Cornstarch is made from the starchy part of the corn kernel called the endosperm. It provides a gluten-free method of thickening sauces, gravies, puddings and pies with similar results to flour. Cornstarch has some advantages over flour; it produces a shinier end product and adds very little taste, which allows the flavor of the food to remain unaffected. Using cornstarch is not difficult if you follow a few simple steps.

Things You'll Need

Cook and season your recipe fully before thickening. Cornstarch will not add flavor to your finished product, so adjust your flavors accordingly.

Measure 1 tbsp. cornstarch for every cup of hot liquid to be thickened and place it in a small measuring cup or dish.

Combine 2 tbsp. cold water per tablespoon of cornstarch and stir until well combined, forming a slurry. It is important to use cold water because hot water will cause lumps to form.

Bring your recipe to a low boil. Add slurry slowly, stirring constantly to avoid creating lumps.

Allow your recipe to boil for about 1 minute or until thickened. Extended boiling after thickening may actually cause your recipe to thin.


  • When reheating leftovers, use medium-low or medium heat to avoid thinning.

  • Avoid vigorous stirring during the thickening process. Stir gently.