Edible Gold Leaf – Everything You Need To Know!

Published Categorized as Journal

Edible gold leaf is one of the world’s most expensive food items and for good reason. Gold leaf is made of “real” gold, and is completely edible– if you can believe it! So, what exactly is gold leaf and how is it used to make glorious gold gourmet? Join me as I reveal that and more in today’s post.

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Edible Gold Leaf – Everything You Need To Know!

Table of Contents

What Is Edible Gold Leaf?

Edible gold leaf are edible gold leaf sheets or flakes that can be used for a variety of purposes. They are often used to decorate cakes and cupcakes, but they can also be used to add shimmer to virtually any food out there.

Foods that are lucky enough to be speckled with pure gold are often thought of to be extravagant, although some fast-food chains, such as Popeyes, have been known to dec out their food in gold flakes as well.

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What Is Edible Gold Leaf Made Of?

Edible gold leaf made of pure gold may contain small amounts of naturally occurring silver. Edible gold sheets or flakes are often sold as 24 karat gold. However, some may have fewer karats.

When consuming gold leaf that isn’t 24 karat gold you run the risk of the gold containing impurities.

Thus, it is recommended that you only purchase pure gold leaf that is a full 24 karats when you are able.

Is Gold Leaf Actually Edible?

Yes, gold leaf is actually edible!

Why is gold leaf edible? Because gold is known to be a non-reactive compound. This means it will do your body no harm if it is consumed. What’s more is that gold isn’t ever really absorbed by your digestive system, so you can expect those gold flakes to pass on through.

Thus, gold leaf is edible–which is really cool if you think about it! 

How Is Gold Leaf Edible?

Remember that gold leaf is edible because this kind of gold is chemically inert. However, you should know that in order for your gold leaf to be non-reactive within your body it must be as pure as possible. It is for this reason that you should only consume gold that is 23-24 karats. Anything lesser than this may yield impurities that could be harmful to your body.

Note: It is important to know that edible gold isn’t exactly the same as gold found in your jewelry. Gold that is used for jewelry making and other common purposes may contain metals that are harmful and toxic to human health. Rather, edible gold leaf is approved by the European Union as a food additive and has been considered non-toxic to the human body.

Is It Safe To Eat Gold Leaf?

It is completely safe to eat gold leaf. Because 23-24 karat gold leaf has been approved by the European Union as a food additive, you can safely consume the gold without the fear of getting sick.

Remember that an edible gold sheet or gold flakes aren’t the same as your golden necklace. Thus, I don’t recommend that you go chewing on your gold jewelry. Rather, gold leaf is thin, pure, and doesn’t contain other metals (other than a trace amount of pure silver) unlike traditional gold.

Edible Gold Leaf – Everything You Need To Know!

What Happens if You Eat Edible Gold Leaf?

Nothing will happen to you if you eat edible gold leaf. The gold will pass through your digestive system and then will be eliminated as waste. 

Also, because gold leaf isn’t absorbed by the digestive system, you shouldn’t expect to reap many health benefits from having consumed it. Instead, you may see specks of gold in your poo, but even this is doubtful.

The bottom line? Edible gold leaf is harmless and you shouldn’t expect to see any positive or negative effects from having eaten it.

What Does Gold Leaf Taste Like?

Edible gold leaf tastes like nothing.

Though you may expect something as sparkling and shimmering as edible gold leaf to taste like metal, the opposite is true.

Gold leaf doesn’t taste of anything. it is for this reason that it makes an excellent addition to ritzy dishes and fancy desserts. It looks great and doesn’t subtract from the flavor of the items that it’s garnishing.

Edible Gold Leaf – Everything You Need To Know!

Why Do People Eat Edible Gold Leaf?

There are some usual questions to ask, like why people eat cornstarch, or if you can eat rooster. But we’re talking about eating a metal here.

The main reason people eat gold leaf is that they wish to use it as decoration.

People that eat gold leaf aren’t likely doing it for health reasons. There are no known health benefits or dangers to eating gold leaf. In essence, eating gold leaf is neutral when it comes to boosting health.

