Crispy Chicken Sandwich (2024)

If a crispy chicken sandwich is your go-to meal at fast-food chains like McDonald’s, Wendy’s or Chick-fil-A, you’ve likely wondered how you can make that deliciously crisp chicken in your own kitchen. With the right amount of buttermilk, eggs, spices and oil, you’ll be frying up chicken sandwiches in no time. Get your fluffy brioche buns and fresh lettuce ready!

What’s the secret to crispy fried chicken?

No one likes soggy fried chicken, but we also don’t want super crunchy chicken when making sandwiches. The art of frying chicken is all about riding the linebetween crispy and crunchy, and there are a few things you can do to ensure that your fried chicken remains crispy and light.

First, make sure to marinate your chicken overnight. The buttermilk and hot sauce mixture will not only deepen the flavor of the chicken, but it will also tenderize the meat. Next, you’re going to want to make sure that your flour coating completely covers the chicken.

Lastly, despite popular belief, you don’t want to let your chicken cool on paper towels. The moisture from the meat will seep through the crispy outer coating, making your crispy chicken soggy. Instead, treat your chicken like a baked pastry and place the breasts on a wire cooling rack so the airflow can reach all the sides.

Crispy Chicken Sandwich Ingredients

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  • Boneless skinless chicken breast
  • Buttermilk
  • Hot pepper sauce
  • Large eggs
  • All-purpose flour
  • Garlic powder
  • Onion powder
  • Paprika
  • Pepper
  • Salt
  • Canola oil
  • Brioche hamburger buns, split
  • Optional toppings: shredded lettuce, sliced tomatoes, pickle slices, onion slices, mayonnaise


Step 1: Prep the chicken

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Cut each chicken breast horizontally in half, and place the halves in a large bowl. Add the buttermilk and hot sauce, and toss the chicken until it’s coated. Refrigerate the marinating chicken, covered, for eight hours or overnight.

Step 2: Double dredge the chicken

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Stir the eggs into the chicken mixture. In a shallow dish, whisk together the flour, garlic powder, onion powder, paprika, pepper and salt.Remove the chicken breasts from the buttermilk mixture and dredge them in the flour mixture, firmly patting to help the coating adhere. Repeat, dipping the chicken again into the buttermilk mixture and then dredging it once more in the flour mixture.

Step 3: Chill the chicken

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Place the chicken on a wire rack over a baking sheet. Refrigerate the chicken, uncovered, for 30 minutes.

Step 4: Fry the chicken

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In an electric skillet or deep-fat fryer, heat the canola oil to 375°F. Fry the chicken in batchesuntil a thermometer reads 165° and the coating is golden brown and crispy, about three to four minutes on each side.Once fried, transfer the chicken to a wire rack to maintain its crispiness.

Editor’s Tip: Don’t overcrowd the pot, and don’t skimp on the oil! Make sure there is enough to fully submerge your chicken, while leaving a couple inches at the top to leave room for bubbling oil.

Step 5: Assemble the sandwiches

Serve the chicken in buns with the optional toppings.

Editor’s Tip:Toast the buns in an air fryer or under a broiler for extra texture and flavor.

How do you store a crispy chicken sandwich?

While crispy chicken sandwiches can absolutely be stored in the refrigerator, it’s best to store the chicken on its own; that way you can reheat it more efficiently while maintaining its crispiness. Allow the crispy chicken to cool completely before storing it. Once cooled, place it in an airtight container and refrigerate it for up to four days. Reheat it in a 400° oven on a wire rack, then assemble sandwiches.

Crispy Chicken Sandwich Tips

What’s the best oil for frying crispy chicken?

The best oils for frying crispy chicken are oils with a high smoke point, like canola oil, sunflower oil, vegetable oil and peanut oil. Avoid oils with a low smoke point, like butter and olive oil; they’ll burn if they get too hot.

Can you make crispy chicken in an air fryer?

Yes! Preheat the air fryer to 400º. Follow all the steps above through Step 3, then spray or brush both sides of the battered chicken with oil or cooking spray. Arrange the dredged chicken in a single layer on a greased tray in an air-fryer basket. Cook the chicken until an inserted thermometer reads 165°, about seven to eight minutes on each side. The coating should look golden brown and crispy.

Can you use chicken thighs for crispy chicken sandwiches?

You can absolutely use boneless chicken thighs for this recipe. Bone-in chicken thighs are not the best for inside a bun, though. If using bone-in chicken thighs, follow the recipe to deep-fry them, then top them with the same toppings as you would in a sandwich. You can eat them with a fork and knife, with dinner rolls on the side.

What can you serve with crispy chicken sandwiches?

Serve a cool,creamy coleslaw or macaroni salad on the side with your crispy chicken sandwiches, or keep with the fried theme and opt for fried okra or oven-fried pickles. For a perfect drink pairing, serve the sandwiches with fresh-squeezed lemonade or your favorite beer.

Test Kitchen Approved

Crispy Chicken Sandwich

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Prep Time15 min

Cook Time10 min

Yield6 servings.


  • 3 boneless skinless chicken breast halves (6 ounces each)
  • 3/4 cup buttermilk
  • 2 teaspoons hot pepper sauce
  • 2 large eggs, beaten
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon plus 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 tablespoon onion powder
  • 1 tablespoon paprika
  • 2 teaspoons pepper
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • Oil for deep-fat frying
  • 6 brioche hamburger buns, split and toasted
  • Optional: Shredded lettuce, sliced tomatoes, pickle slices, onion slices, mayonnaise
Text Ingredients


  1. Cut each chicken breast horizontally in half; place in a large bowl. Add buttermilk and hot sauce; toss to coat. Refrigerate, covered, 8 hours or overnight.
  2. Stir eggs into chicken mixture. In a shallow dish, whisk flour, garlic powder, onion powder, paprika, pepper and salt. Remove chicken from buttermilk mixture. Dredge chicken in flour mixture, firmly patting to help coating adhere. Repeat, dipping chicken again in buttermilk mixture and then dredging in flour mixture.
  3. Place chicken on a wire rack over a baking sheet. Refrigerate, uncovered, for 30 minutes.
  4. In an electric skillet or deep-fat fryer, heat oil to 375°. In batches, cook chicken until a thermometer reads 165° and coating is golden brown and crispy, 3-4 minutes on each side. Serve chicken in buns with optional toppings, if desired.

Nutrition Facts

1 sandwich: 543 calories, 18g fat (3g saturated fat), 136mg cholesterol, 778mg sodium, 63g carbohydrate (8g sugars, 4g fiber), 30g protein.


Rosemary Siefert

Rosemary is an editor at Taste of Home where she blends her six years of writing and editing with her lifelong love of all things food. When she's not working, Rosie can be found curled up with a coffee and a book, testing a new recipe for dinner or trying a new dish at a local restaurant.

Read More

Crispy Chicken Sandwich (6)

After trying all the major fast-food chains' chicken sandwiches, I decided to come up with my own version. I think this is better than the original. —Ralph Jones, San Diego, California

Recipe Creator

Crispy Chicken Sandwich (2024)


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