Popeyes Bonafide Spicy Chicken (Copycat)

"My revised, reverse-engineered recipe for Popeyes' 'Bonafide' Spicy Fried Chicken. PLEASE NOTE: The Nutritional Information listing here is inaccurate -- since only a fraction of flour, eggs and salt actually end up in the finished product. So be aware -- the suggested sodium, sugar, carbohydrate and calorie levels are ridiculously exaggerated!"
photo by The Spice Guru photo by The Spice Guru
photo by The Spice Guru
Ready In:
13hrs 10mins




  • RINSE chicken pieces and blot; PLACE chicken into a 9 x 13 baking dish; COAT chicken well with contents of one 6-ounce bottle original Louisiana Hot Sauce, rubbing sauce well into skin of chicken.
  • MEASURE the all of the SEASONING ingredients into a resealable plastic container; SEAL container and shake well to blend; FUNNEL mixture into an empty, clean salt shaker; SPRINKLE the SEASONING evenly and generously on every side of marinated chicken; RUB mixture well into chicken; ALLOW chicken to marinate in seasoning for at least 2 hours, refrigerated and sealed.
  • BEAT 6 large eggs in a large bowl with 1 tablespoon white pepper, 1 teaspoon fine salt, 1 teaspoon fine sugar, and 1/2 teaspoon Accent seasoning; WHISK mixture in bowl vigorously until smooth.
  • ADD 3 cups all-purpose flour into a medium bowl for the DREDGING.
  • PLACE a cooling rack over a baking sheet and set aside.
  • REMOVE chicken from the marinating dish using tong; (1) DIP chicken into the BATTER until evenly coated; (2) COAT the chicken well in the DREDGING flour; PLACE chicken onto the rack over baking sheet.
  • REPEAT steps with remaining chicken pieces until all are battered and breaded (NOTE: IF THE FLOUR DREDGING BECOMES CLUMPY, SIFT IT THROUGH A SIEVE TO REMOVE CLUMPS BEFORE CONTINUING); ALLOW breaded chicken to rest at least 15 minutes to absorb the breading.
  • ADD the manufacturer's recommended amount of deep-frying fat for deep-frying (100% beef tallow shortening or 70% Crisco Shortening with 30% Crisco Butter-Flavor Shortening); PLACE deep-fryer basket into place in deep-fryer; PREHEAT fryer to 315°F (or preheat enough fat to immerse chicken completely in deep heavy stovetop pot between 315°F, using a standard deep-fryer thermometer to gauge).
  • CAREFULLY lower each piece breaded chicken one at a time, into the deep-fryer basket without crowding (if a standard size home fryer is used, add no more than 2-3 pieces at a time); (if stovetop frying, gently place breaded chicken pieces into hot oil using tongs, turning once halfway through frying duration); FRY for 10 minutes; RAISE frying temperature to 375°F ; CONTINUE frying at the higher temperature for 5 minutes (return frying oil temperature to 315°F for each new batch).
  • BLOT chicken lightly to drain; TRANSFER rack over a baking sheet and keep chicken warmed in a preheated 170°F oven until serving; SERVE and enjoy!

Questions & Replies

  1. When you list Louisiana Hot Sauce, which one are you referring to? There's Tabasco Sauce, Cayene Hot Sauce, Jalapeno Hot Sauce, Habenero Hot Sauce - all made in Louisiana. Since Tabasco Sauce is the most famous hot sauce from Louisiana, I assume that is the one you are talking about.


  1. I did not have all the ingredients. I just went with what I had. Chicken tenderloins came out great. Will try on whole pieces now. Best clone I've tried on chicken tenders or strips thus far. Enough people on here really do not spend enough time perfecting their clones, and the reviewers really do not put enough effort into saying how close it really is or not. Bazaar usually comes up with some pretty good clones. The recipes seems kind of long with the ingredients repeated in the steps but a good recipe overall. It has a good taste, but I'm going to tweak it a little to see if I can get the texture and look to be more like Popeyes
  2. This is nowhere near how Popeye's does their chicken. First the chicken is marinated for a minimum of 24 hours in the fridge with spices. Then it is floured, dipped in a batter with a similar consistency to pancake batter, floured again and then fried at 350 degrees. Also, the chicken and the batter mix are ALWAYS kept ICE COLD.
  3. Chicken turned out amazing. But the tip of rinsing the chicken is a disaster waiting to happen. Please dont. You can make your family very sick as splatter from rinsing can contaminate your kitchen.
  4. The seasoning mixture would not come out of my shaker. I wound up just spooning it on...you can skip that "funneling" step. 3 cups of flour and 6 eggs for 8 pieces of chicken is about twice what you need. No point in wasting food. I now have enough SACO to make this recipe about 400 times, but it's messy, time consuming, and requires planning ahead. Think I'll just go to Popeyes! (Tasted pretty good, though.)


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