The objective of this research was to tailor native tapioca starch by substitution reaction with propylene oxide and then by cross-linking reaction with sodium trimetaphosphate, for use as a thickening agent in low acid canned food. Tapioca starch (40% by dry starch basis, dsb.) was first modified with substitution reaction at pH 11.00±0.10. It was found that temperature (40℃, 50℃), amount of sodium carbonate (0.25, 2.70, %dsb.) and the interaction had significantly effect (p≤0.05) on hydroxypropyl content of the modified starch. At 50℃ amount of sodium carbonate had not significantly effect (p≤0.05) on average hydroxypropyl content. When starch was substituted at 50℃, with 0.25% Na₂Co₃, it found that amount of propylene oxide (5, 7.5, 10, %dsb.), reaction time (6, 12, 24 hrs.) and the interaction significantly increased (p≤0.05) hydroxypropyl content of the substituted starch. The hydroxypropyl starches had lower pasting temperatures and higher viscosity in heating-cooling cycle than native tapioca starch. Swelling power at 65℃ and 75℃ were increased but decreased at 85℃ and 95℃. The substituted starches showed good paste stability when storage at 5℃-7℃. Two hydroxypropyl starches (D.S. 0.047, 0.075), which showed high paste stability when storage at low temperature were chosen to modify with cross-linking reaction. It was found that phosphate content in the modified starch depended on D.S. and reaction time (1, 1.5, 2, 3, 4 hrs.). The hydroxypropyl cross-linked starches had higher pasting temperature and were more resistance to heat and shear force than the uncross-linked starch. Hydroxypropyl cross-linked starches which had low hot paste viscosity and high cold paste viscosity, native tapioca and corn starch were selected as thickening agents in a simulated low acid canned food. The result showed that native tapioca starch and hydroxypropyl cross-linked (D.S. 0.047 starch cross-linked 3 hrs.) had more rapid heat penetration than the others. The products which used hydroxypropyl cross-linked starch showed less viscosity change during storage at room temperature for 1 year than those using tapioca and corn starch.