What is Edible Gold? (History, Types & Nutritional Facts)

Some people love gold so much they’d it, literally! Just when you think you’ve seen it all on Instagram, someone decides to take his pictures eating golden food! And yes- it’s pure 24-karat gold they are eating. So you wonder, how is gold metal safe to eat? What are the nutritional facts of edible gold?

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What is edible gold? Edible gold E175 is an additive from pure gold that garnishes food items. Restaurants put flakes, leaves, or sheets of pure gold onto dessert candy or cocktails, and it’s eaten as a garnish on regular food.

In this article, find everything there is to know about edible gold.

History of Edible metals

Ancient Egyptians used edible gold more than 5,000 years ago. Egyptians believed that gold had spiritual, mental, and physical purification capabilities.

Alchemists in Egypt developed drinkable gold as part of medical attempts to rejuvenate the body. Some associated gold with gods and royalty, and edible gold was food for the gods.

Ancient Indians, Chinese, and Japanese also used gold for food and medical purposes. Many European kings of the Middle Ages loved to eat gold as a food decoration.

Some Europeans believed that edible gold cured arthritis. The father of modern pharmacology, Paracelsus, developed several medicines that contained edible gold.

Then, in the 20th-century, people started taking gold in high-end food, medicine, and supplements to refill body minerals.

Today, edible gold represents a high-end extravagant culture. Authorities in Europe and the United States acknowledge edible gold as a food additive  E175.

In the Haute extravagant cuisine (not the movie), people eat gold in cookies, decorations, ice cream, alcoholic drinks, and sushi garnishment.

Types of Edible Gold

Edible gold is basically 99.9% of the pure metal in a powdered or paste form. The 23 or 24 karat gold is then applied onto cookies, meat, and candy, as well as other forms of food.

Here are popular types of edible gold.

1. Gold leafs

Gold leafs 1
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Gold leaf forms a layer or sheet of gold onto food products. The thin sheets of pure gold garnish the main dish for festivity and luxurious purposes.

The Samurai of Japan have craftsman’s that make green tea with pieces of gold leaves. Then, some alcoholic drinks in Europe contain floating pieces of Gold Leaf.

 

2. Gold Flakes

Gold Flakes
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If you want to decorate your wedding or birthday cake with gold, the flakes are what you’d look for. Some companies actually manufacture gold-flaked cigarettes.

 

3. Gold petals

Gold petals
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Gold petals appear as flowers on sushi or candy. The pure metal comes in small chewable pieces that decorate food.

 

4. Gold dust

Gold dust
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If you want finer details and designs for your gold food decorations, try the dust. Gold dust lets you form a paste and paint it over candy cakes and strawberries! The result is a picturesque meal that’s delicious, too!

 

5. Edible Gold shapes

Edible Gold shapes
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Sometimes you want to have a beautiful shape on your food, but it’s too complex. So, you get a ready-made gold shape and place it on your cake or other food.

Edible gold shapes come in different forms, sizes, and shapes. You can have the star, heart, aces, maple leaf, square, or other shapes.

Types of Foods With Edible Gold

Cakes, desserts, and some cocktails are the main types of food that have edible gold. The gold garnish gives these edible items a wow factor.

High-end Bakeries and wineries have been producing edible gold foods for many years. The trend is shifting to restaurants targeting customers with deep wallets and extreme love for gold.

The Brooklyn Magazine’s editor terms edible gold as “a product of the Instagram cuisines”. In short, most people want edible gold for the pictures and vast multitudes of followers and likes it attracts on social media.

But, we cannot dismiss the fact that genuine gold enthusiasts don’t care whether social media platforms exist! They ate gold five thousand years ago, and they’d do it again today!

But where can I order edible food?

Here is a list of restaurants that sell dishes containing edible gold.

Frrrozen Hot Chocolate, The Serendipity 3

Frrrozen Hot Chocolate holds the Guinness record for the most expensive dessert.

