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Chef John's Nashville Hot Chicken

Rated as 4.41 out of 5 Stars
57k

"If you've never had Nashville Hot Chicken, we're talking about an ultra-crispy fried chicken doused with a cayenne-infused glaze, and by 'glaze' I mean melted butter and lard. For the record, I've never been to Nashville, so I can't tell you how authentic this is, but it works for me, and is fairly easy to pull off."
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Ingredients

10 h servings 1115
Original recipe yields 4 servings

Directions

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  1. Toss chicken pieces with 1 tablespoon kosher salt. Transfer chicken to a bowl; cover and refrigerate overnight.
  2. Whisk buttermilk, pickle brine, hot sauce, and egg together in a mixing bowl. Pour marinade over chicken and stir to ensure each piece is thoroughly coated. Cover and let chicken marinate in refrigerator 2 to 4 hours.
  3. Mix flour and salt together in a shallow flat dish. Remove chicken from marinade and blot with paper towels. Reserve marinade. Toss chicken in flour until thoroughly coated. Return chicken to marinade, coating all sides; remove chicken from marinade allowing excess to drip back into the bowl. Coat the chicken once again in flour mixture. Place on a rack. Repeat with all chicken pieces. Allow to sit out about 15 minutes to allow coating to dry out a bit.
  4. Place butter and lard in a large pot. Add cayenne pepper, brown sugar, paprika, garlic powder, kosher salt, and black pepper. Place over medium-high heat. Cook and stir until fats melt. Remove from heat; keep sauce warm.
  5. Fill cast iron skillet about 1/3 of the way with vegetable oil. Heat oil to 350 degrees F over medium-high heat. Carefully place chicken into hot oil, skin side down. Maintain an oil temperature of 325 degrees F, adjusting heat as need. Fry until instant read thermometer reads 160 degrees F, 8 to 10 minutes per side.
  6. Transfer chicken to a rack to drain. Brush with the sauce on both sides.

Footnotes

  • Cook's Note:
  • Serve chicken pieces on white bread and brush with the sauce. Serve with pickles.

Nutrition Facts


Per Serving: 1115 calories; 66 74.5 53.9 258 3755 Full nutrition

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Reviews

Read all reviews 24
  1. 29 Ratings

  2.  
    Rated as 5 out of 5 Stars
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    Rated as 4 out of 5 Stars
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    Rated as 3 out of 5 Stars
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    Rated as 2 out of 5 Stars
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    Rated as 1 out of 5 Stars
Most helpful positive review

My husband and sons love hot food. Me, not as much. I was kind of scared of the amount of cayenne pepper in this recipe but the fats and the brown sugar took the edge off. It was fantastic -- al...

Most helpful critical review

Butter/lard remained separated from the seasonings & brown sugar, which congealed. Maybe I did something wrong but hard to see how.

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My husband and sons love hot food. Me, not as much. I was kind of scared of the amount of cayenne pepper in this recipe but the fats and the brown sugar took the edge off. It was fantastic -- al...

I'm a fried chicken snob, and this recipe came very close to the fiery version I've eaten down South. To turn up the heat, I added a teeny bit of habanero chili powder and that did the trick. A...

I have made this recipe 5-6 times already. The first time I made a “mistake” and added the dry seasoning to the flour, the second time I followed the recipe exactly and we did not like it as muc...

Butter/lard remained separated from the seasonings & brown sugar, which congealed. Maybe I did something wrong but hard to see how.

Loved it. Nice and spicy and the pickles are a nice cooling factor.

I have made this several times and it's always a big hit when hosting. When it's just for my little family we take the leftovers and make chicken salad for lunches. As other reviewers have menti...

Easy recipe to make. Skin is crispy and the brining made the chicken juicy. I brined for 24 hrs instead of 4-6 hrs.Sauce is tasty,but spicy but great flavor. I would use 1 tbls of cayenne ins...

Just made this, and it turned out great! I usually fail when I try to make fried chicken, it's either soggy or all of the breading just falls off. Like in the video, you can run a fork over it a...

I made this today, but since we don't normally keep buttermilk in the house, I used whole milk instead. Other than that, I followed the recipe exactly. The outside of the chicken stayed nice and...