Sucrose substitution in cake systems is not a piece of cake

Successful sucrose replacement in cake systems requires thorough understanding of its functionality.

Time-domain H NMR showed that water in the viscous aqueous phase isolated from cake batter by ultracentrifugation [i.e. the batter liquor (BL)] exhibits low
mobility by its low T2 relaxation time (T2,D RT). This is due to its interactions with sucrose or sucrose replacers.

The T2,D RT itself is positively related with the effective volumetric hydrogen bond density of sucrose or sucrose replacers. Sucrose additionally codetermines the quantity and viscosity of cake BL and thereby how much air the batter contains at the end of mixing. Like sucrose, maltitol and oligofructose provide adequate volumes of BL with low water mobility and thus sufficient air in the batter, while the rather insoluble mannitol and inulin do not.

Differential scanning calorimetry and rapid viscosity analysis revealed, however, that, in contrast to sucrose and maltitol, oligofructose fails to provide appropriate timings of starch gelatinisation and protein denaturation, resulting in poor cake texture. The shortcomings of mannitol and oligofructose in terms of respectively ensuring appropriate gas content in batter and biopolymer transitions during baking can be overcome by using mixtures thereof. This work shows that successful sucrose substitutes or substitute mixtures must provide sufficient BL with low water mobility and ensure appropriate timings of starch and protein biopolymer transitions during baking.

Godefroidt, T., Riley, I.M., Ooms, N. et al. Sucrose substitution in cake systems is not a piece of cake. npj Sci Food 7 , 52 (2023). Sucrose substitution in cake systems is not a piece of cake | npj Science of Food