Frozen baked goods: operational challenges and how to overcome them

Dr. Yanling Yin, director of R&D bakery applications for Lenexa-based Corbion, discusses some of the biggest operational challenges associated with frozen baked goods and how bakers can address them with the right combination of ingredients:

  • Preventing ice crystal damage, which can impact the crumb structure and eating quality of finished applications. “Dough strengtheners help create elasticity to mellow the impact of ice crystal damage.”
  • Maintaining consistency throughout distribution. “Dough conditioners help make it easier for bakers to ensure stability throughout freeze-thaw cycles.”
  • Reducing the risk of freezer burn. “Bakers can also use dough conditioners to prevent water migration and to improve freezing-thawing stability.”
  • Ensuring freshness after thawing. “Extended shelf-life solutions, such as our Ultra Fresh® and Ultra Fresh® Sweet products, can help ensure moistness, resilience and softness so products stay fresher for longer.”
  • Preventing negative impacts on flavor. “Because there’s very little fermentation and proofing, there is less time for flavor development. Our natural sours and Pristine® Wheat Ferment solutions can help bakers control flavor impact.”

“It’s important for bakers to partner with food ingredient suppliers who can help address their specific challenges when working with frozen baked goods.”

Dr. Yanling Yin, Corbion

Working with frozen finished applications, meanwhile, can bring its own set of operational challenges, Dr. Yin said, including:

  • Warehousing and distribution hurdles.
  • Storage limitations.
  • Excessive condensation during the thawing process, which can lead to mold. “Not a warm fuzzy for any baker. That’s where our Verdad® MP 100 solution comes into play. Verdad MP 100 features a combination of vinegar and natural flavors that delivers the functionality of traditional, chemical-based mold inhibitors like calcium propionate with more favorable flavor contributions, cleaner ingredients and fuzz-free baked goods.”
  • Icing breakdown or weeping caused by freezing and thawing.
  • Losing crispness after freezing sweet baked goods.

“It’s important for bakers to partner with food ingredient suppliers who can help address their specific challenges when working with frozen baked goods,” Dr. Yin said. “We work directly with our customers to understand their needs, as well as identify and implement the most fitting solutions based on their specific applications and consumer demands.”

By working side by side with its customers — oftentimes right on the production floor — Corbion helps them minimize operational challenges and production costs, as well as determine which physical and chemical attributes are required for each of their applications, Lin adds.

“Whether they’re struggling with freshness, quality, consistency or ease of use, we can help them tackle it all.”