On the menu tonight – Southern Buttermilk Fried Chicken!
I was craving fried chicken, so I decided to make my own. To make sure you end up with a juicy and flavorful piece of chicken, you need to start with a marinade or brine. I soaked the chicken in buttermilk with hot sauce overnight. If you want it quicker, soak the chicken in buttermilk at least 4 hrs.
The next step is the coating. You don’t want that delicious flour mixture to come off on the first bite, you want it with every bite. The trick is dredge the chicken in the seasoned flour mixture and then let it set in the fridge for about 20-30 minutes. THEN you can do the egg dunk, re-dredge, and I like to let it set again.
The thing to be careful of is making sure the chicken is fully cooked. If the oil is too hot, the coating is going to burned and the chicken won’t fully cook. If the oil is too cool, you’ll end up with greasy, uncooked chicken. 350 degrees is where you want to keep the temperature of the oil. To make sure the chicken is completely cooked, you can put the bigger pieces of chicken in the oven for another 15-20 minutes to make sure they are fully cooked.
Serve with some homemade coleslaw and mashed potatoes with gravy.
Southern Buttermilk Fried Chicken
Southern Buttermilk Fried Chicken
- 3-4 lbs chicken pieces
- 1 tsp baking powder
- 3 cups flour
- 2/3 cup corn starch
- 2 Tbsp garlic powder
- 2 Tbsp onion powder
- 2 Tbsp paprika (hot or sweet)
- 1 Tbsp thyme
- 2 tsp black pepper
- 2 tsp cayenne pepper
- 2 cups buttermilk
- 1/2 cup hot sauce (Frank's is a favorite)
- 2 large eggs, beaten
- 8 cups peanut oil for frying
Put the chicken pieces in a gallon sized ziplock bag along with the buttermilk and hot sauce
Massage/mix the chicken, buttermilk, hot sauce to make sure the chicken is soaking. (use two bags if necessary)
Marinate the chicken overnight (4 hrs minimum) in the refrigerator
When ready to cook -
Mix 4 teaspoons salt, black pepper, thyme, flour, cornstarch, cayenne pepper, black pepper, salt, and baking powder in a bowl and stir to combine. I like to put the seasoned flour in a baking dish to give me room to dredge the chicken
Take the chicken pieces from the bag, one a time, let the excess buttermilk mixture drain off and then dredge in the seasoned flour mixture
Place the seasoned chicken on a wire rack set in a rimmed baking sheet and repeat until all the chicken has its first coat of dredge.
Put in the refrigerator at least 15-20 minutes to let the chicken set up with the dredge.
In the meantime, mix together some of the buttermilk/hot sauce mixture with the eggs in a med-large bowl
Dunk the chicken in the egg mixture and back in to the seasoned flour, thoroughly coat, getting the mixture in to every crevice and put back on the wire rack
Repeat until all the chicken is coated
Refrigerate again for at least 20-30 minutes
When ready to fry
Heat the peanut oil in a cast iron Dutch oven or similar heavy pot
Clip your deep-fry thermometer in so you can monitor the oil temperature
Pre-heat your oven to 350 degrees
When the oil gets to 325-350 you can start adding the chicken
Don't add more than 2-3 pieces at a time as the oil temperature will drop and be harder to regulate. Try to maintain 325-350 degrees
Cook until deep golden brown (about 8 minutes for the wings, 10 minutes for the legs, 12 minutes for thighs and 15-18 minutes for the breasts. All these times are assuming bone-in pieces)
As the chicken is finished cooking in the oil, place on a clean wire rack.
Unless you are absolutely sure it is cooked through (test with a thermometer), put in the oven for another 10-20 minutes for the bigger pieces.
Serve with your choice of sides, but you can't go wrong with cole slaw and mashed potatoes.