The objective of this study was to produce processed cheese analogs, in which the acid casein was partially replaced by a whey protein concentrate with various contents of protein, and to determine rheological properties of those products. The hardness of processed cheese analogs was tested using a TA-XT2i Texture Analyser and a 10 mm dia cylindrical sampler (the penetration rate was 1 mm/s, and the temperature of 21ºC was constant). The viscosity of processed cheese analogs was measured using a Brookfield DV II+ rotational viscometer with a Helipath countershaft (F). The meltability of processed cheese analogs was measured using a RS 300 oscillatory rheometer with a parallel plate geometry (in the configuration: plate – plate), at a temperature varying from 30 to 80 ºC. The changes in the storage modulus (G’) and in the loss modulus (G”), and in tan (δ) were determined. The addition of whey protein concentrates (WPC 35 and WPC 65) caused the hardness of processed cheese analogs to increase compared to the analogs produced only on the basis of acid casein. The increase in the protein content in cheese caused by the addition of whey concentrates contributed to the increase in the viscosity of processed cheese analogs. The presence of anhydrous milk fat impacted the texture and rheological properties of processed cheese analogs. In the case of processed cheese analogs, produced on the basis of casein, the application of whey preparation (WPC 35 and WPC 65) can contribute to the essential savings of basic material and to the improvement of rheological properties of the final products. Moreover, the application of low protein concentrates, such as WPC 35, to obtaining processed cheese analogs makes it possible to reduce production costs.
processed cheese analogs, whey protein concentrates, rheology, hardness, viscosity