Slushies are loved by customers of all ages, which makes them a great addition to the menu when you want to boost impulse sales. With the right commercial slushie machine, these icy sluhie drink are easy to make and even easier to sell. But did you know you can make your own slushie syrup mixes? Outdo your competition and mix up gourmet slush syrups that help you stand out from the crowd. We’ll teach you how to use the Brix scale and a simple tool called a refractometer to make sure your slushies turn out perfectly every time.
What Is the Brix Scale?
The Brix scale is a measurement system used in food production to express the percentage of dissolved sucrose (sugar) in a liquid solution. It’s commonly used in juice production, wine making, and frozen desserts to measure the amount of sugar that’s present in the recipe. One degree on the Brix scale is equal to 1 gram of sucrose per 100 grams of solution.
Why Is the Brix Scale Important?
The Brix scale is important when making frozen desserts like slushies or granitas because sugar content affects the freezing process of your slush machine mix. Too much sugar in the mix will prevent the slushie from freezing, and too little sugar will cause it to freeze into a solid mass and damage your slushie machine. By checking the Brix reading on your slushie mix before adding it to the machine, you don’t have to second guess yourself or spend any time adjusting the mix as it freezes.
The ideal Brix reading for a slushie solution should fall between 13 and 15 degrees. Check the manufacturer’s instructions for the recommended Brix level, because every slushie machine has different requirements. Some units will work with Brix levels as low as 11 and as high as 20. Premade slush mixes should be formulated to the correct range, but it never hurts to double-check that the ratio of sugar to liquid is correct. It’s even more important to check the Brix reading of your homemade slushie syrups to ensure they will freeze correctly.
What Is a Refractometer?
A Brix refractometer is a small hand-held tool that measures the Brix level of liquid solutions.
Refractometers use the principle of refraction to measure the concentration of solids in a solution. Refraction occurs when light bends as it passes from one medium to another. The number of solids present in a liquid solution will change the angle of refraction, and the refractometer measures the angle to determine the sugar content in the solution. There are several types of refractometers that measure different solids, but the Brix refractometer is designed specifically to measure sucrose content.