Create snacks that deliver on texture, nutrition AND the indulgence consumers crave

December 01, 2021 | Extruded snack, Snack, Food

Consumers in all segments are demanding new, exciting varieties of indulgent and better-for-you snacks to satisfy their cravings at home, at work and on the go — and extruded snacks are no exception.  

Extrusion processes offer continuous operation at short cooking times and high production volumes, and allow you to develop products with distinctive, delightfully crisp textures and nutritional benefits.

But without the right formulation expertise, nutrition optimisation can significantly impact the texture and appearance of an extruded product — from protein to fibre fortification and from sugar to salt reduction. Selecting and designing extrusion equipment and adjusting process parameters are other critical factors for making high-quality extruded products.

Whether it’s creating a puff that’s cheesy and indulgent, high in plant protein and satisfying, or has all these consumer-pleasing attributes, collaborating with an experienced partner can help you uncover the best ways to create snacks with the right texture, taste, and nutrition for your target market.

Overcome extrusion challenges with formulation expertise and texturising solutions

Below we address some common extruded snack challenges that cause defects that detract from the consumers overall eating experience. 

Lack of crispiness can occur if the dough has a poor, weak expansion framework. To overcome this issue:

  • Adjust the moisture levels of the product both before and after processing
  • Increase amylose containing starch in high-shear, high-temperature processes

Defects in shape and cutting ability can occur because of poor moisture management and process design. To address these challenges:

  • Lower moisture content
  • Add a lipid or modified starch to address stickiness
  • Use or increase the amount of starch with higher process tolerance in high-shear, high-temperature processes
  • Use or increase the amount of starch with lower process tolerance in low-shear, low-temperature processes

Stickiness after extrusion can occur because of excessive moisture or starch degradation due to excessive shear temperatures. To resolve this issue:

  • Lower moisture content
  • Add a lipid or starch with a process tolerance better for your specific manufacturing parameters

Excessive toothpacking, or the degree to which the product sticks to the teeth, can occur if there is a formation of dextrins and short-chain polymers during processing. To tackle this problem:

  • Select a starch with a higher process tolerance
  • Work with an expert to adjust amylopectin and amylose ratio in your formula
  • Add a lipid or modified starch

Need more help? Tap into our teams of technical and market experts today to bring your visions to life.

Source: Thomas, D. J., Wld Atwell, W. A. 1999. Starches. AACC: St. Paul, MN.

Jerry Du

Jerry is a principal technologist with Ingredion and has over 10 years of experience in food ingredient application research. He enjoys collaborating with customers to develop solutions for process and texture challenges in extruded snacks. Jerry also has expertise in formulating with texturisers, and uses this knowledge to help customers develop differentiated chips, crackers and other sheeted snacks.