Sugar reduction in chocolate compound by replacement with flours containing small insoluble starch granules

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Consumer concern about intake of added sugars has increased commercial demand for sugar-reduced chocolates. However, substitution with high-potency sweeteners is not possible as sugar serves as an important bulking agent. Here, we investigated replacement of sucrose in chocolate compound with oat or rice flours, with starch granules smaller than 10 µm, focusing on texture, sweetness, and acceptability. In Study 1, six chocolates were made: a control with 54% sucrose, four sucrose-reduced versions (reductions of 25% or 50%, using either oat or sweet rice flour), and one 54% sucrose chocolate with reduced refining time. These chocolates were compared in a Difference from Control (DFC) test in a within-subject design, with and without nose clips. Particle size distribution, yield stress, and plastic viscosity were measured. Chocolates with 25% sucrose reduction by either sweet rice or oat flour (or reduced refining time) were not significantly different from the blind control (p > 0.05), regardless of nose clip use. In open-ended comments, participants reported differences in rice-flour-containing chocolates were due to a chalkier texture, while oat-flour-containing chocolates were described as smoother, softer, and creamier. DFC scores from the chocolates were positively correlated with plastic viscosity and negatively correlated with yield stress. In Study 2, 25% reduced sugar chocolates made with rice flour were liked significantly less than control, but the oat flour sample did not differ from control. Collectively, these results suggest up to 25% of sucrose in chocolate can be replaced with oat flour without negatively affecting texture or consumer acceptance.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1701-1710
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Food Science
Issue number3
StatePublished - Mar 2024

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Food Science

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