The Secret Step That Will Give You The Best Fried Chicken

Fried chicken is one of those classic dishes that everyone on earth seems to love — and why not? A well-made rendition of fried chicken is juicy on the inside, well-seasoned, and crisp and greaseless on the outside — no small task to achieve at home. Homemade fried chicken can often turn out undercooked, overcooked, bland, tough, or greasy — among other pitfalls. Whether you don't brine your chicken, forget to season the flour you dredge it in, never heat the oil enough before cooking, or made another common mistake, it's easy to ruin fried chicken.

Tips and tricks for making excellent fried chicken seem to abound, running the gamut from a high smoke point oil to double-dredging the chicken and holding cooked chicken in a warm 250-degree oven. But have you ever heard of cooking the chicken all the way through before breading and frying it? This tip from MyRecipes just might rock your fried chicken world.

Poaching before frying is a streamlined take on fried chicken

Home cooks often avoid making fried dishes due to the mess, bother, and hot oil. For that reason, and because it can be a tricky dish overall, tackling fried chicken can seem unnecessarily complicated. But did you know there's another way to make fried chicken — one that relies primarily on the method of poaching?

According to MyRecipes, a streamlined process of making fried chicken at home begins by poaching the bird in a buttermilk solution after brining it. Once the chicken is fully cooked and cooled, shake off the excess liquid, dredge the poultry in seasoned flour, let the breading dry out slightly, and then fry the chicken. Only use about 1½ of hot fat in your pan for a more pleasant and less messy frying experience. Sunny Anderson of the Food Network shared a similar technique with Today. The benefit, she points out, is having the fully cooked chicken on hand. Then, when you want to chow down, it takes just a few additional minutes to have hot, crispy fried chicken on your plate. MyRecipes notes that you can prepare and refrigerate the unbreaded poached chicken up to three days before frying.