Pectin based fillings

5 June 2023
Pectin based fillings | Bakery Academy

Each fruit that you select to make a filling will behave differently. Pineapple is for example rich in the protein/ enzyme bromelain, this will break down structures. Apple doesn’t have this, so this will lend itself to a so called ‘cold bind’, in which a stabilisation with starch and sodiumalginate (hydrocolloid) can give you a nice clear (bake-)stable filling with rich apple taste. With pineapple a heating process is required to make sure it is stable enough to process, so using pectin would be a logical choice. Pectin comes however in multiple variaties, and has different origins (dominantly lemon, lime, orange and apple):

  •           Native: Will consist of a combination of HM and LMC pectin, but might vary, so not a very consistent product for predictable outcomes
  •           HM or High MethoxylDegree of esters/ esterification is over 50%
  •           LMC or Low Methoxyl ConventionalDegree of esters/ esterification is under 50% and Degree of amidation is 0%
  •           LMA or Low Methoxyl AmidatedDegree of esters/ esterification is under 50% and Degree of amidation is below 25%

These three different types indicate something about binding, this in combination with the fact that there are about 5 different mechanisms in which pectin binds/ gels:

ü  Ca-bridges: strong, heat-resistant if in long junction zones

ü  General Ca-binding

ü  H-OH Hydrogen bonding: needs reduced water-activity

ü  NH2 hydrogen bonds: do not need reduced water-activity

ü  Hydrofobic bonds: heat-resistant if in long junction zones

Amidation:  increases hydrogen bonding, therefore reduces effect of Ca-bridges, therefore gives heat-reversibility and more tolerance to Ca level

Pectin is the only gelling agent that gives increased gelling with increased Brix in the range of 60-80Brix


When to use pectin:

Acidic conditions: pectin is most acid-stable gelling agent

Low water-activity: pectin and gelatine are the very suitable gelling agents (but pectin needs low pH)

Stabilization of proteins in acidic environment (yoghurt, acidic milk drinks): only HM pectin, cellulose gum or Polypropyle Glycol Alginate work

Pectin is predominant choice when sugar is present at low pH, or/and - when heating at low pH is needed

Need to know more? Feel free to contact us!

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