Flavored Fried Chicken Batter for Those Perfect Homemade Dishes

Batter for fried chicken
When making fried chicken, marination and double dipping is optional. Marination makes the chicken tender and flavorful. Double dipping is good for those who love an extra crunch.
When it comes to dishes like fried chicken, the choice of batter holds some significance. It is the batter that imparts the flavor and texture of the dish. All you have to do is to experiment with different ingredients, so as to make it crispy, tender, spicy, tangy, or whichever way you want. Apart from the choice of batter, the method of cooking also matters. Here are some batter recipes and tips for those who wish to make perfect homemade fried chicken.
How to Make Batter for Fried Chicken
The word 'batter' denotes the semi-liquid mixture that is used for cooking purposes. In case of fried foods, a batter refers to the coating that is used for frying. For fried chicken, you can use both semi-liquid as well as dry coating. Let us take a look at the different types of batter used for making fried chicken.
Simple Batter Recipe
simple chicken batter
Marination: Cut three pounds of boneless chicken into medium-sized pieces and marinate with four tablespoons each of vegetable oil and lemon juice. You may also add herbs like parsley, sage or thyme, in finely chopped form. Keep the chicken aside, and prepare the batter.

Ingredients For Batter:

Flour - 1.5 cups
Water - 0.5 cup
Eggs - 2
Vegetable oil - 2 tbsp.
Salt - 1 tsp.

Preparation: Add eggs, salt, and oil to the sifted flour, and mix them well. Add water in small batches, and whisk to make the batter. Dip the chicken pieces in the batter, and deep-fry in oil that is heated to 350° F. Take out the pieces, as they turn golden brown.
Batter with Beer
fried chicken batter with beer
Marination: Take 3 pounds of medium-sized chicken pieces. Marinate them with three cups of buttermilk mixed with two tablespoons salt, and one teaspoon each of black pepper powder and cayenne pepper powder. You may also add herbs and spices of your choice. If you want to marinate the chicken for more than an hour, keep it in the refrigerator.

Ingredients For Batter:

All-purpose flour - 2 cups
Beer - 2.25 cups
Cayenne pepper powder - 2 tsp.
Black pepper powder - 2 tsp.
Garlic powder - 2 tsp.

Preparation: Sift the flour and add salt, black pepper powder, garlic powder, and cayenne pepper powder. Mix them well, before adding beer. Whisk properly and your batter is ready. Take out the chicken pieces from the marinade, pat dry, and coat them with the batter. Put the chicken pieces in oil, and turn the pieces in between, till all the sides turn golden brown.
For Crispy Fried Chicken
crispy fried chicken
Marination: You need around three pounds of chicken that has to be marinated in three cups of buttermilk, mixed with two teaspoons each of salt and sugar. You can also add a small amount of hot sauce to this marinade. Add the chicken pieces and let them sit for at least an hour. You can also refrigerate the chicken for up to 24 hours. Before frying, take out the chicken, pat dry, and keep aside for at least 20 minutes.

Ingredients For Batter:

All-purpose flour - 1 cup
Cornstarch - 1 cup
Water - 1.75 cups
Baking powder - 2 teaspoons
Salt - 2 teaspoons
Smoked sweet paprika - 1 teaspoon
Black pepper powder - 1 teaspoon
Cayenne pepper powder - ¼ teaspoon

Preparation: Take a bowl and mix all the ingredients, except water. Add water, and whisk well to make the batter. Now dip the chicken pieces in the batter and fry, till they are done. The crust should be golden brown, and the meat should be cooked well.
For French Fried Chicken
french fried chicken batter
The preparation method of French fried chicken is slightly different from other types. As per this recipe, you need a whole chicken (around three pounds) that is cut into pieces. You may sprinkle the chicken pieces with salt, and steam them till they become tender. Another method is to boil them (in medium heat for around 30 minutes) in a cup of water, along with a teaspoon of salt. You may also add one or two stalks of parsley and celery. Once done, remove the chicken pieces and pat dry.

