If there were an award for delivering the most diverse list of benefits a single ingredient can for flavor development, caramelized sugars would win every time. Natural sugar and sodium reductions, flavor modifications, off-note masking properties, cost effectiveness and incidental color.
Caramelized sugar syrups and powders offer an array of benefits for R&D chefs & flavor developers alike. Looking at the list below, it’s easy to see a developer taking advantage of at least three benefits in a single development.
Benefits while using Caramelized Sugar Ingredients:
- Real, Non-Artificial Ingredients
- Natural Flavor Modifications
- Sugar and Sodium Reductions
- Incidental Color
- Off-Note Masking Properties
- Syrup and Powder Organic Options
- Cost Savings
- Low Usage Rates / Low CIU
Caramelized sugar ingredients are quickly becoming known as the “secret sauce” for flavor developers. You’ll be hard pressed to find another natural ingredient that delivers more favor and clean label benefits than caramelized sugar.
A beverage developer wanted to use caramelized sugar in a plant-based drink because she was anticipating a need to “mask” unwanted off-notes. By using caramelized syrup (75/760-01) she successfully negated anticipated the off-notes. As a result there was no need for a traditional masking agent and as you know that’s a big cost savings. Another benefit realized was the added depth and roundness to flavor caramelized sugar delivered. Lastly, she received an unexpected benefit of deeper and richer color which enhanced the beverage’s visual appeal.
Caramelized Sugar Flavor Enhancement
Caramelized sugar, real natural sugar-based ingredients, just sucrose caramelized in water. Upon completion to caramelization, the product is then left as either a syrup or dried to a powder. The primary use for caramelized sugar is flavor enhancements and due to the caramelization, these products deliver intense impact on flavor at very low usage rates (.125% to 1% avg).
Dissecting the Top Three Benefits to using Caramelized Sugars
When was the last time you used a natural sugar to reduce your total sugar by up to 30% or more? There’s a good chance never. That fact that caramelized sugar can reduce sugar usage alone sounds like an oxymoron statement but it’s true and successfully done every day in many different development scenarios.
Caramelized sugar is not a sweetener simply because these ingredients are only meant to be used at a very low usage rates. You should never apply caramelized sugar as you might table sugar or artificial sweeteners. Caramelized Sugar is a flavor modifying ingredient. Using the right syrup or powder can enhance the sweetness of a product’s flavor system therefore you can use less sweetener overall.
Off-Note Masking Properties
Flavor developers are constantly struggling with off-note issues, especially when developing with plant-based proteins, artificial sweeteners and much more.
Fortunately, Caramelized sugar delivers the benefit of natural off-note masking properties as well. Caramelized sugar rounds out and brightens flavor systems, enhances flavors while suppressing off-notes.
Color, A Natural Byproduct to Caramelization
While flavor modifications are a key benefit for caramelized sugar, developers can take advantage of the naturally occurring color contributions caramelized sugar offers. The color contributions that come along with using caramelized sugar is an inherent byproduct to the caramelization of sucrose. Lightly caramelized sugar tend to be visually more of an amber hue offering subtle color contribution. However, the most heavily caramelized sugars are extremely dark visually and contribute much color more quickly.
Flavor modifications, masking properties and color contributions make caramelized sugars an attractive and versatile clean label ingredient for any flavor developer. Reach out via email or phone to receive your complementary sample Caramelized Sugar Survival Kit. The kit contains samplings of a wide variety of samples in both liquid and powder forms.