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Buttermilk Fried Chicken Drumsticks Recipe: Finger-Lickin’ Good Delight!

Buttermilk Fried Chicken Drumsticks

Oh, the magic of buttermilk! It’s the not-so-secret ingredient that makes this fried chicken recipe truly outstanding. Buttermilk works wonders in tenderizing the meat while infusing it with a subtle tang and richness that will leave your taste buds dancing with delight. The result? Incredibly moist and flavorful drumsticks that will have you hooked from the first bite.



Fried chicken has a long and storied history, and its journey through time is as fascinating as its mouthwatering taste. While the exact origins of fried chicken are shrouded in mystery, it is widely believed that the concept of frying chicken can be traced back to multiple cultures and regions.

The roots of fried chicken can be found in ancient civilizations such as Egypt and Rome, where cooks would prepare chicken by frying it in hot oil. However, it was in the Southern United States where fried chicken truly flourished and became an iconic dish.

During the era of slavery in the United States, West African cooking techniques heavily influenced Southern cuisine, including the preparation of fried chicken. Enslaved Africans brought with them a tradition of deep-frying chicken, which they combined with locally available ingredients and spices, creating what we now know as Southern fried chicken.

In the late 1800s and early 1900s, as African American communities moved north during the Great Migration, they took their beloved fried chicken recipe with them, introducing it to new regions and cultures. Fried chicken quickly gained popularity and became a staple at family gatherings, picnics, and social events across the country.

Buttermilk, with its tangy flavor and tenderizing properties, gradually found its way into the fried chicken-making process. The addition of buttermilk to the marinade not only added depth to the flavor but also helped ensure the chicken remained moist and juicy during frying. This culinary innovation elevated the fried chicken experience to new heights, making it a favorite comfort food for generations to come.

Over the years, fried chicken has evolved and adapted to various regional and international influences. Different cultures have put their unique spin on the classic dish, incorporating diverse seasonings and cooking methods. Today, fried chicken is celebrated worldwide, with each country having its own beloved variations.

The rise of fast-food chains in the mid-20th century further popularized fried chicken, making it a global phenomenon. Notable fast-food chains specializing in fried chicken have become household names and have expanded their reach to various corners of the world.

The recipe for Buttermilk Fried Chicken Drumsticks, with its emphasis on marinating in buttermilk and double dredging for extra crispiness, is a product of years of experimentation and refinement. Home cooks and chefs alike have embraced this delectable recipe, and it continues to hold a special place in the hearts and palates of fried chicken enthusiasts everywhere.

In conclusion, Buttermilk Fried Chicken Drumsticks have a rich and diverse history that spans continents and cultures. From its humble beginnings in the Southern United States to its global fame today, fried chicken has stood the test of time and remains an all-time favorite comfort food enjoyed by people of all ages, backgrounds, and tastes. So, the next time you bite into a crispy, juicy drumstick, remember that you’re savoring a dish with a remarkable history and a legacy of culinary excellence.


Marinating the Drumsticks4 hours (minimum)
Creating the Flour Mixture10 minutes
The Buttermilk Bath5 minutes
Double Dredging Secret5 minutes
Frying to Golden Perfection20 minutes (approx)
Serve and EnjoyVaries

Please note that the total time may vary depending on factors like experience, kitchen setup, and the quantity of chicken being prepared. Enjoy your cooking adventure!


IngredientsQuantity for 2-Person Serving
Chicken Drumsticks4 pieces
Buttermilk1 cup
Salt1 teaspoon
Black Pepper1/2 teaspoon
Garlic Powder1/2 teaspoon
Onion Powder1/2 teaspoon
Paprika1/2 teaspoon
Cayenne Pepper1/4 teaspoon
Fresh Herbs (optional)1 tablespoon, chopped
All-Purpose Flour1 cup
Cornstarch2 tablespoons
Baking Powder1 teaspoon
Cornmeal2 tablespoons
Cooking Oil (e.g., peanut or vegetable oil)Enough for deep frying
Optional: Side dishes or dipping saucesAs desired

Feel free to adjust the quantities based on your preferences and appetite. Happy cooking and enjoy your delightful Buttermilk Fried Chicken Drumsticks!


