetness level was any different. I wonder what taste test would show.

                                          2. You can order the British/Canadian version here for $5.79 before shipping:

                                            Also the L&P Thick Classic Worcestershire knocks HFCS much further down the ingredients ladder:

                                            1 Reply
                                            1. re: CDouglas

                                              But sugar is still 1 gram per 5 cc.

                                            2. Late in posting but I have a bottle ofWan Ja Shan Organic Worcestershire Sauce. List of ingredients:
                                              organic rice vinegar,organic wheat free tamari,soy sauce,organic evaporated cane juice,salt and organic spices. I have not opened yet, so can't comment on the taste, I got it at a taping of Simply Ming, and I know he uses this brand of condiments for what it is worh to anyone.

                                              Cane juice- don't were that falls into the stuff pople are trying to avoid, but it at the end of the ingredient list before the spices.

                                              9 Replies
                                                1. re: hummingbird

                                                  Found wan Jan Shan

                                                  $9 shipping in US so order 2
                                                  Amazon reviews say it is reasonably good but thin

                                                  1. re: hummingbird

                                                    But according to the company site there is sugar in Wan Ja Shan Organic Worcestershire Sauce so I just cancelled my order


                                                    1. re: hummingbird

                                                      For those who are looking for sugar free options:
                                                      posharp got back to me:
                                                      i am on our store floor. yes, it has sugar in it. their organic version 15 oz has NO sugar, also gluten free. - chris

                                                      Another good option is Frenchs tenderizing Worcestershire
                                                      from thier site:

                                                      FRENCH'S® WORCESTERSHIRE SAUCE

                                                      Net Wt.: 10 FL. OZ (295 mL)
                                                      Nutrition Facts

                                                      Serving size: 1 tsp (5mL) Servings: 59 Calories: 5
                                                      Amount Per Serving % DV*
                                                      Total Fat 0g
                                                      Sat.Fat 0g
                                                      Trans Fat 0g 0%
                                                      Cholest. 0mg 0%
                                                      Sodium 65mg 3%
                                                      Total Carb. 1g 0%
                                                      Fiber 0g
                                                      Sugars 0g 0%

                                                      Protein 0g

                                                      If you are a follower of Dr. Neil Barnard's Power Foods for the Brain

                                                      The Alzheimer's Diet: A Step-by-Step Nutritional Approach for Memory Loss Prevention and Treatment

                                                      you will be interested in food with a low glycemic index or load and want to avoid added sugar not just HFCS. This is a an general concept favored by anti aging experts such as Dr. Adrienne Denise

                                                      1. re: Emersk

                                                        There's a bit of a disconnect there between the nutritional info and the ingredients list for the French's product.

                                                        Distilled Vinegar, Water, Molasses, Corn Syrup, Salt. Contains Less Than 2%: Anchovies, Tamarind Extract, Sugar, Spices, Dehydrated Garlic Powder, Caramel Color, Xanthan Gum, Propylene Glycol Alginate and Natural Flavors (Soy)"

                                                        If you compare that with the same info for Lea & Perrins Worcestershire sauce, it looks pretty much the same.


                                                        1. re: SnackHappy

                                                          Right, I should have read on to see the ingredients at
                                                          (then click nutritional info


                                                          Maybe there is less than half a gram of sugar per teaspoon or less than 24 grams of sugar per 10 fl oz bottle?
                                                          There are 5 calories per teaspoon serving and 4 calories in a gram of sugar FYI. A teaspoon weighs 5 grams. The sugar is listed right before the spices so this is possible. In 2009 Lea and Perrins did not list sugar on the ingrediants list according to the bottle in front of me. Probably the amount of sugar has been hovering around half a gram over the years.

                                                          Lea and Perrins now lists 1 gram of sugar per teaspoon whereas French lists 1 gram carbohydrate (Sugar is the worst most caloric carbohydrate) Lea and Perrins is also 5 calories per tablespoon. I would have to assume that since the calories are the same French is probably not better in terms of glycemic load.

                                                          Unless the Wonjan Organic Worcester is less than 5 calories per gram it probably is not better either. They don't list the product on the company site so I have put in an inquiry.

