The Colonel’s Best Almost Kept Secret

The recipe for KFC’s signature chicken is reportedly one of the best-kept secrets in the culinary world. According to DailyMeal, not even the head chef of the company knows the recipe. The recipe is allegedly only known by two KFC executives and locked away in a vault at the KFC headquarters in Louisville, KY, where only one employee knows the code.

Then it gets even more insane when you find there are two companies in charge of creating the blend of herbs and spices, with each company making and knowing only half of the recipe. These blends are combined via an automated machine so that no living soul except the two high-level executives can access the colonel’s empire-making recipe. However, that didn’t stop the internet from figuring out how to duplicate this recipe… kind of.

Dubbed the “Copycat KFC Original-Style Chicken,” this recipe will have you recreating the familiar flavor of our favorite Kentucky quick-service restaurant from your own home.

What You’ll Need:

  • 1 tablespoon paprika
  • 2 teaspoons onion salt
  • 1 teaspoon chili powder
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • ½ teaspoon celery salt
  • ½ teaspoon dried sage
  • ½ teaspoon garlic powder
  • ½ teaspoon ground allspice
  • ½ teaspoon dried oregano
  • ½ teaspoon dried basil
  • ½ teaspoon dried marjoram
  • 1 ½ cups Gold Medal™ all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • 1 tablespoon kosher salt
  • 1 whole chicken (2 breasts, 2 thighs, 2 drumsticks, 2 wings)
  • 1 egg white
  • 2 quarts of neutral oil for frying

The Steps:

  1. Preheat fryer to 350°F. Thoroughly mix all spices.
  2. Combine spices with flour, brown sugar, and salt.
  3. Dip chicken pieces in egg white to lightly coat them, then transfer to flour mixture. Turn a few times and make sure the flour mix is really stuck to the chicken. Repeat with all the chicken pieces.
  4. Let chicken pieces rest for 5 minutes, so the crust has a chance to dry a bit.
  5. Fry chicken in batches. Breasts and wings should take 12-14 minutes, and legs and thighs will need a few more minutes. Chicken pieces are fully cooked when a meat thermometer inserted into the thickest part reads 165°F.
  6. Let the chicken drain on a few paper towels when it comes out of the fryer. Serve hot.

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