Food and Nutrition Sciences, 2013, 4, 270-275 Published Online March 2013 (
Effect of Moringa oleifera Leaf Powder Supplementation
on Some Quality Characteristics of Wheat Bread
Abraham I. Sengev1, Joseph O. Abu1, Dick I. Gernah2*
1Department of Food Science and Technology, University of Agriculture, Makurdi, Nigeria; 2Department of Food Science and Tech-
nology, University of Mkar, Gboko, Nigeria.
Email: *
Received December 4th, 2012; revised January 3rd, 2013; accepted January 10th, 2013
The effect of Moringa oleifera leaf powder supplementation on some physico-chemical and sensory properties of wheat
bread was determined. Bread was prepared from varying proportions of 100%, 99%, 98%, 97%, 96% and 95% wheat
flour supplemented with 0%, 1%, 2%, 3%, 4% and 5% Moringa oleifera leaf powder respectively. The bread samples
were allowed to cool at ambient temperature (30˚C ± 1˚C) and analysed for some physical properties, proximate com-
position, and sensory attributes. Moringa leaf powder addition significantly (p < 0.05) increased the fibre (2.10% to
3.28%), ash (1.10% to 1.65%), protein (9.07% to 13.97%), and ether extract (1.51% to 2.59%), while decreasing mois-
ture content (35.20% to 27.65%). Moringa leaf powder supplementation also significantly (p < 0.05) decreased the loaf
volume, weight loss, loaf height and specific loaf volume from 796.70 to 496.70 cm3, 32.32 to 25.65 g, 7.00 to 5.83 cm
and 4.70 to 2.65 cm3/g respectively, while the loaf weight increased fr om 169.20 to 185.86 g. There was a significant (p
< 0.05) increase in Magnesium (Mg), Calcium (Ca) and Beta-carotene contents from 0.76 to 1.27 mg/100g, 3.67 to 6.07
mg/100g and 0.02 to 3.27 mg/100g respectively, while Iron (Fe) and Cupper (Cu) contents decreased from 2.74 to 1.25
mg/100g and 2.26 to 0.03 mg/100g respectively. Sensory evaluation showed that although there was significant (p <
0.05) improvement in nutritional composition, the acceptability of all bread samples decreased with increasing level of
Moringa supplementation. This implies that despite the high nutrient content of Moringa oleifera powder, it is not a
good substitute fo r wheat in bread production due to its physical characteristics and sensory attributes.
Keywords: Bread; Moringa Leaf Powder; β-Carotene; Physical Properties; Sensory Properties; Supplementation
1. Introduction
Bread is an important staple food in Nigeria. It is how-
ever, relatively expensive, being made from imported
wheat that is not cultivated in the tropics for climatic
reasons [1]. Wheat importation represents an immense
drain on the economy while also suppressing and dis-
placing indigenous cereals, with a resultant detrimental
effect on agricultural and technological development.
Consequently, the id ea of substituting part of wheat with
other starchy crops is not new.
One of the key efforts in this area include the compos-
ite flour program which seeks to substitute flours, s ta rch e s
and protein concentrates from indigenous crops such as
cassava, maize, yam, sorghum and millet, for as much
wheat as possible in baked products. With the increasing
consumption of bread and other baked products in many
countries, the composite flour programme promises to
save significant amount of foreign exchange, provide
nutritious food to more people at lower cost and to utilize
indigenous crops to a greater extent.
Different levels of success have also been recorded
with the use of flours from legumes, cereals, roots and
tubers in baked goods [2-4]. Although there is now a
substantial amount of available composite bread tech-
nology, such breads still require at least 70 percen t wheat
flour to be able to rise [5] and are generally deficient in
The drumstick tree (Moringa oleifera) referred to as
the “miracle plant” and known as “Zogale” in Hausa,
“Okwe Oyiibo” in Ibo, “Ewe Ile” in Yoruba and “Jeghel-
Agede” in Tiv is common throughout the West African
region [6], thus making the seeds easily available. The
leaves are outstanding as a source of vitamin A, B group
and C (when raw), and are among the best plant sources
of minerals. They contain more iron than “kontonmire”,
seven times the vitamin C in oranges, four times the cal-
cium in milk, four times the vitamin A in carrots, two
times, the protein in milk and three times the potassium
in bananas. They are excellent sources of protein, but
poor in carbohydrates and fats, thus making them one of
*Corresponding author.