                                                          But I probably use 3 teaspoons or 1 tablespoon on a big porterhouse steak so its only 15 calories. Dr Neil Barnard notes that some foods like carrots have a high glycemic index but since they have few calories they have a low glycemic load making them healthy to eat. (Eating high glycemic load carbs is like feeding an imaginary fire in your Mitochondria (the energy producing organelles in your cells) with newspapers rather than slow burning logs. You create a surge of insulin to process the sugar. Over time this speeds up the rise in insulin resistance, and non clinical diabetes which is what happens as you age. Insulin Resistance is associated with many medical problems from obesity to dementia. But if you are only consuming 15 calories in a sauce on an 18 ounce Porterhouse steak, it probably makes little difference if you lower those 15 calories a bit. Nevertheless Lee and Perrins Worcester sauce has about 4 times the calories that the same amount of sugary Coke does....

                                                          1. re: Emersk

                                                            @Emersk: you wrote,
                                                            <i>Lea and Perrins now lists 1 gram of sugar per teaspoon whereas French lists 1 gram carbohydrate (Sugar is the worst most caloric carbohydrate) Lea and Perrins is also 5 calories per tablespoon. I would have to assume that since the calories are the same French is probably not better in terms of glycemic load.

                                                            Unless the Wonjan Organic Worcester is less than 5 calories per gram it probably is not better either. They don't list the product on the company site so I have put in an inquiry.</i>

                                                            If you then look at the ingredients, L&P has molasses as the second ingredient followed by water, while French's has water followed by molasses; molasses is >50% sugar by weight. French's then lists corn syrup, while L&P list sugar. By contrast, Wan Ja Shan Organic has no molasses, and first lists "evaporated cane juice" (i.e. sugar) after the salt. Since there's only 150 mg sodium per tablespoon (= 3 tsp), and since salt is 40% sodium by weight, and since one or more of the other ingredients likely adds to the sodium content, there is less than there's less than 375 milligrams (0.375 g) salt in one tablespoon, so there is even less sugar ("evaporated cane juice").

                                                            Note that both French's and Lea & Perrins list 1 g carb and <1 g sugars per <i>teaspoon</i> (5 mL), with L&P claiming 5 calories and French's claiming 0 (probably just exploiting FDA's rounding rules), whereas Wan Ja Shan Organic lists 4 calories per <i>tablespoon</i> (15 mL -- three times as much product). So it's clear that Wan Ja Shan is far lower in sugar and total carb.

                                                            1. re: FoodAsMedicine

                                                              Let me correct myself before someone else does ;-) . The sugar in Wan Ja Shan Organic actually appears before the salt:

                                                              INGREDIENTS: Organic Vinegar, Organic Wheat-Free Tamari Soy Sauce (Water, Organic Soybeans, and Salt), Organic Evaporated Cane Juice, Salt, and Organic Spices.

                                                              I read the label too quickly, and mistook the salt as a sub-ingredient in the tamari for the salt in the product. Still, this is the only sugar-containing ingredient in the product, unlike either French's or L&P, and the label "Nutrition facts" seem credible.

                                                              1. re: FoodAsMedicine

                                                                I'd hope that no one reading this drinks Worcestershire sauces by the glass. With that proviso, a little sense of magnitudes and proportions might add perspective.

                                                                A gram or three of sugars (whatever kind) in a condiment like this will normally be little, compared to the amounts in other food portions including totally natural foods. A carrot, an onion, a s sweet pepper all contain considerable natural sugars, of the common forms (glucose, fructose -- which are the same sugars in HFCS -- and sucrose, which metabolizes promptly to glucose and fructose in the body). To say nothing of ripe fruit. I wouldn't be surprised if the earlier poster concerned with Worcestershire on an 18-ounce porterhouse steak has addressed the minority sugar source in that combination, compared with that occurring in the cooked meat.

                                                                Even with 4x the calories of Coca-Cola, Worcestershire is consumed in rather smaller amounts (like, 1000x smaller).

                                                    2. This thread reminds me of the late 70's early 80's when people were becoming aware of the evils of cigarette smoke - there were followers and detractors alike and both passionately so. The HFCS debate rages on - but IMHO - the fact that the producers of HFCS need to change the name to "market it better" indicates that there is something amiss in Denmark ...oops ..the USA .... no one else uses that stuff. And now HFCS moves on to less suspecting countries like India and Japan to garner more victims......alas, alack.

