Andrew Zimmern Just Shared His Mess-Free Hack For the Crispiest Fried Chicken Ever

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Is there any sensation better than your teeth crashing through the shatteringly-crisp exterior of a hot piece of fried chicken, juicy and tender and flavorful inside? Something about that hot, golden-brown crunch gets us every time, but the process of making fried chicken at home can be, well, a real pain in the a**. If you lay out all of the dishes you need for a three-part breading station, it takes up your whole counter top, nevermind the clouds of flour that billow into the air and make you wheeze. But there’s an easier way, and you probably have the equipment you need lying around next to your recycling bin somewhere. The tip comes from foodie Andrew Zimmern.

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You probably know Zimmern from his many television appearances, and he’s even written books based on his travels while filming Bizarre Foods. But he’s also an avid home cook, and he often shares recipes and cooking hacks on his Instagram and TikTok accounts.

food, andrew zimmern just shared his mess-free hack for the crispiest fried chicken ever

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His latest tip is a total gamechanger for those who love making fried chicken, but hate the mess that comes with it. In a TikTok video, Zimmern demonstrated his technique, and all you need is a brown paper bag.

Zimmern brines his chicken, and when he’s ready to coat it in flour, he drops the chicken right into a brown paper bag filled with seasoned flour. He rolls up the top of the bag, then, very gently, shakes and sort of rolls the bag so that every piece of chicken gets thoroughly coated in the seasoned flour. It’s so much easier than getting your fingers all gooey and disgusting when trying to bread chicken in the traditional manner, and it also prevents flour from getting on seemingly every surface of the kitchen.

food, andrew zimmern just shared his mess-free hack for the crispiest fried chicken ever

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After your oil is heated to 380 degrees (you can use a digital probe thermometer to make sure it’s at the right temperature), you just take the chicken pieces from the bag, give them a little shake so any loose flour falls into the bag, then gently place them in the hot oil.

Every nook and cranny of your chicken should be coated in flour, which means that it will fry up to a crisp all over. The results are juicy, delicious chicken with a crackly, golden-brown exterior, and thanks to Zimmern’s method, you’ll have so many less dishes to clean up at the end of the night — just toss that gnarly brown paper bag in the trash.

Before you go, check out Garten’s best dinner recipes below:

Watch: We Tried Ina Garten’s Overnight Mac & Cheese & We Totally Get Why It Broke the Internet

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