Popeyes Spicy Fried Chicken

Popeyes Spicy Fried Chicken is famous for its crunchy, flavorful crust and juicy, spicy meat. This copycat recipe aims to recreate that delicious experience in your own kitchen. By following these steps, you’ll be able to enjoy a homemade version of Popeyes’ spicy, crispy fried chicken.

Chapter 1: Ingredients

Table of Contents

For the Marinade:

  • 4 pounds chicken pieces (drumsticks, thighs, and breasts)
  • 2 cups buttermilk
  • 2 tablespoons hot sauce (like Tabasco)
  • 1 tablespoon paprika
  • 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon salt

For the Seasoned Flour:

  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon paprika
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 2 teaspoons garlic powder
  • 2 teaspoons onion powder
  • 2 teaspoons cayenne pepper (adjust to taste)
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon white pepper
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano

For Frying:

  • Vegetable oil or peanut oil for frying

Chapter 2: Preparation

  1. Marinate the Chicken:
    • In a large bowl, mix buttermilk, hot sauce, paprika, cayenne pepper, garlic powder, onion powder, and salt.
    • Add chicken pieces to the marinade, ensuring they are fully submerged.
    • Cover and refrigerate for at least 4 hours, preferably overnight for the best flavor.
  2. Prepare the Seasoned Flour:
    • In a large bowl or shallow dish, combine all the ingredients for the seasoned flour.
    • Mix thoroughly to ensure an even distribution of spices.

Chapter 3: Coating and Frying

  1. Coat the Chicken:
    • Remove the chicken pieces from the marinade, allowing any excess to drip off.
    • Dredge each piece in the seasoned flour mixture, pressing firmly to ensure a thick, even coating.
    • Place coated chicken on a wire rack and let it rest for about 15 minutes. This helps the coating adhere better.
  2. Heat the Oil:
    • In a large, deep skillet or Dutch oven, heat about 2-3 inches of oil to 350°F (175°C).
    • Use a thermometer to maintain a consistent temperature.
  3. Fry the Chicken:
    • Fry the chicken in batches to avoid overcrowding the pan. Overcrowding lowers the oil temperature and results in less crispy chicken.
    • Fry each piece for about 15-18 minutes, turning occasionally, until the coating is golden brown and the internal temperature reaches 165°F (74°C).
    • Use a slotted spoon or tongs to remove the chicken from the oil and place it on a wire rack to drain excess oil. Avoid using paper towels, as they can make the crust soggy.
See also  Balsamic-Garlic Marinated Steak

Chapter 4: Serving

  1. Serve Hot:
    • Let the chicken rest for a few minutes before serving to allow the juices to redistribute.
    • Serve the spicy fried chicken with your favorite sides, such as coleslaw, mashed potatoes, biscuits, or fries.

Chapter 5: Tips for Success

  1. Marinating Time: Allow the chicken to marinate overnight for the best flavor and tenderness.
  2. Even Coating: Press the chicken firmly into the seasoned flour to ensure an even, thick coating.
  3. Oil Temperature: Maintain a consistent oil temperature of 350°F (175°C) for perfectly fried, crispy chicken.
  4. Resting Time: Letting the chicken rest on a wire rack after frying helps keep the coating crispy.


Recreating Popeyes Spicy Fried Chicken at home is a rewarding experience that results in a deliciously crispy, flavorful dish. By following this detailed recipe, you can enjoy a homemade version of this popular fast-food favorite. Perfect for family dinners, gatherings, or whenever you crave a spicy, crunchy bite of fried chicken. Enjoy cooking and savoring this delectable treat!