What are breadcrumbs? What are its health and nutritional benefits?

What are breadcrumbs?

For breading, gratinating or making delicious stuffings, breadcrumbs are one of the essential ingredients of our kitchens in France! In this article, discover the nutritional benefits of breadcrumbs as well as some tips for storing them and using them in everyday cooking! 

What are breadcrumbs? 

Breadcrumbs are obtained by reducing the bread and / or rusks to a more or less fine powder. Most often, dry or oven-dried bread is used to obtain fine and tasty breadcrumbs. In the kitchen, breadcrumbs are a basic ingredient in many traditional recipes: breadcrumbs, stuffings, gratins, etc. Moreover, the term breadcrumbs comes from the word chapeler which literally means “to reduce to powder”. If it is very easy to make at home, breadcrumbs can also be bought in supermarkets, to save time! This beautifully golden bread powder brings taste and texture to the most basic recipes! 

Health and nutritional benefits of breadcrumbs

With nearly 400 kcal per 100g, breadcrumbs are not one of the lightest ingredients! However, it has its place in a healthy diet, when it is added to recipes sparingly! Like the bread it is made from, breadcrumbs mostly contain carbohydrates which provide energy to the body and which are sources of group B vitamins. It is also a good source of vegetable protein and contains around 5% lipids. . Also, breadcrumbs help cover the body’s needs in dietary fiber and thus promote digestive well-being and intestinal transit. Be careful though, the breadcrumbs tend to absorb cooking fat. For a lighter recipe, we prefer breadcrumbs and oven-baked dishes. 

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How to store the breadcrumbs? 

Industrial breadcrumbs packaged in a box can be stored for a relatively long time, up to 1 year before opening the package. Once the package has been opened, it must be kept in a dry place, away from light and heat. Otherwise, the breadcrumbs could lose their texture and become rancid. Homemade breadcrumbs are generally more fragile, due to the absence of additives and preservatives in the finished product. However, it can be stored in a glass jar or an airtight container for a few weeks! Cooked meals made from breadcrumbs generally tolerate storage in the refrigerator or freezing very well. 

How to cook the breadcrumbs? 

In the kitchen, breadcrumbs are a real asset because of their ability to brown and brown. Most often, it is used for making meats, vegetables and fish breaded in a pan, or in the oven! For optimal results, we recommend using a little fat and searing the breaded ingredient in a pan over high heat. Be careful, however, if the cooking is poorly controlled, the breadcrumbs risk burning and releasing toxic compounds. Breadcrumbs are also ideal for making baked preparations. Sprinkled in a thin layer on a tart base, it will prevent the dough from soggy during cooking! 

How to choose the right breadcrumbs? 

Nothing beats home-made! Easy and economical, homemade breadcrumbs from dry bread or rusks remain the best alternative to guarantee the absence of additives and preservatives in the product. In addition, the transformation of dry bread into breadcrumbs reduces food waste, which is a serious advantage! It is also recommended to favor bread crumbs over breadcrumbs made from rusks. Indeed, rusks are naturally richer in added sugars and lipids than white bread, so rusk breadcrumbs are richer! 

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Varieties of breadcrumbs

In the breadcrumbs department, there is now something for everyone! Golden, fine, thick, crispy, gluten-free breadcrumbs… Depending on the intended use and tastes, it is possible to find the ideal product! Gluten-free breadcrumbs allow you to enjoy delicious au gratin and breaded dishes even with digestive intolerance to gluten. Panko breadcrumbs, on the other hand, are iconic breadcrumbs in Asian cuisine. Lighter than our traditional bread crumbs, it allows you to coat meats, fish and vegetables and make all kinds of exotic dishes!

How to cook breadcrumbs?

Most often, breadcrumbs are used for breading and for gratinating. It allows you to make cordon bleu, nuggets and other homemade vegetable croquettes. For even more flavor, consider tossing the breadcrumbs with a little dried herbs or ground hazelnuts before coating the ingredients. A simple trick to wow your guests! It is also widely used to make crispy gratins and fillings with incomparable texture. Finally, sprinkled on a tart base before baking, it will make it possible to obtain a perfectly baked pie and prevent the dough from soaking! 

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