                                                      8 Replies
                                                      1. re: cornFusion

                                                        yeah, prunes are now marketed as "dried plums." so what?

                                                        and who else can benefit from our large corn crops? let's see, shall we?

                                                        1. re: cornFusion

                                                          One reason HFCS is not used as much in Europe is that there are quotas designed to protect the home grown sugar beets. One reason it is wide spread in the USA is because our sugar prices are relatively high, due to measures intended to protect USA cane growers.

                                                          1. re: paulj

                                                            why do you think the sugar prices are so high? there many not be one answer but i do know that the corn lobby in the US is very powerful.

                                                            1. re: trolley

                                                              All the sources that I've read attribute higher sugar prices to protectionist measures designed to protect USA cane growers (mainly in Texas and Louisiana). They were supposed to keep cheaper sugar from the West Indies and else where out. I haven't read of any clamor to remove those measures, even though they have contributed to the shift to using more corn sweeteners.

                                                              I have not read of any protectionist measures on sweeteners in Canada, suggesting that their usage may be good indicator what a free market would choose. Canada does produce its own sugar (from beets) but can also freely import cane sugar (and corn sweeteners). It appears, though, that the L&P sauce sold in Canada is produced in the UK, even if bottled in Canada.

                                                              1. re: paulj

                                                                "big cane" sugar also rules in south florida. they are powerful.

                                                                the cane producers also benefit from price protectionism because of tariffs on cane sugar, esp. from brazil, iirc.

                                                                this study http://edis.ifas.ufl.edu/sc019 , a little dated, is instructive on the sugar support history in the u.s., and just reading it will show you why meddling in the free market creates market disruptions and misallocation of resources. then, once some industry gets used to protection, they ain't gonna give it up without a fight.

                                                                here's a 2007 thesis paper on u.s. sugar production history. http://etd.lib.montana.edu/etd/2007/w...
                                                                AN ECONOMIC HISTORY OF THE UNITED STATES SUGAR PROGRAM
                                                                by Tyler James Wiltgen

                                                                The United States Sugar Program has utilized tariffs, import quotas, domestic processor marketing allotments, and a non-recourse loan program to raise U.S. sugar prices..... to increase the incomes of U.S. sugar beet and sugarcane producers and processors. This thesis analyzes world and domestic sugar market conditions ......[and] ... A theoretical model is developed in which sugar beet processors are depicted as monopsonist purchasers of sugar beets as inputs into sugar production. This model suggests that incentives exist for sugar beet producers to vertically integrate into processing activities. It also shows that vertical integration incentives are greater in the presence of a tariff equivalent than in the absence of a tariff equivalent. The model, along with a review of Congressional hearings, is used to explain the lobbying pressures surrounding passage of major sugar program changes. The study shows that resources expended on lobbying in favor of a sugar program increase when the world price is relatively low.""""<<<<

                                                          2. re: cornFusion

                                                            And once, not too long ago someone proclaimed that second-hand-smoke was blowing smoke [pun intended]. We are talking here of serious consequences to people - regardless of the volume ingested. Arsenic is still arsenic in tiny doses.

                                                            1. re: cornFusion

                                                              you are likening hfcs to arsenic and second-hand smoke? based on what do you make such extreme analogies?

                                                            2. re: wolfe

                                                              Could it be their teeth? Denmark ranks at the top in per capita candy consumption (USA is only 5th)


                                                            3. It costs a little more (because it's imported), but I buy the UK-made Lea & Perrins. It's a different recipe with a slightly different flavor profile and doesn't contain HFCS. I think the flavor is awesome.

                                                              Ingredients: Malt Vinegar (from Barley), Spirit Vinegar, Molasses, Sugar, Salt, Anchovies (Fish), Tamarind Extract, Onions, Garlic, Spice, Flavouring.

                                                              You can buy it in some specialty stores like the British Food Shop, and some World Market -Cost Plus locations have it. Also, Publix says they'll add it to their British Food aisle very soon.

                                                              1 Reply
                                                              1. re: Mr. Haney

                                                                Thanks, Mr. Haney! Based on your post, I just got the UK version, and it tastes just like I remember the US version from my youth. I thought it might be my imagination, but GF tried it and said the same thing.

                                                                BTW, no HFCS, FWIW.

