Frito-Lay files patent that could revolutionize the snack industry

According to a recent patent filing, Frito-Lay might have developed a process that could revolutionize the snack industy.  Under a process they’ve developed, they’ve figured out ways to “puff” nuts up, changing their size, texture and flavor.

Frito-Lay claims there is a need to “provide enhanced changes to nuts and legumes which are attractive to the consumer.”  The snack giant’s solution is a two-step process that involves hydrating nuts then either puffing them up or dehydrating them under high temperatures.

“The immersing step and gun puffing step are typically carried out to produce an expanded and texturized nut product by forming blisters on an outer surface of the nut kernels and voids in a body of the nut kernels,” the patent says.  Frito-Lay claims this process could create all sorts of changes from better textures that are lighter, airier and crispier than regular nuts to nuts with larger or cracked kernels.  It also includes a possible marinating step for adding flavors to these nuts.”

It sounds like an interesting innovation. Details about the process and the potential applications are still unkown. But it is clear that Frito-Lay might have something to offer for a market that craves innovation.