Can a Sweetener Replace Sugar? (part of The Saccharin Saga)

Can a Sweetener Replace Sugar? (part of The Saccharin Saga)

Author: Klaus Roth and Erich Lück

Taste Evaluation of Sucrose and Various Sweeteners in Water, Cola, and Vanilla Pudding

A group of trained testing personnel evaluated the taste characteristics of the samples on a scale of 0–4 (0 = not present; 1 = weak; 2 = distinct; 3 = strong; 4 = very strong). Data are median values [1]. The sweetness of each sampled solution corresponded to an 8 % sucrose solution. Aqueous sweetness refers to a sweetness that increases and decreases gradually, whereas a harsh sweetness is one that rises and falls rapidly.

Pure Water

A to some extent obvious off-taste characterizes every sweetener. It is important to note that there is a synergetic taste effect with the saccharin/cyclamate (S/C) combination (1:10), where the off-taste of the mixture relative to the components is significantly reduced.

Box 1 - Pure Water


Cola Beverages

Surprisingly, sucrose in cola leads to a significantly worse taste profile than in water. The taste sensation of sucrose in cola comes closest to that of cyclamate. Aspartame-sweetened cola provides the best taste impression when one is trying to imitate the taste of sugar water. A saccharin/cyclamate mixture is distinguished by a relatively pure sweetness, as well.

Box 1 - Cola Beverages


Vanilla Pudding

A saccharin/cyclamate mixture is distinguished by a strong resemblance to sucrose, with very little off-taste.

Box 1 - Vanilla Pudding



[1] K. O. Paulus in Handbuch Süßungsmittel (Eds: G.-W. von Rymon Lipinski, H. Schiweck), Behr’s Verlag, Hamburg, Germany, 1991 (in German). ISBN: 978-3-89947-262-2


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