The effects of soy flour (5%) and rice flour (5%) addition to the batter formulation on quality of deep-fat fried chicken nuggets were evaluated. Coating pick-up of batters, and moisture content, oil content, texture, color and porosity of nuggets were determined for 3, 6, 9 and 12 min of frying times at 180 degrees C. A batter formulation with no flour addition was used as control. Additionally, the rheological properties of batters were studied and coating pick-up was found to be directly proportional to batter viscosity. All batters were found to show thixotropic behavior. The batters were modeled as power-law fluids and all of them were shear-thinning. Soy flour provided the highest apparent viscosity and was found to be an effective ingredient in improving quality parameters in terms of crispness and color. Both soy flour and rice flour provided reduced oil absorption as compared to the control. (c) 2004 Elsevier Ltd. All rights reserved.