Deliciously crispy and flavorful fried chicken burgers: this is an easy homemade chicken burger recipe that your entire family will love.
Tucked inside a soft, toasted bun and topped with bacon, cheese, and pickles, this fried chicken burger is a true delight. Each bite offers a combination of crunchy exterior, tender meat, and delicious flavors.
Whether you're a fan of comfort food or simply crave a satisfying meal, our fried chicken burger is the go-to choice for a finger-licking good time.
Ingredients for the fried chicken:
- Boneless skinless chicken breast: To make four generous chicken burgers, we need 2 large chicken breasts, which we simply slice horizontally to create two thinner pieces. Alternatively, chicken thighs can also be used as a delicious alternative.
- Buttermilk acts as a tenderizer for the meat and helps retain its moisture, resulting in a juicy and flavorful outcome.
- Egg for adding to the buttermilk marinade.
- Seasoning: Use your favorite seasoning or dry rub for poultry. Alternatively, use a mixture of fine sea salt (or kosher salt), ground black pepper, garlic powder, onion powder, sweet paprika, smoked paprika, and a pinch of cayenne pepper. Add 1 teaspoon of dried herbs, such as oregano or thyme, if you like.
- Flour coating: All-purpose flour for the coating, baking powder, and cornstarch.
- Oil: Opt for vegetable oil, canola, or sunflower oil for deep frying, as they are cost-effective and have a high smoke point, ensuring ideal frying conditions. Don’t use olive oil for frying.
Ingredients for the burgers:
- Burger buns: Brioche buns or hamburger buns with or without sesame seeds, whole wheat or sourdough buns, ciabatta bread, or pretzel buns.
- Bacon: 4-8 bacon slices depending on their size. I used turkey bacon, which is lower in fat. However, regular bacon is perfect.
- Cheese: Use your favorite, nice-melting cheese slices. We had cheddar, but Swiss, Gouda, American cheese slices, or any other kind you like is great.
- Mayonnaise and chili sauce to spread on the bread. You could also use ketchup or another burger sauce you like.
- Red onion, pickled cucumbers (gherkins), and lettuce for more crunch and extra flavor.
- sliced avocado
- sliced tomatoes
- fried egg
- fried mushrooms
- caramelized onions
How to make crispy chicken burgers?
- Slice the breasts horizontally (1) and marinate them in a mixture of buttermilk, egg, and seasoning (2). Bring to room temperature before frying.
- Whisk flour, cornstarch, baking powder, salt, and the remaining seasoning mixture in a large bowl (3).
- Lift the pieces from the buttermilk mixture, let the excess buttermilk drip back into the bowl, and dredge them through the seasoned flour, turning them to coat on both sides and pressing them down gently to help the coating adhere (4).
- Fry the chicken in a large frying pan in the hot oil until golden brown. Do it in two batches if necessary (5,6).
- Transfer to a paper towel-lined plate to absorb the excess oil.
If the chicken is fully submerged in oil, it will need 4-5 minutes to cook. To shallow fry, the pieces will need 6-8 minutes (flip halfway through).
The cooking time also depends on their thickness. Check with a meat thermometer (the Amazon link opens in a new tab); the internal temperature should be 165°F/74°C.
Build chicken burgers:
- Cook bacon: Remove the oil from the pan or use another pan to fry the bacon until crispy and toast the buns. Drain on kitchen paper.
- Toast buns.
- Spread mayonnaise and the hot sauce on the soft burger buns.
- Add lettuce leaves, halved chicken breast pieces, cheddar cheese, and bacon slices.
- Top with onions, pickles, and the top buns. Serve immediately.
- Chicken's thickness: It is important to achieve the right thickness for your sliced pieces. They may not cook thoroughly and could burn if they are too thick.
- Safety: Take precautions when handling hot oil to avoid oil splatter or burns. Follow safety guidelines and closely monitor the temperature of your oil to prevent overheating or excessive cooling.
- Optimal cooking temperature: Heat the oil to approximately 350°F/175°C for frying the breaded chicken. Maintain this temperature consistently throughout the cooking process for best results.
- Fry in batches: Avoid overcrowding the pan to prevent a drop in oil temperature, which can result in greasy chicken. Cook the chicken in multiple batches for even frying.
Buttermilk helps tenderize the meat and infuse it with flavor. Its acidity breaks down the proteins in the meat, resulting in a more tender and juicy texture, and locks in moisture, preventing the meat from drying out.
For at least 30 minutes on the counter and up to 4-6 hours in the fridge. Bring the meat to room temperature (30-40 minutes) before cooking.
Don’t overcrowd the pan while frying. Frying in batches allows the oil to maintain its temperature and ensures proper cooking. Additionally, using a wire rack or paper towels to drain excess fat from the fried chicken after cooking can help reduce greasiness.
How to store and reheat?
- Disassemble leftover burgers before storing them; otherwise, the buns will get soggy.