                                                              2. You might wish to read pickawicca's April-2 report of recently getting British L&P Worcestershire Sauce and finding HFCS listed on the label.


                                                                If you're really interested, and don't know about this already, and have an open mind that can follow logical argument, then you might also want read in the same thread about why distinguishing sugar from HFCS appears largely meaningless for underlying reasons completely independent of the arguments deployed to defend such a distinction. And the absurdities that do surface, if you truly think through some implications of anti-HFCS dogma. Start about here:


                                                                2 Replies
                                                                1. re: eatzalot

                                                                  Mr Haney is the poster who revived that thread a week ago. He is focusing on the difference in flavor profile. We don't need to revisit the pros and cons of HFCS. The other thread was locked because it got too contentious.

                                                                  Regarding the UK contents. When I last looked, the UK L&P site still lists sugar, not HFCS. I would be suspicious of a label that proports to be from the UK and lists HFCS. Glucose-fructose syrup is their way of listing a similar product (not is not necessarily made from corn starch).

                                                                  1. re: paulj

                                                                    Hi paulj. You'll need to query pickawicca about the labeling. pickawicca reported that a new bottle contained HFCS, but I don't know if that was literal labeling, or maybe paraphrasing for a forum that may be less familiar with "glucose-fructose syrup."

                                                                    I've no quarrel whatever with taste preferences (especially real ones -- some preferences disappear when tested blind), I deal with those a lot. Mr Haney did mention taste in the other thread (as an "Incidental" point, after first recommending the UK product on the basis that it lacked HFCS). But it does look as if some people are unaware even now that sugar has always converted to HFCS in the body anyway and that the fructose-glucose combo has always been widespread in our diets -- biochemical background to this subject and not(to my knowledge) controversial.

                                                                2. I have noticed all those who wish to lecture us as to why there is or isn't a difference between HFCS and sugar with regards to health. Having just returned to Canada I can report that Heinz ketchup is much better tasting in Canada and Mexican Coca-Cola tastes better than American Cola. Let the scientists do the science this foodie votes for sugar every time.

                                                                  9 Replies
                                                                  1. re: Moedelestrie

                                                                    +1 for sugar. It's a flavor thing, people.

                                                                    My son convinced me to try some of his Mountain Dew soda, made from a new formulation that uses cane sugar instead of other sweeteners, and I was shocked at how much better it tasted. That is one vile chemical brew, but the sugar made a noticeable improvement. I think HFCS has a flat aftertaste. Don't get me started on the other sweeteners, stevia, et al.

                                                                    1. re: Moedelestrie

                                                                      Moedelestrie, i agree. people here have always tried to convince me that it's just like sugar and it most likely it is. but i just don't want to consume it. some people prefer beer over wine and that's ok. i just prefer real sugar. good portion of my reasoning is that a lot of corn in HFCS is GMO. i don't want to ingest GMO's. if you or your mom wants to eat it then so be it. and you eat it thinking there's no difference between HFCS and regular sugar than you're entitled to your opinion. the ironic thing i that i just bought a bottle of American Lea and Perrins at a major grocery store and guess what? NO HFCS! I wonder if it's an old bottle...

                                                                      1. re: Moedelestrie

                                                                        +1 more for sugar .... let those who wish to taste chemicals do their own thing..... to each his/her own...

                                                                        1. re: cornFusion

                                                                          Chemicals? What chemicals are you talking about? I'm no fan of HFCS, but it's no more a "chemical" than sucrose is.

                                                                          1. re: SnackHappy

                                                                            Spare us the pedantry. The universe has a chemical composition. You know the gist of the conversation if you would like to join in please do. I am sure there are those that prefer the taste of HFCS what is your preference do you perceive a difference?
                                                                            I don't know if HFCS is harmful, I have seen conflicting studies. Do I trust ADM, Cargill or Monsanto? No.

                                                                            1. re: Moedelestrie

                                                                              But you do trust sugar growers and processors. :)

                                                                              GM sugar beets and cane have been developed and tested, though I don't think they are in widespread use yet.

                                                                              1. re: Moedelestrie

                                                                                "You know the gist of the conversation if you would like to join in please do."

                                                                                Thanks for inviting me, but I've actually been posting in this thread since September 2010.

                                                                                As for my personal opinion, I don't like the way HFCS is being crammed down our throats by the food industry. I also don't like when people get dogmatic about anything, including big agribusiness.

