Get a taste of the South with this Fried Chicken Recipe

Howdy folks! Welcome to my kitchen where we’re cooking up some real southern-style goodness. Today, I’m sharing with y’all my secret recipe for Big John’s Southern Fried Chicken. This here recipe has been passed down through generations in my family and I’ve added a few touches of my own to make it even more finger-lickin’ good.

Now, let me tell you, there ain’t nothin’ like southern fried chicken – crispy on the outside, juicy on the inside, and bursting with flavor. And this recipe is the best of the best! Trust me when I say, once you taste Big John’s Southern Fried Chicken, you’ll never go back to plain ol’ grilled chicken again.

You might be wondering what makes this recipe so special. Well, first off, it’s all about the seasoning. We use a blend of herbs and spices including garlic powder, onion powder, black pepper, cayenne pepper, and seasoning salt that’ll make your taste buds sing. And secondly, frying chicken ain’t no easy feat but with my step-by-step instructions and tips, you’ll be able to cook up extra crispy chicken every time.

So what are you waiting for? Grab your apron, roll up your sleeves, and let’s get cookin’!

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

Big John's Southern Fried Chicken
Big John’s Southern Fried Chicken

You might have tried plenty of fried chicken recipes, but none of them can compare to Big John’s Southern Fried Chicken Recipe. This recipe has been passed down through generations in the heart of the south, where we know how to fry up some chicken right.

What makes this recipe so special? First, it’s all about the seasoning. We use a blend of salt, black pepper, garlic and onion powder, cayenne pepper, and herbs to give our chicken that perfect flavor. Plus, we add some chicken broth and a touch of MSG to enhance the taste even more.

And let’s talk about texture. We coat our chicken pieces in a mixture of flour, milk, and beaten eggs before dipping them into seasoned flour – resulting in a perfectly crispy coating that you won’t be able to resist.

But what truly sets Big John’s Southern Fried Chicken Recipe apart is the way it transforms an ordinary meal into a celebration. Whether you’re serving it up for a special occasion or just want to treat yourself and your loved ones to some delicious comfort food, this recipe hits all the right notes.

So if you’re looking for that extra special something for your next dinner party or just want to impress your family at dinnertime, give Big John’s Southern Fried Chicken Recipe a try. I promise it won’t disappoint.

Ingredient List

 Golden and crispy on the outside, juicy and tender on the inside.
Golden and crispy on the outside, juicy and tender on the inside.

Before we get our hands dirty, let’s gather all the ingredients we need. Make sure to get the freshest ingredients to achieve the best results. Here are the things we need to prepare for Big John’s Southern Fried Chicken Recipe:

For the Brine:

  • 1 whole frying chicken (cut into 4 pieces)
  • 4 cups water
  • 1/4 cup sea salt
  • 1/4 cup MSG
  • 3 teaspoons onion powder
  • 2 teaspoons garlic powder
  • 2 teaspoons cayenne pepper
  • 1 whole egg (beaten)

For the Coating:

  • 2 cups flour
  • 1 tablespoon sea salt
  • 1/3 cup MSG
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper crushed

For Frying:

  • Vegetable oil

These are all easy-to-find ingredients that you can buy in your local grocery store. Make sure to double-check the quantities and don’t skip any ingredient to ensure you’ll have a phenomenal fried chicken like Big John’s!

The Recipe How-To

 This ain't your mama's fried chicken!
This ain’t your mama’s fried chicken!

Now, the moment we’ve all been waiting for, Big John’s recipe for Southern Fried Chicken. This is no ordinary chicken, folks. It’s the kind of chicken that will make your mouth water just thinking about it. The secret to this recipe is in the seasoning and preparation. So, let’s get started!


  • 1 whole frying chicken, cut into 4 pieces
  • 4 cups water
  • 1 tablespoon sea salt
  • 3 teaspoons MSG
  • 2 teaspoons cayenne pepper
  • 1 whole egg
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • Seasoned flour (flour mixed with black pepper, garlic powder, onion powder, seasoning salt, and your favorite herbs)
  • Oil (for frying)

Step 1: Brine the Chicken

First things first. Combine water, sea salt, MSG, and cayenne pepper in a large bowl to make the brine. Soak the chicken pieces in the brine for at least an hour. Once finished soaking, rinse each piece under cold running water and pat them dry with paper towels.

