Evaluating the taste-masking ability and sensory attributes of alginate-encapsulated black seed oil


  • Hamzeh Alkhatib Department of Pharmaceutical Technology, Faculty of Pharmacy, University College of MAIWP International, 68100 Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia.
  • Awis Sukarni Mohmad Sabere Department of Pharmaceutical Chemistry, Kulliyyah of Pharmacy, International Islamic University Malaysia, 25200 Kuantan, Pahang, Malaysia.
  • Asween R. Sani Department of Basic Health Science & Pharmacology
  • Muhammad Eid Akkawi Department of Pharmacy Practice, Kulliyyah of Pharmacy, International Islamic University Malaysia, 25200, Kuantan, Pahang, Malaysia.
  • Farahidah Mohamed Department of Pharmaceutical Technology, Kulliyyah of Pharmacy, International Islamic University Malaysia, Jalan Sultan Ahmad Shah, 25200 Kuantan, Pahang, Malaysia.
  • Abd Almonem Doolaanea Sabrena Experience, 1500 Dragon Street, Suite 160 Dallas, Tx 75207, USA.




Taste-masking, Palatability, Nigella sativa oil, Alginate beads, Ionic gelation


Introduction:  This study aimed to evaluate the sensory attributes of alginate-encapsulated black seed oil in 12 healthy volunteers. Black seed oil, derived from Nigella sativa seeds, is known for its therapeutic properties but is characterized by a pungent taste. Alginate, a hydrophilic polysaccharide polymer derived from brown seaweeds, forms water-insoluble gels in the presence of divalent metal ions such as calcium ions. Alginate finds applications in various fields, including food, pharmaceuticals, and biotechnology engineering.

Method:  The ionic gelation method was employed to encapsulate black seed oil within alginate beads for taste-masking and to enhance its sensory characteristics. Sensory analysis was conducted to assess the smell, taste, taste masking, aftertaste, and texture acceptability of different formulations, including blank beads (negative control), black seed oil (positive control), black seed oil-alginate beads with and without added flavours (vanilla, chocolate, orange, and sugar), in both dried and wet forms, and a commercial black seed oil soft-gelatine capsule.

Results: The results showed that encapsulating black seed oil within alginate beads significantly improved its taste and aftertaste, and the addition of flavours further enhanced the smell. Vanilla and orange flavours were found to be the most effective in improving palatability and taste masking ability of the beads in both wet and dried forms, surpassing sugar and chocolate flavours. However, sugar is preferred in the dried form alone.

Conclusion:  Overall, the study demonstrated the potential of alginate encapsulation to mask the taste of black seed oil and improve its sensory attributes, offering broad applications for enhancing the palatability of other unpleasant bio-compounds.


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How to Cite

Alkhatib, H., Mohmad Sabere, A. S., R. Sani, A., Akkawi, M. E., Mohamed, F., & Doolaanea, A. A. (2024). Evaluating the taste-masking ability and sensory attributes of alginate-encapsulated black seed oil. Journal of Pharmacy, 4(1), 82–91. https://doi.org/10.31436/jop.v4i1.260



Original Articles