Cracker Barrel Chicken Fried Chicken Recipe

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Published: 03/04/2024 | Updated: 03/25/2024

Recreate the iconic Cracker Barrel Chicken Fried Chicken recipe at home, capturing the essence of Southern comfort with its crispy coating and juicy interior. This golden delight elevates everyday meals into a celebration of down-home cooking, ideal for both cozy family meals and festive gatherings.

cracker barrel chicken fried chicken recipe

With each bite, experience a blend of moist, tender chicken enveloped in a crunchy, flavorful crust, complemented perfectly by rich, creamy gravy. Grab your skillet, and let’s embark on a culinary journey to the heart of Southern cuisine!

Equipment Requirements for the Recipe

  • Meat pounder
  • Wax paper
  • Deep fryer or large pot
  • Cooking thermometer (meat thermometer)
  • Shallow bowls for dredging
  • Baking sheet with a clean wire rack
  • Paper towels for draining excess oil

Prep Time

Before you begin your culinary adventure, ensure you have an airtight container on hand to store any leftovers. If you choose to freeze cooked chicken, make certain it’s wrapped securely to prevent freezer burn. When you’re ready to enjoy your frozen chicken again, let it thaw to room temperature for the best results.

Recipe Requirements/ Ingredients

This Southern delicacy requires a few key ingredients to capture that authentic Cracker Barrel flavor. You’ll need cayenne pepper for a hint of heat, bacon grease for richness, and chicken gravy to complement the boneless and skinless chicken pieces you’ll be preparing. Let’s get ready to fry up some magic!

Sawmill Gravy Essentials

  • 2 tablespoons bacon grease
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • Teaspoons of ground black pepper to taste

Gather these simple ingredients to create the creamy sawmill gravy that’s a hallmark of this hearty dish. The bacon grease forms the base, infusing the gravy with a depth of flavor that’s unmatched.

Chicken Breading: What You Need

  • Cups all-purpose flour
  • Teaspoons salt
  • Teaspoons of ground black pepper
  • Additional spices as per Cracker Barrel’s down-home cooking tradition

For that perfect crust, you’ll be combining flour and seasonings in just the right proportions to mirror the iconic Cracker Barrel’s down-home cooking style. Get ready to dredge and fry!

Step-by-Step Cooking Guide: Cracker Barrel Style

  • Begin by combining breading ingredients in a shallow bowl in your preferred measurement.
  • Dip the boneless chicken pieces into the buttermilk mixture, then coat the chicken by dredging it in the flour mixture.
  • Place the breaded chicken on a baking sheet and repeat with the remaining chicken.
  • Heat the canola oil in a Dutch oven or deep fryer to 350 degrees, ensuring it’s 3 to 4 inches deep.
  • Carefully place the chicken in the medium heat oil and cook until golden brown and the internal temperature reaches a safe point.
  • Drain the fried chicken on paper towels to remove excess oil.

Additional Choices

  • Use an air fryer instead of deep frying to reduce oil intake for a lighter version.
  • Opt for a whole wheat flour blend for added nutritional benefits.

Tips to Follow

  • Pat the chicken dry with a paper towel before breading to ensure the flour mixture adheres well.
  • Let breaded chicken sit on a wire rack for a few minutes before frying to help set the coating.
  • Use a thermometer to monitor the oil temperature for consistent frying chicken results.
  • Experiment with different spices, like smoked paprika or garlic powder for a unique twist.
  • For a gluten-free option, use almond flour or a gluten-free flour mix.

Select additions to suit your dietary preferences or to add a personal touch to this classic recipe.

Nutritional Information

  • Calories: 800-900 calories per serving
  • Fat: -60 g
  • Saturated Fat: 10-20 g
  • Cholesterol: 200-250 mg
  • Sodium: 1500 mg
  • Carbohydrates: 50 g
  • Fiber: 4 g
  • Sugars: Varies, but typically low
  • Protein: 50 gr

These values are approximate and can vary based on factors such as the specific recipe used, portion size, cooking methods, and any additional sauces or toppings. For the most accurate and up-to-date nutritional information, it’s best to refer to the official nutrition facts provided by Cracker Barrel or contact them directly.

Expert Tips for Preserving Your Homemade Delights

  • Store leftover chicken in buttermilk in the fridge overnight to keep it moist for reheating.
  • Pair with buttermilk biscuits for a true Southern experience.
  • When frying chicken, do so in batches to avoid overcrowding and ensure even cooking.

What to Serve with Your Chicken Fried Chicken

Embrace Cracker Barrel’s down-home cooking vibe by serving your chicken fried chicken with traditional Southern sides. Creamy mashed potatoes, green beans, and cucumber onion salad all make excellent companions to this dish. Don’t forget to pour 3 to 4 inches of oil into your fryer or large pot and heat it to get that perfect crispy exterior!