Step 1: Marinating the Drumsticks


  • 4 Chicken Drumsticks
  • 1 cup Buttermilk
  • 1 teaspoon Salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon Black Pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon Garlic Powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon Onion Powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon Paprika
  • 1/4 teaspoon Cayenne Pepper
  • 1 tablespoon Fresh Herbs (optional), chopped
  1. In a large bowl, combine the buttermilk, salt, black pepper, garlic powder, onion powder, paprika, and cayenne pepper. Mix well until the salt is dissolved.
  2. Optional: Add freshly chopped herbs for an extra burst of flavor. Stir the mixture to incorporate the herbs.
  3. Place the chicken drumsticks in the buttermilk marinade, ensuring they are fully submerged. Cover the bowl with plastic wrap and refrigerate. For the best results, marinate the drumsticks for at least 4 hours, or better yet, overnight. This allows the buttermilk to work its magic, tenderizing the chicken and infusing it with delightful flavors.

Step 2: Creating the Flour Mixture


  • 1 cup All-Purpose Flour
  • 2 tablespoons Cornstarch
  • 1 teaspoon Baking Powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon Salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon Garlic Powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon Onion Powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon Paprika
  • 1/4 teaspoon Cayenne Pepper
  • 2 tablespoons Cornmeal
  1. In a shallow dish, combine the all-purpose flour, cornstarch, baking powder, salt, garlic powder, onion powder, paprika, and cayenne pepper. Mix thoroughly to ensure all the ingredients are evenly distributed.
  2. Add the cornmeal to the flour mixture and mix it in. The cornmeal adds an extra layer of texture and flavor to the fried chicken coating.

Step 3: The Breading Process

  1. Remove the marinated drumsticks from the refrigerator and let them come to room temperature for about 15-20 minutes. Allowing them to warm up slightly ensures more even cooking.
  2. Preheat your cooking oil in a large, deep skillet or Dutch oven to around 350°F (175°C). The right oil temperature is crucial for achieving perfectly crispy fried chicken.
  3. Take one marinated drumstick at a time and dip it into the buttermilk marinade, allowing any excess marinade to drip off.
  4. Roll the buttermilk-coated drumstick in the flour mixture, ensuring it is evenly coated. For an extra crispy crust, press the flour mixture onto the drumstick gently.
  5. Optional: For an even crunchier coating, repeat the process by dipping the floured drumstick back into the buttermilk marinade and then into the flour mixture once again. This double dredging technique takes the fried chicken to the next level!
  6. Set the breaded drumsticks aside on a wire rack, letting them rest for a few minutes. This helps the coating adhere better and yields a crunchier result.

Step 4: Frying to Golden Perfection

  1. Once the oil reaches the desired temperature, carefully lower the breaded drumsticks into the hot oil one by one. Fry the drumsticks in batches to avoid overcrowding the pan, which could lead to uneven cooking.
  2. Fry the chicken drumsticks for approximately 15-20 minutes, turning them occasionally to ensure even browning on all sides. The internal temperature of the chicken should reach 165°F (74°C) to ensure it’s fully cooked.
  3. Once the drumsticks achieve a gorgeous golden-brown color and the crust becomes delightfully crispy, use tongs to carefully transfer them to a wire rack to drain any excess oil.

Step 5: Serve and Enjoy

Now comes the moment you’ve been waiting for – it’s time to indulge in your homemade Buttermilk Fried Chicken Drumsticks! Serve them hot and crispy, pairing them with your favorite side dishes, dipping sauces, and perhaps a refreshing beverage.

Optional: Pairing and Serving Suggestions

Pair your Buttermilk Fried Chicken Drumsticks with classic side dishes like creamy mashed potatoes, coleslaw, cornbread, or macaroni and cheese. For a healthier option, serve them alongside a crisp green salad or grilled vegetables. As for dipping sauces, try honey mustard, barbecue sauce, or a zesty ranch dressing.

Equipment Required

Nutrition Information

Nutrition Information (per 1 Drumstick)Amount
Serving Size1 drumstick
Calories180 kcal
Total Fat9g
– Saturated Fat2g
– Trans Fat0g
Total Carbohydrates10g
– Dietary Fiber0.5g
– Sugars0g

Note: The nutrition information provided is approximate and may vary based on specific ingredients and cooking methods. Be sure to check the nutritional content of any additional side dishes or sauces served with the Buttermilk Fried Chicken Drumsticks.