Step 2: Prepare Egg Wash

In another bowl, whisk together egg, milk, and a pinch of your favorite seasoning to make your egg wash.

Step 3: Coat with Seasoned Flour

Heavily coat each piece of chicken with seasoned flour until fully covered. Shake off excess flour and dip it into the egg mixture.

Step 4: Re-Coat with Seasoned Flour

Coat again in seasoned flour until fully covered. Repeat until all pieces are coated twice.

Step 5: Fry

Heat up oil in a deep fryer or cast iron skillet until it reaches about 350°F (175°C). Add in coated chicken pieces one at a time but do not overcrowd the pan. Fry until cooked through and golden brown, about 20-25 minutes.

Step 6: Serve and Enjoy!

Serve your Southern Fried Chicken while it’s hot and fresh out of the oil. Pair it with some collard greens, mashed potatoes, and macaroni and cheese to complete that classic southern meal. You can also add a little bit of cayenne pepper to give it an extra kick. Trust me, this recipe is sure to impress even the pickiest of eaters!

Substitutions and Variations

 Crispy, savory, and downright irresistible.
Crispy, savory, and downright irresistible.

Folks, I know sometimes you’re missing ingredients or want to switch up the recipe a bit. Don’t you worry, I have just the right tips for you! Here are some substitutions and variations to try:

– Spicy Lovers: If you like your fried chicken with an extra kick, add more cayenne pepper to the seasoned flour or sprinkle it on top once the chicken is fried.

– Buttermilk Substitute: Can’t get your hands on buttermilk? Use regular milk mixed with one tablespoon of vinegar or lemon juice for every cup of milk. Let the mixture sit for five minutes until it curdles.

– Gluten-Free Option: For those who can’t tolerate gluten, swap out the flour for a gluten-free flour blend or cornmeal. Cornmeal will provide an extra crispy texture.

– Vegetarian Option: Want to make this recipe vegetarian? Swap out the chicken for cauliflower florets. Dip the florets in buttermilk or an egg wash and coat them in seasoned flour before frying. You’ll end up with a tasty vegetarian twist on southern fried chicken.

– Healthier Version: To make this dish a bit healthier, try oven-frying the chicken instead of deep frying it. Dip the chicken in buttermilk or an egg wash, coat it in seasoned flour and place it on a baking sheet before spraying it with cooking spray. Bake at 400°F (200°C) for 30-40 minutes until golden brown and cooked through.

So, there you have it folks – five different variations that will allow you to change up your Big John’s Southern Fried Chicken Recipe in a variety of ways without losing its flavorful essence!

Serving and Pairing

 Fried to perfection, Big John's style.
Fried to perfection, Big John’s style.

Now, let’s talk about the best part- serving and pairing this big John southern fried chicken recipe! When it comes to soul food, it is all about comfort and finding the perfect match. This fried chicken pairs perfectly with a variety of classic southern favorites, from buttery biscuits to collard greens.

For an extra crispy touch, you can serve this fried chicken with some oven-fried potatoes or sweet potato fries. You can also add some creamy coleslaw on the side to balance out the spice in the chicken. As a true southern-style chef, I would recommend serving it up with extra savory gravy and some homemade mac and cheese.

If you’re in the mood for a sandwich, try the BigJohn’s special recipe served fresh on a warm sesame seed bun with fresh lettuce, spicy mayo, and tangy pickles. The recipe can be made into fillet burgers or even used as chicken tenders. Another variation is to chop up the fried chicken pieces and put them on top of a salad to make a delicious southern-style salad.

For the perfect drink pairing, I suggest you stick with tradition and pour yourself an ice-cold glass of sweet tea or a refreshing glass of lemonade. If you need something stronger, pair it with your favorite beer and enjoy the evening breeze in your front porch.

