This study aimed to determine optimal extraction parameters by using response surface methodology, examining the effect of microencapsulation on crocin retention, and evaluating the temperature and pH stability of crocin microcapsules. The effect of process variables on the crocin yield was successfully determined by quadratic models (R-2>0.99 and adj R-2>0.98). All variables significantly affected the crocin yield (P<0.1). The process parameters, namely extraction time (4.40min), temperature (55 degrees C), amplitude level (94%), and liquid to solid ratio (L/S) (1000) were determined as optimum extraction points. Safranal was shown to be a compound with major volatility in both the saffron and microcapsule extracts. Safranal, 2,4,4-trimethyl-3-carboxaldehyde-5-hydroxy-2,5-cyclohexadiene-1-one, 4-hydroxy-2,6,6-trimethyl-1-cyclohexene-1-carboxaldehyde (HTCC), and isophorone were other major volatile compounds of saffron extract. The encapsulation process affected volatile percentage distribution insignificantly (P>0.05). The thermal and pH stability of the crocin was determined at different temperatures (60, 70, 80, and 90 degrees C) and pH levels (2, 4.5, and 6). The crocin degradation showed first order kinetic, and degradation rate constant (k) were significantly affected by pH and temperature (P<0.05). A high temperature and low pH showed higher degradation (k) in crocin content. This study suggested that crocin from saffron stigmas should be preserved by spray drying encapsulation and should only be used as a natural food colorant in low or moderate acid food.