The effect of infrared on some physical and sensory properties of popcorn

Document Type : Research Article


1 Ph.D. Student, Iranian Research Organization for Science and Technology, Tehren, Iran

2 Food Technologies Group

3 Department of chemical Engineering, Iranian Research Organization for Science & Technology


The main objective of this study, the effect of infrared (IR) on popcorn produced at IR power 550, 450 and 350 W and sample distance from the radiation source of 10, 20 and 30 cm on changing some physical and sensory properties of popcorn (papping properties, sensory evaluation, surface morphology (SEM) and temperature profile) was investigated. It was observed that typically with increasing IR power and decreasing the distance of the samples from the infrared radiation source, the popping yield, volume expansion rate and popping percentage increased significantly (P <0.05), and the beginning of popping commencement, expansion residue and the bulk density decreased significantly (P <0.05). In SEM analysis, the texture of popcorn produced by IR, after increasing the volume and changing the starch structure of the samples, turned into a honeycomb, and this factor increased the starch volume of the samples and naturally increased the total volume of samples after the popcorn production process by IR has occurred. It was found that the valley of popcorn produced by IR increases the size of pores by reducing the sample distance from the IR source and increasing the power of the IR lamp, or in other words, the number of holes per unit area decreases. The highest heat generated in IR-produced popcorns was measured at IR power 550 W and a distance of 10 cm at 274 Cº. The highest sensory evaluation score given by sensory panels was assessed in IR-produced popcorns at IR power 550 W and distance of 10 cm. According to the results, the IR popping process has a high efficiency to produce popcorn.

Graphical Abstract

The effect of infrared on some physical and sensory properties of popcorn


  • The effect of infrared on the produced popcorns at three infrared power levels of 350, 450 and 550 W and three levels of distance 10, 20 and 30 cm
  • The effect of infrared popping on popping properties of popcorn
  • In SEM analysis, the texture of popcorn produced by IR, after increasing the volume and changing the starch structure of the samples, turned into a honeycomb
  • Investigation of heat generated by infrared popping technology in popcorn ‌‌
  • Investigation of sensory evaluation of popcorn produced by infrared popping technology


