Wheat Starch - An Origin Story

A single wheat kernel is comprised of three main components - bran, germ and endosperm. The bran, or the outermost layers of the kernel, contain multiple layers of cell walls that protect the interior germ and endosperm from environmental factors and pests. Next up is the germ, or the embryo of the wheat kernel, and it contains fat, vitamins and minerals. Last but not least is the endosperm, which comprises more than 80% of the total kernel weight and is the carbohydrate-rich component of wheat. It contains the functional proteins found in conventional wheat flour and is the backbone of all the baked goods we have come to love in our diets(1).

The endosperm itself contains more than 80% starch. Wheat starch specifically contains both linear amylose and highly branched amylopectin. Starches from other grains like corn also contains these same starch molecules; however, in different proportions that impact the respective grain’s swelling capability. Wheat starch’s bimodal granule structure, with large lenticular granules and small spherical granules, makes it unique among starches.

Wheat starch is isolated from wheat gluten by hydrating flour, mixing it into a dough-like mass, and applying a gentle wash process. As the dough is washed, the viscoelastic protein matrix is separated from the starch. Starch that is collected during this wash step is considered native and unmodified; and can be separated into A and B starch. With the A starch containing a higher mount of the large starch granules. From here the wheat starch can either be dried, modified, or further processed to enhance swelling and performance capabilities.

Wheat starch has a lower gelatinization temperature than other grains like corn, rice and tapioca meaning that they begin to swell earlier in the baking process and require less energy to set the crumb structure of a baked product (2). When used alongside wheat flour-based systems, products like GemStar 100, our native and unmodified wheat starch, function synergistically with flour as they are derived from the same source. Because of this synergy wheat starch is the preferred starch in bakery applications. GemStar 100 is a great option to add tenderness and a bright white color to a product like snack cakes, cake mixes and as an ingredient carrier. Wheat starch is also a great product to help control moisture migration in refrigerated and frozen dough systems. GemStar 100 is great options for binding water in these applications and can aid in preventing ice crystal formation.

Our GemStar portfolio also has a range of options for bakery, food, and fried applications. GemStar 2800 is great in doughnut applications as it helps to decrease fat absorption during frying, leaving your product nice and tender with out excess grease. Gemstar 4100 is also a great option for fried batter and coating systems as it helps to increase the crispiness of the finished product coating. Another reason to love Manildra GemStar products? All our starches are non-GMO and feature organic options.

The Manildra GemStar portfolio can offer your product line a range of solutions that helps to improve product appearance, taste, and texture. Reach out to our team of experts today for your solution!




Wheat Kernel - NDSU Wheat Quality & Carbohydrate Research, Dr. Senay Simsek

Starch Gelatinization | Baking Processes | BAKERpedia