Drawbacks of the Browning Reactions

Appears in
On Food and Cooking

By Harold McGee

Published 2004

  • About
Browning reactions do have some drawbacks. First, many dehydrated fruits are prone to gradual browning over weeks or months at room temperature, because the carbohydrates and amine-containing molecules are especially concentrated (browning caused by enzymes can also be a factor). Small amounts of sulfur dioxide are commonly added to these foods to block these unwanted changes in color and taste. Second, the nutritional value of the foods is slightly reduced because amino acids are altered or destroyed.