Brix and Temperature Correlation in Pectin Gummies

Hello! I am making pectin gummies (1st timer). I have a few questions about Brix, temp, and pH. I’m having some issues with getting the Brix to match up with the proper temperature of my slurry. It is more important to have the correct Brix or to have the correct temperature? The formula I’m using suggest heating the slurry to 240 Fahrenheit, but the Brix ends up being 90. When heated to around 225-230 the Brix is at 80, but I’m having issues with my gummies setting up. I believe this is due to a pH issue, but I want to confirm that the Brix/temperature is not the issue first. Are there any suggestions that would help keep the Brix lower until the proper temperature is reached? Would starting out with more water in the formula potentially help this? If so, how much extra water should be added. I’m making small test batches that only use 290 grams of water in Part A with the sugar, pectin, and sodium citrate. I’m using 20g of unbuffered pectin with 5 g of sodium citrate, does this seem to be the proper amount?

As far as pH goes, I know I need to be in a range of 3.4-3.7. After adding color and flavoring to my slurry, I am getting a pH of around 5.5 before adding any citric solution. The solution lowers the pH a bit, but I am finding that I need to add more to continue lowering the pH. I feel like I end up adding way to much of the 50% citric solution at the end. Is there a way to help lower the pH earlier on before adding the acid at the end?


Your temperature will be related to your brix, but vary based on formula. Try to work based on your measured brix, and once you have a satisfactory formulation, correlate that brix with a final temperature for your SOP. Keep in mind that when you scale up to a full sized batch from a micro batch your values will change, as water evaporation rate will differ.

Try starting with a standard recipe like this or similar, then change your formula just 1 ingredient at a time, don’t change multiple values at once as that just obfuscates what each change does.


Final Brix around 80 or so is correct, again depending on formulation, mold cavity size, and setting/drying humidity and conditions. If you go too much higher (approaching 90) the hydrocolloid matrix wont form properly, and the gummy wont really set. It’ll just be a stretchy chewy thing.

PH range you mentioned also should be correct.

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Hi Pseudo,

Thank you for your help! Today, I cooked my slurry to 230 and the Brix was 80. I noticed that the batch does seem like it’s trying to set up better and even starting to get the gummy texture a bit, but it is still too soft and a little clumpy in texture. The slurry seems great until I get to adding the acid. I’ve attached a picture of how they are currently coming out the mold after about an hour.

What does the rest of your recipe look like? Are you using any glucose or polyols?


Hi pdxcanna,

I am using glucose. These are the percentages in my formula.

Part A

Water 29%
Sugar 10%
Rapid Set HM Pectin 2%
Sodium Citrate (I add 5 grams)

Part B

Sugar 17%
Tapioca Syrup, 42 DE 40%

Part C

20% Solution (Sodium Hydrogen Malate & Water) 0.80%
Color 4-5 Drops
Flavor 1 Dram
50% Citric Solution 0.75%

Try slowly adding the citric.

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I would drop temp to 223-230 or so, increase sodium citrate to 8.4g (42% of unbuffered pectin weight). Are you standardizing the pectin with sucrose before mixing into the recipe?

maybe replace a couple grams of sugar with sorbitol if it’s crystallizing like it looks like it is


We eventually stopped looking at Temp when cooking and kill the heat based on Brix alone, we get pretty good results this way. We tend to stop at around 81 Brix, but we are using SS150 instead of HM-100 pectin.

What are you using as your heat source?

Hi Shrimp,

I am using a Waring tabletop burner.

And yes, I am finding this to be correct about the Brix. I was so focused on getting the correct temperature, but I am getting better results by just going with the Brix.

Thank you! I will give this a try. Maybe I’ll add half to start and see how that goes.

@pdxcanna Yes, I am mixing the pectin with the sugar and sodium citrate before adding it to the warm water. I heat the water to 180 Fahrenheit before whisking in the pectin mixture. I will try increasing the sodium citrate in one of my batches today and get some sorbitol as well.

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You don’t need much alternative sugar at all usually replacing just 1-2% of the sugar you’re adding with sorbitol or isomalt will prevent crystallization.

I would also ensure that you’re really thoroughly mixing your pectin/sugar/water solution. It wants to try its absolute hardest to form clumps, and that may be some of the issue you’re experiencing. Again though, my experience is mostly with slow set pectin. We find it is easier to work with.

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Thank you for your help! I do have some isomalt here that I can use today. I started out using rapid set in my earlier batches, but I’ve been having more success lately with the slow set.

Here’s how they are looking after sitting overnight.

Based on what I can tell, it looks like your Brix might be a bit high when you are pouring, the rough texture on top is a giveaway because it didn’t lay down flat when you scraped it.

We also sand the tops of our molds with a thin layer of sugar immediately following the pour and scrape because otherwise it may be difficult to get the sugar to adhere after they have been in the molds for an extended time.

Also remember that you need to sweat and dry your gummies before you package or they will fog up in the packaging.


You might see some very small improvement by letting it sit overnight, but if made correctly, the gummy should “set” within minutes. If its not right immediately, there is a problem with your recipe or method.

Add citric slowly while stirring like I said earlier.

Also add more water at the beginning to ensure pectin isn’t clumping. Will increase the time it takes to reach appropriate brix, but may also fix your problem.

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Also, in the op you say you feel like you can’t get ph low enough. Make sure your meter can handle extreme temps. Many cannot and will give incorrect readings.

Ph is logarithmic so going from 4 to 3 takes 10x more solution than going from 5 to 4, and so on.

I wouldn’t recommend trying to lower ph some well before adding citric. It may still work but you’ll be focusing on something that certainly isn’t the actual problem.

Also consider that adding more citric/water solution will decrease brix. Have rarely seen this be a problem but it could be.

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This is your problem

Hm100 is already ph balanced and has sodium citrate added, you will still have to mix it with sugar to make sure it doesnt clump whem heating it with the water


@Kingofthekush420 I have been using slow set pectin instead of rapid set in preparation for scaling up the formula for production.