These crispy chicken burgers are the ultimate made at home takeaway food. With big pieces of juicy fried chicken, mayo, bacon and lettuce all inside a brioche bun, these burgers are big on flavour and are easier to make than you might think!
I have a bit of a weakness for chicken burgers. They are one of my go-to takeaway foods but to be honest, more often than not I end up pretty disappointed or feeling a bit yucky afterwards (KFC I’m looking at you). The solution? Make this dairy free dinner at home and they will be ten times better than anything you can get takeaway!
Now I am usually a strict baked not fried kind of person but I do make the exception for these crispy chicken burgers. There is just no doubt about it, they are so much better fried. Not only is the outside super light and crispy, but the chicken remains really tender and juicy in a way that can only be achieved through frying.
I’ve often been intimidated by the thought of frying, but for this recipe we’re just going to shallow fry so it’s way less hassle than trying to deep fry at home and it’s actually a lot easier than you might expect.
And I maintain that no matter what you’re enjoying, if you’re making it at home yourself it’s going to be so much better for you than just buying takeaway as you control the exact ingredients being used.
To make these chicken burgers, we’re going to need a few usual burger ingredients and a few other pantry staples to make sure we get the crispiest chicken possible.
- Chicken thigh – quite often chicken burgers will use the breast fillet, but if you truly want the juiciest, most flavourful burger, you have to use thigh fillets.
- Eggs – often fried chicken will involve a buttermilk soak, but I’m keeping things dairy-free and just using eggs as the ‘adhesive’ for the flour mixture.
- Plain flour – for our coating, you could also replace this with a 1-1 gluten free flour if needed.
- Corn flour – just a little bit helps keep the batter light and crisp
- Baking powder – the secret to keeping the batter super light and crisp. Don’t leave this out.
- Spices – now it’s not quite the 11 secret herbs and spices of the Colonel, but this mix of salt, pepper, onion, garlic, paprika, oregano and thyme creates a super tasty chicken.
- Brioche burger buns – as I’m dairy-free I buy the vegan brioche buns from Woolworths and you would never tell they were anything other than the real deal. Otherwise, Aldi has really delicious brioche buns.
- Bacon – I simply can’t go past adding bacon to my chicken burgers! It’s a classic and it’s got to be there.
- Lettuce – I’m using sliced little gem lettuce.
- Mayonnaise – for these burgers, I’ve kept things classic with a regular mayo, however I do sometimes make a sriracha mayo instead.
To make these crispy chicken burgers, it’s always good to start with a bit of prep.
I like to minimise dishes, so I cook my bacon first, wash out the pan and then use it for frying the chicken rather than needing to use 2 separate pans.
The second part is preparing the chicken. Depending on the size of the chicken thighs you’ll most likely need to even them out a bit by flattening them out. The most usual way would be to use a meat mallet, but I don’t have one so instead I grab a small saucepan with a heavy base, cover the chicken with plastic wrap and bash away.
I find due to the larger surface area of the base of the saucepan, it really only takes one hit and I have perfectly even, flat pieces of chicken ready for coating. Plus it’s a bit of fun.
Next, grab two bowls making sure they are quite open at the top and shallow to make coating the chicken pieces a bit easier. In one, whisk up the eggs. In the second, mix together the dry coating ingredients.
Now to coat the chicken. First, a piece of chicken gets dunked in the eggs, then in the flour coating. I always find it’s good to reserve one hand for eggs and one for flour lest you end up with well battered fingers.
It’s time to fry! Depending on the size of the pan you’re using will depend on how much oil you need but roughly it’s about 1.5 cm deep of oil in the base. Let this heat up. You want it to sizzle when you drop in the chicken.
Carefully (avoiding any splattering) place the chicken into the oil. Let it cook on one side until brown then flip and cook on the other side. I like to rotate the chicken in the pan frequently to make sure each side doesn’t get too dark.
The other thing that will make this process so much easier is if you have a meat thermometer as this will help you know that the chicken is perfectly cooked without having to cut it open. Once the internal temperature has reached 75°C (165F) then you know it’s cooked through and you can remove the chicken from the pan and let it drain on a plate with a paper towel.
Depending on the size of your chicken pieces and your pan, you may need to do these in several batches.
Once the chicken is cooked, it’s time to assemble your burger!
I keep mine really simple with just lettuce, bacon and mayonnaise but you can use any of your favourite burger toppings.
In my opinion, it’s the texture of the super crispy fried chicken in the really soft brioche bun that makes this the ultimate in comfort food and just something that I love to eat. Make these this summer – they will be sure to be a hit!
More make at home takeaway recipes:
Crispy Chicken Burgers
- 400-700 grams chicken thigh 4 large fillets
- 2 eggs
- 1 ½ cups plain flour
- 1 tablespoon corn flour
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon black pepper
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon onion powder
- 1 teaspoon smoked paprika
- 1 teaspoon dried oregano
- 1 teaspoon dried thyme
- canola oil for frying
- 4 brioche burger buns
- 4 rashers bacon
- mayonnaise see notes
- Start by cooking the bacon rashers in a frying pan over medium/high heat until crispy. Set aside on a plate lined with a paper towel until ready to use. Wash out the frying pan and dry completely.
- Get the chicken thighs and lay them out on a chopping board. Place some plastic wrap over the top of the chicken and then flatten the larger fillet end using the base of the frying pan or a saucepan (or meat mallet if you have one). You want the fillets all to be an even thickness.
- Get two bowls and in one, add the eggs and whisk together well. In the second bowl, add the flour, corn flour, baking powder and all spices and mix together well.
- To the frying pan over medium/high heat, add enough canola oil to cover the base and be about 1.5 cm deep.
- Dredge the chicken pieces first in the egg then into the flour mixture, making sure each piece is completely coated. Repeat with all chicken pieces.
- Once the oil is hot, place the chicken pieces into the oil and fry until golden brown on one side, turn and continue to fry until golden on the other side. Use a thermometer to check that the chicken is cooked all the way through – it should be 75°C (165F).
- Depending on the size of your pan, you may need to cook the chicken in batches as you don’t want to overcrowd the pan as this will prevent the chicken from getting crispy. Once the chicken pieces are cooked, place them on a plate lined with paper towels to absorb any extra oil.
- Assemble the burger by placing a generous amount of mayonnaise on the bottom side of the burger bun, followed by lettuce, bacon and then a piece of the crispy chicken and the top of the bun. Serve immediately.
Nutritional information is provided as a guide only and is calculated using automated online tools, therefore we cannot guarantee the accuracy. We encourage you to make your own calculations based on the actual ingredients used in your recipe.