- Refrigerate fried chicken in an airtight container for up to 2-3 days. Freeze in an airtight container for up to 3 months. Defrost in the refrigerator and reheat before serving.
- Refrigerate buns and toppings in separate containers.
- Reheat meat in the preheated oven (350°F/ 175°C) for 10-15 minutes until heated through. Microwaving will make the breading soggy.
- Reheat the buns in a toaster or oven for a few minutes until warmed.
What to serve with crunchy chicken burgers?
- Other side dish ideas: Air Fryer Asparagus, Mac and Cheese without Flour, etc.
- Serve the fried chicken as it is and not in a burger with boiled potatoes, mashed potatoes, Spring Onion Potato Salad, baked potato wedges, fries, green salad, etc.
- Make crispy chicken sandwiches with the leftovers using regular bread and other toppings you like.
Check out the webstory for this burger: How to make Fried Chicken Burgers
More Fast Food Recipes
Give my quick recipes a try for your next family meal! Feel free to reach out if you need any assistance!
Crispy Fried Chicken Burgers
- Large frying pan
- Several bowls
- 2 boneless skinless chicken breasts large, Note 1
- vegetable oil for frying, Note 2
- ½ cup buttermilk 125 ml
- 1 egg
- 2 tablespoons chicken seasoning or dry rub, divided, Note 3
- ½ cup all-purpose flour 60 g
- ¼ cup cornstarch 30 g
- ½ teaspoon baking powder
- ½ teaspoon fine sea salt or kosher
- 4 slices bacon Note 4
- 4 burger buns
- 4 tablespoons mayonnaise
- 4 teaspoons hot chili sauce
- 4-8 leaves lettuce depending on size
- 4 slices cheddar or other cheese you like
- 1 small red onion thinly slices
- 2-4 pickled cucumbers gherkins, depending on size, sliced
- Slice the chicken breasts horizontally into two thinner slices. 2 large chicken breasts
- Marinate chicken: Mix buttermilk, beaten egg, and only ½ of the spice mixture in a shallow container (non-metallic) that will hold the pieces snuggly and in a single layer or only lightly overlapped. Marinade for at least 30 minutes (on the counter) and up to 4-6 hours (in the refrigerator). Bring it to room temperature before frying (30-40 minutes). ½ cup/ 125 ml buttermilk + 1 egg + ½ of the seasoning
- Flour coating: Whisk flour, cornstarch, baking powder, salt, and the remaining seasoning in a shallow bowl. ½ cup/ 60 g flour + ¼ cup/ 30 g cornstarch + ½ teaspoon salt + 1 tablespoon seasoning
- Bread chicken: Lift the chicken pieces from the marinade and let the excess drip back into the bowl. Dredge them through the flour mixture, turning them to coat on both sides and pressing them down gently to help the coating adhere. Set them aside.
- Heat the oil to 350°F (175°C). enough oil to half or fully submerge the chicken
- Lower the breaded pieces into the oil using tongs; don’t overcrowd the pan; fry the chicken in several batches if necessary.
- Fry: If the chicken is fully submerged in oil, it will need 4-5 minutes to cook. If it’s only partially submerged, it will take 6-8 minutes (flip halfway through). The cooking time also depends on the thickness of the chicken pieces. Check with a meat thermometer; the internal temperature should be 165°F/74°C.
- Transfer to a plate lined with paper towels to absorb the excess fat.
- Cook bacon: Remove the oil from the frying pan or use another pan to cook the bacon until crispy. Drain on paper towels. Lightly toast the burger buns in the same pan. 4 bacon slices; 4 burger buns
- Spread mayonnaise on the bottom bun and the chili sauce on the top bun. Place lettuce on the lower bun. 4 tablespoon mayonnaise + 4 teaspoon sweet or hot chili sauce + 4-8 lettuce leaves
- Cut each chicken piece in two and arrange the pieces on the lettuce. Add cheese and bacon. Top with sliced onions and pickled cucumber slices. Place the top buns on top.4 slices cheese + 1 red onion + 2-4 pickled cucumbers
- Chicken breast: One large breast weighs about 8-9 oz/ 220-250 g. Two large breasts, split horizontally, should be enough to make 4 chicken burgers.
- Oil: Adjust the amount of oil according to the pot size. You can deep fry the chicken (completely covered with oil) or use less oil and partially submerge the chicken in it; in this case, the cooking time will be slightly longer.
- Seasoning: Use your favorite chicken seasoning or dry rub. OR mix 1 teaspoon sweet paprika + 1 teaspoon smoked paprika + 1 teaspoon garlic powder + ½ teaspoon onion powder + 1 teaspoon oregano + pinch of cayenne pepper + ½ teaspoon salt + ¼ teaspoon black pepper.
- Bacon: I used turkey bacon, but regular bacon is perfect.
- The nutrition is calculated considering scant 1 cup/ 100 ml oil, but that's probably not entirely accurate.