If you haven’t had this Filipino fried chicken recipe, you’re missing out! Marinated with lemon juice, fish sauce, and pepper, this crispy fried chicken packs a punch that makes you wanting more!
So, what makes this Filipino fried chicken recipe so addicting? (Like finish the whole batch good…) Is it that it’s perfectly marinated with lemon juice, fish sauce, and pepper?
Or could it possibly be that this chicken is so moist and tender, it changes your view on how to make fried chicken from here on out? Dramatic yet?
This Filipino style fried chicken recipe is a family favorite, addictingly served with banana ketchup, lemon wedges, and of course rice!
This post will go over everything you need to know to create this Filipino fried chicken recipe.
Recipe difficulty: Surprisingly beginner level!
Cooking this easy fried chicken recipe is totally easy enough and quick to do! I’ll give tips below on how to make sure your fried chicken is completely cooked and perfectly crispy! Plus, this recipe will give insanely helpful tips on marinating the chicken and achieving the crispy exterior without even using an egg!
Sam’s Pro Tips for this Filipino Fried Chicken Recipe
Marinating the Chicken
- Don’t skip out on marinating the chicken! The top takeaway tip! This Filipino fried chicken marinade uses the lemon juice to break down and tenderize the meat, while the fish sauce gives it a zesty flavor. Marinate the chicken with the lemon juice and fish sauce for 2 hours at the most. If you leave it any longer, the acidity of the lemon juice will start to break down the texture of the chicken and turn it mushy. Not good!
Frying the Chicken
- Make sure the oil is hot before you pan fry the chicken! Use a high-smoke point oil for even frying and to get a nice golden-brown color on the outside! I used canola oil for this Filipino fried chicken recipe. Also, you don’t want to overstuff your pan otherwise the temperature of the oil will drop! A quick check to see if your oil is hot enough is to spritz some water on the top of the oil, if it sizzles, you’re good to go!
Keep it Crispy!
- Add some cornstarch to your flour for a crispier exterior! This tip is from my Hot and Crispy Fried Smelt Fish Perfect with Vinegar. Cornstarch is the secret sauce you need to produce a crispy coating to your fried foods. The reason being that cornstarch prevents gluten development and absorbs moisture, leading to a crispier coating and a beautiful golden-brown color! No need to dip this Filipino fried chicken in egg as the outside will already be crispy enough!
- Place the fried chicken on a wire rack to maintain crispiness! Don’t you hate after you do all this work to fry your chicken, it ends up being soggy on the plate anyway? The WORST! Have the fried chicken cool on a wire rack to remove excess oil. My little trick is to put a baking pan underneath the wire rack in case there is any extra oil! In other words, don’t use a paper towel as this will make the chicken soggy as the paper towel absorbs the oil. Don’t forget!
Key Ingredients – Filipino Fried Chicken Recipe
Below are some key ingredients for this recipe:
- Chicken drumsticks or thighs: You can use either or both in this Filipino crispy fried chicken recipe. I personally like drumsticks, so I used 1.5 pounds in this recipe. Delicious!
- Lemon juice: The juice of a WHOLE lemon will be used for that tart flavor! We love using lemon in our favorite dishes like our Spicy Filipino Sardines Recipe with Habaneros for the incredible zing it gives! Traditionally, calamansi is used, but can be hard to find depending on location.
- Fish sauce: 1 tablespoon of fish sauce will be used, which is pungent enough! The fish sauce will marinate with the lemon juice to give an incredible flavor to the chicken. Trust me, the two flavors totally work well together!
Seasoning and Oil
- Flour: The flour mixed with the cornstarch will give your perfect crispy coating. You may have extra flour at the bottom of the Ziploc bag when it is all tossed, but don’t worry it will stick!
- Cornstarch: Your go-to ingredient for the crispiest fried chicken and beautiful golden-brown color!
- Onion powder: Such a favorite in this chicken recipe! Definitely gives the exterior coating a flavorful boost!
- Garlic powder: This will complement the onion powder and is common in Filipino cooking. You can add other seasonings to your preference, but make sure you at least have garlic powder!
- Canola oil: Canola oil is our choice for a high-smoke point oil and is fairly cheap.
More Variations to this Filipino Fried Chicken Recipe
There are a few ways you can variate this Filipino fried chicken recipe. Here’s how:
- Add soy sauce to the marinade! To add a whole other flavor component to the fried chicken, add some soy sauce to the marinade! Why not? You won’t need a lot as the fish sauce will already be salty enough, but this will definitely give a different flavor boost! Let me know in the comments below if you tried this!
- What can I pair with this dish? This Filipino fried chicken recipe will pair great with banana ketchup or extra lemon wedges on the side! (More lemon the better right?) Serve with white rice or vegetables. If you are feeling extra healthy, give our Cilantro Cauliflower Lime Rice a try with this dish!
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Frequently Asked Questions
How many minutes do you fry chicken?
Fry each side of the chicken for at least 8-10 minutes, although it may vary depending on the thickness of the chicken. Another way to check, is to take the temperature of the chicken and have it reach 165 degrees Fahrenheit.
What do you soak chicken in before frying?
For the best Filipino fried chicken recipe, marinate the chicken in lemon juice, fish sauce, and pepper for at least 2 hours. The lemon juice will tenderize the chicken and keep it moist when frying.
Is cornstarch good for fried chicken?
Cornstarch is the secret sauce you need to produce a crispy coating to your fried foods. The reason being that cornstarch prevents gluten development and absorbs moisture, leading to a crispier coating and a beautiful golden-brown color!
How much juice can you get from one lemon?
Usually, 1 lemon can yield 3 tablespoons of juice depending on the size of the lemon.