• Sugar Reduction in Sponge Cakes: Physical and Sensory Properties of Sponge Cake with Sugar Alternatives - Maltitol /Steviol glycosides/Polydextrose/ Inulin

      Li, Weili; Mao, Kuangqi (University of Chester, 2019-01-31)
      Challenges in reducing sugar in foods have been serious global issues as an excessive intake of sugar causes negative effects on human health, even though sugar plays a key role in the structural and sensory attributes of food products. Therefore, it is urgent for food industries to find an alternative to reduce the sugar content of foods without any noticeable effect, such as using sugar replacements to substitute the role of sugar in high-sugar foods. The first aim of this study was to verify the function of sugar in sponge cakes. The second was to compare the effects between sugar and sugar alternatives on sponge cakes in order to explore feasible sugar replacements. In current study, the effects of sugar on physical properties of sponge cake and batter were first studied in terms of different concentrations. Then the effects of replacement by maltitol, polydextrose, inulin and steviol glycosides were extensively studied using the same concentrations with regarding to sugar. Batter viscosity and specific gravity were analysed before baking. Cake physical properties were also studied through image analysis, specific gravity, height, weight loss and firmness. In addition, sensory testing was also carried out to explore the feasible sugar replacement. Experimental results showed that sugar truly exerted crucial functions in cakes manufacture, like increasing the batter viscosity and the cake volume. Significant improvement in physical properties of cakes, especially in terms of specific gravity and specific volume, can be found as the sugar level reached by 140% (P<0.05). In regard to sugar-free sponge cakes, best results in physical properties can be obtained from cakes elaborated with maltitol when the containing level was 140%. Compared with sugar, closest results can be achieved by maltitol due to the similar structure and properties. Meanwhile, cakes elaborated with maltitol got the highest overall liking level in sensory evaluation. Cakes with polydextrose showed a relatively worse performance in physical property testing and sensory evaluation due to the weaker bulking function and sweetness of polydextrose. However, the addition of steviol glycosides can improve the sensory properties to some extent. In addition, inulin appeared to be unfeasible to replace sugar according to the result obtained in this study because it led to the lowest quality of sponge cakes in physical properties or sensory attributes.