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There’s nothing like homemade fried chicken! And this Southern fried chicken recipe assures you’ll have that crispy, crunchy texture outside with tender, juicy meat inside. While you’ll need to be patient during the fridge time, you’ll be rewarded with the best fried chicken ever!

Best Fried Chicken Recipe

I used to think the best fried chicken came in a bucket. Silly me! One day, I wondered if I couldn’t recreate it in my kitchen and now here we are. You just never know what’s in foods you buy ready-made. Preservatives, artificial colors and flavors…yuck. But with this Southern fried chicken recipe, you can see all the ingredients are wholesome.

Homemade Fried Chicken Ingredients

  • Chicken – yes, that’s obvious. Drumsticks and chicken thighs are the best though you can use any other part like the chicken wings or chicken breast to fry.
  • Buttermilk – this is for soaking the chicken prior to frying, a crucial step for making buttermilk fried chicken.
  • Hot sauce – you’ll add this to the buttermilk to give your chicken a nice spice.
  • Flour and cornstarch – these create the signature texture for your buttermilk crispy chicken.
  • Seasonings – when it comes to selecting the best fried chicken seasonings, garlic powder, oregano, white pepper, basil, and smoked paprika are just a few of your spice rack staples you’ll need to flavor up this fried chicken to perfection. This combination is the perfect way to season fried chicken.

Easy Fried Chicken Recipe

While the time on this recipe is over 4 hours, that’s mainly because you’ve got to let it sit in buttermilk and tenderize so you get nice, juicy meat inside. After that, your buttermilk fried chicken recipe is easy! Just shake the coating on and fry it up to perfection!

Girls, if he only wants your breasts, legs, and thighs, send him to KFC.

How do you Make Fried Chicken from Scratch?

Crispy fried chicken from scratch is so easy. Sure, the ingredient list looks long, but that’s a whole lotta spices you’ve already got in your kitchen. You’ll make the buttermilk mixture, soak the chicken and let it sit in the fridge, then coat it until well seasoned and deep fry it. Yum!

Expert Tips and Tricks for the Perfect Fried Chicken Every Time

  • Don’t skip the buttermilk. Buttermilk marinade tenderizes your chicken meat. This step is so important! If you don’t have buttermilk, you can make buttermilk by adding a tablespoon of lemon juice or vinegar to one cup of whole milk. Buttermilk chicken is a game changer!
  • Use cornstarch in the dredge. I think the thing most people skip is adding both flour and cornstarch to the fried chicken batter. Cornstarch helps get it nice and crispy.
  • Gluten-free – This recipe isn’t gluten-free, but if you swap in your gluten-free flour, it can be!

How to Cook Fried Chicken?

Once you’ve prepped your chicken, you’ll fry it in your deep fryer (or a deep stock pot filled with enough oil) for 7 minutes per side. You should also check the internal temperature and make sure it’s at 165F.

If you have an air fryer, you can do it in there too at 400F and then flip the pieces after 5 to 6 minutes before cooking on the other side. For both styles of frying, you’ll need to flip the pieces to cook them evenly.

What is the secret to fried chicken?

The secret is absolutely the buttermilk soak. If you’ve tried to make fried chicken before and it just felt dry inside, try this crispy fried chicken batter and you’ll see the difference!

Should you soak chicken in milk before frying?

Yes. That’s the key to getting the perfect tender texture inside of the crispy coating.

What type of flour should I use when making fried chicken?

All-purpose flour always works the best in your fried chicken batter recipe when deep frying chicken. You can use a gluten-free version of it too.

Should you dip chicken in egg before frying?

This crispy chicken recipe doesn’t call for eggs because the buttermilk soak will keep it moist enough to dredge successfully into the coating. However, other recipes may use an egg wash to get the coating to stick.

What is the best oil to fry chicken?

Vegetable oil is the best for frying chicken since it has a high smoking point.

Best way to fry chicken?

Your deep fryer will give you the best results when you want to fry chicken. Make sure you only put in a few pieces at a time so they cook evenly.

How long to fry chicken?

It should take about 7 minutes per side to fry your chicken. The internal temperature needs to be 165F to be safe.

How do you get perfectly crusted fried chicken?

The perfect crust for fried chicken is made with a mixture of flour, cornstarch, and seasonings. Using cornstarch with the flour ensures a crispy coating.

