The Best Version of KFC is Korean Fried Chicken

Having traveled to Korea multiple times and living in California for most of my life, I have been lucky enough to partake in KFC… “Oh, the Colonel” you say. No, not that KFC, although I have had that more times than I should admit. Even tried that double-down monstrosity. No, I mean Korean Fried Chicken. Whether having it in Korea or having it at Bon Chon (I’ve visited locations in Boston, California, and now even Orlando!).

Well if you’re going to eat me, let’s have a shot!

KFC – So What?

“So what?” you grumble at me. Well, I”ll tell you “what”! Korean Fried Chicken is the most transcendent chicken experience you can have. The chicken is moist and the skin is thin, crispy, and intensely flavorful. I’d say the crispness is akin to having enveloped a chicken leg in a potato chip. And so long as you don’t let it steam itself, it will stay crispy for quite some time.

I’ve Got a Secret!

So what’s the secret? The main thing is the double frying. I’m guessing it’s something that may have originated with being able to precook batches of chicken before being ordered. The first fry cooks it at a normal temperature returning edible, tan chicken. The second, hotter further crisps the skin without further cooking the chicken inside.

And as usual I’ve scoured the internets for the perfect recipe (serious eats among others), trying multiple styles and not finding just the right one, ultimately making a combination of recipes into one final recipe

Gettin’ Sauced

Generally when you order Korean Fried Chicken, you have a choice of Soy-Garlic flavored, or spicy. Or both. Get both. And order all of them. You’ll be surprised how many chicken legs you can eat in one sitting!

Oh and you see the humanoid chicken up there? He recommends you have a drink with your KFC. Either Soju like our friend there (I prefer Bek Seju), or a light beer. Chimaek is a popular combo in Korea Chi (Chicken) and Maek (Maekju/Beer).




Korean Fried Chicken

Korean Fried Chicken - KFC is the most transcendent chicken experience you can have. The chicken is moist and the skin is thin crispy and intensely flavorful.
Course Chicken
Cuisine Korean
Keyword chicken, fried chicken, kfc, korean fried chicken
Prep Time 1 hour
Cook Time 12 minutes
Total Time 1 hour 12 minutes
Servings 8
Calories 2399kcal
Author Filivino


  • cooling rack


For the Chicken

  • Kosher salt
  • ¾ cups corn starch
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 2 lbs chicken drumsticks
  • 2 qts peanut oil
  • ½ cup AP flour
  • ½ cup cold water
  • ½ cup vodka

For the sauce

  • ¼ cup 1/4 Gochujang
  • 2 tbsp soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp rice wine vinegar
  • 3 tbsp brown sugar
  • 3 cloves garlic minced
  • 1 tsp fresh grated ginger
  • 1 tbsp toasted sesame oil

Garlic Soy Sauce

  • ½ cup soy sauce
  • 1 tbsp brown sugar
  • 2 bulbs garlic finely minced



  • Combine 2 tsp salt, 1/4 cup corn starch, and 1/2 tsp baking powder in a large bowl and whisk fully.
  • Add chicken (I use drumsticks) and toss until completely coated.
  • >Transfer drumsticks to a wire rack over a baking sheet, shaking loose any excess coating
  • Transfer to refrigerator to rest, uncovered 30 min - 24 hours
  • While you're waiting perhaps you should start working on your sauces (see below)
  • Preheat fryer to 350F
  • Combine remaining cornstarch, 1/2 tsp baking powder, flour, and 2 tsp salt and whisk until fully combined.
  • Add water and vodka and whisk until smooth. If too thick add a bit more water. It should be a pretty thin consistency.
  • Add half of the chicken to your batter.
  • Working with one piece at a time, lift the piece out allowing excess to drip off and use your finger to help get rid of any large dollops of batter.
  • Lower chicken slowly into fryer.
  • Repeat with remaining pieces, cooking each piece about 8 minutes when golden brown.
  • Move chicken to a wire rack to drain.
  • Crank your fryer up to 400F
  • Fry the chicken for 2 more minutes.

Sweet and Spicy Chili Sauce

  • Whisk together all ingredients adding water to ensure consistency. It should barely stick to a spoon.
  • Either toss with plain chicken, or serve on the side.

Garlic Soy Sauce

  • Combine all ingredients and let rest for 5-10 minutes
  • Either toss with plain chicken, or serve on the side.
The Best Version of KFC is Korean Fried Chicken was last modified: May 28th, 2020 by FiliVino

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