Several pieces of crispy fried chicken on a white plate
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Crispy Fried Chicken

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One of my favorite chicken dishes to make and eat is this crispy fried chicken recipe. Crispy fried chicken is one of the ultimate comfort foods here in the United States. And oh yeah, it is so comforting especially served with creamy mashed potatoes or homemade French fries.

Growing up there were two things I love, and still love, crispy fried chicken and hamburgers. If you wanted to make me happy in those days, McDonald’s or KFC was the way to go. My tastes in fast food have changed a bit, but still love burgers and fried chicken.

I am a huge fan of chicken and this recipe really hits the spot. If you are craving homemade crispy fried chicken, try this recipe out! If I can do it, you can do it. Let’s get started!

Step 1: Gather the ingredients

Bowls of chicken, flour, buttermilk, canola oil, and other ingredients on a wooden table.

In order to make delicious crispy fried chicken at home you need just a handful of everyday ingredients:

  • Chicken – Thawed drumsticks, wings, and thighs.
  • Buttermilk – I love a good buttermilk soak, but pickle juice works really well as well.
  • Flour – All-purpose flour
  • Cornstarch – Optional, but it really helps to make the chicken extra crispy.
  • Salt
  • Garlic powder
  • Paprika – Smoked, if possible
  • Ground black pepper
  • Cayenne pepper or chili powder – If you want them to be spicy, optional.
  • Hot sauce – to go in the buttermilk, optional for more spicy fried chicken.
  • Oil for frying – Vegetable, canola, peanut, avocado, lard, coconut, etc.
crispy fried chicken on a plate.

Tools

  • Bowls
  • Tongs
  • Sheet pan
  • Parchment paper or a silicone mat
  • Wire rack
  • Candy thermometer
  • Deep fryer or pot/skillet – I don’t always use my deep fryer, normally I just use my enameled dutch oven.

Step 2: How to make crispy fried chicken at home

Pouring buttermilk in a bowl of chicken drumsticks and things.

Take a large bowl and add thawed out chicken wings, thighs, and or drumsticks to it. Cover the chicken with buttermilk or you can use pickle juice. If you would like to add some kick to the chicken, add a some hot sauce to the buttermilk.

Cover the bowl with a lid or plastic wrap. Place the bowl in the fridge and allow the chicken to soak for 4 to 24 hours, the longer the better.

Large pot of oil on a wooden table.

15 to 20 minutes before you are ready to fry up the chicken, take a large pot, something like an enameled dutch oven and add in oil so it is about 2 inches or so deep. You may also, of course, use a deep fryer.

You can also use less oil in a skillet, and not deep fry the chicken. I prefer more oil, and like to deep fry it. I will point out, if you plan on doing lots of deep frying, chicken, donuts, french fries, etc. You may want to get a deep fryer.

Set the heat on the fryer to 350 F. On the stovetop, set the burner to medium to medium-high heat, use a thermometer with the pot of oil. 325 F is really a better temp to deep fry chicken at, but as you add chicken the heat will decrease from 350 F.

Step 3: Dry ingredient dredge

Medium bowl full of flour, salt, pepper, paprika, garlic powder, etc.

While the oil is heating up, take a bowl and add all the dry ingredients. The flour, cornstarch, salt, pepper, paprika, garlic powder, and any extra spices, like cayenne, or chili powder. Whisk the dry ingredients together and place them in a large ziplock bag.

You could really just skip the bowl and place everything in the bag and shake it to mix it. But I like to whisk it in a bowl first.

Bowl of chicken in buttermilk, next to a bag of dry ingredients.

Remove the chicken out of the fridge. Take a piece of chicken out of the bowl, allow it to drain any excess buttermilk, or pickle juice. Then place it in the bag and shake it. This is a great and easy way to evenly cover the piece of chicken. You can add more than one piece.

Once you are done shaking the bag, remove the chicken and place it on a pan, lined with parchment paper or a silicone mat.

Step 4: Fry the chicken until crispy

Bowl of hot oil with deep fried crispy chicken.

Once the oil is at the right temperature, gently dip the chicken in the oil and let it fall away from you to fry. You can put three or four at a time in the oil, just don’t overpack it.

Different pieces of chicken take different times. For drumsticks, you will let them fry for 10 to 14 minutes, until nice and golden brown.

Thighs take 14 to 18 minutes. Keep an eye on the oil temp. If the temp goes below 300 F. (150 C) turn the heat back up. If the heat goes higher than 325F. (162 C) decrease the heat or add in a bit of oil. Try and maintain the heat of the oil between 300 F and 325 F if possible.

Wings will take 7 to 8 minutes or so. Just remember different pieces of chicken take different amounts of time.

Fry the chicken until they are golden brown. You can also check each piece with a meat thermometer the internal temp should be 165 F (74 C).

Once done remove the chicken with tongs or a spider ladle. Place the chicken on a plate with parchment paper or on a wire rack over a sheet pan, to dry/drain.

Step 5: How to get extra crispy fried chicken

Hand dipping chicken before it is fried into an egg wash.