How to Store Cracker Barrel Chicken Fried Chicken

  • Place leftovers in an airtight container and refrigerate for up to 3-4 days.
  • To freeze cooked chicken, wrap it tightly and store it in the freezer for up to 3 months.
  • Always bring frozen chicken back to room temperature before reheating for best results.

Recipe Notes

For a festive twist, try adding some heat with extra cayenne pepper or serving this dish during football season – it’s sure to be a crowd-pleaser! And remember, when working with bacon grease, it’s not just about flavor; it’s a nod to tradition in Southern cooking, much like the chicken wings that often grace the tables at family gatherings.

Does Cracker Barrel Have Fried Chicken?

Yes, Cracker Barrel offers a variety of fried chicken options, including their famous Cracker Barrel Chicken Fried Chicken and Sunday Homestyle Chicken. These dishes are part of their comfort food menu, showcasing the classic Southern fried chicken with sawmill gravy, embodying the homestyle cooking Cracker Barrel is known for.

Their fried chicken is marinated in a buttermilk mixture, coated, and fried to achieve a crispy on the outside and tender on the inside texture.

But What if You Don’t Live Near a Cracker Barrel?

If you don’t live near a Cracker Barrel, you can still enjoy their classic dishes by making Cracker Barrel copycat recipes at home. Many recipes, such as the Cracker Barrel Chicken Fried Chicken or the Sunday Homestyle Chicken, have been recreated by fans and can be found online.

These easy copycat recipes bring the taste of Cracker Barrel into your kitchen, allowing you to enjoy your favorite comfort food anytime.

Could This Be Cooked in an Air Fryer?

Many Cracker Barrel fried chicken recipes can be adapted for cooking in an air fryer. Using an air fryer allows you to make a healthier version of the traditional deep-fried chicken using less oil.

To cook in an air fryer, marinate and coat the chicken as usual, then air fry until golden brown and crispy, usually about 7 to 8 minutes per side. This method maintains a crispy texture and flavorful taste.

What’s The Best Oil For Frying?

The best oil for frying, especially for dishes like Southern fried chicken, is one with a high smoke point and neutral flavor, such as peanut or vegetable oil. These oils allow you to deep-fry the chicken at the right temperature without the oil smoking or the flavor of the oil overpowering the chicken.

Peanut oil is favored for its ability to heat up quickly and maintain a consistent temperature, ensuring each piece of chicken is crispy and golden brown.

What’s the Best Way to Reheat Chicken Fried Chicken?

The best way to reheat chicken fried chicken to maintain its crispy texture is in the oven. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees, place the chicken on a baking sheet, and heat until the chicken is crispy and warmed for 10-15 minutes.

Avoid using a microwave as it can make the breading soggy. Reheating in the oven helps to keep the chicken crispy on the outside and moist on the inside, just like when it was first cooked.

Cracker Barrel Chicken Fried Chicken Recipe: A Southern Delight

Course: Dinner/Lunch, Other Recipes, Quick & Easy
Keyword: cracker barrel chicken fried chicken recipe
Author: Natalie

Equipment

  • Meat pounder
  • Wax paper
  • Deep fryer or large pot
  • Cooking thermometer (meat thermometer)
  • Shallow bowls for dredging
  • Baking sheet with a clean wire rack
  • Paper towels for draining excess oil

Ingredients

  • Cups all-purpose flour
  • Teaspoons salt
  • Teaspoons of ground black pepper
  • Additional spices as per Cracker Barrel’s down-home cooking tradition

Instructions

  • Begin by combining breading ingredients in a shallow bowl in your preferred measurement.
  • Dip the boneless chicken pieces into the buttermilk mixture, then coat the chicken by dredging it in the flour mixture.
  • Place the breaded chicken on a baking sheet and repeat with the remaining chicken.
  • Heat the canola oil in a Dutch oven or deep fryer to 350 degrees, ensuring it's 3 to 4 inches deep.
  • Carefully place the chicken in the medium heat oil and cook until golden brown and the internal temperature reaches a safe point.
  • Drain the fried chicken on paper towels to remove excess oil.

Notes

For a festive twist, try adding some heat with extra cayenne pepper or serving this dish during football season – it's sure to be a crowd-pleaser! And remember, when working with bacon grease, it's not just about flavor; it's a nod to tradition in Southern cooking, much like the chicken wings that often grace the tables at family gatherings.

More Cracker Barrel Copycat Recipes

Cracker Barrel Chicken and Rice Recipe
Cracker Barrel Hamburger Steak Recipe
Cracker Barrel Turnip Greens Recipe
Cracker Barrel Chicken and Dumplings Recipe
Cracker Barrel Pancake Recipe

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