Snacks, snack bars and protein powders are the top application areas of interest for edible insect right now. However, cricket powder also works well in burgers, sausages, fruit rollups, shakes and other products. Inclusion rates vary by product, and are in many cases limited by cost rather than functionality, said Laurie Keeler senior manager, product development, at the University of Nebraska, Lincoln.
However, cricket powder is more like a protein powder than wheat flour, said Dr Aaron Dossey from All Things Bugs, who is trying to wean people away from using the term 'cricket flour'.
"You can’t just do a 1:1 substitution for wheat flour and expect the recipe to turn out the same; you might replace maybe a quarter or a third of wheat flour, but more than that and you’ll run into issues, as wheat flour is mostly starch and cricket powder is mostly protein [67%+] and oil."
While many firms roast and then grind crickets to make a dark, coarser powder, All Things Bugs grinds its insects before heat-treating them, creating a paler, finer powder with a more neutral flavor and smaller particle size (less than 100 microns) with a shelf-life of at least 12 months.