4D printing of edible insect snacks: Color changes with external pH stimulation

Zixuan Kang, Zun Wang, Wei Zhang, Zhongxiang Fang

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

9 Citations (Scopus)
48 Downloads (Pure)


To increase consumers’ acceptance, food 3D/4D printing could be a suitable technology to develop attractive and nutritious insect foods. This study investigated the feasibility of making 4D printed snacks using cricket powder and purple potato puree as main ingredients, and the effect of ink composition on the 3D printing performance was investigated, while the color change caused by pH stimulation (4D) was measured. The results showed that the content of cricket powder and water in the ink significantly affected its rheological properties and printability. The color of the 3D-printed samples varied greatly with pH from red to green but was accompanied by high color stability. Additionally, the hardness, gumminess, adhesiveness, and cohesiveness of the 4D-printed snacks were significantly altered after the pH modification. This research opened a new window for the development of attractive 4D-printed insect snacks, which could be practically applicable of insect proteins for human foods.

Original languageEnglish
Article number102971
Number of pages10
JournalFood Bioscience
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2023


  • 4D food printing
  • Anthocyanins
  • Color stability
  • Cricket food
  • pH-stimulated color change
  • Purple potato puree


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