Optimizing Ingredients

The Amazing Rise of Clean Label Pizza Crust

Just when you thought yeast alone was the answer to your leavening needs, along comes Maxx Performance with another major breakthrough.

The president and R&D director of an upscale frozen pizza dough manufacturer reached out to us with a complex request: could we help them produce a crispy, mouthwatering, clean-label crust with greater texture and volume—and do it within the context of a highly automated manufacturing process that left little time for proofing?

Yeast alone was not delivering the kind of product they were looking for; they needed to find another solution.

The prototype: an encapsulated blend

Maxx quickly mobilized our team of R&D and applications experts, and applied our legacy knowledge to the problem at hand. Had we solved similar problems for other bakers in the past? If so, what learning could we bring forward?

In fact, we had done work with another pizza crust manufacturer; we’d replaced their lower active leavening system blend with our higher active blend that delivered more dough volume and better texture.

Based on this experience, we sent the R&D Director two frozen pizza self-rising crust formulations and samples of three stand-alone actives—Sodium Bicarbonate, a Sodium Bicarbonate Sodium Aluminum Phosphate blend, and an encapsulated Sodium Bicarbonate and Monocalcium Phosphate blend. The customer conducted benchtop testing and was pleased with the results of all three samples, which included improved porousness, volume and tenderness, plus the rise, cell structure and browning they were looking for.

But because the customer wanted to go to market with a clean label, they opted to test small batches of the Sodium Bicarbonate Monocalcium Phosphate blend in process to see what effects the higher oven settings would have on the dough.

The pilot: proof of clean leavening concept

The R&D director ordered the encapsulated blend of Sodium Bicarbonate and Monocalcium Phosphate for their plant trial, and 45 days later we heard back from the R&D director. To say that he was impressed by the amount of rise they were able to achieve would have been an understatement; in his words, the results of our blend were “unheard of” in their manufacturing facility. He said that he did not know that use of encapsulated leaveners like ours could deliver the product and process improvements they were seeing.

With our blend at the heart of the formulation, the frozen pizza dough company is gearing up to launch its new self-rising crust pizza—now with a clean label—to make pizza lovers even more satisfied!

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