The secret to KFC's 11 herbs and spice blend fried chicken may have been discovered thanks to the expert palates of two Michelin-starred chef
Tom Aikens, who runs Muse in Central London’s Belgravia, and Alex Bond, who runs Nottingham’s Alchemilla, joined French Maître d’hôtel Fred Sirieix for the first episode of Channel 4’s cooking series, Snackmasters airing April 6 on Channel 4 at 9:20 pm.
Hosted by Fred Siriex, the chefs on the show try to recreate some of the most famous snacks worldwide using their own recipes. Previous episodes highlighted KitKats and Burger King-inspired Whoppers.
In the latest episode, Aikens mixes ingredients such as thyme, basil, oregano, dried mustard, paprika, garlic salt, ground white pepper, and ground ginger to coat the fried chicken. A combination of buttermilk and flour was also used to bond the flavors together.
Tom Aiken’s KFC inspired chicken recipe
- Dried thyme leaves
- Dried basil leaves
- Dried oregano leaves
- Ground white pepper
- Chicken pieces of your choice
- Celery salt
- Black pepper
- Dried mustard
- Garlic salt
- Ground ginger
How to cook
- Dip chicken in salt water brine initially. The brine acts as a bond for the flour to stick and packs the flavors.
- Use the buttermilk and egg wash to coat the drumsticks & thighs first, and then add the flour and seasoning mixture.
- Heat oil to 175 degrees Celsius and fry in small quantities for roughly 15 minutes.
*Be mindful of the herbs used. If you use too much paprika or other dried herbs, the chicken coating will go dark.*
On the other hand, Bond used celery salt, ginger, onion powder, basil, cayenne, garlic powder, dried oregano, white pepper, black pepper, thyme, mustard powder which was mixed with flour, salt sugar, and cornflour.
Alex Bond’s KFC-inspired chicken recipe
- Black Pepper 4.5g
- White pepper 7.5g
- Garlic powder 20g
- Dried Oregano 1g
- Paprika 2g
- Flour 170g
- Cornflour 20g
- Sugar 12g
- Dried Thyme 1g
- Celery salt 3g
- Mustard powder 10g
- Ginger 3g
- Onion powder 15g
- Basil 1g
- Cayenne 5g
- Salt 11g
- Chicken pieces of your choice
1.Mix all herbs, spices, and flour.
2. Coat chicken in flour mixture on both sides, then shake off any excess flour.
3. Fry, and you’re all set!
When Colonel Sanders passed away in 1980, his eleven herbs and spice recipe was locked up in a vault. Forty years later, it is only handed out on a strict “need to know basis.”
This is understandable to prevent the goods from getting out!
According to a 2016 article in The Chicago Tribune, Joe Ledington, the Colonel’s nephew by marriage, uncovered a scrapbook that belonged to him that included a recipe for the chicken.
Ledington believes that the recipe is “close to the original.”
The recipe consisted of dried oregano leaves, dried basil leaves, celery salt, ground black pepper, dried mustard, paprika, garlic salt, ground ginger, and ground white pepper mixed with all-purpose flour and salt.
Last year, Dan Fell, a Warwickshire music composer who has also been called the ‘modern-day hero’, revealed his similar to the original KFC secret recipe. In the 18 months he spent perfecting the recipe, he decided to share his Twitter recipe amid the Covid-19 lockdown.
Dan Fell’s ‘similar to the original’ KFC chicken
- Five cups of plain flour
- Half a tablespoon of oregano & thyme
- One tablespoon of brown ginger
- Two tablespoons of garlic powder
- One tablespoon of mustard powder
- One tablespoon of celery salt
- One tablespoon of black pepper
- One-third of a tablespoon of sea salt
- Two tablespoons of white pepper
- Four tablespoons of paprika
1.Combine herbs, spices, and flour. Then, use one part self-raising flour and three parts flour.
2. Season chicken in the mix at room temperature.
3. Use an egg white and milk wash to coat your chicken. Then dip chicken in the mix to re-season.
4. Fry the chicken for about five to six minutes between 160 to 165 degrees Celcius before putting them in an 80-degree celsius oven. After, give it another minute and a half fry before sharing.
Last but not least, Londoner Ernestina Agyei unveiled her own KFC recipe. She states that she mixes the flour and spices before deep-frying the chicken in oil to make the chicken as delectable as possible. She even received a 9 out of 10 rating from KFC.
Among all these flavorful recipes for the famous fried chicken, what’s the original KFC recipe?
A relative of Colonel Sanders believes that the blend of 11 herbs and spices, which is kept in a vault that no one except the company is aware of. What also became interesting was Sanders deciding to have two different companies make certain parts of the recipe, so no company knows the entire secret.
The ‘original’ KFC chicken recipe
Prep time: 30 minutes
Soak time: 20-30 minutes
Cook time: 15-18 minutes
Serves four people
- Two cups all-purpose flour
- Two-thirds tablespoon of salt
- Half a tablespoon of dried thyme leaves
- Half a tablespoon of dried basil leaves
- One-third tablespoon dried oregano leaves
- One tablespoon celery salt
- One tablespoon ground black pepper
- Expeller-pressed canola oil
- One tablespoon dried mustard
- Four tablespoons paprika
- Two tablespoons garlic salt
- One tablespoon ground ginger
- Three tablespoons ground white pepper
- One cup buttermilk
- One egg, beaten
- One chicken cut up. Cut breast pieces to get an even fry
- Combine flour, herbs, and spices and set aside.
- Mic egg and buttermilk together in a separate bowl. Then soak the chicken in the mixture at room temperature for approximately 20-30 minutes.
- Take chicken out of the mixture and allow for the excess to drip off. Then dip the chicken pieces in the flour, herb, and spice mix, and shake off excess. Place chicken pieces on a rack over a baking sheet for 20 minutes.
- Heat three inches of oil in a large pot over medium-high heat to 350 degrees. (Tip: Use a deep-frying thermometer to monitor temperature). Once you reach the temperature, lower the heat to medium heat to maintain at 350 degrees.
- Fry four pieces of chicken at a time so the pot isn’t overcrowded. Turn the chicken once in 15-18 minutes until golden brown.
- Take fried pieces of chicken and place them on a baking sheet with paper towels underneath.
- Repeat the same steps for the remaining pieces of chicken.
Are you going to try recreating KFC’s fried chicken with the following recipes or create your own delicious concoction?