Distribute soylent as a paste?


#1

Curious if there’s been much discussion around distributing soylent as a paste or something other than powder + oil. I searched on the forum and didn’t find much beyond a few lonely requests for liquid versions.

I love the stuff, but I still feel it’s grainy-er than it ought to be, and I know people who try mine think that. I compare it favorably to pancake or cake batter, but neither is so unmixable. I shake the christ out of my soylent in its pitcher – uncooled – every day, and still feel it could be less grainy.

Obviously not a food scientist, but not sure why it can’t be machine mixed into a dense paste, homogenized / pasteurized / vacuum-sealed, and shiped with the expectation that it’s consumed within 6 weeks. With a dense enough paste, not sure that shipping weight would have to increase too terribly, and Rosa Labs might be able to get away with (that is, save money on) a less ultra-super-fine mesh of oat flour than that which seems to have held up production for ages. A squeeze packet or something could easily be squeezed into the regular pitcher, which could then be more easily emulsified with the right amount of water.

Or maybe I’m making up too much food chemistry. Thoughts?


#2

The mechanical process involved with mixing it into a paste would add a large machine to the production line that would have to be cleaned and maintained. It would add cost to a product that would not really benefit from it too much.


#3

“that would not really benefit from it too much.”

Well that’s an assertion. The benefits of having a proper suspension rather than the grainy-tasting current product could mean the difference between mainstream and not. There are of course costs (as I said in my original), but I’m not sure liquid mixing is especially more complex/costly than solid mixing when you factor in stringent cleanliness standards that apply to all food manufacturing. It might add a step, but that step could be pretty simple and extremely cheap at scale – that’s where I’d have to defer to food chemistry and experimentation.

I suspect the tougher question to answer is whether one can make/ship a finer suspension at all, and also obviously whether there’s something that can be done to the dry product that would allow it to mix more smoothly.


#4

Do you let your liquid mixture soak awhile? I’ve found that letting Soylent chill at least 6-8 hours (I make it the night before I want to consume it) seems to help improve the consistency. I think it’s something to do with the oats absorbing some of the water and softening. It may help alleviate the particulate mouthfeel. You might also want to try adding a little more moisture… a thinner blend might also give you a better texture.

The oat flour used in the current Soylent is probably the finest grind reasonably obtainable for something like this. @axcho might be able to comment as to whether the rice flour used in some of his DIY blends gives a creamier/smoother texture than the fine-ground oat used in the official blend.


#5

You may also find that using a stick blender to mix the Soylent powder with water will give a little smoother texture.

Like jb008, I mix mine the night before, then let it chill overnight in the fridge. In the morning, I add the oil and shake it for about 15 seconds. I find that the oil mixes readily. I drink it for breakfast immediately after adding the oil and shaking.

The result is still a little grainy, but not objectionably so to me.


#6

Generally, I find that oat flour is more fine and less gritty than rice flour. Any grittiness in Soylent is likely from other ingredients, like rice protein.


#7

I think these are all great points. I hadn’t thought about this much, but I agree that I notice less grittiness when it’s sat overnight. It’s also interesting that you think the grittiness might be from something else than the oat flour; I clearly have no idea, it was a poor assumption on my part. Whey protein always seems to mix quite easily but I’m sure different proteins and other ingredients mix very differently.

Regardless, I wasn’t posting in an effort to solve my own issues (I don’t really care), but rather to explore an at-scale solution to what I think will be a common at-scale problem. I have only a little space in a fridge at work so I’m probably not leaving extra in there overnight, and I’m also not going to blend in the office. I think it’s pretty reasonable to expect that if this is a mass-market diet choice, many people will have similar constraints and won’t be willing to make huge convenience/preparation concessions to make it work. That’s why I brought it up, because I thought it might be a good mass-market solution.

But thanks for the thoughts anyway :slight_smile: