How to Choose the Best Oil for Fried Chicken Easily

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Christina Flores

· 2 min read

The Best Oil for Crispy, Golden-Brown Fried Chicken

Prep Time: 15 minutes

Cook Time: 30 minutes

Additional Time: 30 minutes

Total Time: 1 hour 15 minutes

Servings: 4-6


  • 8 chicken thighs, skin-on and bone-in
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne pepper (optional)
  • Vegetable oil or peanut oil for frying (about 4 cups)

Steps to Cook:

  1. Prepare the chicken: a. Pat the chicken thighs dry with paper towels. b. In a shallow bowl, mix together the flour, salt, black pepper, paprika, and cayenne pepper (if using).

  2. Bread the chicken: a. Dredge the chicken thighs in the seasoned flour, coating them evenly on all sides. b. Shake off any excess flour and set the breaded chicken aside.

  3. Choose the best oil for frying: a. Vegetable oil and peanut oil are the best choices for frying chicken. b. Vegetable oil has a neutral flavor and can withstand high heat without burning or smoking. c. Peanut oil has a slightly nutty flavor and a high smoke point, making it excellent for frying. d. Avoid using olive oil or butter, as they have lower smoke points and can burn easily at frying temperatures.

  4. Heat the oil: a. In a large, heavy-bottomed pot or Dutch oven, pour the vegetable or peanut oil to a depth of about 3 inches. b. Heat the oil to 350°F (175°C) over medium-high heat. Use a deep-fry thermometer to monitor the temperature.

  5. Fry the chicken: a. Working in batches, carefully lower the breaded chicken thighs into the hot oil. b. Fry the chicken for 12-15 minutes, turning occasionally, until golden brown and cooked through. c. The internal temperature of the chicken should reach 165°F (75°C) when measured with a meat thermometer. d. Transfer the fried chicken to a paper towel-lined plate to drain excess oil.

  6. Rest the chicken: a. Allow the fried chicken to rest for 5-10 minutes before serving. b. This resting period allows the juices to redistribute, ensuring the chicken is moist and flavorful.

  7. Serve and enjoy: a. Serve the crispy, golden-brown fried chicken hot, garnished with fresh parsley or your desired accompaniments. b. The fried chicken pairs well with sides like mashed potatoes, coleslaw, or biscuits.

Cook’s Note:

  • For extra crispy skin, you can double-fry the chicken. After the initial fry, let the chicken rest for 5-10 minutes, then return it to the hot oil for an additional 2-3 minutes.
  • Adjust the seasoning to your taste, adding more salt, pepper, or spices as desired.
  • Ensure the oil temperature is maintained at 350°F (175°C) throughout the frying process for the best results.
  • Fry the chicken in batches to avoid overcrowding the pot, which can cause the oil temperature to drop.
  • Allow the oil to return to the correct temperature between batches for consistent frying.
  • Leftover fried chicken can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3 days. Reheat in a 400°F (200°C) oven for 10-15 minutes to restore the crispiness.

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About Christina Flores

Hi, I am Christina Flores, author of I'm passionate about creating delicious and nutritious recipes to help people lead healthier lives. Join me on this culinary journey as we explore the world of healthy eating together!