Some of us could, some didn't care
EC: Can You Taste the Difference Between Real and Fake Maple Syrup?
Credit: Illustration by Lauren Kolm

Do you know the difference between real maple syrup and fake syrup? Don't be embarrassed if you don't. Real maple syrup is made from the sap of a maple tree, which has been collected in the woods and then cooked down until it's super thick and syrup and sweet. Fake maple syrup, also known as pancake syrup or imitation maple syrup, is basically maple-flavored sugar. And fake maple syrup isn't necessarily worse for your health than real maple syrup. It just doesn't come from tree sap, hence why it's considered fake. In fact, according to research from the Washington Post, most Americans actually prefer fake maple syrup to the real stuff.

So we were curious: Could the average person taste the difference between real and imitation syrup? Some of us even started to wonder if we—people who write and think and make videos about breakfast all day long—could tell the difference between the two. Armed with a jug of maple syrup, a gallon of the fake stuff, and a box of frozen waffles, we conducted a blind taste test to find out if our staff could taste the difference between real maple syrup and imitation syrup. The results were somewhat surprising—but undeniably delicious.