Tyler Florence's Fried Chicken Failsafe Is All About Temperature - Exclusive

Food Network star Tyler Florence grew up watching his grandma shallow fry chicken in a cast iron pan, which is an exceptional way to do it — Florence exclusively told Tasting Table — if you're working with "thinner cuts" of the white meat, like chicken fried steaks. Suffice it to say, the celeb chef is not shy about his own fried chicken expertise, having recently declared on Food Network that the buttermilk-brined fried chicken dish with roasted garlic, lemon, and herbs he serves at Wayfare Tavern is "one of our greatest recipes we've ever come up with."

Florence doesn't shallow fry his Wayfare chicken. He deep fries it — and if crispy is your end goal, you should, too. "Deep-fried is where you're going to get the most crispy texture of all because it cooks at the same time," Florence advised us. His failsafe when deep-frying chicken is temperature control. "You have to think through a big pot of oil. Start off at 375 degrees [Fahrenheit] because you're going to put cold oil into that," the celebrity chef suggested.

"Setting the oil at a proper temperature is [a] good clutch to not mess it up, because if it's too hot, it's going to burn before it cooks all the way through. If it's too cold, the crust is going to balloon off because it steams before it gets crispy." By starting at 375 Fahrenheit, says Florence, you'll ensure that when your chicken goes in, it'll fry at 350 — your optimal chicken-frying temperature.

Tyler Florence adds a kick to his buttermilk bath when frying chicken

Of course, temperature isn't the only consideration you'll need to take into account — make your fried chicken sing by thinking through layers of flavor. Needless to say, you'll season your crust, and salt alone is hardly sufficient, says Tyler Florence. "It's got to be big, bold flavors — a lot of black pepper, a lot of garlic powder, a lot of onion powder," the celebrity chef told Tasting Table. "I don't put paprika in mine, but some people do."

To up your fried chicken game further, add layers of flavors even before you give your soon-to-be-fried chicken its flour coating. No need to limit spicy to dipping sauces (no offense to Sean Evans or his "Hot Ones" team); Florence adds hot sauce to his chicken's buttermilk marinade. "The pre-step is to make sure that you get chicken in a good buttermilk bath. That's where I like to add my hot sauce and a little bit of sugar," Florence told us. "The combination between spicy, sour, salty, and sweet — it's great."

Catch more of Tyler Florence on new episodes of Season 16 of "The Great Food Truck Race," which you can tune into on Sundays on Food Network.