The Magic of Monk Fruit

The Magic of Monk Fruit

Learn all about why monk fruit is our chosen alternative sweetener for a healthy option on your wellness journey.

Monk fruit is having a moment, and for good reason! Compared to other natural sweeteners like stevia, honey, and maple syrup, monk fruit has become a popular choice for those looking to reduce their sugar and caloric intake and a great alternative for those managing certain health conditions such as diabetes and weight loss. 

What is Monk Fruit Sweetener: A Natural Alternative

It may come as a surprise to some that monk fruit -  also known as Luo Han Guo - is actually a small green gourd. Native to Southeast Asia, monk fruit is often found in Thailand and China. While monk fruit sweetener has been used for centuries in traditional Chinese medicine, it has only recently grown in popularity since it’s become more readily available and researched. 

The way in which monk fruit goes from the vine to the table is quite fascinating. First, the fruit is crushed to release its natural, sweet juice and then mixed with hot water to make a sweet infusion. The infusion is filtered and leaves a clear juice that contains sweet antioxidants and a small amount of natural fruit sugar. The juice retains the fruit sugars which are then dried into a concentrated powder. When choosing monk fruit products, remember it's important to look for high-quality, minimally processed options free of fillers. 

Health Benefits of Monk Fruit

The sweetness of monk fruit comes from antioxidants called mogrosides, which are extracted from the fruit to create a sweetener that is much sweeter than sugar (100-250 times in fact!) but is naturally calorie-free and doesn't raise blood sugar levels. Because of this, monk fruit sweeteners have become increasingly popular as a natural alternative to sugar, especially for those looking to reduce their sugar intake. Additionally, monk fruit sweeteners are not fermentable like conventional sugar meaning they do not promote tooth decay, and studies have found no side effects to this sweet substitute. 

Monk fruit has gained popularity for several reasons:

  1. Low Glycemic Index: The glycemic index (GI) measures how quickly a food raises blood sugar levels. Monk fruit sweeteners have a very low GI, which means they have minimal impact on blood sugar levels. This makes them suitable for people following low-carb or low-sugar diets.
  2. Zero Calories: Unlike sugar, which is calorie-dense, monk fruit extract is calorie-free. This makes it a popular choice for those aiming to reduce calorie intake or maintain a healthy weight.
  3. No Bitter Aftertaste: Some artificial sweeteners can leave a bitter or metallic aftertaste long after consumed, but monk fruit sweeteners are known for their clean, neutral flavor profile, making them a versatile option for cooking, blending and baking.
  4. Antioxidant Properties: Some studies suggest that mogrosides, the active compounds in monk fruit, may have antioxidant properties, which could offer additional health benefits beyond just being a sugar alternative.
monk fruit whole

How does monk fruit sweetener compare to other natural sweeteners?

Stevia, while also a zero-calorie option can leave an aftertaste that can be a challenge to mask for many in beverages and baked goods. 

While it's easier to incorporate into recipes as a 1:1 swap for sugar; honey, maple syrup, agave, and coconut sugars all contain varying amounts of calories making them less desirable options for diabetics and those following a keto diet. 

Here are a few common ways to incorporate monk fruit into your favorite everyday recipes:

  • Baking: You can use monk fruit sweetener as a replacement for sugar in most baking recipes. Whether you're making cookies, cakes, muffins, or other treats, simply substitute monk fruit sweetener for sugar. Keep in mind however that monk fruit sweetener can be much sweeter than sugar, so you may need to adjust the amount needed when following a recipe. 
  • Beverages: Monk fruit sweetener dissolves easily in both hot and cold beverages, making it a great option for sweetening matcha, your favorite smoothie recipes and juices. Just add it to your drink and be sure to stir until it's fully dissolved.
  • Cooking: Monk fruit sweetener can also be used in savory dishes to add a touch of sweetness. It works well to sweeten dressings and sauces, while helping to balance out flavors without adding extra calories.
  • No-Bake Treats: Since monk fruit sweetener doesn't need to be heated to dissolve, it's perfect for no-bake recipes like energy balls, chia seed pudding and raw desserts.

It’s important to note that taste preferences vary and to keep in mind that monk fruit sweeteners can be much sweeter than sugar or other artificial sweeteners. You may need to adjust the amount needed when following a recipe. 

Clean Approved List of Sweeteners for While on Clean 21, Clean 7 or Simply following a Clean Lifestyle


  • Monk fruit
  • Stevia
  • Coconut sugar
  • Dates
  • Yacon syrup
  • Lucuma powder
monk fruit sweetener

How can monk fruit sweetener support gut health and detoxification goals?

Researchers are suggesting the mogrosides (the antioxidant that offers the sweetness factor) found in monk fruit serve as prebiotics, promoting the growth of beneficial bacteria in the digestive tract. 

You can find monk fruit in Clean’s Daily Shake, Clean 21 Cleanse Shakes, Clean Greens powder, Total Magnesium, as well as Hydrate. In addition to stevia, coconut sugar, and dates, you can enjoy monk fruit as a sweetener in your favorite smoothie or dessert recipes, delivering a smooth and pleasant flavor during our reset programs and in your clean lifestyle. This is a great sweetener option to help you stay focused on your health goals without compromising taste. 

If you have any questions or would like to know if our programs are right for you, book a complimentary health coaching session with one of our Clean Health & Wellness coaches here

Check out this delicious treat and Clean-approved recipe with monk fruit: Clean Chocolate Superfood Bark

Written by Katherine Feldhouse, Clean Wellness Coach