Southern Fried Chicken

Crisp, crunchy Southern fried chicken but without breadcrumbs or flour meaning these are much lower carb
Southern Fried Chicken

Southern Fried Chicken is one of my personal favourites and so it made sense to search the internet for that special secret blend of spices to get that certain fried chicken taste (but without using flour!)

Well after lots of searching and testing out a few different options, I think I’ve nailed a pretty good homemade low carb version of that special spice mix to use alongside my original chicken strip coating and create a low carb Southern Fried chicken recipe!

I have not yet tried this recipe on chicken pieces such as drumsticks, thighs and wings however this crumb should still work well for coating these too (just like original KFC chicken pieces). The skin on chicken adds to the fat content and will help the pairing of any other carbs on the plate. So please feel free to enjoy your chicken skin if you enjoy eating it!

Note: Please adjust the cooking time to ensure larger chicken pieces are cooked thoroughly with the juices running clear. Pieces of chicken will take longer to cook than breast strips or nuggets.

This coating can also be used on fish, Quorn, tofu and vegetables too, so please give them a try on any of your favourite foods that you like to add a crispy Southern Fried crumb to!

Southern Fried Chicken

Southern Fried Chicken

Crisp, crunchy Southern fried chicken but without breadcrumbs or flour meaning these are much lower carb
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Course: Main Meals
Cuisine: American, British
Diet: Diabetic, Gluten Free, Vegetarian
Keyword: chicken, coating, crumb, fakeaway, KFC, Southern Fried
Free or Subscription Recipe: Free Recipe
Free from: coconut, eggs, gluten
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Marinating time: 30 minutes
Total Time: 1 hour
Servings: 4 servings
Calories: 254kcal
Author: Jo Paterson


  • 300 grams skinless chicken breast fillets
  • 250 ml buttermilk
  • 1 tsp olive oil

Southern Fried Spice Crumb

  • 100 grams ground almonds
  • 1 tbsp cornflour
  • 1 tbsp paprika
  • 2 tsp white pepper
  • tsp garlic salt
  • ¾ tsp celery salt
  • ¾ tsp black pepper
  • ¾ tsp mustard powder
  • ¾ tsp ground ginger
  • ½ tsp dried thyme
  • ½ tsp dried basil
  • ½ tsp dried oregano


  • Cut the chicken into strips or nuggets/chunks to your liking. Place in a dish and cover with enough buttermilk so that they are completely submerged. Cover the dish and place in the fridge for at least 30 minutes. You can marinate for as long as you like – the longer they are left, the more tender the chicken will be (this can be done overnight if you wish)
  • When you are ready to cook your chicken strips, if using the oven to cook, preheat the oven to 200°c fan
  • Start by preparing your coating by adding all Southern fried crumb coating into a bowl and mixing well to distribute the ingredients evenly throughout the crumbs
  • Using a fork or clean fingers, start by taking a piece of chicken out of the buttermilk and hold up to drain slightly. Drop the chicken into the crumb, cover in the crumb and then turn and repeat on the other side. Place the coated chicken onto a plate and repeat with each piece. The crumb will soak up some of the liquid and become slightly wetter looking
  • Then re-coat each chicken piece again in just the leftover crumb to ensure they are fully coated
  • If cooking in the oven, line a baking tray with parchment paper to help stop them from sticking, spray well with some olive oil and bake for approx. 20-25 minutes or until crisp, golden and the chicken is cooked all the way through. (They may need turning halfway through cooking).
    If cooking in an air fryer, line the basket with some baking parchment paper, add the chicken strips, spray well with olive oil and cook for 12 minutes, then check to see how they are doing. Mine took 15 minutes to fully cook at 200°c in my Ninja Foodi on air-fry
  • To garnish I added finely chopped flat leaf parsley and an extra sprinkle of seasoning. Because the coating is made from almonds, it means you can serve these with another type of carb, such as potato wedges, sweet potato fries, chips, or rice and salad or green vegetables of your liking. Here I served mine with full fat mayonnaise


If you are wanting a dairy free version for buttermilk, you can use almond milk with some lemon juice added to create a non-dairy buttermilk equivalent.
Nutritional info. provided here is just a guide and based on the buttermilk not being included as much of it is not actually eaten and is only used to marinate the meat


Calories: 254kcal | Carbohydrates: 9g | Protein: 22g | Fat: 16g | of which saturates: 1g | Fibre: 3g | of which sugars: 1g