New chips and other fried or baked snacks and/or convenience foods — including sweet goods such as cookies and donuts — are externally coated with or have directly incorporated into their dough matrix certain starch-based compositions. As external coatings, the compositions significantly increase the crispness and tensile strength of the snack after it is cooked. It changes the organoleptic qualities to provide a new form of the underlying food product. On sweet goods, the coating provides a surface barrier that stabilizes sugar icing on the outside of the product, preventing it from becoming tacky, moist or wet, while simultaneously reducing moisture loss from the dough, adding crispness at the surface and greatly retarding staling.