Add Pickle Brined Fried Chicken to the dinner menu this week! Made with real pickle juice and plenty of seasoning, this homemade fried chicken is crispy on the outside, tender on the inside, and flavorful throughout.
Pickle Fried Chicken
If you’ve never made pickled brined fried chicken, you’re in for a delicious surprise today! It may sound crazy, but adding pickle juice to this chicken marinade puts it over the top adding incredible flavor and texture.
If you’re looking for a unique addition to Sunday night dinner or a summertime party, give pickle fried chicken a try. It’s impressively flavorful and cooks perfectly every time!
Why You’ll Love this Fried Chicken Recipe:
- VERSATILE: Make this recipe with any cut of chicken – thighs, breasts, and drumsticks all work great.
- MOIST: The pickle juice tenderizes the chicken, making it extra tender and delicious under a crispy fried coating.
- ALWAYS A HIT: Pickled brined chicken always wows a crowd!
Serve this fried chicken for lunch or dinner with your favorite sides like macaroni and cheese, roasted sweet potatoes, green bean casserole, mashed potatoes, steamed broccoli, and more.
How to Make Pickle Brined Fried Chicken
Be sure to see the recipe card below for full ingredients & instructions!
- Make the marinade.
- Marinate the chicken for 8-12 hours.
- Prepare the flour coating.
- Coat each piece of chicken in the flour mixture.
- Fry the chicken and serve.
Use 4 pounds of your favorite kind of bone-in chicken thighs, breasts, or drumsticks.
Let the chicken brine for at least 8 hours and up to 12 hours. The longer it marinates, the more flavorful and tender it will be.
Heat the oil to 350°F. If the oil is any cooler, the chicken will be greasy and won’t cook through. If the oil is any hotter, the chicken can burn.
Fry thighs and drumsticks for 12 minutes and breasts for 15 minutes. The chicken is done when a thermometer inserted into the thickest portion of the meat reads 165°F.
Recipe Tips and Notes
- For a little spice, add a couple splashes of your favorite hot sauce to the marinade.
- Before serving, transfer the fried chicken to a paper towel-lined plate to get rid of any excess oil.
One bite of this pickled fried chicken and you’ll be adding pickle juice to everything!
Where can I buy pickle juice?
For 1 ½ cups of dill pickle juice, drain a 16 ounce jar of dill pickles. Keep the drained pickles and serve with the fried chicken.
What can I use instead of buttermilk?
If you don’t have buttermilk on hand, use a DIY substitute. Measure out 2 cups of milk, remove 4 tablespoons of milk, and mix in 4 tablespoons of white vinegar. Let the mixture stand for 5 minutes before adding it to the marinade.
A fun twist on classic fried chicken, pickled brined fried chicken is full of flavor and super tender every time!
If you’ve made this recipe, please be sure to let us know by leaving a star rating or a comment below. Enjoy!
Pickle Brined Fried Chicken Recipe
- 2 cups buttermilk
- 1 ½ cups dill pickle juice
- 1 ½ tablespoons hot sauce optional
- 1 tablespoon kosher salt divided
- 4 pounds bone-in chicken breasts, thighs, or drumsticks
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 2 teaspoons garlic powder
- 2 teaspoons onion powder
- 2 teaspoons paprika
- 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
- Oil for frying
- In a large bowl, whisk the buttermilk, pickle juice, hot sauce (if using), and 2 teaspoons of salt together.2 cups buttermilk, 1 ½ cups dill pickle juice, 1 ½ tablespoons hot sauce, 1 tablespoon kosher salt
- Add the chicken and mix well to coat each piece. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and marinate in the refrigerator for 8-12 hours.4 pounds bone-in chicken breasts, thighs, or drumsticks
- When ready to cook, remove the chicken from the refrigerator. Set a wire rack over a baking sheet. Use a colander to drain the chicken and place each piece of marinated chicken onto the rack. Allow the chicken to come to room temperature.
- In a shallow bowl, combine the flour, remaining 1 teaspoon salt, garlic powder, onion powder, paprika, and pepper.2 cups all-purpose flour, 2 teaspoons garlic powder, 2 teaspoons onion powder, 2 teaspoons paprika, 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
- Coat all sides of each piece of chicken in the flour mixture. Transfer breaded chicken back to the wire rack. Repeat the process until all pieces of chicken are breaded. Allow the chicken to rest at room temperature for 30 minutes.
- Heat oil in a deep fryer to 350°F. Working in batches, add chicken pieces to the hot oil. Fry for 12-15 minutes until golden brown, turning once during cooking. The chicken is done when a thermometer inserted into the thickest portion of the meat reads 165°F.Oil
- Remove the cooked chicken from the oil and place on a paper towel-lined baking sheet. Repeat the process until all pieces of chicken are cooked. Serve the fried chicken with pickles.
- Pickle Juice: For 1 ½ cups of dill pickle juice, drain a 16 ounce jar of dill pickles. Keep the drained pickles and serve with the fried chicken.
- Fry Time: Fry thighs and drumsticks for 12 minutes and breasts for 15 minutes. The chicken is done when a thermometer inserted into the thickest portion of the meat reads 165°F.