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Crispy Fried Chicken Strips are crispy-crunchy on the outside and tender on the inside. These delicious chicken strips are a family favorite!
When it comes to dinnertime, the family often requests my Crispy Fried Chicken Strips. I always make sure I have the ingredients on hand to make this quick and easy main dish. It’s a favorite with the grandkids.
Once it’s time to eat, we gather around the dining table to eat and catch up on the latest. We talk about our day, grades at school (excellent), sports (pretty good) and everything in between. We even talk about how crispy and yummy the chicken strips are.
I’m a southern girl, and I’ve been frying chicken for a long time. Over the years, I’ve discovered the best secrets for cooking the crispiest chicken. You’re in luck because I’m giving away all my secrets today, including the number one secret of all. Here goes!
#1 Secret for Frying The Crispiest Chicken Strips
My number one secret for getting the crispiest chicken with an airy texture is Argo® Corn Starch! When I fry chicken, I use one-half Argo® Corn Starch and one-half all-purpose flour in the breading. This combination produces the crispiest result.
I always have Argo® Corn Starch in my pantry because it’s the leading corn starch brand and has been trusted for over 100 years. When I was growing up, my mom always had Argo® Corn Starch in her pantry. So did my grandma. Multiple generations have trusted Argo® Corn Starch, and now my grown daughter is carrying on the family tradition.
There are so many ways you can use cornstarch when cooking. Cornstarch can be used to thicken gravies and is often used to quickly crisp meats and vegetables in Asian recipes. My homemade lemon sauce is always smooth and velvety thanks to Argo® Corn Starch.
When you use Argo® Corn Starch in your batter to coat the chicken strips before frying, you’ll notice a beautiful golden brown, crispy exterior. The chicken will be tender and juicy on the inside.
Heat the Oil To The Proper Temperature
Heat the oil to 350ºF. As soon as you place the first batch of chicken into the skillet, the temperature of the oil will drop a little. That’s fine because you want to keep the oil at 300-325º while the chicken is frying.
If the oil is not hot enough, the chicken will be greasy. If it’s too hot, the outside of the chicken will get done and the inside will be undercooked. It pays to have a candy or deep-fry thermometer on hand. Chicken is perfectly cooked at 165ºF. Use an instant-read or meat thermometer to make sure your chicken is done.
Don’t Overcrowd the Skillet
Fry in batches and leave room around each piece of chicken. If you overcrowd the skillet, the chicken will steam instead of fry. We want crispy chicken, not steamed chicken.
Cool On A Rack
Skip the paper-towel-lined platter. Drain chicken on a wire cooling rack placed over a cookie sheet. Allowing crispy chicken to rest on paper towels creates steam and causes the chicken to be soggy.
Crispy Fried Chicken Strips
I like to use chicken strips (tenders) when I’m frying chicken for the boys because they fry up in a hurry. After soaking in buttermilk for 15-30 minutes, I pat the chicken strips almost dry with paper towels. You’ll have crispier chicken if you make sure the chicken pieces are not too wet before dredging. Combine Argo® Corn Starch, all-purpose flour and seasonings in a shallow dish while the oil is heating.
Once the oil is at the right temperature, dredge 4-5 chicken strips and place them in the skillet. Cook for 8-10 minutes (4-5 on each side) or until golden brown and cooked through.
- 3/4 cup Argo® Corn Starch
- 3/4 cup all-purpose flour
- 2 lbs. chicken tenders
- 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon paprika
- 1 cup buttermilk
- Oil for frying
- Pour buttermilk into a large bowl. Add the chicken strips and let sit at room temperature while the oil is heating.
- Fill a 9-inch regular or cast-iron skillet with two inches of oil. Heat to 350ºF.
- Prepare the breading by combining the Argo® Corn Starch, flour, and seasonings in a shallow dish.
- Remove the chicken from the buttermilk and pat almost dry with paper towels. Dredge the chicken in the cornstarch/flour mixture.
- Carefully place the breaded chicken strips into the hot oil, cooking about 5 strips at a time. Cook for 4-5 minutes on each side or until golden brown and chicken is no longer pink.
- Drain chicken on a wire cooling rack placed over a cookie sheet.