As an alternative ingredient packed with protein and full of essential amino acids, buckwheat provides consumer packaged goods, food service and bakeries a plant-based, healthy ingredient that meets consumer market demands for healthier foods. As a healthy plant protein and fiber source, the versatility and nutritional value combine to make buckwheat an alternative ingredient that is truly superior to many first-generation gluten-free main ingredients such as rice.
Buckwheat, which actually is not related to wheat at all, produces a gluten-free seed that can be milled, roasted or otherwise processed either from whole buckwheat, sometimes called dark buckwheat, or buckwheat groats, sometime referred to as light buckwheat, which loses the outer hull. Roasted or toasted buckwheat provide a new flavor profile beyond the traditional nuttiness of regular buckwheat.
But why is it such a great choice as an alternative ingredient? Quite simply it is great for baking and easy to incorporate as a versatile gluten-free flour in pancakes, muffins, cookies, brownies, breads, and cakes. While earlier gluten-free all-purpose flours often lack protein and fiber, buckwheat brings both attributes to the equation even without being combined with other gluten-free flours as needed with many other ancient grains, pulses or root-based vegetables.
“We believe CPGs are just scratching the surface with what can be done with buckwheat,” said VP of Marketing Bradford Warner. “Nutrition bars, crackers, cereals, side dishes, prepared meals and vegetarian products can all benefit from buckwheat.”
Buckwheat is considered easier to work with than nuts or coconut, which present processing issues and allergen concerns, or many other ancient grain flours such as amaranth, quinoa, teff and millet because it can be used in larger amounts within a formulation than those ancient grains.
“The fact buckwheat has excellent nutritional content compared to other legacy gluten-free flours and double the protein of rice flour alone should get product developers attention,” stated Mike Hallman, VP of Sales. “When you then consider of the versatility of buckwheat can lead to so many uses, it becomes even more compelling,” he added.
The nutritious perception of buckwheat comes from several factors. Buckwheat is a good source of high soluble fiber and protein, and higher nutrient levels than numerous ingredients based on the recommended daily values of many vitamins and minerals. This includes higher levels of manganese, magnesium, copper and zinc than other cereal grains. Buckwheat also contains antioxidants and flavonoids including rutin and quercetin while remaining low in fat.
Firebird maintains an inventory of gluten-free/non-GMO secondary ingredients so we are ready to mill, blend and package on-site, saving you time and money and getting you to shelf faster. If gluten-free is a priority for your products, contact Firebird Artisan Mills today to discuss. Give us a call at 701-324-4330 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.