by Peter Thomson, application specialist
Fibre addition to pizza can be a discrete affair if you hide it in the dough
Yes, pizza is indulgent. But, with the healthier food trend here to stay, there are some consumers who are raising their expectations about the nutritional content of their leisure-time snack.
According to the market analysts at Mintel, one in five pizza consumers in the UK and almost one in three in the US are interested in buying pizza that packs in a little more nutrition in the form of fiber.
Generally speaking, fiber addition to bakery products is no longer a problem. Whole grain solutions that counter the tendency towards dryness and toughness are easy to come by. The focus of our recent development work has been how to raise the fiber content of pizza base without altering the taste or appearance.
Based on our previous experience with fibre addition to bread, we put our prebiotic dietary fibre polydextrose to the test in pizza dough at levels of 8%, 10% and 12%, based on the flour weight.
The important feature of polydextrose is that it acts as an invisible fibre. Even at the highest dose rate, the look and taste of the pizza base are relatively unchanged compared to the control. If the aim is to qualify for an EU-approved high fibre claim, the addition of 10% polydextrose is enough.
In frozen pizzas, polydextrose offers an added advantage – its ability to protect the structure of frozen and thawed goods. This results in the development of smaller ice crystals in the freezer, contributing to an efficient defrosting and bake-off process.
All in all, you not only boost the nutritional profile of your pizza. You get better freezing quality as well.