AbstractRed maple, sweet gum, trembling aspen, red alder, and Eucalyptus globulus samples were pretreated with dilute sulfuric acid and green liquor before enzymatic saccharification. Substrates showed different levels of delignification and sugar recovery, depending on the applied pretreatments and the syringaldehyde/vanillin ratio (S/V). Three major conclusions were drawn in this research. First, lignin is the greatest contributor to recalcitrance of hardwood to enzymatic saccharification. Second, a high S/V ratio is a useful indicator of high delignification during a pretreatment process. Third, green liquor pretreatment is a promising pretreatment method because of a high delignification degree and sugar recovery. In addition, xylan also contributes to the recalcitrance of hardwoods toward enzymatic saccharification.