How to make crispy fried chicken?

To make your fried chicken crispy, you need to use both flour and cornstarch. This gives it that wonderful texture you’re looking for.

Why is my fried chicken not crispy?

It’s a problem with your heat. If it’s too high or too low, you will not get the texture you’re trying to achieve.

How to keep fried chicken crispy?

For a crispy fried chicken recipe, after you finish frying each piece, you’ll want to soak up the excess oil from the frying process. That should prevent your fried chicken breading from getting soggy.

What to Serve with Fried Chicken

Round out your crispy fried chicken dinner with corn on the cob, mashed potatoes and gravy, a beautiful garden salad, okra and stewed tomatoes, potato salad, or any number of things. You can even make chicken and waffles if you wish. There are so many ways to make a great meal with deep fried chicken.

How to Store Fried Chicken

After it’s cooled, assuming there’s any leftovers, you’ll want to refrigerate your chicken promptly in airtight containers or on a dish wrapped in aluminum foil.

How Long Does Fried Chicken Last?

Fried chicken will keep well in your fridge for up to 4 days. Obviously, it will taste the best when it’s fresh though.

Can You Freeze Fried Chicken?

Yes! If you make a big batch and everyone is getting tired of it by day #2, wrap it well and freeze it. It will last for up to 4 months this way.

How to Reheat Fried Chicken?

If it’s frozen, let it thaw overnight in your fridge. Then heat your oven to 400F and place your chicken on a baking sheet in a single layer. Bake for 15 to 20 minutes and it should be hot and crispy.

Watch How To Make Fried Chicken (Video)

The Perfect Fried Chicken Recipe

5 from 2 votes
Prep Time 4 hours 5 minutes
Cook Time 30 minutes
Total Time 4 hours 35 minutes
Servings 8 servings
Calories 456
The perfect Fried Chicken recipe is crispy on the outside and moist and juicy on the inside. This is a family favorite fried chicken recipe that always has people asking for the recipe. From my family to yours, enjoy!


  • 3 cups buttermilk
  • 3/4 cup hot sauce
  • 2 tbsp salt
  • 1 1/2 tsp black pepper
  • 4 chicken drumsticks (with skin)
  • 4 chicken thighs (with skin)
  • 3 cups flour
  • 1/2 cup cornstarch
  • 1 tbsp smoked paprika
  • 2 1/2 tsp garlic powder
  • 2 1/2 tsp onion powder
  • 1 1/2 tsp white pepper
  • 1 1/2 tsp cayenne pepper ( )
  • 2 tsp dried oregano
  • 2 tsp dried basil


  • Whisk together buttermilk, hot sauce, salt and pepper in a large bowl. Add in the chicken pieces, cover with plastic wrap and refrigerate for 4 hours.
  • After the chicken has finished refrigerating, turn on your deep fryer and heat the oil to 350F. Use a kitchen thermometer to make sure your vegetable oil reaches the correct temperature. While the oil heats up, prepare your dredging mixture. In a gallon sized resealable plastic bag, combine the flour, cornstarch, onion powder, oregano, basil, white pepper, cayenne, smoked paprika, and salt.
  • Take the chicken out of the refrigerator and let it warm up to room temperature. Remove chicken pieces from the buttermilk mixture, shaking to remove any excess. Place it in the flour mixture breading and coat thoroughly. Once every piece of chicken has been thoroughly coated, fry 2-3 pieces at a time in the deep fryer, about 7 minutes per side or until the internal temperature reaches 165F (use a kitchen thermometer) and they are golden brown.
  • Once cooked through, place the chicken on a baking sheet pan lined with paper towels or a wire rack to drain. Rest for 10 minutes before serving.
Calories: 456kcal
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American


Calories: 456kcal | Carbohydrates: 51g | Protein: 24g | Fat: 17g | Saturated Fat: 5g | Cholesterol: 100mg | Sodium: 2520mg | Potassium: 462mg | Fiber: 2g | Sugar: 5g | Vitamin A: 833IU | Vitamin C: 17mg | Calcium: 137mg | Iron: 4mg

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Author Megan Miller

I’m a mom of two, food and wine lover, and recipe creation enthusiast. Good food brings families together. Which is why I’m devoted to sharing my best recipes that are simple enough for even the beginner cook that your family will love!

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