Fried Chicken

Extra crispy fried chicken sandwich with a slice of heirloom tomato and butterhead lettuce

Fried chicken is one of those meals that I will almost never turn down. Of course, it’s not the healthiest meal but it’s still a guilty pleasure of mine. It’s a dish that is made all over the world with different countries having their own spin on it. Today I’ll be sharing my recipe for the American version…and oh man are you guys in for a treat!

Step 1: Make sure to brine your chicken!

A key step to some good fried chicken is to brine it ahead of time. I typically do this the night before I am going to fry the chicken but you can definitely get away with only doing it for a few hours. My brine mixture consists of buttermilk, pickle juice, hot sauce, salt, and pepper. I’m sure this combination might sound a little odd to someone that’s never made fried chicken before, but it gives the chicken great flavor while keeping it juicy and tender. All you need to do is combine those ingredients, submerge the chicken thighs, and refrigerate until it’s time to cook. This is a non-negotiable step for me – trust the process!

Crispy & crunchy fried chicken pieces resting on a rack
Fried chicken is such a treat

Step 2: Double dredging is the way to go!

So you’ve brined your chicken overnight and combined your dredging ingredients (flour, corn starch, & seasonings listed in recipe). Now you’ll need to dredge your chicken in the flour mixture (aka coat it) and you’ll be ready to fry – right? WRONG! Of course that will work, but if you want your chicken to be super crispy and crunchy then you better dredge that chicken a second time! A summary of the steps goes as follows:

  1. Remove 1 piece of chicken from the brining mixture and dredge into the flour mixture
  2. Take that same piece of chicken with the flour mixture on it and dip it back into the brining mixture
  3. Now take the same piece of chicken one more time and dredge into the flour mixture again
  4. All done – now repeat this process with the remaining pieces of chicken

*Pro Tip*: When handling the chicken between the brine mixture & flour mixture, I highly recommend using one hand for the brine and the other for the flour. It’s significantly less messy this way.

While that may seem a little redundant, it’s an easy step that’s worth doing. Make sure to also squeeze the flour mixture onto the chicken – especially during the second dredge. This ensures that your fried chicken comes out extra crispy and mouthwatering.

Step 3: Time to Fry!

Now that our chicken is dredged in the flour mixture, it’s time to let it rest on a rack (so that air can flow through on all sides) while we heat up our oil. I like to use avocado oil when frying due to its high smoke point. Additionally, it is also considered to be a “healthier” option for frying. It is a more expensive option so using something like canola, vegetable, or peanut oil will also work just fine. I’ll heat the oil to 350ºF in a dutch oven (here’s the dutch oven that I use but there are many options available) and fry the chicken in batches – typically 2-3 pieces per batch depending on their size. The oil temperature will drop when you put the chicken in, so try to keep it above 300ºF-325ºF. I use this thermometer to keep track of the oil temperature. Fry for about 3-4 minutes per side or until the internal temperature is at least 170ºF.

A piece of crispy fried chicken between two buns with butterhead lettuce and an heirloom tomato
Who doesn’t like fried chicken sandwiches???

Step 4: Enjoy your fried chicken however you’d like!

Fried chicken is extremely versatile. You can eat it as is or in a sandwich, wrap, taco, pizza, etc. I prefer it in a sandwich or by itself, but it’s honestly amazing in all of its forms. Some tips for toppings if you are eating it in a sandwich:

  • Lettuce – use butterhead lettuce. This one hits different on sandwiches.
  • Tomato – heirloom tomatoes are also best for sandwiches. Optional but recommended: salt & pepper your tomato slice before putting on your sandwich.
  • Ranch dressing & hot sauce – I like my food spicy so I am a big fan of combining these two. There are countless amounts of sauces that will go well on this.
  • Pickles – not necessary due to a slight pickle flavor from the brine but I still put them on. If you like pickles, then go for it!

This recipe has always been a big hit with everyone! Delicious and pretty simple to make, there’s no reason you can’t have homemade fried chicken whenever you are craving it. Just follow the steps of brining, double dredging, and frying at the correct temperatures and you’ll be opening up your own fried chicken food truck in no time!

Extra crispy fried chicken sandwich with a slice of heirloom tomato and butterhead lettuce

Fried Chicken

Fried chicken is one of those recipes that just about everyone loves. With so many different variations around the world, you can prepare it and use it however you'd like. This recipe is an American version that is great in a sandwich or by itself. Crispy & crunchy on the outside while tender & juicy on the inside, this recipe is sure to be a big hit!
Servings 4 people


Chicken Brine

  • 1.5 lbs Chicken Thighs
  • 2 cups Buttermilk
  • 1/2 cup Pickle Juice
  • Hot Sauce to taste
  • 1 tbsp Salt
  • Black Pepper to taste

Chicken Dredge

  • 3 cups Flour
  • 1 cup Corn Starch
  • 3 tbsp Garlic Powder
  • 2 tbsp Onion Powder
  • 1 tbsp Paprika
  • 1 tbsp Mustard Powder
  • 1 tbsp Salt
  • 1 tbsp White Pepper
  • 1 tbsp Cayenne Pepper Optional (omit if you do not like spicy)
  • Black Pepper to taste


  • 4 cups Avocado Oil


  • Combine buttermilk, pickle juice, hot sauce, salt, and pepper in a bowl.  Add and submerge chicken thighs. Cover and refrigerate for at least a few hours, preferably overnight.
  • Make flour mixture: combine flour, corn starch, garlic powder, onion powder, paprika, mustard powder, salt, white pepper, cayenne pepper (if using), and black pepper into a bowl. Remove the brine from refrigerator.  One chicken thigh at a time, remove from brine and dredge in flour mixture, then dip back in brine, and back in the flour mixture.  Make sure to cover chicken all over with the flour mixture and squeeze it on (this will help make the chicken crispy). Repeat with all pieces.  Let chicken rest for 15 minutes.
  • While chicken thighs are resting, heat avocado oil to 350ºF.  In batches, making sure not to overcrowd, fry chicken for about 3-4 minutes per side or until internal temperature is 170ºF.  Serve as is, in a sandwich, or however you like to eat fried chicken!
Tried this recipe?Let us know how it was!
Join The Conversation

You Might Also Like

Made This Recipe?

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe Rating