                                                                                How do we know that the difference in taste and flavour between Canadian Heinz, Mexican Coke and their US counterparts has anything to do with the sweetener they use? Recipes for these products can change from market to market. I'm surprised that so many claim they can taste the difference between HFCS and sucrose and yet can't tell the difference between cane sugar and beet sugar; or those who decry the health hazards of HFCS and yet buy products containing invert sugar, agave syrup or honey.

                                                                                The point of my "pedantry" was to call out a dogmatic, uninformed position. HFCS may or may not be good for you, but it is no more a "chemical" than refined sugar.

                                                                                1. re: SnackHappy

                                                                                  I try to stay away from sugar. The sugar I use when I am baking or making a marinade is pure cane sugar, maybe its my imagination but I think it is perceptively sweeter. The passover coke in Montreal this year was the best coke I ever tasted.
                                                                                  With regard to Agribusiness I have good cause to distrust Monsanto but I know Cargill and ADM strictly by reputation. Twenty years ago when I attended farmer's day at an experimental farm in Canada I suggested to a Monsanto representative that Roundup resistant canola would breed with wild mustards and produce a Roundup resistant weed. He proceeded to ridicule me in front of my fellow community members and suggested that certainly a professional such as himself knew more than a local yokel. It certainly influenced my ability to explain science to the locals and reduced my credibility to local population. I am less concerned with my being right and his being wrong as much as know nothing salespeople are let loose on a very vulnerable population.
                                                                                  Science is very difficult for people to grasp in that scientific theory always leaves open the possibility of error. You are so right in your anger over dogmatism but science can never win because it doesn't provide absolutes. Even when scientific theory reaches almost certitude it must perforce allow for error and people are always looking for certainty.
                                                                                  Everybody's sensory perceptions are different but the jury is still out on the hazards of HFCS but I would feel a lot better if money wasn't so big a part of the equation.

                                                                                  1. re: Moedelestrie

                                                                                    Fully agree. Besides ... my original thought was "mass produced fake food" (and i used the term "chemicals" for brevity). Yes there are chemicals in raw sugar (duh) but the point is that big chemical companies that produce man-made chemicals and insert these into our food together with massive campaigns whose price would easily run some small countries are not something that the common man can evaluate easily. Thus - my personal preference to stay away from those mass produced man-made so-called food.

                                                                        2. Hi I know I'm late to the party...

                                                                          But I quit buying L&P cuz of the HFCS in it - even in small amounts, it all adds up. But I picked up a bottle of Original L&P labelled "All Natural" the other day and didn't see any listings for HFCS or corn sugar. Here are the ingredients as listed on my bottle:

                                                                          Distilled white vinegar, molasses, water, sugar, onions, anchovies, salt, garlic, cloves, tamarind extract, natural flavorings (rut roh...that means msg!), chili pepper extract.

                                                                          There was another L&P bottle with a different label that still lists HFCS and corn sugar in its ingredients list.

                                                                          1 Reply
                                                                          1. re: susiet

                                                                            They must have switched to sugar instead of using HFCS in 2011...I am very happy that they are now producing a HFCS-free worcestershire sauce!!!

                                                                          2. HFCS is the third ingredient on my bottle, after vinegar and molasses. If it didn't have that, I'm sure it would have some other form of sugar. I'm in favor of reducing sugar i take generally, but in my opinion this is not a problem because so little is used. There is no substitute, as far as I am concerned.

                                                                            1. I just looked at a new bottle of "Original" L&P on the shelf. The ingredients are: distilled white vinegar, molasses, water, sugar, .... That's interesting. I had always thought it was unchanged.

                                                                              1. I just recently bought a bottle of Lea and Perrins WITHOUT the HFCS It's not listed on the back .Now I don't recall where but I shop often in a Bestyet Market. Again no HFCS I also shop at Fairway ,Waldbaums and Stop and Shop .I'm sorry not remembering the store .

                                                                                1. I checked my Kroger store-brand worcestershire sauce. It does not contain HFCS.

                                                                                  3 Replies
                                                                                  1. re: Firegoat

                                                                                    I posted this 3 years ago and since then, it seems lea and perrins changed their formula so we're good!

                                                                                    1. re: trolley

                                                                                      Did you notice any change in taste?