• Fatty acids;
  • Volatile compounds;
  • Dairy beverages;
  • Functional foods;

Five plant sterol (PS)-enriched dairy products from the Spanish market were characterised for fatty acids (FA), volatile compounds and lipid stability. The ingredients used for PS enrichment by the food industry may come from different sources, thus influencing the composition and stability of the lipid fraction. In this study, the FA profile proved highly variable among samples, not agreeing with the nutritional labelling of the products. The volatile profile was characterised. A total of 55 volatile compounds were identified in the samples by GC–MS. Concentrations of hexanal (from 1.1 to 7.5 ng/g), nonanal (from 0.9 to 1.2 ng/g) and decane (from n.d. to 11.9 ng/g) indicated a low lipid oxidation extent. Peroxide value, ranking between 0.7 and 3.2 meq of active oxygen per kilogram of fat, except sample with fish oil, where peroxide value was 7.7 meq of active oxygen per kilogram of fat, and thiobarbituric acid reactive species, from 2 to 21 μg malondialdehyde (MDA)/g of fat, were in the lower limits of the ranges found in the literature.