All about Barley Malt - syrup, powder, flour

Barley Malt Syrup seems straightforward. I used barley malt syrup as sweetener in the dough and poaching liquid for bagels using the Peter Reinhart’s Artisan Breads Every Day recipe. I am happy with the taste imparted by this “secret ingredient.”

I am confused about using Diastatic Barley Malt Powder or Flour that I purchased at the Breadtopia store -

  • Is “powder” and “flour” the same thing?
  • Can I use Diastatic Barley Malt Powder/Flour as a substitute for sweetener in recipes, such as pretzels?
  • With appropriate equivalency measures, can Barley Malt Syrup and Diastatic Barley Malt Powder/Flour be used interchangeably in recipes?

Don’t know much about this, but here’s some theory:

coming from the `brewing side of things I can tell you malt powder is probably dry malt derived from extracting the maltose from the grain then converting that liquid into powder by dehydrating it.

Malt flour is the milled malt same way regular grains are milled/ground.

In my search for baking with crushed/cracked wheat malt, I saw references to “sprouted wheat”. This is basically “Malt”. The controlled sprouting of the grain activates enzymes in the seed or berry allowing the starch to be turned into maltose and other sugars so the seed can grow. Once sprouted the “green” malt is dried, the technique and temperature of this “kilning” allows a maltster to create a wide variety of flavors and colors that help allow brewers to create the endless varieties and colors of beer you see on your store shelf.

Several varieties of grain can be malted, though with brewing the primary grain is barley because of its attached husk. Other grains include wheat, rye, oats.

Anyways, this was off the top of my head, know this was a old thread, was searching for help with baking with cracked wheat malt after my question went un answerd


Hi, everyone.

I just got my first bottle of malt syrup. I thought I was stuck with the diastatic kind, but the supplier got me a non-active syrup, which is good since I usually include diastatic barley malt flour in my loaves. I didn’t want to double that element.

Anyway, how versatile is this stuff? I know it’s a staple in bagels (which I fully intend to do), but is it usually a good flavor addition to a country loaf or a whole grain loaf? What about pizza dough? Or is the flavor of malt syrup “too distinctive” just to include casually?

I’d be interested to hear how you all use it!