There are endless possibilities when it comes to pairing this southern-style fried chicken recipe with other dishes. So go ahead, experiment, and find your favorite way of serving up Big John’s perfected southern fried chicken!

Make-Ahead, Storing and Reheating

 A taste of the South in every juicy bite.
A taste of the South in every juicy bite.

Listen to me good, folks. You just can’t beat the taste of freshly fried southern-style chicken. But I know life gets busy, and sometimes you need to prepare ahead of time, or maybe you have some leftover chicken. Don’t fret, because I’ve got you covered with tips for make-ahead, storing, and reheating.

If you’re planning to fry up a batch of Big John’s Southern Fried Chicken for a big event like a family reunion or a church picnic, you can do some advance prep work. Season your chicken pieces ahead of time and coat them in seasoned flour before putting them in the fridge for up to 24 hours. This will allow the flavors to meld together, resulting in an even more delicious chicken.

Once you’ve fried up your chicken, it’s important to store it properly to keep it safe to eat. As tempting as it might be to leave that extra crispy goodness sitting out on the counter all night long, don’t do it. Instead, wrap your fried chicken tightly in aluminum foil or plastic wrap and store it in the refrigerator for up to two days.

When it’s time to reheat your fried chicken, there are a few ways you can go about it. If you just pop that bird in the microwave or oven, chances are you’re going to end up with either soggy or dried out chicken (and nobody wants that!). For the best results, take your leftover fried chicken out of the fridge and let it sit at room temperature for about 20-30 minutes before reheating.

If you want that crispy texture back on your leftover fried chicken, try reheating it in a toaster oven or oven at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for about 10-15 minutes. For extra crispy results, place the chicken on a wire rack set over a baking sheet so the air can circulate around it evenly.

So don’t throw away those leftovers just yet! With a little bit of effort, you can make that leftover fried chicken taste almost as good as it did the first time around. Now, go ahead and enjoy your southern-style feast!

Tips for Perfect Results

If you’re going to make some fried chicken, might as well make it the best fried chicken you can cook. Here are some pro tips from my kitchen on how to whip up a scrumptious southern fried chicken that will make people come back for seconds.

1. Pre-heat your oil

To avoid greasy fried chicken, heat your oil up to the right temperature before adding the chicken pieces into the pot. I prefer to use peanut or vegetable oil for frying chicken. Your oil should be between 350-375F, so give it at least 15 minutes of warming time on medium-high heat.

2. Keep the coating thin

Thick clusters of flour in your coating could sabotage the texture of the chicken if you’re not careful. So when you dredge your chicken in flour, buttermilk or egg, shake off any excess before placing it in the hot oil. This will ensure that the crust is evenly spread out and crispy.

3. Give it some space

As tempting as it may be to crowd your pot with several pieces of coated chicken at once, don’t do it! When there’s too much food in the pot, things tend to cool down and won’t get crispy as they should, resulting in extra greasiness. Instead, cook them in batches, giving each piece plenty of elbow room.

4. Cook until golden brown

Before you take out your chicken from the pot, test it first by pricking it with a meat thermometer or knife at its thickest part. The internal temperature should read 165°F before taking it out of the oil. This ensures that it has cooked all the way through to produce succulent meat and crispy skin.

5. Blot off any excess oils

To prevent soggy bites of fried chicken, leave your cooked poultry on a paper towel-lined plate for a few minutes after removing them from frying oil. This trick will allow any excess oils to be absorbed before settling on the skin.

Remember, cooking the best southern fried chicken plate requires taking your time and being a little patient with the process. Incorporating these tips in your recipe is a sure way to get some extra crispy results that’ll have family and friends asking for seconds.


Now, before wrapping up this southern-style fried chicken recipe, I’ll answer some of the commonly asked questions. So, fasten your seatbelts and let’s dive right in!

What is the secret to making great fried chicken?

