perfect southern fried chicken

Southern fried chicken is a classic comfort food with a crispy, flavorful coating. Here’s a recipe for perfect Southern fried chicken:


For the Chicken:

  • 3-4 pounds chicken pieces (legs, thighs, wings, breasts)
  • 2 cups buttermilk
  • 2 teaspoons hot sauce (optional)
  • Salt and black pepper to taste

For the Coating:

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon paprika
  • 1 tablespoon garlic powder
  • 1 tablespoon onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper (adjust to taste for spice level)
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper

For Frying:

  • Vegetable oil, for frying


  1. Marinate the Chicken:
    • In a large bowl, mix buttermilk, hot sauce (if using), salt, and black pepper.
    • Add the chicken pieces to the buttermilk mixture, making sure each piece is well-coated.
    • Cover the bowl and let it marinate in the refrigerator for at least 4 hours or overnight for best results.
  2. Prepare the Coating:
    • In a large, shallow dish, whisk together the flour, paprika, garlic powder, onion powder, cayenne pepper, dried thyme, dried oregano, salt, and black pepper.
  3. Coat the Chicken:
    • Preheat your frying oil in a large, heavy skillet or Dutch oven to 350°F (180°C).
    • Remove each piece of chicken from the buttermilk marinade, allowing excess liquid to drip off.
    • Coat the chicken pieces thoroughly in the seasoned flour mixture, pressing the flour onto the chicken to adhere.
  4. Fry the Chicken:
    • Carefully place the coated chicken pieces into the preheated oil, a few pieces at a time to avoid overcrowding.
    • Fry the chicken for about 12-15 minutes for smaller pieces, and up to 20-25 minutes for larger pieces, or until the internal temperature reaches 165°F (74°C) and the coating is golden brown and crispy.
    • Use a slotted spoon or tongs to transfer the fried chicken to a paper towel-lined plate to drain excess oil.
  5. Serve:
    • Let the fried chicken rest for a few minutes before serving.
    • Serve the Southern fried chicken hot with your favorite sides, such as mashed potatoes, coleslaw, or biscuits.

Enjoy your delicious and crispy Southern fried chicken!

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