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Cajun Fried Chicken

This recipe for Cajun Fried Chicken is a variation on classic Southern Fried Chicken that features a spicy and robust flavor profile. Serve it alongside your favorite Southern sides and a glass of sweet tea to wash it all down.

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Easy Cajun Fried Chicken Recipe

What is Cajun Fried Chicken? This recipe features Cajun spices to season the breading and the buttermilk marinade. Cajun seasoning typically includes a blend of spices like paprika, cayenne pepper, garlic powder, onion powder, oregano, and thyme. For this recipe, you can use your favorite brand of prepared Cajun seasoning to make assembly of the seasoned flour a cinch. For this recipe the chicken pieces are soaked overnight in a blend of buttermilk, hot sauce and Cajun seasoning and then dredged in a seasoned flour mixture. Deep fry the chicken pieces until they’re golden brown with a crispy exterior and a juicy and tender interior, infused with bold Cajun flavor. How to make Southern Style Cajun Fried Chicken: (Scroll down for full printable recipe.)

  • Chicken – Use a sharp knife to divide chicken into 8 even pieces then cut the breast pieces in half to form 10 pieces.
  • Buttermilk Marinade – In a 13×9 inch pan whisk together buttermilk, eggs, hot sauce, salt and black pepper. Add chicken pieces turning to coat. Cover and chill for 12 hours or up to 24 hours, turning occasionally.
  • Seasoned Flour – Whisk together flour, cornstarch, salt, black pepper, Cajun seasoning, granulated garlic, onion powder and baking powder.
  • Transfer to Bags – Divide mixture between 2 large gallon size Ziploc bags.
  • Coat the Chicken – Remove chicken pieces from buttermilk allowing excess to drip off. Place 5 pieces in one bag 5 pieces in the other Ziploc bag. Seal the bags and shake to fully coat.
  • Rest at Room Temperature to Set the Breading – Place coated chicken pieces on the rack. let stand for 30 minutes.
  • Fry – Heat vegetable oil in a dutch oven or deep pot to 325°F. Cook chicken in batches for 15-22 minutes until golden and the juices run clear. Test with a thermometer inserted into the thickest portion that registers 160°F for white meat and 165°F for dark meat. (Pro Tip: Cook white meat and dark meat separately for more even cooking.)
  • Keep Warm – Remove chicken from the hot oil to a clean pan fitted with an oven safe rack. Transfer to a 200°F oven to keep warm between batches.
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How to Make the BEST Cajun Fried Chicken Recipe

  • Ingredients you’ll need to make homemade Cajun Fried Chicken: 5 pound whole chicken divided into 10 pieces (cut chicken breast pieces in half), buttermilk, large eggs, hot sauce, salt, black pepper, all purpose flour, cornstarch, prepared Cajun seasoning, granulated garlic, onion powder, baking powder and vegetable oil or peanut oil for frying.
  • Kitchen tools you’ll need: 6 quart Dutch oven, fry thermometer, 13×9 inch dish for the buttermilk marinade, sharp knife and cutting board, medium bowl, whisk, measuring cups and spoons, sheet pan with rack, stainless steel spider or slotted spoon and two gallon size Ziploc bags for the breading.
  • Cutting the breast pieces into two smaller pieces helps to cook the chicken more quickly and evenly.
  • What’s the best Cajun Seasoning? The best Cajun seasoning to use is one that you already enjoy. Tony Chachere’s, Zatarain’s Creole Seasoning, Slap Ya Mama and Weber all have really flavorful blends readily available on the spice aisle of most grocery stores. There are many to choose from go with the blend that you like best.
  • If you can’t find whole buttermilk low fat buttermilk will work for the marinade.
  • Cajun fried chicken can be served with classic Southern sides like coleslaw, mashed potatoes, green beans plus a side of cornbread or fluffy Southern buttermilk biscuits. It pairs well with hot sauce or comeback sauce on the side for dipping.
  • Store Cajun Fried Chicken chilled in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
  • Enjoy cold or reheat in a 350°F air fryer or a 375°F oven for a few minutes to crisp the breading.
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Cajun Fried Chicken

Prep Time25 minutes
Cook Time22 minutes
Stand time5 minutes
Total Time52 minutes
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American, Southern
Keyword: best-southern-fried-chicken-recipe, cajun-fried-chicken-recipe
Servings: 10 servings
Calories: 305kcal

Ingredients

  • 1 5 lb whole chicken divided into 10 pieces (Cut breasts in half)
  • 4 cups whole buttermilk
  • 2 large eggs lightly beaten
  • 1/4 cup hot sauce
  • 4 tsp salt divided use
  • 1 1/2 tsp black pepper divided use
  • 2 cups all purpose flour
  • 3/4 cup cornstarch
  • 2 Tbsp Cajun seasoning
  • 1 tsp granulated garlic
  • 1 tsp onion powder
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 4-6 cups peanut oil or vegetable oil

Instructions

  • Divide chicken into 8 even pieces then cut the breast pieces in half to form 10 pieces.
  • In a 13×9 inch pan whisk together buttermilk, eggs, hot sauce, 2 teaspoons salt and 1 tsp black pepper. Add chicken pieces turning to coat. cover and chill for 12 hours or up to 24 hours, turning occasionally.
  • In a medium bowl whisk together flour, cornstarch, remaining 2 tsp salt, 1 tsp black pepper, Cajun seasoning, granulated garlic, onion powder and baking powder. Divide mixture between 2 large gallon size Ziploc bags.
  • Remove chicken pieces from buttermilk allowing excess to drip off. Place 5 pieces in one bag 5 pieces in the other Ziploc bag. Seal the bags and shake to fully coat.
  • Fit a large pan with a baking rack. Place coated chicken pieces on the rack. Let stand uncovered for 30 minutes.
  • Fry: Heat vegetable oil in a dutch oven or deep pot to 325°F. Cook chicken in batches for 15-22 minutes turning as needed for even browning maintaining the oil temperature between 325-335°F. Cook until golden and the juices run clear. Test with a thermometer inserted into the thickest portion that registers 160°F for white meat and 165°F for dark meat. (Pro Tip: Cook white meat and dark meat separately for more even cooking.)
  • Remove chicken from the hot oil using a stainless steel spider or slotted spoon to a clean pan fitted with an oven safe rack. Transfer to a 200°F oven to keep warm between batches.
  • Serve immediately, warm or at room temperature.

Nutrition

Serving: 1serving | Calories: 305kcal | Carbohydrates: 34g | Protein: 7g | Fat: 15g | Saturated Fat: 4g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 4g | Monounsaturated Fat: 6g | Trans Fat: 0.004g | Cholesterol: 48mg | Sodium: 1207mg | Potassium: 261mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 5g | Vitamin A: 913IU | Vitamin C: 5mg | Calcium: 144mg | Iron: 2mg
Tried this recipe?Mention @melissassk or tag #melissassk!

4 Comments

  1. 5 stars
    Hi Melissa,
    This Cajun Fried Chicken is so good. I used wings instead of the whole chicken. They were juicy on the inside and crispy on the outside. My hubby loved them and that’s always a plus. Like many of your recipes, this one is a keeper. I appreciate all of your research and hard work. Keep the fabulous recipes coming!

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