Make Your Chicken Breading Actually Stick With One Extra Ingredient

After dredging some soon-to-be crispy fried chicken in flour and dipping it in an egg wash, you'd expect the breading to stick fast to the chicken pieces after all the trouble you've gone through prepping them. But then ... the chicken just doesn't stick no matter how much you ground it into the breading mix. It's a very common problem that's frustrating anytime it happens. Fortunately, there's an easy fix: Add starch!


The reason your chickens stick better to breading after you've dredged it in flour lies in the flour's starch content. Starch loves moisture — it pulls every bit of excess moisture from the egg wash and the chicken's own juices to turn into a sticky, glue-like substance that'll work far better as an adhesive than either the flour or egg wash on their own.

So, if your chicken isn't taking too well to the breading, add a dash of extra cornstarch into the flour mix and roll the chicken in it again. It'll make a world of difference.

Starch can give your chickens a sticky boost

Cornstarch is nearly pure starch — the key ingredient that allows flour to become sticky when mixed with moisture. By adding it to the flour mix you use for dredging your chicken, you can give its adhesiveness a huge upgrade. For every half cup of flour, adding about 2 teaspoons of cornstarch (8% to 10% of the flour's weight) is a great rule of thumb if you're planning on trying this trick.


But don't feel like you have to stick to cornstarch! Any type of starch will do. Potato starch, for instance, not only excels in binding and thickening but also gives your breading a light, crispy texture. Similarly, rice and tapioca starch are excellent alternatives. Knowing how to cook with tapioca opens up a whole world of recipes and substitutes — including when it comes to chicken. Rice starch is particularly beneficial for those with allergies to corn or potatoes. It's hypoallergenic, making it a fantastic option for anyone who might experience stomach issues from starchy foods.