It’s summer and it’s hot, and if you’ve got a craving for fried chicken, it just might be easiest to head to your local fast food chicken joint and get some handed straight through your driver side window.

But it's better if you make it for yourself.

In honor of National Fried Chicken Day on Saturday (July 6), we thought it would be a good idea to share this delicious Ranch Fried Chicken recipe for all those in the mood to up their game in the kitchen a little bit. Borrowed from our friends at the Rachael Ray Show, this fried chicken kicks it up a notch by not only using buttermilk in the recipe, but also throws in a few more ingredients to give it that undeniable ranch dressing flavor.

Fair warning: this recipe includes the words "Dutch oven." And no, that’s not the same stupid Dutch oven your little brother used to make you suffer through when you were kids. It’s the Dutch oven used for cooking and frying and yes, you need to be careful. But we guarantee that once you are done and you see the finished product, you will be proud of yourself that you didn't burn your hands off.

And yes, you and your friends will get to have a mighty good dinner.

Ranch Fried Chicken

Ingredients:

    • 1 quart buttermilk
    • Salt and pepper
    • 4 cloves garlic, smashed
    • 2 teaspoons dried dill
    • 1 teaspoon onion powder
    • 2 bone-in, skin-on whole chicken breasts, thighs, and legs
    • 2 cups flour
    • Canola oil, for frying

Directions:

In a large bowl, mix buttermilk, 1 tablespoon salt, 1 teaspoon black pepper, the garlic, dried dill and onion powder. Halve the whole chicken breasts to make four breasts, then add the chicken to the buttermilk marinade. Let sit at room temperature for at least 30 minutes. (If not cooking immediately, marinate the chicken in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour or up to 12).

In a shallow bowl, whisk the flour with 1 teaspoon salt and ½ teaspoon pepper. Working one piece at a time, remove chicken from the buttermilk and shake off any excess. Dredge in the flour mixture to coat; using your hands, squeeze the chicken all over so that the flour adheres. Transfer to a plate to rest. Repeat with the remaining chicken and flour mixture.

Fill a large Dutch oven one-third of the way full with canola oil. Place over medium-high heat until the oil registers 350˚F or the oil bubbles immediately when a pinch of flour is sprinkled in. Carefully lower half of the chicken pieces into the pot. Cover with a lid, lower the heat to medium-low and set a timer for six minutes. Remove the lid, flip the chicken, and cover and cook for 6 minutes more. Transfer the fried chicken to a wire rack to drain and season with salt. Repeat with the remaining chicken, allowing the oil to reheat in between. Let the chicken rest for a few minutes before serving.

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