What Is Crispy Flour? (What Is It Made Of, What’s It For, Substitutes + Taste) 

While flour is a popular ingredient used in many baking recipes, flour is also commonly used for cooking to make food crispy, which some people may call “crispy flour.”

If you have never heard of crispy flour before, you may be curious as to what crispy flour is. I did the research, and here is what I learned!

What Is Crispy Flour?

Crispy flour is not a specific type of flour because crispy flour refers to any flour or mixture that contains flour used to coat food before frying to create a crispy texture. Almost any type of flour can be used to make crispy flour, but some popular options include rice flour with cornstarch.

Do you want to learn how frying flour becomes crispy, how you should use crispy flour, and what the best flour for frying is? Keep reading!

What Exactly Is Crispy Flour?

Crispy flour is a term used to call certain flour or mixtures with flour that are used to coat food to help create crispy textures.

Generally, crispy flour is not considered a type of flour, but many people like to call flour “crispy flour” if they are using the flour specifically to make fried food crispy.

What Is Crispy Flour Made Of?

Technically, there is no exact recipe for crispy flour since crispy flour is not a type of flour, but it references any flour or mixture with flour used to make food crispy.

However, most crispy flour may simply be plain flour, such as white wheat flour.

Although, other types of flour, which includes rice flour and potato flour, are popularly used to create crispy flour since rice flour can give more “crunch” than wheat flour.

It is also very common for people to mix flour with other ingredients, such as cornstarch, to enhance the crispiness of their crispy flour.

For instance, mixing cornstarch with rice flour is a very popular recipe for crispy flour because it creates a very crispy yet light and thin coating.

What Is Crispy Flour Used For?

Crispy flour is used for any recipe as a coating for other ingredients, and the coating creates a crispy texture once the ingredients are dried.

For instance, most fried chicken recipes have a flour coating that the chicken gets dipped into right before frying the chicken, and the fried flour creates a crunchy texture around the chicken.

Occasionally, some recipes may only use flour to make food crispy before frying, or the crispy flour may be part of a process of steps.

For example, tonkatsu is a Japanese fried pork dish that involves dipping pork into flour, egg, then breadcrumbs.

How Do You Use Crispy Flour?

Generally, you can use crispy flour by dipping your food into any desired flour before frying the food.

For instance, you can take a piece of raw, cleaned chicken and roll the chicken in flour, patting the flour into the chicken to make sure the flour sticks then shaking any excess flour off of the chicken.

What Makes Frying Flour Crispy?

What Makes Frying Flour Crispy?

Flour works as a helpful ingredient to enhance crispiness when frying food since starchy ingredients work best.

Water boils and tries to emerge to the surface when you fry food, so there needs to be a barrier between the water and hot oil to create a dry, crispy crust.

Normally, flour is the chosen starchy barrier between the water and hot oil, which protects the moisture in your food while the starchy flour dries up and crispens.

Does Corn Flour Make Things Crispy?

It may be possible to use cornflour as a coating for fried food, but cornflour is rarely used to make things crispy.

Generally, cornflour is a very fine and soft powder that creates tender and crumbly recipes, such as cornbread, muffins, and pancakes.

Therefore, corn flour is usually not an ideal ingredient for crispy flour coatings, and people opt to use other flours and cornstarch instead.

Does Baking Powder Make Things Crispy?

Baking powder can make things crispy, and baking powder is a common ingredient for crispy flour and frying batter.

Generally, baking powder is alkaline, meaning baking powder can raise the pH of foods like chicken skin, which breaks proteins down to create crispy and brown exteriors.

Additionally, baking powder is well-loved for frying batter recipes because if the batter sits on the food in the fridge for a while, the baking powder will create bubbles to increase the surface area and texture of the food.

Does Baking Soda Make Things Crispy?

Baking soda does not make things crispy because baking soda does not possess the same qualities as baking powder, which is what can help make food crispy.

However, baking soda may be present in some recipes before frying, particularly meat-based recipes, because baking soda is a tenderizer, which can keep the interior of fried food moist and soft.

What Flour Is Best For Frying?

All-purpose flour is regarded as one of the best types of flour for frying since all-purpose flour has a neutral flavor (making it great to mix with spices and herbs) and creates a golden-brown color.

Moreover, all-purpose flour may be better for certain fried meat recipes because all-purpose flour can withstand head well, creating an even and crunchy coating while cooking the meat through.

However, another well-loved flour used for frying is rice flour, especially if you are frying food that does not need to be cooked for long periods.

For instance, rice flour creates a thin yet crunchy coating that is perfect for fried veggies, shrimp, and more.

Which Is Crispier, Flour Or Cornstarch?

Generally, cornstarch is crispier than flour because cornstarch absorbs the food’s moisture and expands, creating a crispier coating than flour.

Moreover, cornstarch leaves a puffy, crackling coating on food because moisture gets cooked out of the food once the food has been fried.

If you wish to know what cricket flour is, what cupcake flour is, and what cultured wheat flour is, read our other articles.


Crispy flour is a term used to call any flour or mixture that has flour that is meant to coat food before frying, and crispy flour creates a crunchy exterior on food once fried.

Typically, almost any kind of flour can be used to create crispy flour, but popular options for flour include all-purpose flour and rice flour.

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