Copyright © 2013 SciRes. FNS
Effect of Moringa oleifera Leaf Powder Supplementation on Some Quality Characteristics of Wheat Bread 271
the best plant foods available in nature [6].
The leaves are beneficial in the treatment of many
ailments due to their various medicinal properties and
their rich iron content. In Africa, nursing mothers have
been shown to produce more milk when Moringa leaves
were added to their diets. Severely malnourish ed ch ildren
have been shown to make significant weight gains when
care givers add Moringa leaves to their diet [6]. Supple-
mentation of wheat with Moringa oleifera powder could
therefore significantly improve the nutritional quality of
the composite flours, especially in micro-nutrients.
This study was therefore carried out to assess the pos-
sibility of producing acceptable bread with enhanced
nutritional value by supplementation of wheat flour with
Moringa oleifera leaf powder.
2. Materials and Methods
2.1. Sample Procurement/Preparation
Wheat flour and all ingredients for baking (sugar, fat, salt,
yeast,) used for this work were purchased from Wuru-
kum Market, while matured Moringa oleifera leaves
were obtained from Ashar Ijir hamlet, opposite Special
Science School, along University of Agriculture Road,
North Bank, Makurdi, Ben ue State. Destalking, washing,
drying and grinding of the leaves were all carried out
using the method described by Gernah and Sengev [7].
Five blends of wheat flour (WF) and Morin ga leaf pow-
der (MLP) were then formulated in the following ratios,
99:1, 98:2, 97:3, 96:4 and 95:5 from which doughs were
prepared for production of the bread samples, with 100%
WF as co ntrol.
2.2. Baking
Doughs from the flour blends were baked using the
straight-dough method Chauhan et al. [8] with some
modification. The baking formula was 500 g of flour
blend, 9 g of compressed baker’s yeast, 5 g of salt (NaCl),
13 g of cane sugar, 10 g of vegetable shortening and ap-
proximately 280 ml of water. All the ingredients were
mixed in a Kenwood mixer (Model A 907 D) for 3.5 min.
The doughs were fermented for 90 min at 28˚C ± 1˚C
then punched, scaled to 250 g dough pieces, proofed for
90 min at 30˚C, 85% relative humility and baked at
250˚C for 30 m
2.3. Analyses
2.3.1. Chemical Properties
Moisture, crude protein, crude fat, crude fibre and ash
were determined according to standard methods describ ed
by AOAC [9], while carbohydrate was determined by
difference as described by Ihekoronye and Ngoddy [10].
Mineral composition was determined using the Atomic
Absorption Spectrophotometer (AAS) (UNICAM 960
series) as described by AOAC [9], while β-Carotene was
determined by the method of Akpapunam and Ibiama
2.3.2. P hysical Properties
Loaf volume was determined by the sorghum displace-
ment method [12]; loaf weight by the method of AACC
[13], specific loaf volume as described by Penfield and
Campbell [14], while loaf height was measured using a
meter rule. The dough and the baked loaves were we i g h ed
and percent weight loss calcu lated.
2.3.3. Sensory Evaluation
Sensory evaluation was performed 24 hours after baking
to evaluate crust colour, crumb colour, crumb texture,
flavour and overall acceptability of the bread samples as
described by Meilgaard [ 1 5].
2.3.4. Statistica l A na lyses
Data were generated in triplicate and subjected to analy-
sis of variance. Means were tested for significant differ-
ences by Duncan’s Multiple Range Test (DMRT) [16].
Significance was accepted at p < 0.05.
3. Results and Discussion
3.1. Effect of Moringa Leaf Powder on the
Proximate Composition of Bread
The chemical properties of wheat flour and Moring a
oleifera leaf powder are shown in Table 1, while the
proximate composition of bread samples is shown in
Table 2. The moisture content decreased significantly (p
< 0.05.) from 35.20% in 100% WF to 27.65% in 95 WF:
5 MLP composite bread. This could be due to the low
moisture content of Moringa leaf powder used in the
blends and might have implications in terms of the tex-
ture and microbiological quality of bread processed with
added Moringa leaf powder. Olaoye et al. [1] reported
similar values for wheat, plantain and soybean composite
bread. The moisture content of foods is usually used as
an indicator of food quality. It is important to measure
the moisture content in breads because of its potential
impact on the sensory, physical, and microbial properties
of the bread.
