Pronunciation: [GLIH-ser-ihn]

The commercial name for glycerol, a colorless, odorless, syrupy liquid—chemically, an alcohol—obtained from fats and oils and used to retain moisture and add sweetness to foods. It also helps prevent sugar crystallization in foods like candy. Outside the world of food, glycerin is used in cosmetics, inks and certain glues.

From The Food Lover's Companion, Fourth edition by Sharon Tyler Herbst and Ron Herbst. Copyright © 2007, 2001, 1995, 1990 by Barron's Educational Series, Inc.

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