General Question

Zone36's avatar

How do I keep my chicken breast meat moist?

Asked by Zone36 (408 points ) March 13th, 2010

I want to make a chicken and vegetable stir fry. I will be cutting the chicken into small chunks. How and when do I put it in to keep if from becoming dry rubber?

Can I prep it any way?

Can I make them really small chunks and just put them in at the end?

They are skinless.

Observing members: 0 Composing members: 0

18 Answers

shf84's avatar

I always had good luck baking chickens in the microwave the breast is usually quite moist that way

tragiclikebowie's avatar

Brine it first.

davidbetterman's avatar

Just don’t overcook it and it will be tender, moist and delicious.

Zone36's avatar

Well I’d like to know when it would be good to do.

Like I know if I toss them in before the veggies they will be well overdone when I’m finished.

And maybe at the very end might keep the veggies too long while I try to cook the bacteria out.

davidbetterman's avatar

@Zone36 So just cook them separately, leave them on the side, and when the veggies are done, toss them back in.

Buttonstc's avatar

TLB has the right idea. You can use just salt and water or other seasonings as well.

I don’t have the proportions right off the top of my head, but it’s a fairly standard ratio and just googling it should give you several foodie websites.

You can either soak them in the brine overnight or for just several hours.

Then cut into chunks or strips.

YARNLADY's avatar

I always cook mine separately, and then stir them together after the fact, just before serving with rice or noodles.

rooeytoo's avatar

In Chinese restaurants they usually do the chicken first, then set it aside to rest, they then do the veg in the same wok as they had done the chicken, it is all cooked so there is no cross contamination. When the veg are done chuck the chicken back in, add sauce if you are doing so and there you are. The chicken only gets dried out or rubbery if you cook it too long.

That’s the way I do all stir-frys at home and it hasn’t killed me yet!

Haleth's avatar

Cut it into small pieces and then cook it at a very high temperature for a low amount of time. Coat the bottom of the pan with a decent amount of oil and pan sear it. No matter what you do, though, chicken breast is usually way more dry than dark meat cuts of chicken. I usually cook with chicken thigh.

partyparty's avatar

Why not marinade the chicken first. Here is a good one for chicken;

1½ cups vegetable oil
¾ cup soy sauce
½ cup Worcestershire sauce
½ cup red wine vinegar
⅓ cup lemon juice
2 tablespoons dry mustard
salt, pepper

You can guarantee the chicken will be moist if you use this method.

stranger_in_a_strange_land's avatar

Stir-frying is a very quick process. Just cut up the pieces to size no larger than the vegetables you’ll be cooking it with. It will all cook at the same rate and come out perfectly. As long as you don’t overcook the whole dish, everything will be fine. If you wish, you could precook the chicken pieces in chicken broth in the wok before stir frying the veggies, then add the chicken only for the last few seconds of stir-frying.

janbb's avatar

There is a process used in Chinese cooking called velveting the chicken. It is soaked in a cornstarch mixture for a time and then partially pre-cooked before the stir-frying. I am on vacation and don’t have my cookbook here but it is amazing how moist and tender the chicken remains. You should be able to find the instructions online if you Google “velveting chicken” or “Chinese cooking and velveting chicken.” There is also a method for velveting in water that works fine too. It’s the best way I know to keep chicken moist and not difficult at all.

filmfann's avatar

If you bake it first, add a bit of mayonese to it before you bake it, perhaps ⅓ cup for a full chicken.

skfinkel's avatar

What you don’t want to do is put in raw chicken after the vegies are cooked. Cooking them separately is probably best. And a marinade would be good too. Looks like you have some suggestions above.

john65pennington's avatar

Crock Pot. overnight cooking in a cream soup and water will do the trick. your gonna love it and its very simple.

nisse's avatar

If you are frying it, USE A LID. Preserves the moistness alot better.

Cheeseball451's avatar

Water seems to do the trick.

maried63's avatar

I had the same problem until a few months ago when a chines cook let me know what to do. For ever pound of chicken, add one tablespoon of cornstarch (you can dry season it if you’d like) and mix until coated (it’ll seem a little messy looking… mine always does, but its ok) then pan/stir fry alone, place aside, do vegetables or cook what ever it is that you’re putting with it, then ad the chicken back in for a minute before serving. I couldn’t believe WHAT A DIFFERENCE in moistness it made until I tried it.

Answer this question




to answer.

This question is in the General Section. Responses must be helpful and on-topic.

Your answer will be saved while you login or join.

Have a question? Ask Fluther!

What do you know more about?
Knowledge Networking @ Fluther