Another thing you can do to get a thicker, extra crispy fried chicken is double dredging it. Take the chicken after it has been covered in the dry ingredients then dip it in some egg wash, then place it back in the bag and shake it to give it a double coating.

Now fry it like the others. I love both ways of doing it.

Several pieces of crispy fried chicken on wire racks on a sheet pan.

Allow the crispy fried chicken to cool a little bit. Once it has cooled feel free to dig in and enjoy that yummy chicken. It will be nice and crispy on the outside, and moist and perfectly cooked on the inside.

How long does crispy fried chicken last?

Homemade fried chicken will last 3 to 4 days if placed in an airtight container or bag in the fridge. You can also freeze it and it will last a few months in the freezer.

Crispy fried chicken pin for Pinterest
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Here are some other recipes you make like:

Crispy Bake Chicken Wings

Grilled Cheese Sandwich

Chicken Nuggets

Bacon Wrapped Steak

Fall Off The Bone Instant Pot Baby Back Ribs

Homemade Crispy Fried Chicken

If you love chicken, try this homemade crispy fried chicken. Fried chicken is one of the most popular comfort foods here in the US. You may not want to drive to the nearest KFC or other places to get some fried chicken. You can make delicious fried chicken at home. If I can do it, you can do it!
Prep Time25 mins
Cook Time15 mins
Soaking time4 hrs
Total Time4 hrs 40 mins
Course: Lunch, Main Course
Cuisine: American
Keyword: crunchy, KFC, savory
Servings: 10 people
Calories: 469kcal
Author: Matt Taylor

Equipment

  • Bowls
  • Tongs
  • sheet pan
  • parchment paper or a silicone mat
  • Wire rack
  • Candy Thermometer
  • Deep fryer or pot/skillet

Ingredients

  • 3 pounds thawed chicken drumsticks and thighs (1362g)
  • 2 to 3 cups of buttermilk 900ml
  • 3 cups of all-purpose flour 360g
  • 1/2 cup of cornstarch 60g (optional)
  • 2 tbsp. of table salt 30g
  • 1/2 tbsp. garlic powder 8g
  • 1/2 tbsp. paprika smoked if possible (8g)
  • 1 1/2 tbsp. ground black pepper 22g
  • cayenne pepper and chili powder for heat optional
  • Hot sauce in the buttermilk optional
  • Oil for frying canola, peanut, coconut, lard, etc.

Instructions

  • Take a large bowl and add in all of the chicken, I am using drumsticks, wings, and thighs. Add in the buttermilk until it covers the chicken, or you can use pickle juice. Use plastic wrap or a lid and cover the bowl and place it in the fridge for 4 to 24 hours. The longer you let it soak the better. If you want some heat, add in some hot sauce to the buttermilk.
  • 20 to 25 minutes before you are ready to fry up the chicken take a large pot, deep fryer, or skillet and add in your oil, 1 1/2 to 2 inches deep. Using medium to medium-high heat, heat the oil to 350 F. (176 C). The optimal temp for frying chicken is between 300 and 325 F. The reason why it higher is because the temp lowers significantly once we put the chicken in it.
  • Add the flour, cornstarch, salt, pepper, paprika, and garlic powder to a large bowl. If you want some heat add in some chili powder and cayenne pepper. Mix all the ingredients together. Next place the flour mixture into a large ziplock bag.
  • Grab a piece of chicken and let the excess buttermilk fall off, then place it in the bag of flour. You can add 3 or 4 pieces. Then close the top and shake the bag until the chicken pieces are completely covered. Place on a sheet pan and then bring over to the oil.
  • Gently dip the chicken in and let it fall away from you. Don't overcrowd the fryer. Only do 3 to 4 pieces at a time.
    For drumsticks, you will let them fry for 10 to 14 minutes, until nice and golden brown. Thighs take 14 to 18 minutes. Wings for 7 to 8 minutes.
    Keep an eye on the oil temp. If the temp goes below 300 F. (150 C) turn the heat back up. If the heat goes higher than 325F. (162 C) decrease the heat or add in a bit of oil. Try and maintain the heat between 300 F and 325 F if possible. The internal temp of the chicken should be 165 F. Use a meat thermometer to check if you like.
  • Place the chicken on a plate with parchment paper or a cookie rack to drain and cool.
  • I also like to double dredge the chicken for an extra crispy chicken. Take the chicken that has been dipped in the flour, then dip it in some egg wash (2 eggs plus 2 Tablespoons (30ml) of water). Then go back into the back of flour and shake. Then in the fryer, it goes. It produces an amazing outer crispy crust on the chicken.
  • Now enjoy the crispy fried chicken.

Video

How to Make Fried Chicken | Homemade Crispy Fried Chicken Recipe

Notes

Note: You don’t have to even soak the chicken for 4 plus hours, you can soak them for only 20 minutes or so while the oil heats up. But it will turn out a bit better if you soak it longer. 
List of nutritional facts for crispy fried chicken

Do you like this recipe? Share and Pin it! Please give it a rating and comment down below, I really appreciate it. If you make it tag me on Instagram @inthekitchenwithmatt. Also, sign up for the newsletter so you won’t miss out on any of my new posts and recipes.

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