Conversely there was significant (p < 0.05) increase in
protein content with increasing level of supplementation
from 9.07% in 100% WF to 13.79% in 95 WF:5 MLP
blend. This could be due to substitution effect caused by
the high protein content of Moringa leaf powder (Table
1). Gernah and Chinma [4 ] also reported this effect when
wheat bread was produced with maize/ soyabean blends.
The ether extract, crude fibre and ash contents in-
creased significantly (p < 0.05) from 1.51% to 2.65%,
Copyright © 2013 SciRes. FNS
Effect of Moringa oleifera Leaf Powder Supplementation on Some Quality Characteristics of Wheat Bread
Copyright © 2013 SciRes. FNS
Table 1. Chemical Properties of Wheat Flour and Moringa oleifera Leaf Powder.
Parameter Wheat Flour Moringa Leaf Powder
Moisture (%) 12.50 ± 0.02 6.46 ± 0.01
Crude protein (%) 11.20 ± 0.04 27.82 ± 0.06
Ether Extrac t (%) 1.43 ± 0.02 3.10 ± 0.01
Crude Fibre (%) 2.50 ± 0.01 19.32 ± 0.03
Ash (%) 1.67 ± 0.01 5.36 ± 0.01
Carbohydrate (%) 69.70 ± 0.04 38.20 ± 0.02
β-Carotene(mg/1 00g) 0.01±0.01 5.23 ± 0.03
Iron (mg/100g) 3.05 ± 0.02 8.30 ± 0.01
Magnesium (mg/100g) 141.00 ± 0.04 244.00 ± 0.02
Calcium (mg/100g) 27.60 ± 0.02 442.20 ± 0.03
Potassium (mg/100g)
Copper (mg/100g) 312.00 ± 0.01
2.66 ± 0.02 1320.00 ± 0.01
3.10 ± 0.04
Table 2. Proximate composition of bread suppleme nted wi th Moringa oleifera leaf powder.
Blend Moisture Crude Protein Ether extract Ash Crude Fibre Carbohydrate
100 WF 35.20 ± 0.63a 9.07 ± 0.61a 1.51 ± 0.01a 1.10 ± 0.01a 2.10 ± 0.05a 51.02 ± 1.21a
99 WF:1 MLP 32.21 ± 0.28b 10.17 ± 0.30b 1.79 ± 0.04b 1.18 ± 0.03b 2.23 ± 0.07b 52.42 ± 1.17a
98 WF:2 MLP 30.51 ± 0.07c 11.22 ± 0.02c 1.90 ± 0.05c 1.28 ± 0.03c 2.46 ± 0.02c 52.63 ± 0.09a
97 WF:3 MLP 28.72 ± 0.29d 12.36 ± 0.14d 1.99 ± 0.03d 1.40 ± 0.05d 2.71 ± 0.12d 52.82 ± 0.80a
96 WF:4 MLP 29.01 ± 0.36e 12.96 ± 0.17e 2.15 ± 0.01e 1.61 ± 0.03e 3.21 ± 0.01e 51.06 ± 0.35a
95 WF:5 MLP 27.65 ± 0.01f 13.97 ± 0.01f 2.65 ± 0.03f 1.65 ± 0.05e 3.28 ± 0.03e 50.08 ± 0.06a
LSD 0.60 0.51 0.06 0.06 0.11 1.38
Values are mean ± stan dard d eviat ion of trip licate d etermin ati ons . Means i n the s ame co lumn n ot fo llowed by th e same s uper script letters are significantly (p <
0.05) different. Key: W F = Wheat Flour; MLP = Moringa Leaf Powder; LSD = Least Significant Difference.
2.10% to 3.28% and 1.10% to 1.65% respectively. This
could be due to the higher fat, crude fibre and ash con-
tents of Moringa leaf powder as shown in Table 1.
There was no significant difference (p > 0.05) in car-
bohydrate content, which ranged from 51.02% to 52.82%
as the percentage of Mor inga leaf powder supplementa-
tion increased. The slight differences observed could be
due to dilution effect during supplementation with Mor-
inga leaf powder which had a carbohydrate content of
38.20% as against 69 20% (Table1).
3.2. Effect of Moringa Leaf Powder on the
Physical Properties of the Bread Samples
Table 3 shows th e physical properties of bread produced
from composite flours of wheat and Moringa leaf powder.