Gold leaf is, however, very attractive when used atop food items. It gives whatever it graces a touch of splendor and magnificence. It is likely for this reason that gold leaf is so commonly consumed!

How Expensive Is Edible Gold Leaf?

Edible gold leaf ranges in price. The sheets are often sold in books of 10-100 in specialty shops and also online. Some books may only cost $8-25 for a booklet of 10, 24 karat gold sheets. However, prices may fluctuate depending on the market, availability, and the merchant.

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Why Is Gold Leaf So Cheap?

Gold leaf is really just gold that has been pounded thin enough for use on food. Thus, since the gold is so thin, you shouldn’t expect to pay for it the same price you might pay for pure gold jewelry.

Remember also that you can buy imitation gold leaf in stores and online. As you might imagine, these sheets and flakes often cost much less than their 24 karat pure gold counterparts. And they often look just as good!

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How To Apply Loose Leaf Edible Gold

Gold leaf applies best when a surface is somewhat sticky. When applying gold leaf to desserts, fancy cakes, or other food items, try your best not to use your hands for application. Tweezers can often work well. Some use also wax paper to help them further smooth the gold sheets once in place.

To get the sheets or flakes to stick, consider using maple syrup or a thin layer of water (hand-held steamers work well for this) to the top of the food items you are applying it to.

How To Use Edible Gold Leaf

Edible gold lead for cakes are often used. You can even make edible gold leaf steak, hamburger buns, chicken wings, and other items. You can add edible gold sheets to nearly anything. Just know that going overboard with it, especially if the edible gold lead is real gold, could get pricey over time.

Is It Difficult To Use Gold Leaf Sheets?

Gold edible sheets can be hard to use because you have to be careful not to ruin them. Sometimes the oil in your hands can cause them to stick to your skin. You can also blow them away with just a soft breath.

Thus, applying gold leaf can be tricky. But by using the right techniques, you’re sure to get the hang of it!

How to Make Edible Gold Leaf

As you might imagine, it’d be quite hard to make your own edible gold leaf at home from pure gold. You can, however, make your own imitation gold leaf sheets and flakes using edible metallic paint. For a tutorial on exactly how to do this using only a few ingredients, view the video below!

Edible Gold Leaf: A Dazzling Addition to Your Next Dish!

All in all, edible gold leaf is a glamorous way to add a little pizazz to your next dish. Whether you use a gold leaf sheet or use gold leaf flakes, you’re bound to wow your guests at your next formal get-together by opting to use these as decorations and accents.

What dish will you add your gold leaf to?

Until next time!

FAQs

Why is there no edible gold 24K?

There is gold leaf available in 24K. In fact, this is the recommended type of gold leaf to consume. Anything less than 23K is considered impure. Be sure to check online and in specialty shops to get your hands on the right gold leaf type.

Are gold leaf and silver leaf edible?

Yes, both gold and silver leaf are edible assuming that they are marked as such. If you stumble upon gold or silver leaf that isn’t marked as safe for eating, don’t attempt to consume it. Sometimes these kinds of gold and silver leaf are found in crafting sections of markets. Avoid using these for use in food dishes.

Is gold leaf safe for people suffering from allergies?

Consult with your doctor before consuming gold or silver leaf if you have allergies.

Why is gold leaf so cheap?

Pure gold leaf isn’t always cheap, especially when compared to the price of imitation gold leaf. Having said that, it is often significantly cheaper than gold jewelry or other items made of pure gold. This is likely because the sheets are so thin. Thus, you can take advantage of a lower price point for all of your food design needs!

Published
Categorized as Journal

By Anna

Hey, I’m Anna; writer, editor and amateur cook extraordinaire! Food has been my life and my passion for the most of my life – it’s crazy to think I didn’t pursue a career in cooking. I’m obsessed! However, keeping cooking as an obsessive hobby has worked for me – my passion grows as the years pass by – maybe I wouldn’t say the same if it was also my day job! I hope you find cooking inspiration, entertainment and “stop and think interesting tid-bits” throughout my writing – and I’d love to hear from you if you’ve got anything you want to share. Food feeds the soul – so get eating!

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