The Serendipity 3 is a New York-based restaurant popular for its gold foods. The Frrrozen Hot Chocolate costs $25000 and contains 5g of 23-carat gold. The restaurant serves the dessert in a goblet of edible gold. That’s how the sundae dessert won a Guinness World Record for its exorbitant price.

The Manila Social Club

The Manila Social Club is a popular restaurant in Williamsburg with thousands of followers on Instagram. The Miami-based inn boasts the Golden Cristal Ube golden donuts that cost a whopping $1,200.

The Lord Dudley Hotel

Located in Woollahra in Australia, the Lord Dudley Hotel sells the Posh Pie at a staggering $12,000AUS. The meal contains beef cuts, lobsters and winter black truffles with 23-karat gold leaf.

Nestle Australia

Nestle Australia celebrated the Chinese New Year of 2016 by creating a KitKat bus made of edible gold. The exclusive limited-edition cost 88 Australian Dollars, and it’s such a modest price tag.

Phat Stacks Burgers

Victorians haven’t been left out of the edible gold rush. The Phat Stacks Burgers restaurant makes the Golden Phat Stack Burgers with beef patties, bacon, cheese, and fried chicken with a 24-carat gold cap.

Nutritional Facts of Edible Gold

Nutritional Facts of Edible Gold
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Edible gold is an expensive treat. If you eat the gold dust strawberries above, you will get nutritional benefits from the berry and not the metal.

Sorry to heartbreak you, but the gold has no health or nutritional benefits to offer to your body. Gold is a chemically and biologically inert metal. As long as it is pure, your body cannot break it down.

In short, when you eat gold food, the metal will get out of your body without being absorbed. The code E-175 food additive is biologically inactive and will not oxidize in your body.

Instead, the body treats it as a waste product and pushes it through your alimentary canal, awaiting you to go to the toilet.

Is edible gold safe?

Edible gold is safe to eat. The digestion process in human beings does not support noble metals like gold.

So, it’s like swallowing a piece of jewelry. The piece will not hurt you unless the size or shape has large sharp edges.

Fortunately, the particle size of edible gold is so tiny that it’s measured with the nanoscale. The largest particle of gold food additives should be 1/8000 of a millimeter.

The dimensions of the gold leaf vary. But, the metrics in America and Europe insist that the additive particles have to be safely tiny.

However, it’s worth mentioning that edible gold is only safe if it is 23 to 24 carrots. In short, you have to aim at finding a gold purity that hits a hundred percent.

If the gold is impure or has other impurities such as nickel, it could cause allergic reactions to your body.

 

FAQ

What’s the taste of edible gold?

Edible gold is tasteless. It tastes nothing, but you can feel a slight texture of the solid. In short, gold leaf, pastes, and shapes are neither sweet nor sour.

The shiny yellow metal adds nothing to the taste of your food other than the excessive glitter.  So, you don’t eat gold foods for their delicacy- you eat them for the prestige they are associated with.

How do chefs prepare food from edible gold?

Edible gold recipes are delicate because the metal can easily tear. Even your breath is enough to distort the design. So, every touch has to be well calculated.

During the preparation of edible gold recipes, the chef needs proper equipment such as razors, dry paintbrushes, and paring knives to handle the gold. Gold leaf tends to stick on surfaces, and the chef has to stick the sheet to the food item.

How is edible gold eaten?

Edible gold is eaten in cookies, cakes, chocolate and candy as a garnish. Typically, the metal garnishes food in Vax, leaves, flakes, and gold dust paste.

Chefs use the E-175 as the ingredient at the top. It comes in different sizes and shapes.

The Indian royal culture has gold dust as part of its list of food additives. They believe that once they add dust to their food, it boosts their health and intelligence. So, Indian royalties mix the gold dust with herbs and spices.

Is Edible Gold Recyclable?

Can you take edible gold from food to make ornaments? Can you get pure gold from the food items and resell them?

Many people would like to know whether they can reuse edible gold. And yes, you can, but you’d need to do too much work.

First, the amount of pure gold that garnishes food items is small. Then, people don’t eat gold to reuse it. It’s a body waste in the end.

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