Learn more about Yeast – 3 -How does Yeast Grow

How does yeast grow




  • To grow yeast, cells need food, warmth and moisture.
  • Food and liquid need to enter into the yeast cell.
  • The temperature needs to be favourable (lukewarm liquid or room temperature).
  • One yeast cell needs sugar + water + warmth.
  • The individual cell forms another cell within the mother cell.
  • They break apart and one cell produces 2 cells.

This process is referred to as "budding".

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Yeast grows through the process of fermentation:

  • Sugar is a form of food for yeast.
  • Yeast also feeds from sugar formed by the starch in flour.
  • There are 2 enzymes – maltase and diastase – which are present in flour.

The yeast breaks down the starch to maltose and glucose (sugar). The Yeast will feed from it, the maltose is used up quickly but the glucose remains present for a longer period.

A third enzyme, zymase, which is present in yeast, then breaks down the glucose and carbon dioxide and alcohol is formed.
A long fermentation process will cause the carbon dioxide and alcohol to turn into citric acid.

During fermentation of the dough the pH balance reduces, due to the by-products that are formed – f ermentation is best in slightly acidic dough.

The dough will increase in size and bubbles will be seen – the dough is now fully aerated.