Can You Fry Without Breading?

Last updated on July 25th, 2022 at 12:24 am

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Fried food is an excellent choice to eat when you go to enjoy a day at the fair or as a way to wind down after a long and stressful day of work. You can take almost any food and fry it. The fair is notorious for taking food that you may not have ever considered frying and frying it for you. 

Have you ever opened a pack of Oreos and thought to yourself, what would these taste like breaded and fried? Someone else did, and deep-fried Oreos are a great treat at the fair. 

The same can be said about Twinkies. When you unwrapped a Twinkie as a treat, did you think, how would this taste if I fried it? Again, deep-fried Twinkies are a great treat to enjoy while walking around the fairgrounds. 

What about bologna? You’re making a sandwich and after you’ve slathered on the mustard and mayonnaise you’re ready to add your meat. As you reach for that piece of bologna, did you stop to think what that bologna would taste like fried? No? Well, you can try it during the summer at the fairgrounds. 

You can take practically any food and make it fried. 

Some of the more common foods that you’re used to eating fried are chicken, fish, and cheese. Fried cheese and mozzarella sticks make for great appetizers before you enjoy your fried chicken dinner. If you have cheese at home, but no flour for breading, can you still fry it? 

Do you have to have a breading mixture on the cheese, chicken, or fish before frying it? 

You can fry food without the breading, but it will not taste the same. If you take chicken and place it in your pan to fry without breading, it will basically turn out like grilled chicken instead of fried chicken. The same goes for fish, you can fry fish, but without the breading, your fish will end up grilled instead of fried.

If you are looking for the crispy, greasiness that comes from frying, then yes you will need the breading. If you are looking for a healthier alternative to frying and don’t mind your food not being as crisp, you can fry the food in a pan with added oils or butter. 

Can You Skip Flour When Breading? 

Fried foods are an excellent choice for comfort foods. Eating a piece of crispy chicken or crispy cheese sticks is a great way to melt away the stress of the day. 

If you want to make your own fried foods at home but have no flour, is that okay?

Maybe you want to skip the flour process because you are trying to stay away from carbs or bread in general. If you are following a Keto diet, is it possible to still enjoy the crispiness of fried food without using any flour? 

Fried foods need some sort of breading to make them taste how they should. However, you don’t have to use flour and you can use other substitutes as breading instead of flour. 

There are a few different alternatives that you can use when you may not have flour or you are trying to avoid flour. 

Eggs and Breadcrumbs

If you are simply out of flour and not trying to avoid bread, this is the best option as a replacement for flour. Typically, you will use eggs and breadcrumbs on pork, fish, and eggplants to form a crust on the outside. 

You can also use this for chicken and any other fried foods as well. 

The only problem that comes with eggs and breadcrumbs is that the breadcrumbs tend to slide since the eggs are slippery. This method works the best in an air fryer or when you go to bake your fried chicken. 


Cornstarch has a corn flavor to it that can even enhance your fried food experience. Cornstarch is 100% gluten-free, so if you can’t have gluten, cornstarch is the perfect substitute for flour when frying. 

Rice Flour

Rice flour on its own isn’t that great, but it is a great substitute for flour in frying. Brown rice flour will add a nutty smell and flavor to your fried foods. 

Baking Powder

You will need to be careful not to dry out your meat when you use baking powder as a substitute for flour. You will get crispy, crunchy, and lightly fried food when you use baking powder as a substitute. You can also use baking powder mixed with any other flour substitutes; almond, chickpea, quinoa, and rice; for extra crispiness. 

Why Won’t Fried Chicken Get Crispy? 

Have you ever made fried chicken only to find that instead of a crispy layer of deliciousness, you are left with a layer of a soggy mess or just non-crispy chicken? Don’t worry, you are not alone. 

It can be frustrating, but here are a few different tips to help your chicken become crisp and avoid being soggy. 

Do not fry the chicken cold

If you start to bread your chicken straight from the fridge, you will not end up with crispy chicken. The cold chicken will drop the temperature of your oil which can lead to uneven cooking. 

It is best to allow your meat to sit at room temperature for a bit. This is why it’s important that your meat cooks evenly since the meat will have sat out for a bit. 

Do not skip the breading process

If you are trying to avoid bread and save a few carbs here and there, there are other ways to bread your chicken. You will not have a crispy chicken if you do not bread it. 

You will end up with a flavorful grilled chicken if there is no breading. 

Do not eyeball the temperature

The best way to know when your chicken is done cooking is with a meat thermometer. When you fry chicken, the outside may look crisp and ready to go, but the inside will still be raw. Instead of it being a soggy mess it’s a salmonella mess. 

The oil temperature must stay steady throughout the process to ensure that the chicken is cooking evenly. 

Do not put cooked chicken on paper towels

You may have a plate all ready to go with either cloth or paper napkins underneath to make it all look good when you serve the chicken, but that is soaking up all the grease. Allowing your chicken to cool on a surface that will absorb moisture will take away some sogginess of the chicken, but it might also take away some of the crispness too.

Final Thoughts

The next time you plan on frying some food, it is best to use breading. If you are wanting to avoid flour as the breading, there are a few different flour options that you can choose from instead. 


Hannah R.

Hey, I'm Hannah and I'm the founder of Get Eatin'.

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