Now you can have delicious, sweet and spicy homemade preserved stem ginger in syrup, with zero sugar!
This easy stem ginger recipe is perfect for eating solo and adding to keto & low-carb recipes. The sugar-free ginger syrup is delicious in drinks, and a jar of this preserved ginger makes a wonderful homemade gift!
Table Of Contents
Sugar-free preserved stem ginger
I love the peppery taste of ginger, added as a spice to food, in ginger tea, in gingerbread cake and cookies, in ginger ale and ginger cocktails, and as a spicy kick to bring up the warmth in keto mulled wine.
And preserved stem ginger in syrup is a delicious way of having the ginger, just by itself, as a sweet treat.
The problem is, store bought stem ginger in syrup is just chockful with sugar! Definitely not keto friendly, and any health benefits you might expect from eating this mighty superfood are utterly nullified by the high sugar content.
That’s why I created this sugar-free, low-carb and super keto preserved stem ginger recipe, that you can make in the comfort of your own home with just 3 ingredients!
Making this easy keto preserved ginger recipe just takes some time and 3 ingredients only: water, keto sweetener (like allulose), and stem ginger!
Erythritol is a fantastic keto sweetener and it could be used as well, but it can cause some crystallization in the syrup, because of its properties. For this reason only, it’s best to use allulose or xylitol.
How to choose fresh ginger
- Pick ginger with smooth and shiny skin, not shriveled and papery. The skins should also be on the thinner side, and you can test this by scratching the surface with your nail, it is good if it easily peels off. Imagine that you’ll have to remove this skin later…
- The root piece should feel heavy for it’s size, as an indication that it’s still full of moisture and not drying up.
- The freshest ginger will snap when broken. Try to tear an arm off. If it offers resistance, feels elastic or if it starts bending before it breaks, don’t buy it.
The easiest way to peel ginger
Peeling ginger can be done easily with a small spoon or knife:
- Use a small spoon: Hold the ginger root with one hand and use the edge of a spoon to scrape away the skin, starting from the top and working your way down.
- Use a knife: Choose a paring knife, which is easier to handle. Peel the larger ginger surfaces as you would a potato, then make small cuts at the little knobs to open the skin and then use your finger nails to peel it away.
A vegetable peeler is not ideal for peeling ginger, as the surface of the roots is very uneven and full of little knobs. The same goes for vegetable brushes (like coconut fiber brushes). I’ve tried, as I’ll describe below, without much success.
I find it better to work with a bowl of water, and soak the ginger as I peel it. This will help remove the peel, as it remains soft, and the water catches them as you work.
Frozen ginger skin becomes brittle so it’s easier to peel. Let the ginger thaw before peeling to avoid freezing your fingers!
But, the first time I made this recipe… I’ll share what happened so you can avoid making the same mistakes:
I bought almost 1 kilo of ginger root and decided to just wash and peel all of it all at once, and keep what I was not going to use prepped and frozen for another time. Big mistake – I should have frozen everything before starting!
I peeled the whole kilo of fresh ginger by vigorously brushing the roots under water, which sounded easier than trying to use a knife or spoon (it’s not), as they are full of nooks and crannies.
All the ginger rubbing made the the spicy vapors so strong in the kitchen that my nose and eyes started burning. I then started seeing some odd shapes formed by the roots. For example,
and other way less pretty and NSFW shapes too. I’ll leave it to your imagination 😁
How to make stem ginger in sugar-free syrup
The LikeHotKeto sugar-free preserved ginger is really simple to make, and impossible to get wrong. You’ll just need to boil the ginger with the water and sweetener until it’s softened!
Just make sure to follow my tips above for choosing the freshest ginger and how to peel it to get the best results!
In a regular pan:
It doesn’t get any easier: Just add all ingredients to a pan and bring it to a boil, stirring until the sweetener is completely dissolved.
Then, bring down the heat to very low, cover the pan, and let it simmer until the ginger gets softened. You can check this by piercing a piece with a fork. It should go through without much resistance.
Ginger roots can have different textures to start with, and some will take longer boiling time to soften than others. It can take about 2 to 3 hours for fresh ginger, less if frozen.
It’s important to keep an eye on the level of water throughout the cooking, as you don’t want it to dry out. Add a little more water when needed, boiling so not to bring down the temperature which would prolong the cooking time.
In an pressure cooker or instant pot:
To make this sugar-free preserved ginger in a pressure cooker or instant pot, heat the water before adding to the pan first, so it will dissolve the sweetener straight away as you mix.
Close the pan, set pressure to high and cook for 60 minutes until the ginger is softened. Let pressure release naturally.
Hot tip: Freeze the ginger
My first batch on the stove top (not on pressure cooker) took nearly 3 hours of simmering to soften!
You can decrease the cooking time to half that, or even less, using ginger that has been previously frozen for a few days.
Ginger will get naturally softer when frozen, and it will be easier to peel as well. But, there is a time limit.
I left a bag of ginger in the freezer for a few months and it turned to mush. For real, if I lightly squeezed the ginger in between my fingers, I’d juice it!
That’s definitely not the consistency you want for a preserved stem ginger, so if freezing I say don’t go past one month.
Keep the sugar-free preserved ginger in an airtight container – a mason jar is ideal – in the fridge for up to one month.
It’s important that the ginger remains submerged in the syrup so that it stays fresh for as long as possible.
If you’ve made this this preserved ginger and would like to try it in a recipe, go and check out my keto gingerbread cake – with real ginger!
Copyright Pris Frank for LikeHotKeto. Please DO NOT SCREENSHOT OR COPY/PASTE recipes to social media or websites. We’d LOVE for you to share a link to this recipe instead 🙂 Try the easy sharing buttons below!
I love ginger so this is right up my alley. Thanks for sharing!
Yum, I love ginger and pickling it sounds wonderful.How long will it keep for?
If it stays submerged in the syrup, it will keep for a long time (at least one month in the fridge, but I’ve kept for longer). It can grow moldy on the top if it’s dry, though.
I am a huge fan of condiments and little preserved goodies to keep on hand for salads and snacks. This ginger is easy to make and great on so many things!
True that, Sharon! The preserved ginger is not only great by itself, it’s a versatile addition to dished and drinks as well.
What a great recipe! I love ginger, but have been having a tough time finding a recipe for this. Thanks so much!
What a great idea ! Have loads of ginger sitting in the fridge, gonna try this out !
Go for it Meesha! The longer the ginger sits in the freezer, at least, the softest it gets and the less time you need to cook in the syrup.
Thanks Anissa! I’m happy to be of assistance 😉