My Favorite Fried Chicken (Babe's Copycat)

Succulent Fried Chicken, uncomplicated ingredients, flour, milk, salt and pepper enhancing the flavor of fried chicken without overpowering it, a salt water brining and double dipping is the key.

My Favorite Fried Chicken is a simple perfectly cooked chicken.  

It all started the first time my son took me to eat at the original Babe's Chicken Dinner House in Roanoke, Texas. 

One of their trademarks is that they serve up family style, which is my favorite.  

It makes you feel like you are eating at home. 

The key to Babe's having the most flavorful chicken is that their uncomplicated ingredients enhance the chicken's flavor without overpowering it.

The marinate a simple salt water solution that they let the chicken hang out in for 24-36 hours.

Their secret to the amazing crunchy flavor is they double dip the chicken using milk, salt, and pepper.

How simple is that?

Now you know why this it is my favorite, Simple, Crunchy, Juicy, Flavorful Fried Chicken!

My Favorite Fried Chicken
Printable Recipe

  • 2 qt. water, divided (heat 2 cups and chill the rest)
  • 1/2 cup table salt
  • 3-4 lbs. chicken pieces (I fried thighs and breast)
  • 4-6 cups Crisco shortening (You can use vegetable oil if you like)
  • 2-4 cups flour
  • 1-1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1- 1 1/2 tablespoon coarse black pepper
  • 1-2 cups milk
  • 1-1 1/2 teaspoons salt
  • 1 teaspoons coarse black pepper
In a medium saucepan, heat 2 cups of water to boiling; and add the salt. Stir until all is dissolved; add the rest of the 2 quarts of water that has been chilled.

Set the salt water solution in the refrigerator until the solution is very cold.

Remove from the refrigerator; line a resealable bag in a large bowl and pour the solution into the bag.

Rinse the chicken pieces with cold water and place in the brine.  Seal bag and set in the refrigerator for 24-36 hours. Turn the bag side to side to mix the water around the chicken every 8 hours.  (See note below.)

When ready to fry, spoon shortening into a cast iron skillet or a heavy gauge pan and heat on medium high.  In a paper bag or a large dish, mix the flour, salt, and pepper.

Drain and rinse the chicken laying each piece on a sheet pan. (It is really important to rinse the chicken.)

In a medium bowl, mix milk, salt, and pepper; set aside.  Pick one piece of chicken up at a time and coat it in the flour mixture (first dip) and lay them on another clean sheet pan until each piece has been coated.

Start with the first coated piece, and dip in the milk mixture and then again in the flour mixture (second dip), laying them on the same sheet pan.

Place coated chicken in the hot grease one at a time.

Fry each side for approximately 6-8 minutes or until golden brown in color.

The total cooking time for each piece will be about 12 to 15 minutes, or you can check with a meat thermometer, and it needs to reach to 165 F.

Place chicken on a cooking rack and place in a warm oven until all the chicken pieces have been fried.  

Note:  Make more of the brine if there is not enough.  It will depend on how big your chicken pieces are as to how much you will need.

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  1. i like simple fried chicken as well. thanks for sharing this 'secret' will definitely try this sometime :)

    happy friday!

  2. we all love fried chicken! this recipe is a must-try....

    thanks so much for sharing your 'secret' to a delicious and crunchy fried chicken over at Food Friday, K!
    enjoy your weekend!

  3. Oh yum! I'd love it if you'd link this recipe up at A Little Nosh!

  4. I am going to copy this dish. :)

    Hopping from Food Friday.

  5. Oh my gosh, I love Babe's fried chicken, too!!! Thanks for sharing it!!! I live in Frisco. I'm here from Foodie Friday.

  6. I love Fried Chicken. It's one of those things I could eat everyday :) Thanks for sharing at Church Supper. Have a blessed week.

    Everyday Mom's Meals

  7. So brining and then double dipping is the secret huh - yum!

  8. Oh BABE'S! Now I am realy homesick for Texas. I have eaten there once, taken by our Aunt who lives in the Fort Worth area. She said, "You have to have this chicken. It is the best!" She was correct. Thanks for sharing the "secret" to their chicken and helping us become experts too. Thanks, also, for linking to TMTT.

  9. I haven't tried shortening yet to cook fried chicken, but I think it may be one of the keys to success. Will certainly have to try this! Katy

  10. Oh my mouth is watering! I spied this over at Stuff & Nonsense and immediately had to come check out the recipe -- I love fried chicken but don't make it that very much at all. This would be a treat better than any cake. Yum!

  11. I <3 fried chicken I could eat it for da rest of my life

  12. I LOVE Babe's!! That chicken is so amazing. Thanks for sharing this recipe, I'll definitely have to try it

  13. Babe's is awesome !!!! Thanks for the recipe. I'm going to give it a try in the next couple of days. Any word on how to find the green bean and corn side dish recipes ?

  14. How would you make the batter extra crispy?


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