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Rachael shares a spicy fried chicken recipe that's worth the overnight brine.

FYI: Rach serves the chicken with her Oil 'n' Vinegar Slaw With Poppy Seeds.

Pro tip: Cut chicken breasts in half across the middle so that they are relative in size and shape with thighs.


For the brine:
  • 6 cups water
  • 4 cloves crushed garlic
  • 2 bay leaves
  • 2 teaspoons black peppercorns
  • 1 small bundle of thyme, tied with kitchen string
  • ¼ cup sugar
  • ¼ cup kosher salt
  • Ice
For the chicken:
  • 8 to 12 pieces bone-in, skin-on chicken breast, thigh and drummer
  • About 2½ cups flour
  • ¼ cup cornstarch
  • 2 tablespoons kosher salt
  • 2 tablespoons granulated garlic
  • 2 tablespoons granulated onion
  • 2 tablespoons paprika or pimenton/smoked sweet paprika
  • 1 tablespoon white pepper
  • 1 tablespoon black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon poultry seasoning or ground thyme
  • 2 teaspoons, cayenne pepper
  • Peanut or safflower oil, for frying, 6 to 8 cups depending on size of your cast iron skillet, about 2 inches of oil
To serve:


Serves: 4 to 6


For the brine, in a medium pot, heat water with garlic, bay, peppercorns, and thyme to low simmer, add sugar and salt to dissolve, and transfer brine to large container or bowl. Add 4 to 5 cups of ice and melt to cool.

Add chicken to brine and chill overnight.

Mix flour and seasonings in a large casserole or large paper bag.

In a large cast iron skillet, heat oil to 350˚F or between medium (just over medium) to medium-high heat.

Remove chicken from brine, transfer to a sheet tray with a rack and pat dry. In batches, coat with flour and transfer back to rack.

Fry chicken in 2 batches, about 10 to 11 minutes, turning occasionally, and remove to brown paper- or towel-lined platter or another sheet tray with a wire rack and season with a bit more salt. Serve with hot sauce, honey, pickles, white bread and slaw.

10" x 14" Oval Serving Platter

10" x 14" Oval Serving Platter

Rachael Ray
$60 $25