Try ‘The Pioneer Woman’ Ree Drummond’s Fried Chicken Recipe for Dinner Tonight

The Pioneer Woman star Ree Drummond has a delicious recipe for fried chicken that’s sure to dazzle your taste buds. Drummond said she enjoys this version of chicken because it’s easy to take to family gatherings. “I love fried chicken. My family really loves fried chicken, and it really is the perfect picnic type food because it doesn’t have to be piping hot when you eat it. It’s just as good room temperature as it is hot,” said Drummond during an episode of The Pioneer Woman. Here’s Ree Drummond’s recipe for fried chicken.

Ree Drummond and Daphne Oz | Ida Mae Astute/Walt Disney Television via Getty Images
Ree Drummond and Daphne Oz | Ida Mae Astute/Walt Disney Television via Getty Images


  • 2 fryer chickens, each cut into 8 pieces
  • 4 ¼ cups buttermilk
  • 5 cups all-purpose flour
  • 3 tablespoons seasoned salt, such as Lawry’s
  • 2 teaspoons paprika
  • 2 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 teaspoons ground dried thyme
  • 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper, plus more for seasoning
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • Canola or vegetable oil, for frying


1. Rinse the chicken pieces, then place them in a bowl and cover with 4 cups of buttermilk. Soak in the refrigerator overnight or up to 24 hours.

2. When you’re ready to fry the chicken, remove the bowl from the refrigerator and let it sit on the counter for 30 minutes to remove the chill.

3. In the meantime, preheat the oven to 360° F and mix up the breading. Place the flour, seasoned salt, paprika, black pepper, thyme, and cayenne (plus extra cayenne if you like heat) in a very large bowl. Stir together well.

4. In a small bowl, combine the remaining 1/4 cup buttermilk and milk. Pour the milk mixture into the flour mixture and gradually mix with a fork until there are little lumps throughout; these will adhere to the chicken and make for a crispier breading. If necessary, add a little more flour or milk to make the breading slightly lumpy.

5. Heat 1 ½ to 2 inches of oil in a deep skillet over medium-high heat until a deep-fry thermometer reaches 365°F. Lower the heat slightly, if necessary, to keep the oil from getting hotter.

6. Working in batches, thoroughly coat each chicken piece with breading, pressing extra breading onto the chicken if necessary. Place the breaded pieces on a plate.

7. Add the breaded chicken to the oil, 3 or 4 pieces at a time; make sure they don’t stick together. Cover the pan and fry for 5 to 7 minutes, checking occasionally to make sure the chicken isn’t getting too brown. Turn the pieces over, cover again, and cook for 3 to 5 minutes more. Monitor the temperature of the oil to make sure the chicken doesn’t burn.

8. Transfer the fried chicken to a baking sheet and continue frying the rest of the chicken. When all the chicken has been fried, remove the wings and legs to a plate and keep covered. (These should be cooked all the way through by now, but always check if any pink juice or meat is visible. If so, return to the hot oil for another minute or so, until fully cooked.) Leave the thighs and breasts on the baking sheet.

9. Bake the thighs and breasts for 15 minutes to finish cooking. (Sometimes Drummond will cut into the thicker part of one of the larger pieces just to make sure the chicken is cooked through. If any pink juice or meat is visible, the chicken needs to continue cooking in the oven.)

Source: Ree Drummond

Read more: What ‘The Pioneer Woman’ Ree Drummond Eats in a Day

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