These days, we can all use a little comfort. That comfort, done in moderation, can come from foods that are both satisfying and indulgent. Now, I’m certainly not saying to sit down with a big ol’ chocolate layer cake and a fork (although trust me, it’s tempting)! But, from time to time, especially during challenging situations like we are going through now as a country, a fried chicken dinner could be the ticket to helping us all feel just a tad bit better.
Fried chicken is very hard to come by when you’re celiac and/or on a gluten free diet. Like me, if you have been daydreaming about a chicken leg that’s been fried to a deep golden brown on the outside with a moist, juicy inside, I invite you to please try this recipe! You won’t believe how crispy the chicken is on the outside — not soggy or rubbery as you’d expect “gluten free” to be. Here are a few of my tips for making this the ultimate fried gluten free chicken!
- Trim away the excess fat from the chicken skin, but leave some of the skin intact
- Be sure that your club soda is very cold and fresh; the more carbonation, the better. Do not use flat soda!
- Be sure that your frying oil is always kept at 350 degrees. This is critical to obtaining a crispy exterior! It’s important to watch the thermometer in between batches, as the oil may need to get back up to 350 degrees after a batch of chicken has been fried.
- This recipe make a lot of batter, so if you are making a smaller portion of chicken, cut the recipe on half to reduce wasted batter
- If you don’t have club soda, you can use a gluten free beer instead. Just keep in mind that the beer will give the batter a stronger flavor. The whole concept here is to add carbonation so the batter expands and thickens.
- I like to serve the chicken with a side of pickles, homemade Cole slaw or potato salad!
Gluten Free Fried Chicken
- For the batter:
- 2 cups white rice flour (not sweet white rice flour)
- 1/2 tsp. salt
- Black pepper, to taste
- 1 1/2 tsp. paprika
- Cold club soda
- For the chicken (I prefer Bell & Evans):
- 12 chicken legs
- Salt, pepper, garlic powder, to taste
- Canola, vegetable or peanut oil for frying
- Step 1 Trim the chicken legs of any excess fat or skin, leaving some of the skin intact.
- Step 2 Pat dry with paper towels and season, to taste, with salt, pepper and garlic powder. Set aside while you make the batter and heat the oil.
- Step 3 In a large bowl, whisk togeter the rice flour, salt, pepper and paprika. Do not add the club soda yet.
- Step 4 Pour a few inches worth of oil into a deep sauté pan with sides or a dutch oven. Using a candy thermometer, heat the oil to 350 degrees.
- Step 5 In the meantime, slowly pour the cold club soda into the flour mixture, whisking as you go. You need to add enough soda so that the batter is not lumpy or dry, similar to the consistency of a thick pancake batter. If the batter is too thin, it won’t stick to the chicken. It should coat the back of a spoon.
- Step 6 Using tongs, dunk the chicken into the batter, allowing the excess to drip off. Immediately drop the chicken into the hot oil. Do not overcrowd your pot or the oil temperature will drop.
- Step 7 Fry the chicken for about 8-10 minutes per side until it reaches a deep golden brown. If the pieces are very thick, you may need to fry them a bit longer.
- Step 8 Place the chicken on a plate lined with paper towel or brown bags tp Darin off excess oil.