Batter-Fried Chicken from Cook's Illustrated

Total Time
Prep 1 hr 30 mins
Cook 30 mins

This IS perfect fried chicken!

Ingredients Nutrition


  1. Whisk one qwt. cold water, salt, and sugar in large bowl until sugar and salt dissolve. Add chicken and refrigerate for 30 minutes or up to one hour.
  2. Whisk water, flour, cornstarch, pepper, paprika, baking powder, salt, and cayenne in large bowl until smooth. Refrigerate batter while chicken is brining.
  3. Heat oil in large Dutch oven over medium-high heat to 350 degrees. Remove chicken from refrigerator, pour off brine, and pat dry with paper towels.
  4. Rewhisk batter. Transfer half of chicken to batter. One by one, remove chicken from batter (allowing excess to drip back into bowl) and transfer to oil. Fry chicken, adjusting burner as necessary to maintain oil temperature between 300 and 325 degrees, until deep golden brown and white meat registers to 160 degrees, 12-15 minutes.
  5. Drain chicken on wire rack set inside rimmed baking sheet. Bring oil back to 350 degrees and repeat with remaining chicken. Serve.
  6. Can reheat by placing chicken on wire rack set inside a rimmed baking sheet and warming in a pre-heated 450 degree oven for about 10 minutes.


Most Helpful

This fried chicken is SOOOOOOOO GOOOD best I ever had Cant wait to make it again I just might make it weekly yummy

respcarol_7053657 December 04, 2011

I agree that this is the best fried chicken because the skin is the crispiest that I have ever had without it being too hard. This is the only way I will fry my chicken from now on. With that being said, I didn't think it was the tasiest though. It seemed to lack flavor to me. In other words, it was somewhat bland to me. I am not sure if my husband brined it long enough or used enough salt for that matter because he hates to measure anything. So the salt may be right, but I definitlely thought that it needed some black pepper and garlic and or onion powder. I like somewhat of a spicy chicken so that may be the reason I thought it was bland. I will definitely try it again and find out if it was the recipe or my husband in regards to the salt it seemed to lack. I am pretty sure it was the latter though. Please try this because you will love the crispiness that's for sure.

mizjmassie September 18, 2011

Join the Conversation

  • all
  • reviews
  • tweaks
  • q & a