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Research article - Peer-reviewed, 2021

Mixed legume systems of pea protein and unrefined lentil fraction: Textural properties and microstructure

Johansson, Mathias; Xanthakis, Epameinondas; Langton, Maud; Menzel, Carolin; Vilaplana, Francisco; Johansson, Daniel P.; Lopez-Sanchez, Patricia


Within the context of circular economy, there is an increasing interest to utilise agrifood by-products. However, extensive extraction and purification steps make the valorisation of side streams not always cost effective. Therefore, an increased knowledge of the functionality of unrefined side streams could increase their utilisation in food products. We investigated the thermal gelation of mixed legume systems containing a commercial pea protein isolate (Pisum sativum) and the unrefined fraction remaining after protein extraction from lentils (Lens culinaris). The unrefined lentil fraction contained mainly starch (similar to 45 g/100 g) and insoluble cell wall polysaccharides (similar to 50 g/100 g) with minor amounts of soluble protein (4 g/100 g) and polyphenols (<1 mg GAE/g). The addition of the unrefined lentil fraction increased the strength and Young's modulus of pea protein gels in the pH range 3-4.2, and also increased the gels' elastic modulus G'. The microstructure could be described as a mixed network of swollen protein particles of different sizes (5-50 mu m), gelatinised starch and cell wall fragments. The results demonstrate that unrefined side streams from lentils could be used for textural modification of plant protein gels, with implications for the design of novel plant-based foods.


Pea protein; Lentil; Starch; Rheology; Microstructure

Published in

Food Science and Technology
2021, Volume: 144, article number: 111212
Publisher: ELSEVIER