You can't go wrong with fried chicken, and my easy crispy fried chicken recipe is the perfect way to get your fix! I like to make a classic buttermilk fried chicken that uses the whole chicken so you can choose your favorite piece of meat!
Cut and prep your whole chicken into an 8-piece for frying.
4 lb whole chicken
In a large mixing bowl or storage container, whisk together the buttermilk, salt, and pepper. Add the chicken pieces into the container with the buttermilk. Add more buttermilk if needed to cover the chicken pieces.
1 cup buttermilk, 1 teaspoon each, salt & pepper
Mix together your all-purpose flour, cornstarch, and seasoning (salt, pepper, paprika, garlic powder, onion powder, dried basil, and cayenne powder) for dredging either in a gallon zip top storage bag, brown bag, or shallow dish.
1 teaspoon each, salt & pepper, 2 cups all-purpose flour, ¼ cup cornstarch, 1 teaspoon paprika, ½ teaspoon garlic powder, ½ teaspoon onion powder, ½ teaspoon dried basil, ¼ teaspoon cayenne powder
Coat chicken pieces one at a time, allowing each piece of chicken to drip the excess buttermilk off before coating in the flour mixture. Coat the chicken pieces well on all sides then shake gently to remove any excess coating.
Set the breaded chicken pieces aside on a tray or rack until all of the chicken has been breaded. Cover with a sheet of waxed paper, parchment paper, or a kitchen towel until the breading turns paste-like in consistency.
Heat 1 quart of cooking oil in a deep dish or Dutch oven to 350°F (175°C). Working in batches, fry the chicken 3-4 pieces at a time (leaving space between them so that the chicken isn't crowded in your pan) and turning the chicken halfway through the cooking time.
1 qt cooking oil
Allow your frying oil to return to 350°F (175°C) before cooking additional batches.
Remove fried chicken pieces when they are golden, crispy, and have a minimum internal temperature of 165°F (74°C). Place your cooked chicken on a wire cooling rack over paper towels until all of the chicken has been fried, the chicken has rested for 10 minutes, and you're ready to serve it.
I typically try to keep my buttermilk to just using 1 cup, but have needed up to 2 cups depending on the size of my cut up chicken.
If your chicken is perfectly crisp and golden, but has not reached the minimal internal temperature of 165°F (74°C) you can finish it in the oven. When doing this, I heat my oven to 400°F (205°C) and place the chicken on a baking sheet or in a roasting pan with a rack (for even air circulation). Cook until you reach the safe minimum internal temperature needed for chicken.