Best Ever Fried Chicken

best ever fried chicken

Mike Garten

If you’re looking to add a different flavor note to your fried chicken, add celery seeds, sugar, and salt to the buttermilk marinade! 

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Yields: 10 servings
Total Time: 1 hour 0 mins


1/4 c.



cloves garlic, thinly sliced 

6 c.

low-fat buttermilk, divided 

4 tbsp.

celery seeds, divided 

Kosher salt and pepper


whole chicken (5 to 6 lbs), cut into 10 pieces

2 c.

all-purpose flour

1/2 tsp.


4 c.

peanut or canola oil, for frying 


In a large bowl, whisk together sugar, garlic, 4 cups buttermilk, 2 Tbsp celery seeds, and 1/2 cup salt. Add chicken and toss to coat. Cover and refrigerate 1 hour. Meanwhile, in a large bowl, whisk together flour, cayenne, 1 tsp salt, 1 Tbsp pepper, and remaining 2 Tbsp celery seeds. Attach a deep-fry thermometer to a large Dutch oven and heat oil on medium to 325°F. Place remaining 2 cups buttermilk in a second bowl. Working with a couple of pieces at a time, remove chicken from marinade, letting excess drip off. Coat in flour, shaking off excess, then coat in buttermilk and in flour once more. Shake off excess flour and add chicken to oil. Fry chicken until golden brown and cooked through, 4 to 10 minutes depending on piece. Repeat with remaining chicken, adjusting heat to keep oil between 300°F and 325°F.

PER SERVING: 485 calories, 27.5 g fat (6.5 g saturated fat), 37 g protein, 1,005 mg sodium, 21 g carbs, 1 g fiber


WD TEST KITCHEN TIP: Dip chicken in marinade and flour twice before frying for a shatteringly crisp crust. Switch it up by adding sugar, salt, and other seasonings to the buttermilk marinade. The oil’s temp drops every time you add chicken—adjust the heat to keep it at 325°F.

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