The efficiency of phospholipase and lipase preparations in the hydrolysis of lysophospholipids of native and gelatinized barley starch was examined. The degree of hydrolysis was analyzed by determination of the amount of released fatty acids by an enzymatic method. Thermal and structural properties of the enzyme‐treated starch were studied by differential scanning calorimetry and light microscopy. Lysophospholipids of the gelatinized barley starch were easily hydrolyzed, in contrast to the lipids of the granular starch. The maximum degree of hydrolysis achieved for the gelatinized starch was 80% and for the native starch ≈20%. Gelatinization enthalpies and micrographs indicated that even though the amount of the released fatty acids from the native starch was small, formation of free fatty acids inhibited swelling and gelatinization of starch granules.