Unilever has unveiled new zero salt stock cubes by Knorr (veggie, chicken and beef). Knorr’s study of more than 6,000 adults across six different European countries showed that 77% of respondents wanted to explore different ways to flavour their food and 61% would love to prepare flavour-rich dishes without all the salt.
To that end, the new salt-free cubes are completely free from artificial colours and added MSG, and made with high-quality ingredients including free-range chicken, beef from organic farming and sustainably grown vegetables.
Unilever said the cubes are made from a unique blend of vegetables, herbs and spices such as rosemary, nutmeg, lovage and turmeric, the cubes help build up a rich flavour in food, leaving cooks to decide, after tasting, how much, if any, salt is needed.
Creating a salt-free stock cube has been a complicated process, requiring food researchers at the Hive, Unilever’s Global Foods Innovation Centre to go back to basics.
“That’s because salt normally has two important roles in bouillon cubes. It strengthens other flavours and forms the structure of the cube, with salt crystals holding all the other ingredients together,” said Gunabalan Raju, Technical Project Leader, The Hive, Wageningen.
“We found the right balance by extracting vegetables, herbs and spices – and meat for the chicken and beef bouillon,” Gunabalan continues. “And then we combined them with some fat and ingredients that can create crystals so that the cube held its structure – all with zero salt.”
The product is already on shelves in the UK, but will roll out globally.