Super-Fast Fried Chicken

Keep the skin on these chicken thighs to allow the flavor of the sweet paprika and spicy cayenne in the batter to sink in for 15 minutes.

  • Servings: 4
Super-Fast Fried Chicken

Photography: Bryan Gardner

Source: Everyday Food, October 2012


  • 2 pounds bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs (about 8)
  • Coarse salt and pepper
  • 1 clove garlic, minced and crushed into a paste with the flat side of a chef's knife
  • 1 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon sweet paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon fine salt
  • 1/3 cup peanut oil, plus more if needed


  1. Season chicken with coarse salt and pepper, then rub with garlic. Let sit 15 minutes. In a large zip-top bag, combine flour, paprika, cayenne, and fine salt. In batches, add chicken and shake well until evenly coated. If you have time, let chicken sit 15 minutes.

  2. In a 10-inch heavy skillet, heat oil over medium until it reaches 365 degrees. The oil is ready when a little flour dropped in bubbles and sizzles steadily.

  3. Shake excess flour off a piece of chicken, then carefully place in oil, skin side down. Repeat, adding just a few more pieces to skillet (do not crowd pan). Adjust heat to keep a steady sizzle and maintain 365 degrees. Cover and cook until chicken is browned on bottom, about 7 minutes. Carefully flip each piece, then cover and cook until chicken is cooked through, about 8 minutes.

  4. Drain chicken on paper towels. Repeat with remaining chicken, replenishing and reheating oil between batches, if necessary.

Cook's Notes

As a favorite on "Top Chef" and cohost of "The Chew," Carla Hall is known for cooking on TV, but her passion is cooking from the heart. This recipe is adapted from her book "Cooking With Love: Comfort Food That Hugs You."


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