Facts about Carrageenan

Facts about Carrageenan

From the Irish moss plant, comes an interesting substance which is called, chemically, a polysaccharide. This just means that it is a bunch of sugars bonded together in a complex structure sometimes referred to as a carbohydrate. It is very different from any type of starch or carbohydrate you might encounter, in fact. You will find that carrageenan is a very fine polysaccharide additive in many of the foods you commonly encounter. It is a thickener that is commonly used in place of gelatin. Many people do not want to consume gelatin because it is typically made from pork or beef.

Instead, this wonderful, seaweed-derived ingredient is available at most health food stores and it is pretty easy to find out how to use it in a variety of recipes to replace several different ingredients normally used or to enhance the flavors of existing recipes and bring them to new life. All thickeners make it possible to bring out the creamy textures of puddings, pies, and many other desserts. Carrageenan is no exception and, since it is easy to get and so simple to use, it is a practical ingredient to learn about as you move along with building your cooking skills. It is such a common ingredient, that if you look on grocery store shelves and start reading labels, you are bound to start finding it in all sorts of preparations.

All you need to do to find out the wonderful things you can do with this interesting seaweed extract is get on the internet and start reading about it. Do a search on recipes that include it and welcome yourself to a new world of some of the most interesting, light desserts in the world. It is also good for those who have food allergies and cannot tolerate the typical ingredients used for puddings, gelatins, pies, and puddings. When you use an ingredient as novel as the Irish mossed derived material, you get a thick, smooth texture with all of your preparations.


With a low allergy impact and many different applications, you can see how this ingredient can easily become part of the collection in your kitchen. As you branch out into new types of healthy eating, you will run across all sorts of ingredients and wonder what they are or if they are safe. This one definitely is. It has been used for centuries as a safe food thickener and additive with no harmful effects to anyone. Even though it may sound like an unusual and insidious chemical, it is nothing of the sort. In fact, Irish moss is commonly consumed by health enthusiasts.

Branch out into using new ingredients and find ways to avoid the meat additive you would normally use on a day to day basis. It is easy to find alternatives when you do the right research. Once you put together a few different recipes and get them right with your friends, then you know you have discovered a delightful new cooking niche with a great new ingredient.

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