by Jade 

November 17, 2017

how to reheat fried chicken

Crispy, flavorful, and juicy fried chicken is the ultimate comfort food for the soul especially dipped in hot gravy mmmmmm… so good! It’s a staple in our house and we cook it two to three times a week. Sometimes we order from KFC if we're too lazy to prepare it.

With that being said, we rarely finish everything because we often have one piece per person, so we’re forced to store it in the refrigerator.

Over the years of eating stale chicken, I have learned the best ways to reheat it to maintain its crispiness and juiciness. So for this post, I will show you a cheat guide on how to reheat fried chicken.


how to reheat fried chicken

Before enumerating the best ways to reheat fried chicken, let me explain to you a brief history of the famous food.

The History of Fried Chicken

Between 7,500 and 5,000 B.C.E., people from Southeast Asia domesticated jungle fowl from Africa, China, Middle East, and Europe. 

They are the closest relative of the modern chickens (Gallus domesticus). Ancient men considered these birds as divine animals because they have this belief that these chickens could predict the future since they’re the only animals that announce daybreak.

Some experts believe this was the main reason why they were domesticated in the first place.

As time goes by, the need for food overshadowed their beliefs. The chickens were cooked but it’s first served on royal tables before going down the social ladder to be eaten by everyone.

how to reheat fried chicken

In this era, chicken were cooked twice because it had tougher meat. They graze more and exercise their muscles, hence the “muscled meat”. On the other hand, our chickens today are stationary and locked up in coops. After butchering the meat, it was fried quickly then braised in liquid for longer periods to cook the meat.

Between 1700’s to 1900’s, a British writer by the name of Hannah Glasse wrote “The Art of Cookery Made Plain and Easy”. As stated in her book, fried chicken preparation includes marinating in different spices and herbs, drenching in flour, and frying in hog’s lard.

During the 1950’s to 1980’s, fast-food style fried chicken emerged because of improved farming and breeding -- chickens became plentiful and cheaper. This made fried chicken a daily staple in households and restaurants.

how to reheat fried chicken

If you’re interested to educate yourself in the history of fried chicken you may read this article. Now, it’s time to learn how to make the perfect fried chicken.

The Best Fried Chicken Recipe

The best fried chicken recipe is contestable. All restaurants serving the dish claim that they have the best recipe. But personally, I find Gordon Ramsey’s recipe one of the bests, if not the best. Why Gordon Ramsay? I’m a huge fan of Gordon, don’t judge me.

Gordon Ramsay’s take on his fried chicken recipe with sweet pickled celery is easy to make at home. Learn how to make his awesome fried chicken in the video clip below.

Tips On Frying Chicken

  • Don’t fry chicken after removing it from the chiller. Let it rest at room temperature for 15 minutes first.
  • Fry in a heavy bottom pan or cast iron skillet.
  • Use flavorless oil with a high smoking point (peanut, canola, vegetable).
  • And lastly…Don’t forget to make the gravy because without it, the dining experience is not complete

The Ultimate Cheat Guide On How To Reheat Fried Chicken

Reheated fried chicken used to be boring and unappetizing because it’s soggy and dry…but not anymore! No more eating cold leftover fried chicken! Here’s a comprehensive guide on how to reheat fried chicken to keep it moist, warm, and crispy.

Cheat #1: Reheating Using A Brown Paper Bag

Prep Time

5 minutes

Cooking Time


 & Equipments


25 minutes

Leftover fried chicken

Brown paper bag

1.Place leftover fried chicken from the chiller in room temperature 20 minutes before reheating.

2.Preheat oven to 325 degrees F.

3.Place chicken in the brown paper bag and distribute evenly by size so that they reheat at the same time (e.g. I put the breast and thigh part in one bag, wings in a separate bag, and legs in another).

4.Fold the opening gently and place it on a baking sheet.

5.Bake for 25 minute only! If you exceed, the chicken will dry up.

6.Remove the chicken and serve warm!

how to reheat fried chicken

Cheat #2: Reheating Chicken In The Oven

Prep Time

                             7 minutes

Cooking Time


 & Equipments


30 minutes

Leftover fried chicken


Baking sheet


1.Remove the chicken from the chiller and let thaw for half an hour.

2.Preheat oven at 375 degrees. You may use the oven thermometer for precise temperature.

3.Put the chicken in a nonstick baking sheet. Alternatively, you may line foil under the chicken if you don’t have a nonstick tray.

4.Place the chicken on the center. If you place it on the top, it will easily burn on that side and if you place it on the bottom, it will likewise burn on the bottom.

5.Set timer on 30 minutes (Cooking time may change depending on the size of the chicken).

6.Check the chicken often to prevent burning.

7.After chicken is done, move it to a wire rack to cool for ten minutes.

8.Serve warm!

how to reheat fried chicken

Cheat #3: Reheating Chicken In A Pan

Prep Time

4 minutes

Cooking Time


 & Equipments


2-3 minutes

Leftover fried chicken

Vegetable or peanut Oil

1.Let chicken cool at room temperature. Never drop cold chicken in hot oil because the oil will splatter all over the place.

2.Heat the frying pan in the stove until smoke appears.

3.Pour oil halfway in the pan and lower stove temperature to medium heat.

4.Carefully place the chickens in the oil using a tong. Tip: Place the chicken away from you to prevent any splatter.

5.Fry 2-3 minutes per side.

6.After reheating, place it on a wire rack for five minutes to drain any excess oil.

7.Serve warm!

how to reheat fried chicken

Reheating No-No’s

Some of you may make mistakes when reheating fried chicken (not everyone is perfect). I’m here to tell you the no-no’s in reheating fried chicken.

Using the microwave: I know the handy dandy microwave is fastest way to reheat food, but with fried chicken, it’s a big NO-NO! If you don’t want your chicken to be soft and soggy, I suggest you throw your microwave in the bin (just kidding!).

Searing the chicken in a pan: Searing is a cooking method in which the pan is heated at a high temperature then placing a small amount of oil in the pan. If you decide on reheating fried chicken through searing, you’ll end up burning both sides and failing to heat the chicken all the way through.

Cooling on a paper towel is discouraged because the oil sipped from the towel will return to the chicken when cooled while it sits there.

Final Thoughts

To get to other side of the plate (I know it’s corny, again don’t judge me), reheating chicken is easy if you follow the cheat guides that were listed in this article.

Personally, I prefer using cheat #1 because the chicken is protected inside the paper bag, and it’s slowly heated from the inside out to ensure a moist and crispy texture just like when you had it the first time.

For the health conscious people I would avoid cheat #3 because it makes the meat oiler when eaten right away, so you may have to cool it down again in the rack for 8 minutes but then, you get cold chicken yet again.

how to reheat fried chicken

Did you find our guide helpful? Yes? Alright! Now let’s do the chicken dance!

Do you have any additional ideas for leftover fried chicken? Do you have any suggestions besides the ones given here? Leave suggestions and comments in the comment section below. Don’t forget to share this post. Take care!

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