Instant Potato Flakes Are What You Need For The Crunchiest Fried Chicken

Fried chicken may be a staple comfort food, but every home cook and restaurateur has their own unique recipe. No matter who you are, one thing remains the same for all fried chicken — it needs to have a crispy, crackling, crust. Depending on who you ask, the secret to achieving a crispy crust can range from a double dredge to choosing the right coating. An unexpected, but mighty ingredient to achieve the crispest shards of chicken skin is instant potato flakes. While traditionally used as an easy way to make mashed potatoes by just adding water, the flakes can be used in a ton of other recipes.

If you're wondering how potato flakes are made, it's actually quite a process. Essentially, real potatoes are scrubbed, cooked, then mashed. After they are mashed, the spuds are dehydrated and smashed to create tiny flakes. The flakes resemble the texture of breadcrumbs, which makes it perfect to coat things like chicken. Much like breadcrumbs, potato flakes become extra crispy when deep-fried. To make the fried chicken, All Recipes suggests coating the chicken in a milk and egg mixture, before dunking the chicken into the potato flakes. The chicken is fried in hot oil, resulting in an extra crispy exterior.

Potato flakes have several uses

Potato flakes are great for a fried chicken coating when they are deep fried because frying helps to enhance crispiness. However, potato flakes also work as a great crispy coating when oven baked. If you're craving the crunch of fried chicken, but don't want to deal with the hassle and cleanup of deep frying, simply coat the chicken in melted butter, roll it in potato flakes, and bake. Potato flakes act in a similar way to potato starch, and when used on their own, or mixed with flour, create a nice crunchy coating for a variety of dishes.

For those who are gluten-free, but still want to enjoy crunchy, crispy, deliciousness, potato flakes can be a lifesaver. Since they're essentially dehydrated potatoes, flakes are naturally gluten-free. Potato flakes are sold plain ,but also are sold with garlic flavor, eliminating the step of adding extra seasoning. If you think coating or breading foods with instant potato flakes is your only option, think again. Potato flakes make a great thickener for soups or stews or as a binder in things like meatloaf and burgers. You can even make potato bread with potato starch, which results in a fluffy, pillowy, dough.