Thick syrup that is produced as a by-product during the refining of sugarcane. It is the residue that is left after the sugar crystals are extracted. Light molasses comes from the first boiling of cane. Dark molasses comes from the second boiling of cane; it is more flavorful and less sweet than light and is used often in gingerbread and spice cookies. Blackstrap molasses is the lowest grade which comes from the third boiling; it has a strong bitter taste.
Molasses is used in baking, yeast production, and alcohol production as a fermentable carbohydrate.