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How to Make Bread Crumbs Stick to Chicken

Updated July 20, 2017

The breaded chicken you eat in restaurants always seems perfect. The coating sticks to the chicken and stays crispy, while the meat is tender and moist. Believe it or not you can perform such culinary magic with your chicken at home. A few simple ingredients and a few extra steps in the process of preparation is all it takes to make your chicken extra crisp and completely delicious.

Use a paper towel to soak up any excess moisture on the chicken. A wet surface is one of the reasons that breading fails to stick.

If you are cooking chicken breast, flatten it so that it cooks uniformly without burning any of the coating. Place the breast between two sheets of cling wrap and pound with it with a meat mallet or a rolling pin.

Coat the chicken in flour seasoned with salt and pepper. This is the integral step that most people leave out. The egg wash is going to need to stick to something, and that something is the flour. Make sure each piece of chicken is covered in it. Shake off the excess.

Beat the eggs lightly with a little bit of water. Froth will keep the breadcrumbs from grabbing hold of the eggs. Dip the chicken in the egg wash.

Press each side of the chicken firmly into a pile of breadcrumbs. Panko breadcrumbs stay extra crispy and you can cook them at higher temperatures than regular breadcrumbs. Find them in the Asian section of the grocery store. Let the chicken sit for five to 10 minutes before cooking to allow the egg to dry and further cement the breading.

Pour enough oil in the pan to come halfway up the side of the chicken. Heat to 176 degrees C before you add the chicken.

Carefully set the meat in the hot oil, avoiding splatters. Don't overcrowd the pan. Too much chicken will cause the temperature of the oil to drop and soak into the breading, making it soggy. Cook the chicken in batches if you must.

Once the pieces are dark golden brown in colour, take them out of the pan and place between two paper towels to absorb excess grease.

Tip

Try substituting 1/4 of the breadcrumbs with grated Parmesan cheese. For a healthier option, bake the chicken in a 375-degree oven for about 40 minutes.

Warning

Undercooked chicken can cause food poisoning. If you have any doubt that you've cooked it completely, check the temperature with a food thermometer. It should be no less than 73.9 degrees C.

Things You'll Need

  • Chicken breasts or wings
  • Flour
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • Eggs
  • Water
  • Panko breadcrumbs
  • Vegetable oil
  • Paper towels
  • Cling wrap
  • Meat mallet or rolling pin
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About the Author

Justin Friedman received his M.F.A. in creative writing from American University where he completed work on his first novel, Thaw. He has been a working writer since 2001 when he started writing for the Boston-based music magazine, Skope. Since then he has continued to write about music for Brightestyoungthings.com and Maingig.com.