Loaf volume and specific volume decreased significantly
(p < 0.05) from 796.70 to 495.73 cm3 and 4.70 to 2.65
cm3/g respectively. This could be due to the reduction in
gluten content as a result of supplementation. It has also
been reported by other researchers that partial replace-
ment of wheat flour with non-glutinous flour results in
lower bread volumes [4,8,12]. Increase in yeast dosage
and longer fermentation/proofing time could possibly
help improve these physical characteristics.
Loaf volume is regarded as the most important bread
characteristic since it provides a quantitative measure-
ment of baking performance [17]. Loaf volume is also
extremely important to consumers because they desire
breads that appear to be light and not so dense. The sig-
nificant decrease in height from 7.00 to 5.83 cm of the
bread could again be attributed to the reduction in gluten
content of the blends.
Loaf weight and weight loss are inversely related.
While loaf weight increased significantly (p < 0.05) as
the percentage of Moring a leaf flour increased, weight
loss decreased. Both effects could be attributed to inade-
quate fermentation during bread making process as the
percentage of Moringa leaf powder increased. Keetels et
al. [18] reported that weight loss is a natural occurrence
in the bread making process. Usually, carbon dioxide
(CO2) is trapped in small air pockets as the dough fer-
ments. During baking, the trapped CO2 causes the air
pockets to expand, and later the starch gelatinizes, trans-
forming the dough into an elastic bread crumb. During
this transformation, bread loses weight.
For communities that prefer low volume/high weight
bread, these bread samples will be acceptable in terms of
Effect of Moringa oleifera Leaf Powder Supplementation on Some Quality Characteristics of Wheat Bread 273
their physical characteristics.
3.3. Effect of Moringa Leaf Powder on the
Mineral and β-Carotene Contents of the
Bread Samples
The mineral and β-carotene contents of bread supple-
mented with Moringa leaf powder are presented in Table
4. The mineral content of the bread samples increased
significantly (p < 0.05) as the levels of supplementation
increased. This could be ascribed to substitution effect
caused by the high levels of Iron (Fe) and Copper (Cu),
Magnesium (Mg) and Calcium (Ca) contents in Moringa
leaf of 8.30, 3.10, 244.00 and 442.20 mg/100g respec-
tively (Table 1). Gernah and Sengev [7] also reported
iron content of 26.20 mg/100g ; while Barminas et al. [19]
reported 454.00 mg/100g calcium and 450.60 mg/100g
magnesium in Moringa leaf powder.
Beta-carotene content increased significantly (p < 0.05)
from 0.02 to 0.97 mg/100g, with increase in Moringa
leaf powder. This could be due to the much higher level
of β-carotene in Mor inga leaf powder (5.23 mg/100g) as
compared to wheat flour (0.01mg/100g) (Table 1). Ger-
nah and Sengev [7] also reported a high value of 5232.40
mg/100g tot al carotenoi ds fo r Moringa leaf powder.
3.4. Effect of Moringa Leaf Powder on the
Sensory Attributes of the Bread Samples
The general appearance of the bread samples is as shown
in Plates 1 and 2, while the mean scores of the sensory
attributes are presented in Figure 1. There was signifi-
cant (p < 0.05) decrease in preference in all the attributes
evaluated as the percentage of Moringa leaf powder
Table 3. Physical Properties of Brea d Supple mented with Moringa oleifera Leaf Powder.
Blend (%) Loaf Volume (cm3) Loaf weight (g) Loss Weight (g) Loaf Height (cm) Specific Volume (cm3/g)
100 WF 796.70 ± 5.80a 169.20 ± 1.48a 32.32 ± 0.60a 7.00 ± 0.50a 4.70 ± 0.03a
99 WF:1 MLP 698.30 ± 2.90b 177.00 ± 1.06 b 29.20 ± 0.43b 6.73 ± 0.25b 3.91 ± 0.04b
98 WF:2 MLP 690.00 ± 5.00b 178.05 ± 1.10 b 28.81 ± 0.47b 6.26 ± 0.25b 3.95 ± 0.19b
97 WF:3 MLP 603.30 ± 5.70c 177.52 ± 1.38b 28.99 ± 0.55b 4 .60 ± 0.36c 3.39 ± 0.04c
96 WF:4 MLP 553.30 ± 5.20d 184.51 ± 1.67c 26.19 ± 0.67c 5.33 ± 0.1 5d 2.99 ± 0.04d
95 WF:5 MLP 496.70 ± 5.50e 185.86 ± 2.49c 25.65 ± 1.00c 5.83 ± 0.28db 2.65 ± 0.09e
LSD 11.29 2.85 0.56 0.16 1.14
Values are mean ± stand ard deviation of triplicat e determin ations .Means in the same co lumn not followed by th e same supers cript letters are significantly (p <
0.05) different. Key: W F = Wheat Flour; MLP = Moringa Leaf Powder; LSD = Least Significant Difference.
