How to Make Fried Chicken Using Crackers Instead of Flour


Fried chicken is traditionally made with a floury coating, but crackers are just the ticket if you prefer your chicken extra-crispy on the outside and juicy-tender inside. Nearly any type of cracker makes crispy, flavorful breading, including saltines, whole-grain crackers or buttery snack crackers, but be sure to crush the crackers as finely as possible. Serve the crispy chicken as-is, or stir a little milk and flour into the pan drippings to make rich, flavorful gravy.

Things You'll Need

  • Resealable bag and rolling pin
  • Blender or food processor (optional)
  • Herbs and spices (optional)
  • Shallow dish or pie pan
  • Egg
  • Whole milk
  • Heavy skillet
  • Cooking oil
  • Tongs or spatula
  • Meat thermometer
  • Paper bags
  • Paper towels
  • Serving plate
  • Place the crackers in a resealable bag. Remove the air from the bag, seal the top securely, and crush the crackers with a rolling pin. You can also crush the crackers in a food processor or blender.

  • Season the crackers with herbs and spices such as dried thyme, black pepper or paprika, if desired. Transfer the crushed crackers to a shallow dish or pie pan.

  • Beat an egg and whole milk together in a separate bowl. Use about 3 tablespoons of milk for each egg.

  • Place a heavy skillet over medium heat or preheat an electric skillet to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. Cover the bottom of the skillet with about 1/2 inch of cooking oil. You can also use lard, bacon grease or good quality shortening. Heat the skillet until a drop of water sizzles when dropped into the oil.

  • Dip the chicken pieces, one at at time, into the egg mixture. Coat each piece evenly with cracker crumbs.

  • Place the breaded chicken in the hot oil. Don't crowd the pan. Fry the chicken in batches, if necessary.

  • Cook the chicken for about 7 to 10 minutes on each side, or until the cracker crumbs are golden brown. Turn the chicken with tongs or a spatula. Don't use a fork because puncturing the skin causes a loss of savory juices.

  • Serve the chicken when a meat thermometer registers at least 165 F when the probe is inserted into the thickest part of breast or the inner part of a wing or thigh.

  • Remove the fried chicken from the skillet, then let it drain for a few minutes on a layer of brown paper bags or paper towels before serving.

Tips & Warnings

  • Most crackers are salty and no additional salt is required. However, you can add extra salt to the crumb mixture, if desired.

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