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How to Prepare Chicken

Coating and Breading Chicken

Chicken is especially delicious when it's coated or breaded with flavorful ingredients before cooking. Yet too often, the delicious coating falls off and ends up in the pan instead of on the chicken. in this section, we'll show you how to coat and bread chicken.

Try It!
Here are some poultry recipes from our collection:

Breading Chicken

Bread chicken to provide a crisp outer layer. The crumbs may be seasoned with herbs for additional flavor.

To bread chicken:

  1. First, dip the pieces into a beaten egg that has been thinned with oil, water, or both, so it leaves only a thin layer of egg on the chicken.

  2. Hold the dipped piece over the bowl for a couple of seconds so the excess drips off.

  3. Roll the chicken through a shallow plate of flour or place the flour in a resealable plastic food storage bag.

  4. Add the chicken a few pieces at a time, seal the bag, and shake to coat the chicken.

Coating Chicken

As a general rule, chicken pieces should be thoroughly wiped dry with a paper towel so the coatings adhere, especially if the chicken has been marinated. Next, a thin coating of flour can help the breading stick better.

To coat chicken with a batter:

Dip each piece directly into the batter, or hold each piece over the bowl and use a spoon to pour the batter down over the chicken; shake off the excess. Or, to coat floured strips or chunks of chicken with a batter, use a fork to dip each piece in the batter and shake off the excess.

Use a fork to dip chicken chunks into batter.
©2006 Publications International, Ltd.
Use a fork to dip chicken chunks into batter.

Use your fingertips to dip larger pieces.

Light, dry coatings can be used with or without the flouring step outlined above. Dip the pieces in beaten egg or melted butter. Combine the coating ingredients in a large resealable plastic food storage bag. Add the chicken pieces a few at a time, closing tightly, and shaking to coat the chicken completely.

Add coatings by shaking the chicken in a sealed plastic bag to save on cleanup.
©2006 Publications International, Ltd.
Save on cleanup by coating chicken
in a plastic storage bag.

Hot Tip!
It's a good idea to let the coated or breaded chicken rest for about five minutes before cooking. This helps set the coating and bind it to the chicken.


To coat chicken with crushed nuts or coarse crumbs:

  1. Dip the floured chicken into a second bath of beaten egg or into mustard, yogurt, melted butter, or whatever wet mixture the recipe indicates.

    Coat the chicken pieces with a wet mixture, such as seasoned yogurt.
    ©2006 Publications International, Ltd.
    Coat the chicken pieces with a
    wet mixture,such as seasoned yogurt.

  2. Roll the pieces in the coating.

  3. Press the nuts or crumbs into the chicken with your fingertips to assure even coverage.

    Use your hands to sprinkle breading.
    ©2006 Publications International, Ltd.
    Use your hands to sprinkle breading.

    You now know how to coat and bread chicken, as well as how to soak it in tasty marinades. If you want to learn more about cooking chicken, check out our article on how to cook chicken. This will unlock a number of great easy chicken recipes for you to enjoy.

©Publications International, Ltd.