Purpose: The purpose of this paper is to divulge the current knowledge about the nutritional and functional characteristics of Cañihua (Chenopodium pallidicaule Aellen), in addition to its potential applications in the food industry since research studies related to it are still limited compared to other cereals of greater diffusion. Design/methodology/approach: The scientific information was collected from Web of Science, Scopus and Google Scholar databases, using keywords such as nutrition value of Chenopodium pallidicaule, amaranth and pseudocereals. Consistent information was selected according to its relevance, year of publication and accuracy with the topic. A total of 49 research papers were selected. Findings: Cañihua is a grain with high nutritional potential, considered a superfood because it has a high protein quality, a balanced composition of essential amino acids and unsaturated fatty acids, with a high concentration of linoleic and oleic acid. Besides, it has a good level of bioactive compounds with high antioxidant capacity. However, its production and consumption are limited outside its area of origin, although its cultivation is possible under harsh conditions. Originality/value: This paper, through a systematic bibliographic review, highlights the potential of cañihua to be considered in the development of food products with high nutritional and functional value. The information compiled will help researchers and professionals become aware of the importance of this grain and join forces in its processing and enhancement of its attributes.
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- Bioactive compounds
- Food industry
- Functional food