Crispy Oven-Fried Chicken Thighs or Legs Recipe

Crispy fried chicken doesn’t have to be a messy, labor-intensive task. This chicken recipe uses two methods to make perfect oven-fried chicken with crispy skin and fabulous flavor. With this two-step skillet and oven method, you don’t sacrifice the crunchy coating and flavor you get with deep-fried chicken.


  • 3 pounds chicken thighs, bone-in, or whole legs, with skin
  • 2 cups buttermilk, well shaken
  • 1/2 cup hot sauce, such as Texas Pete’s or Frank’s
  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt
  • 1 tablespoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 2 teaspoons ground paprika
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil, for frying


  1. In a food storage bag, combine the chicken thighs with the buttermilk and hot sauce. Refrigerate for 3 to 4 hours or overnight.

  2. Heat the oven to 350 F.

  3. Place a rack in a large, rimmed baking pan or roasting pan.

  4. Combine the flour, kosher salt, pepper, and paprika in a wide, shallow bowl or pie plate.

  5. Pour vegetable oil in a deep skillet or saucepan to a depth of about 1/2 inch.

  6. Heat the oil to 360 F.

  7. Remove the chicken pieces from the buttermilk mixture, and dip in the flour mixture to coat thoroughly. Shake off excess.

  8. Arrange the coated chicken pieces in the hot oil—you might have to work in batches—and fry for about 2 1/2 to 3 minutes on each side or until the coating is lightly browned. The chicken will brown more as it bakes.

  9. Remove the chicken to the rack in the baking pan.

  10. Bake the chicken thighs or legs for 35 to 45 minutes, or until the chicken registers at least 165 F on an instant-read food thermometer inserted into the thickest chicken thigh, not touching bone.

Crispy Oven-Fried Chicken Thighs or Legs Recipe

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