New Research Reveals Optimum ‘Dunking Time’ For Biscuits In A Cuppa

Photo by Rumman Amin on Unsplash

Top biscuit manufacturer, McVitie’s, has hired its first-ever Chief Dunking Officer, who has revealed exactly how long you should dip biscuits before they disintegrate into your brew.

McVitie’s Chief Dunking Officer, Dr Helen Pilcher believes each biscuit has a unique texture, structure, flavour, and size, which affects its so-called ‘dunkability.’

“The natural porosity of a biscuit makes it an ideal snack to be dipped into a drink and soak up all the deliciousness,” Dr Pilcher explained. “However, Brits are still susceptible to over-dunking their biscuits – which is why we have identified the Optimum Dunking Time and the Dunking Danger Zone for a range of McVitie’s classics.”

McVitie’s is the retailer behind some of the nation’s beloved biscuits including Digestives, Hobnobs, Gingernuts, Fruit Shortcakes, Rich Tea Biscuits, Jaffa Cakes, and Penguins.

According to Dr Pilcher’s ‘Biscuit Immersion’ study, the ‘perfect dunk’ is when a biscuit absorbs just enough liquid to give it added softness and flavour, but not so much that it becomes mushy.

When a biscuit is about to enter the ‘dunking danger zone,’ it exhibits at least one of three diagnostic warning signs: disintegration, bending and the appearance of fault lines or cracks.

“For the optimal dunking experience, it is crucial not to dunk beyond the dunking danger zone,” advises Dr Pilcher. “It’s utter dunking madness to enter this structurally dangerous territory.”

During the study, ten McVitie’s biscuit brands were put to the test: Digestives, Milk Chocolate Digestives, Milk Chocolate Caramel Digestives, Hobnobs, Milk Chocolate Hobnobs, Gingernuts, Fruit Shortcakes, Rich Tea Biscuits, Jaffa Cakes, and Penguins.

Each biscuit was dunked vertically, to its mid-point, in a mug of freshly prepared tea (milk, no sugar), maintained at a temperature of 60 to 65C.

Find out the perfect dunking time for your McVitie’s favourite:

Biscuit Optimal Dunking Time In Seconds Dunking Danger Zone In Seconds  
Ginger Nuts 0.3 7.3  
Fruit Shortcake 0.3 5.3  
Digestive 0.4 11.2  
Hobnobs 0.5 12.5  
Rich Tea 0.6 8.8  
Jaffa Cakes 0.6 9.2  
Milk Chocolate Digestive 3.6 12.0  
Milk Chocolate Hobnobs 3.7 19.5
Chocolate Caramel Digestive 5.0 40.1
Penguin 6.5 540.0