The effects of consumption of a soup preload with added maltodextrin, relative to a no-maltodextrin control soup matched for sensory properties, on intake and the pattern of changes in rated hunger and fullness during lunch were investigated in 24 male volunteers. Preloads were consumed 30 min before lunch and condition-order counterbalanced. Intake at lunch was reduced significantly by 77 g (407 kJ) after the maltodextrin preload, and this reduced intake was associated with a significant reduction in eating rate but not meal duration. Hunger ratings were significantly lower, and fullness ratings significantly higher, at the start of lunch after the maltodextrin compared with control preload. However, the pattern of changes in subjective appetite once eating had started (assessed by analyzing best-fit quadratic functions between rated appetite and actual intake) did not differ between preloads. Neither the rated pleasantness of the lunch food at the start of the test meal nor the pattern of change in pleasantness across the meal differed between preloads. These results imply that the effect of maltodextrin preloads on appetite is to reduce the general desire to eat, and possible mechanisms for this effect are discussed.