Main Subjects

[1] Kuchaki, A. (1388). Agriculture in arid regions: cereals, industrial plants and forage plants.  Academic Center for Education, Culture and Research (Ferdowsi University Mashhad). [In Persian]
[2] CODEX. (2006). Draft action plan for implementation of the global Strategy on diet. J Phys Act Health, 3. CL 2006/44-CAC.
[3] Raninen, K., Lappi, J., Mykkanen, H., & Poutanen, K. (2011). Dietary fiber type reflects physiological functionality, comparison of grain fiber, inulin, and polydextrose. Nutr. Rev., 69(1), 9e21.
[4] Miller, H. E., Rigelhof, F., Marquart, L., Prakash, A., & Kanter, M. (2000). Antioxidant content of whole grain breakfast cereals, fruits and vegetables. J Am Coll Nutr, 19(3), 312Se319S.
[5] Mishra, G., Joshi, D. C., & Panda, B. K. (2014). Popping and puffing of cereal grains: a review. J. grain processing storage, 1(2), 34-46.
[6] Hoseney CR, Zeleznak K and Abdelrahman A, )1983(. Mechanism of popcorn popping. J. Cereal Sci. 1: 43–52.
[7] Saberi, B., Farahnaki, A,. Majzobi, M. (1390). Investigation of physical properties of natural and hydroxy-propylized wheat and oat starch gels. J. Food Research (AGRICULTURAL SCIENC). 22, 1. [In Persian]
[8] Allred-Coyle TA, Toma RB, Reiboldt W and Thaku M, )2000(. Effects of moisture content, hybrid variety, kernel size, and microwave wattage on the expansion volume of microwave popcorn. Int J Food Sci Nutr. 51: 389–394.
[9] Shimoni E, Dirks EM and Labuza TP, )2002(. The relation between final popped volume of popcorn and thermal–physical parameters. LWT-Food Sci Technol. 35: 93–98.
[10] Cañizares, L. D. C. C., da Silva Timm, N., Ramos, A. H., Neutzling, H. P., Ferreira, C. D., & de Oliveira, M. (2020). Effects of moisture content and expansion method on the technological and sensory properties of white popcorn. Int J Gastron Food Sci22, 100282.
[11] Mir, S. A., Bosco, S. J. D., Shah, M. A., & Mir, M. M. (2016). Effect of puffing on physical and antioxidant properties of brown rice. Food Chem.191, 139-146.
[12] Puangjinda, K., Matan, N., & Nisoa, M. (2016). Effects atmospheric radio-frequency plasma treatment on popping characteristics of popped rice and its nutritional evaluation. Innov Food Sci Emerg Technol35, 119-124.
[13] Llopart, E. E., & Drago, S. R. (2016). Physicochemical properties of sorghum and technological aptitude for popping. Nutritional changes after popping. LWT-Food Sci Technol71, 316-322.
[14] Singh, J., & Singh, N. (1999). Effects of different ingredients and microwave power on popping characteristics of popcorn. J. Food Eng.42(3), 161-165.
[15] Lee, E.H. (2019). A review on applications of IR heating for food processing, Innov Food Pro Tech.
[16] Shavandi, M., Taghdir, M., Abbaszadeh, S., Sepandi, M., & Parastouei, K. (2020). Modeling the inactivation of Bacillus cereus by infrared radiation in paprika powder (Capsicum annuum). J. Food Saf., e12797s.
[17] Shavandi, M., Sadeghi, A., & Sarani, A. (2020). Modeling the effect of different infrared treatment on B. cereus in cardamom seeds and using genetic algorithm-artificial neural network. J. Food Bio. Eng.3(1), 29-34.
[18] Shavandi, M., Kashaninejad, M., Sadeghi, A., Jafari, S, M., Hasani, M. (2018). Evaluation of Selective Infrared Radiation on Inactivation of Bacillus Cereus by Response Surface Methodology. Food Eng. research (Journal of Agricultural Engineering Research), 17, 57-70. [In Persian]
[19] Javanmard, M., & Shavandi, M. (2021). Effect of pulsed infrared on safranal, crocin and picrocin and color parameters in saffron (Crocus sativus L.). Innov. Food Technol.8(3), 349-363.‌ [In Persian]
[20] Asadiamirabadi, A., Shavandi, M., & Kashaninezhad, M. (2020). Modeling of Blackberry Drying Process by Double sided infrared System using Genetic Algorithm–Artificial Neural Network Method. Innov. Food Technol.7(2), 201-210. [In Persian]
[21] Staack, N., Ahrné, L., Borch, E. and Knorr, D. (2008a). Effect of infrared heating on quality and microbial decontamination in paprika powder. J. Food Eng., 86(1), 17-24.
[22] Sandu, C. (1986). Infrared radiative drying in food engineering: a process analysis. Biotechnol. Prog2(3), 109-119.
[23] ASAE (2000). ASAE standards 2000. St. Joseph, MI: American Society of Agricultural Engineers.
[24] Mishra, G., Joshi, D. C., Mohapatra, D., & Babu, V. B. (2015). Varietal influence on the microwave popping characteristics of sorghum. J. Cereal Sci.65, 19-24.
[25] Shavandi, M., Javanmard, M., & Basiri, A. (2022). Novel popping through infrared: Effect on some physicochemical properties of popcorn (Zea Mays L. var. Everta). LWT-Food Sci Technol155, 112955.
[26] Devi, M. K., & Das, S. K. (2018). Microwave popping characteristics of paddy as affected by sample placement and geometry and process optimization. J. Food Eng.221, 45-53.
[27] Mishra, G., Joshi, D. C., & Mohapatra, D. (2015). Optimization of pretreatments and process parameters for sorghum popping in microwave oven using response surface methodology. J. Food Sci. Technol.52(12), 7839-7849.
[28] Shavandi, M., Kashaninejad, M., Sadeghi, A., Jafari, S. M., & Hasani, M. (2020). Decontamination of Bacillus cereus in cardamom (Elettaria cardamomum) seeds by infrared radiation and modeling of microbial inactivation through experimental models. J. Food Saf.40(1), e12730.
[29] Gökmen, S. (2004). Effects of moisture content and popping method on popping characteristics of popcorn. J. Food Eng.65(3), 357-362.
[30] Mariotti, M., Alamprese, C., Pagani, M. A., & Lucisano, M. (2006). Effect of puffing on ultrastructure and physical characteristics of cereal grains and flours. J. Cereal Sci.43(1), 47-56.
[31] Ceylan, M., & Karababa, E. (2002). Comparison of sensory properties of popcorn from various types and sizes of kernel. J. Sci. Food Agric.82(1), 127-133.
[32] Dofing, S. M., Thomas‐Compton, M. A., & Buck, J. S. (1990). Genotype✕ Popping Method Interaction for Expansion Volume in Popcorn. Crop Sci.30(1), 62-65.
[33] Ginzburg, A. S. (1969). Theoretical principles of heating and drying using infra-red radiation. In A. S. Ginsberg (Ed.), Application of infra-red radiation in food processing (pp. 1-71). London: Leonhard Hill Books.
[34] Sakai, N. and Hanzawa, T. (1994). Applications and advances in far-infrared heating in Japan. Trends Food Sci. Technol. 5(11):357-62.
[35] Park, D., Allen, K. G., Stermitz, F. R., & Maga, J. A. (2000). Chemical composition and physical characteristics of unpopped popcorn hybrids. J Food Compost Anal.13(6), 921-934.
[36] Dharmaraj, U., Ravi, R., & Malleshi, N. G. (2012). Physicochemical and textural characteristics of expanded finger millet. Int. J. Food Prop.15(2), 336-349.
[37] Arnhold, E., Silva, R. G., & Viana, J. M. S. (2010). Seleção de linhagens S5 de milho-pipoca com base em desempenho e divergência genética. Acta Scientiarum. Agronomy32(2), 279-283.