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Tips to get fried chicken batter to "stick" to skinless chicken?

Hi. I just made a delicious batch of skinless fried chicken, but the batter always slides off the chicken when I make it this way. Does anyone have any tips? I read on Cooks Illustrated that resting battered but not fried chicken helps.
I dredged in buttermilk and then in a mixture of flour. a bit of wondra (includes baking powder), salt, and seasonings. Came out gorgeous--crisp, flavorful, etc--but the chicken lost it's batter on the top and bottom as we ate! thanks in advance!

asked by ortolan about 1 year ago
6 answers 17345 views

Sam is a trusted home cook.

added about 1 year ago

Even with skin on chicken it's best to do a soak first.
Then the missing step you have is a 'dry dredge" of just seasoned flour before the "wet dredge"

The middle step of a dry dredge before the final dredge gives the batter something to hang on to.

SO, for that recipe it would be:
Wet...dry...back into wet and dry again. (although most traditional would have the final step a egg batter type wet batter)
Basically you gotta have a foundation of dry and then a repeat building of the wet and a final structure on top.

added about 1 year ago

I've had luck using a dry-wet-dry method. I take chicken breast or thighs (boneless and skinless) pounded flat and I cover them in flour, then I dunk them in well beaten eggs (with a little water), lastly I cover them in panko bread crumbs with assorted fresh herbs. Then I take the well covered chicken and cook in a liberal amount of oil. I've used this method very successfully for years. Good luck to you!

added about 1 year ago

You need to dredge your chicken pieces in seasoned flour as a FIRST step. Seasoning can include anything from paprika, through oregano to "whatever you like", but be sure to include salt & pepper. Your batter should also be seasoned to taste. Batters are enhanced by the addition of baking powder, beer, or, my personal favorite, cornstarch. This one " lightens" the batter.
Good luck!


pierino is a trusted source on General Cooking and Tough Love.

added about 1 year ago

That was meant to read "superfine" flour. And I have to add as a PS that I am no way, no how any big fan of Cooks Illustrated.

added 11 months ago

The real answer was revealed on one of the cooking shows by Cook's Illustrated this last week. To mix the dredge, you add some water and a titch of baking power (1/8th?, I'd use more, love the taste) to it just enough to make it floury/lumpy (little lumpy) then put in refrigerator for a time. How long, I don't remember but one could assume until it chilled and dried enough to stick together and to the chicken. Somebody who has a brain cell left, unlike myself, can give you the deets.