When it comes to preparing a delicious southern-style dish, it’s important to cut the chicken into proper pieces that satisfy everyone’s preference for both dark and white meat. To enhance the flavor, creating a mouth-watering marinade is a must. However, it’s crucial not to rush the preparation process to achieve the perfect taste. When seasoning, be generous to get the most flavor out of the meal. It’s also essential to use the correct cooking oil at the right temperature to ensure the chicken is properly cooked. Lastly, ditch the paper towels to ensure a crispy exterior.

What do you soak chicken in before frying?

Brining is a widely known method to enhance the flavor and texture of chicken. In a typical brine, salt is mixed in water, and the chicken is soaked in this solution for some time. The salt in the brine causes the proteins in the meat to break down, making it more relaxed and capable of retaining more moisture while cooking.

What is the difference between fried chicken and southern fried chicken?

Southern fried chicken is a mouth-watering dish made with juicy chicken pieces dipped in a seasoned batter or flour coating, then fried to perfection. This cooking technique results in a crispy and flavorful exterior while keeping the meat tender and juicy.

What does soaking chicken in buttermilk do?

Marinating chicken in buttermilk has multiple benefits for cooking southern-style cuisine. Buttermilk, being slightly acidic, functions as a natural tenderizer for the chicken without altering its texture. Furthermore, buttermilk also aids in creating a delicate and crispy coating when you coat the chicken in dry mix.

Bottom Line

So, my friends, there you have it – Big John’s Southern Fried Chicken Recipe. This recipe is something special, trust me. Not only does it hit all the right notes with its spices and herbs, it is also versatile and easily adaptable to any occasion. Whether you’re hosting a picnic for family and friends or just looking to enjoy a cozy night in with a scrumptious meal, Big John’s Southern Fried Chicken Recipe is the perfect choice to make your taste buds sing.

I hope that you give this recipe a try and experience the joy of southern-style cuisine at its finest. And remember, cooking isn’t just a science – it’s an art. So be sure to experiment with different combinations of seasonings and spices to find your perfect version of this classic dish!

At the end of the day, nothing beats the warm and comforting flavors of southern cuisine, so why not try something new? Break out of your usual routine and give Big John’s Southern Fried Chicken Recipe a chance. Your tastebuds will thank you.

Big John's Southern Fried Chicken

Big John’s Southern Fried Chicken Recipe

Crispy & juicy, and you might just lick your fingers.
No ratings yet
Prep Time 1 hr 30 mins
Cook Time 15 mins
Calories 538.5 kcal


  • 1 whole frying chicken, cut up


  • 4 cups water
  • 1 tablespoon sea salt
  • 1/3 teaspoon msg
  • 1/2 teaspoon cayenne pepper, crushed

Coating Mix

  • 1 whole egg, beaten
  • 1 cup milk
  • 2 cups flour, all-purpose
  • 2 teaspoons onion powder
  • 2 chicken broth, packets,dry
  • 2 teaspoons fines herbs, ground
  • 2 teaspoons seasoning salt
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper, ground
  • 1 teaspoon msg


  • Clean chicken pieces being sure to remove any extra fat and skin.
  • Combine marinade ingredients in large bowl.
  • Place chicken pieces in bowl, cover with plastic wrap and let stand for a minimum of 1 hour.
  • Heat deep fryer to 350 degrees F.
  • Combine milk with beaten egg in med.
  • bowl.
  • Combine remaining dry ingredients in another bowl and mix well.
  • Dry marinated chicken on paper towel.
  • Take pieces one at a time and coat with flour mixture, milk mixture and flour mixture again.
  • Place coated chicken pieces on a plate and let stand for 10 minutes.
  • Fry pieces in deep fryer and cook until golden brown (approx. 15 min.) be sure to turn chicken in order to cook evenly on all sides.
  • Remove from deep fryer and allow to drain for several minutes prior to serving.

Add Your Own Notes


Serving: 329gCalories: 538.5kcalCarbohydrates: 52.6gProtein: 31.6gFat: 21.3gSaturated Fat: 6.8gCholesterol: 141.3mgSodium: 1877mgFiber: 2gSugar: 0.9g
Keyword < 4 Hours, Chicken, Deep Fried, Meat, Poultry, Weeknight
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