Ingredients For Batter:

All-purpose flour - 2 cups
Milk - 1.5 cups
Eggs - 2
Baking powder - 3 tsp.
Salt - ½ tsp.

Preparation: In a medium-sized saucepan, beat eggs properly, and stir in milk. Add sifted flour, baking powder, and salt. Continue beating this mixture until you get a smooth batter without any clumps. Dip the chicken pieces in the batter and fry in hot oil. The temperature of the oil should be around 350° F. The chicken pieces have to be fried till they turn golden brown.
For Spicy Fried Chicken
Marination: Cut a whole chicken into pieces and sprinkle some salt and pepper on it. Marinate them for at least two hours in a quart of buttermilk mixed with a tsp. of cayenne pepper. You can it overnight, in the refrigerator. Before frying, remove the chicken pieces from the marinade and pat dry.

Ingredients For Batter:

All-purpose flour - 2 cups
Hot red pepper sauce - 1 cup
Eggs - 3
Water - ⅓ cup
Cayenne pepper - 3 tsp.
Black pepper powder - 2 tsp.
Paprika - 2 tsp.
Salt - ½ tsp.

Preparation: Whisk the eggs, along with red pepper sauce and water. In another bowl, combine the flour with paprika, black pepper powder, salt, and cayenne pepper. Now mix the chicken pieces with the flour mixture, and take them out, one by one. Tap them slightly to remove the excess flour. Dip in the egg mixture and once again, coat with the flour. Once done, let them sit for at least five minutes, before frying. Fry them in hot oil (350° F), till they turn golden brown.
For Red Velvet Fried Chicken
Red velvet fried chicken can be made in different ways. You may prepare the red velvet cake batter and use it as a coating for the chicken pieces to be fried. Another method is to prepare the batter and use half of it to bake the cake that will provide you with the crumbs. Use the other half as batter for chicken. Dip the chicken pieces in the batter and roll them in cake crumbs. Once done, fry them in oil that is heated to 350° F. The following is the easiest method.

Take ¼ cup of all-purpose flour in a bowl. In another bowl, beat two eggs. Keep red velvet cake crumbs in a shallow dish. Take the chicken pieces one by one. Coat with flour, then dip in egg, and roll in cake crumbs. Heat the oil to 350° F, and fry the chicken pieces. The fried chicken should be tender and deep red in color.
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Tips for Perfect Fried Chicken
Check the Size
If you are buying a whole chicken for frying, don't go for those, which are more than 2.5 pounds. Those who buy chicken pieces must choose medium-sized ones. While large pieces may fail to cook properly, the small ones may get dry and rubbery as they lose the juice quickly. It will be better to fry similar-sized pieces in a single batch, as they will take more or less the same time to cook.
White and Dark Meat
Another important point to remember is the difference between white and dark meat. White meat (like breast) cooks faster than the dark meat (like thighs). So, it will be better to separate the pieces beforehand and fry them in different batches. Chicken breasts cook faster than other pieces.
Ideal Temperature
This is one of the important points to remember, while frying chicken. The temperature range for the oil must be between 330° F to 350° F. If the temperature is too high, the chicken will burn, and if it is too low, the chicken will turn soggy and greasy. So, adjust the heat, as per your requirement. Go for oils with high smoking point.
Fry in Batches
It is always better to fry the chicken pieces in batches, rather than overcrowding the skillet. If you fry too many pieces at one go, the temperature of the oil will drop and the pieces will turn soggy.
Cast Iron Skillet
It is said that a cast iron skillet is the best to make fried chicken. You may also use a heavy stainless steel pot instead. Use tongs to toss and turn the chicken, while frying. This will help you to avoid spatters to a large extent.
In short, homemade fried chicken is not something impossible. These are only a few of the popular and easy recipes for making fried chicken batter. Once you become familiar with the basics, you can experiment with different ingredients.