The objective of this research was to investigate the effects of different ingredients (reducing sugars, leavening agents, citric acid), processing conditions (feed moisture content, exit die temperature), and extrusion cooking methods (with/without CO2 injection) on furfural and 5-hydroxymethylfurfural (HMF) formation in corn-based extrudates. The decrease in furfural levels was 16% upon addition of sodium-bicarbonate, while the increase was 12% upon addition of ammonium-bicarbonate for extrudates produced at 150 degrees C and feed moisture content of 22%. The furfural concentration of extrudates produced at 150 degrees C and feed moisture content of 22% without leavening agents was 810 mu g/100 g and increased to 11,901 mu g/100 g upon citric acid addition (about a 15-fold increase). Furthermore, both low feed moisture and high exit die temperature had promoting effects on furfural and HMF contents. The CO2 injection method did not have considerable effect on furfural and HMF levels of the extrudates; however, it positively affected the physical properties of extrudates. (C) 2015 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.