Why does by bite-sized tempura chicken turn soggy after some time? They are really light and crispy when I initially deep fry them, but they gradually becomes soggy after 15 to 20 minutes.

My chicken pieces are cut bite-sized and marinated for about 30 minutes with fresh minced garlic, chilli flakes, salt and lemon juice in the refrigerator.

I am using icy-cold batter with 1:1 ratio of flour and cornstarch mixed with refrigerated club soda and ice cubes with minimal mixing.

Once I am ready to fry, I take out the marinated chicken pieces, prepare a small quantity of icy-cold batter, dip chicken pieces in batter and drop them in hot oil. They come out wonderfully light and crisp but eventually turn out soggy if served after 15 minutes. I have also noticed that last few pieces of the chicken I fry don’t even come out light and crispy as the first ones.

What am I doing wrong?

  • also see cooking.stackexchange.com/questions/20297/…
    – rumtscho
    Commented Apr 30, 2015 at 10:45
  • Just as reassurance: it doesn't sound like you're doing anything wrong in the preparation, you're just asking for something that's nearly impossible. The crispy batter will continue to absorb moisture and it'll eventually go soggy - the only way to avoid this is to eat it as fresh as possible.
    – logophobe
    Commented Apr 30, 2015 at 14:49


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