Amaranth caudatus seeds were popped and studied for optimal popping conditions and flavor compounds. The optimum popping temperature for the seeds was 180C. At this temperature, the expansion volume, flake size and unpopped kernel proportion were 9.4–11.3 cm3/g, 0.010–0.012 cm/g and 10–2%, respectively. Flavor compounds of raw and popped seed flour were isolated with a dynamic headspace procedure and were analyzed and identified by using gas chromatography-mass spectrometry. The main volatile compounds of raw seeds were 2, 4-dimethyl-1-heptene, 4-methylheptane, branched C11. H24 alkane and dodecene C12. H24 isomer. Those compounds represented about 70% of the total volatile compounds of the raw seeds. Most of the volatiles identified in popped seeds were aldehydes formed by Strecker degradation including 2-methylpropanal, 3-methylbutanal, 2-methylbutanal and phenylacetaldehyde. Also, alkylpyrazines such as methylpyrazine, vinylpyrazine, 2,5-dimethylptrazine and 3-ethyl-2, 5-dimethylpyrazine were found. These compounds could be characterized as cornlike, nutty, hazelnutty and having roasty odors, and they were not present in the raw seeds.


Popping is a very attractive technology for processing amaranth seeds. In popping, the steam produced inside the seed matrix fills the pores of the starch granules, increases the temperature and pressure, and causes swelling and expansion of starch granules. This process affects chemical composition, functional properties and overall quality of the product. Flavor as an important quality attribute in cereal products is highly affected by popping. Isolation and identification of major flavor compounds formed during seed popping provide useful information about flavor characteristics. The dynamic headspace technique for isolation followed by analysis and identification of those compounds by gas chromatography-mass spectrometry is an effective practical application tool for flavor description in popped seeds and cereal products. Improving the quality of popped amaranth products can be achieved by understanding the changes that occur during the popping process.