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Enzymes: Enhancing Clean Label in Baked Goods


01 Clean Label

1. No artificial additives

2. Simple ingredient list

3. Minimize processing

Processing aids function to improve product quality during processing without leaving residues in the final product because they are often destroyed or removed during processing. This substance does not need to be listed on product labels due to regulatory requirements, therefore, the use of processing aids instead of chemical additives provides a new approach to food clean labeling.

Enzyme preparations are one of the most commonly used processing aids. During the baking process, the baking enzymes that play an improved function are destroyed by high temperature baking, so there is no need to declare it on the label. Therefore, baking enzymes present an opportunity to achieve clean label in baked goods.

Traditional bread making in the past used natural enzymes to prolong the fermentation time. The natural enzymes in wheat flour break down starch, protein, non-starch polysaccharides and lipids, resulting in better quality, delicious and nutritious baked bread. Today, enzymes are regarded by the industry as important processing aids, for example, in dough processing to control moisture loss and thus extend product shelf life.

02 Baking enzymes help achieve clean label

1. Lipase reduces fat requirements in baked goods

To meet consumer demand, the bakery industry has been trying to reduce the fat content of its products. However, during the processing of cakes, biscuits and pastries, fats play some functional roles and play a key role in the taste and shelf life of the final product. So, if the fat content is reduced in baked goods, other ingredients need to be added to compensate for these functions.

Fat is a lubricant that helps bread and cookie dough soften and enhance dough flow without being sticky. Reducing the fat content in the recipe can cause the dough to stick to molds and mass transfer surfaces, increase dough waste, and require additional cleaning. Emulsifiers can be used to replace the functions of some fats, but emulsifiers are food additives and must be listed in the product ingredient list, which is easy to cause disgust among consumers.

Lipase is a fat obtained by enzymatically degrading the oil in flour raw materials. It is used in the production of bread and cakes to reduce the amount of fat required in recipes. Experiments show that the better the stability of the air cell, the faster the expansion of the bubbles, and the larger the volume of the bread. That is, with the addition of lipase to the dough, the volume of the bread is improved and the quality of the crumb is significantly increased.

2. Amylase reduces sugar requirements in baked goods

Like fat, reducing the sugar content of a product is a priority for many bakers. Similarly, in the processing of cakes, biscuits and pastries, sugar also plays some functional roles, such as: providing flavor, controlling batter viscosity, moisturizing, providing color through Maillard reaction, etc. However, excess sugar can alter the kinetics in fermentation and can lead to problems in automated processes.

In today’s health-conscious world, the use of enzymes to sweeten baked goods rather than adding sugar directly falls into the category of clean label baked goods. For example, yeast uses the fermentable sugars produced by amylase to form dough in a more controlled way, and carbon dioxide is produced at a slower rate, which prevents damage to the fragile network of air bubbles within the gluten. Amylase works slowly to maintain the sugar balance until the yeast is inactivated at around 55°C. After the yeast is deactivated, the amylase continues to produce sugar until the amylase is deactivated during the baking process, so that a small amount of sugar is present in the dough, which helps the Maillard reaction to brown the crust and provide some flavor.

3. Xylanase increases fiber content in baked goods

Fiber is good for human health, so many bakers try to increase the fiber content in baked products. Fibers like bran, however, absorb a lot of water more slowly than other ingredients in the dough. When the fibers absorb moisture, the dough becomes tight, making it difficult to handle. The dough doesn’t expand, limiting the yeast’s action, which in turn results in poor bread that doesn’t form well. In response to the above problems, xylanase can cut the glycosidic bonds between large fiber chains to release low molecular weight sugars and water. This helps to slowly soften the dough, redistribute moisture, enhance air cell extensibility and stability, and improve dough workability.

In addition, in baked goods, glucose oxidase and lipoxygenase help to strengthen gluten; glutaminase can be used to strengthen wheat flour protein; protease breaks down peptide chains into small peptides and amino acids, which can soften cookie dough and make it Flows better; asparaginase, which reduces acrylamide in baked goods, and more.

Enzyme preparations are more and more widely used in food production, and there are more and more types of enzyme preparations used in the baking field. Baked food is gradually moving towards the ranks of clean labels with the development of enzyme preparations.


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