Sweet Tea Marinated Fried Chicken

Jocelyn Delk Adams


For the tea:
5cups water
5-6 black tea bags
3/4cup white sugar
1/3cup fresh lemon juice
For the chicken:
8-10pieces chicken
3large eggs
2 1/2cups all-purpose flour
3tablespoons plus 2 teaspoons seasoned salt
3tablespoons cornstarch
2teaspoons paprika
1/2teaspoon cayenne pepper
2teaspoons black pepper
1/2teaspoon garlic powder
1tablespoon onion powder


For the Tea:
  1. Heat water in a medium sized pot until boiling.
  2. Turn off heat and add tea bags. Let tea steep for 20-30 minutes, then remove bags.
  3. Stir in sugar and lemon juice until completely dissolved, then let tea come to room temperature.
  4. Add tea to large bowl then submerge chicken pieces in tea. Refrigerate for 24-48 hours depending on level of sweetness you want your chicken to have.
For the Chicken:
  1. In a medium sized bowl, whisk together eggs and set aside.
  2. Add flour, seasoned salt, cornstarch, paprika, cayenne pepper, black pepper, garlic powder and onion powder to a paper bag and shake to mix well.
  3. Dip each piece of chicken into egg wash, coating both sides, then dip into seasoned flour, thoroughly coating each piece. Then add piece to baking sheet to rest.
  4. Finish coating all chicken and let sit for 10-15 minutes until coating has set.
  5. While coating sets, add 1-1/2 inches of oil to a cast iron skillet or heavy bottom skillet and heat over medium high heat. Also turn on oven to 275 degrees.
  6. This is my test for knowing when the oil is ready: Big Mama always tossed a tiny bit of flour in the oil and if it began to fry and sizzle, the oil was ready.
  7. Fry four pieces at a time on each side starting with dark meat since it takes longer. Make sure you don’t overcrowd the pan.
  8. After each side has turned slightly golden, put the top on the skillet to steam the inside of the chicken ensuring doneness. After a couple of minutes, remove the top and continue to fry until the crust is crispy again and completely golden brown.
  9. Remove chicken from oil and place on paper towels or rack to drain. Place chicken on a baking sheet covered with parchment and add to warmed oven while finishing the other chicken pieces.
  10. Fry the remaining chicken pieces and drain and add to oven. Add the remaining chicken to the oven.
  11. Serve when ready.

This recipe by Grandbaby Cakes for Honest Cooking was reposted with permission. It originally appeared as Sweet Tea Fried Chicken.