The many uses of xanthan gum in baking.

Let’s dive into one of the most popular and versatile staples of baking: xanthan gum. Since the 1960s, bakers have been using it as an humectant, texture enhancer and viscosity builder.

These days, it’s a hot ingredient for gluten free baking! It makes a great partial substitute for wheat flour. Xanthan gum can improve gluten-free dough viscosity as well as the final product’s texture and consistency.

What else is xanthan gum used in?

This ingredient has several functions in baked goods:

  • Thickening agent: due to its ability to form highly viscous solutions even at low concentrations and in a wide temperature range (0-100 °C / 32-212 °F).
  • Stabilizing agent: provides oil-water emulsions and freeze-thaw stability by producing a web that avoids aggregations.
  • Gelling agent: it can form gels when mixed with locust bean or tara gum.
  • Dough improver: improves dough properties such as elasticity, and gas retention during proofing and baking.
  • Texturizer: in gluten-free baked goods.
  • Shelf-life improver

What about its usage in batter vs dough?

Bakery system Level Effect
Wet batters 0.05%
  • Reduction of sedimentation
  • Gas retention improvement
  • Shear and freeze-thaw stability
  • Even coating and good cling
Pancake batter 0.05%
  • Spread control improvement
  • Volume enhancement.
  • Higher gas retention
Baked goods 0.05%
  • Improvement in volume and moistness
  • Higher crumb strength
  • Less crumbling
  • Greater resistance to handling damage
Refrigerated dough 0.05%
  • Improved volume and texture
  • Enhanced moisture retention during refrigeration
Pie or baked goods filling
  • Texture improvement
  • Enhanced flavor release
  • Extended shelf life stability
  • Freeze-thaw stability

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