Table 4. Mineral and β-carotene Contents of Bread Supple me nte d wi th Moringa oleifera Leaf Powder (mg/100g).
Blend Fe Mg Ca Cu Beta carotene
100 WF 2.74 ± 0.08a 0.76 ± 0.01d 3.67 ± 0.01f 2.26 ± 0.01a 0.02 ± 0.01e
99 WF:1 MLP 2.76 ± 0.09a 1.06 ± 0.02c 5.18 ± 0.02e 2.27 ± 0.03b 0.35 ± 0.01d
98 WF:2 MLP 2.79 ± 0.02a 1.08 ± 0.00c 7.32 ± 0.02a 2.27 ± 0.01b 0.41 ± 0.00c
97 WF:3 MLP 2.82 ± 0.03a 1.21 ± 0.02b 6.72 ± 0.01b 2.28 ± 0.00c 0.67 ± 0.01b
96 WF:4 MLP 2.84 ± 0.01b 1.24 ± 0.04b 5.62 ± 0.40d 2.30 ± 0.02d 0.76 ± 0.02b
95 WF:5 MLP 2.87 ± 0.01b 1.27 ± 0.01a 6.07 ± 0.08c 2.31 ± 0. 0 1e 0.97 ± 0.01a
LSD 0.09 0.03 0.07 0.01 0.02
Values are mean ± stan dard d eviat ion of trip licate d etermin ati ons . Means i n the s ame co lumn n ot fo llowed by th e same s uper script letters are significantly (p <
0.05) different. Key: W F = Wheat Flour; MLP = Moringa Leaf Powder; LSD = Least Significant Difference.
A = 100% WF; B = 99% WF:1% MLP; C = 98% WF:2% MLP; D = 97%
WF:3% MLP; E = 96% WF:4% MLP; F = 95 % WF:5% MLP; WF = Wheat
Four; MLP = Moringa Leaf Powder.
Plate 1. Crust appearance of bread supplemented with
Moringa leaf powder.
A = 100% WF; B = 99% WF:1% MLP; C = 98% WF:2% MLP; D = 97%
WF:3% MLP; E = 96% WF:4% MLP; F = 95% WF:5% MLP; WF = Wheat
Four; MLP = Moringa Leaf Powder.
Plate 2. Crumb appearance of bread supplemented with
Moringa leaf powder.
Copyright © 2013 SciRes. FNS
Effect of Moringa oleifera Leaf Powder Supplementation on Some Quality Characteristics of Wheat Bread
WF = Wheat flour; MLP = Moringa l eaf powder.
Figure 1. Sensory attributes of bread supplem e nte d with Moringa leaf powder.
increased. The significant (p < 0.05) decrease in likeness
for crust and crumb as the level of supplementation in-
creased could be ascribed to the green colour of the bread
imparted by the chlorophyll content of the leaves which
was also alien to consumers. The decrease in likeness for
flavour of the bread samples could be attributed to the
herbal flavour of the leaf powder. The decrease in gen-
eral acceptability with increase in the percentages of
Moringa leaf powder implies that panelists did not accept
bread supplemented with Moringa leaf powder.
The use of flavouring agents to mask the unacceptable
herbal flavor of Moringa oleifera powder could help im-
prove the acceptability of these products.
4. Conclusion
Bread was successfully produced from composite flours
of wheat flour and Moringa leaf powder. Though the
bread samples all had increased nutrients (fibre, protein,
fat, minerals and β-carotene), they had poor physical
characteristics (loaf volume, specific volume, loaf height
and loaf weight) which became more pronounced with
increase in Moringa leaf powder addition. Increase in
Moringa leaf powder substitution drastically reduced the
preference/acceptability of the bread samples.
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