Impact of processing approach and storage time on bioactive and biological properties of rocket, spinach and watercress byproducts

Helena Araújo-Rodrigues, Diva Santos, Débora A. Campos, Suse Guerreiro, Modesta Ratinho, Ivo M. Rodrigues, Manuela E. Pintado*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)


The high nutritional value of vegetables is well recognized, but their short shelf life and seasonal nature result in massive losses and wastes. Vegetable’s byproducts are an opportunity to develop value-added ingredients, increasing food system efficiency and environmental sustainability. In the present work, pulps and powders of byproducts from rocket and spinach leaves and watercress were developed and stored for six months under freezing and vacuum conditions, respectively. After processing and storage, microbiological quality, bioactive compounds (polyphenols, carotenoids and tocopherols profiles), antioxidant capacity, and pulps viscosity were analyzed. Generally, the developed vegetable’s pulps and powders were considered microbiologically safe. Although some variations after processing and storage were verified, the antioxidant activity was preserved or improved. A rich phenolic composition was also registered and maintained. During freezing, the quantitative carotenoid profile was significantly improved (mainly in rocket and spinach), while after drying, there was a significant decrease. A positive effect was verified in the vitamin E level. Both processing and storage conditions resulted in products with relevant phenolics, carotenoids and tocopherol levels, contributing to the antioxidant activity registered. Thus, this study demonstrates the potential of vegetable byproducts valorization through developing these functional ingredients bringing economic and environmental value into the food chain.
Original languageEnglish
Article number2301
Number of pages25
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - 28 Jan 2021


  • Antioxidant capacity
  • Byproducts
  • Carotenoids
  • Freezing and drying impact
  • Polyphenol
  • Rocket leaves
  • Spinach leaves
  • Vitamin E
  • Watercress


Dive into the research topics of 'Impact of processing approach and storage time on bioactive and biological properties of rocket, spinach and watercress byproducts'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this