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Amylose can also be described as a tightly-packed polysaccharide, which makes up 20% - 30% of any most starches.

Amylopectin, the other starch, makes up 70% - 80%. Amylopectin does gelatinze when cooked. 

Amylose is insoluble in water and more resistant to digestion than amylopectin. The higher the Amylose content that there is in a starch, the less expansion potential that that particular starch has. Amylose is broken down into Maltose and Maltotriose by the enzyme, α-amylase.

Long Grain White Rice has a high Amylose level which is why its grains retain their shape when cooked. Medium Grain Rice has a moderate amount of both Amylose and Amylopectin which is why they can gelatinize and become creamy, while still holding some of their shape. Short Grain Rice tends to be low in Amylose and high in Amylopectin which is why Short Grain Rices are almost all Sticky Rice


The specific starch composition varies from plant to plant and even from species to species. For example within Rice, Glutinous Rice is 0% Amylose and 100% Amylopectin and is known as Sticky RiceMedium Grain Rice tends to have a medium amount of Amylose and a medium amount of Amylopectin and is only moderately sticky. Long Grain Rice, generally, has much more Amylose and very little Amylopectin and is considered a Starchy Rice which means a "non-sticky" rice. Russet Potatoes, are also higher in Amylose.

Culinary Uses

In culinary and foods manufacturing, Amylose is an important thickener, stabilizer, and gelling agent.