  • Use Quality Buttermilk: Opt for high-quality buttermilk to ensure maximum flavor and tenderness in the chicken. If you can’t find buttermilk, make a quick substitute by mixing 1 cup of whole milk with 1 tablespoon of white vinegar or lemon juice. Let it sit for 5 minutes before using.
  • Pat Dry the Chicken: Before marinating the drumsticks, pat them dry with paper towels. Removing excess moisture helps the marinade and breading adhere better to the chicken.
  • Marinate Longer for Enhanced Flavor: While marinating for at least 4 hours is recommended, if you have the time, marinate the drumsticks overnight for even more flavor and tenderness.
  • Get Creative with Seasonings: Feel free to experiment with different seasonings to tailor the flavor to your liking. Add herbs like thyme, rosemary, or sage to the marinade for a herb-infused twist.
  • Try a Spicier Version: If you love spicy fried chicken, increase the amount of cayenne pepper in the marinade and flour mixture for an extra kick.
  • Test the Oil Temperature: Use a kitchen thermometer to ensure the cooking oil reaches 350°F (175°C) before frying. The right temperature ensures a crispy crust and prevents the chicken from becoming greasy.
  • Cook in Batches: Fry the drumsticks in batches, allowing enough space between them in the pan for even cooking. Overcrowding the pan can lead to uneven frying and a less crispy crust.
  • Keep an Eye on Cooking Time: The frying time may vary depending on the size of the drumsticks and the heat of the oil. Monitor the chicken’s color and internal temperature to prevent overcooking.
  • Rest on a Wire Rack: After frying, let the drumsticks rest on a wire rack instead of a paper towel. This preserves the crispiness of the crust by preventing moisture from accumulating.
  • Double Dredge for Extra Crunch: If you’re a fan of an extra crispy coating, try double dredging the drumsticks by repeating the buttermilk and flour coating process.

Pros & Cons

✔️ Finger-lickin’ good flavor❌ High in calories
✔️ Crispy and crunchy exterior❌ High in fat
✔️ Tender and juicy interior❌ Time-consuming preparation
✔️ Versatile – great for various occasions❌ Requires deep-frying
✔️ Family-favorite comfort food❌ May create oil splatters


In conclusion, the Buttermilk Fried Chicken Drumsticks recipe is a true winner that brings together the irresistible combination of finger-lickin’ good flavor, a crispy and crunchy exterior, and a tender and juicy interior. With its roots deeply embedded in Southern comfort food, this dish is a delightful celebration of all things fried chicken.

As you embark on this culinary adventure, you’ll discover that the magic of buttermilk tenderizes the chicken while infusing it with a delightful tang that keeps you craving for more. The double dredging secret ensures an extra crispy and golden crust that is simply addictive.

While the recipe requires a bit of marinating and frying time, the end result is well worth the effort. Whether you’re hosting a family gathering, treating yourself to a comforting meal, or trying to impress guests at a special occasion, Buttermilk Fried Chicken Drumsticks are sure to be a crowd-pleaser.

So, put on your apron, heat up that frying pan, and get ready to experience the joy of creating this classic fried chicken masterpiece in your own kitchen. The joy of savoring each bite and witnessing the smiles on your loved ones’ faces will make it all worthwhile.

Remember, cooking is an art, and there’s always room for creativity. Feel free to experiment with different seasonings, sides, and dipping sauces to make the recipe uniquely yours.

So go ahead, embrace the finger-lickin’ goodness, and dive into the world of Buttermilk Fried Chicken Drumsticks. Trust us, your taste buds will thank you for this delectable and satisfying culinary experience. Happy cooking! 🍗😋


  • 1. 🐔 Southern Roots and African Influence 🌍
    • Fact: The origins of fried chicken are deeply rooted in the Southern United States, where African slaves combined their deep-frying techniques with local ingredients and spices. This fusion of culinary traditions gave birth to the beloved Southern fried chicken we know today. 🍗🌽
  • 2. 🌽 Buttermilk’s Tenderizing Secret 🥛
    • Fact: The secret to the juicy and tender texture of Buttermilk Fried Chicken Drumsticks lies in the magical powers of buttermilk. The acidity in buttermilk helps break down the chicken’s proteins, resulting in a succulent and flavorful bite. Soaking the chicken in this tangy marinade works wonders, making every mouthful a delightful experience. 😋🍶
  • 3. 🔍 The Double Dredging Mystery 🕵️‍♀️
    • Fact: Wondering why the crust on Buttermilk Fried Chicken Drumsticks is so incredibly crispy? It’s all thanks to the double dredging secret! By dipping the chicken twice in the flour mixture after marinating, you create a thicker, more textured coating that fries to a delectably golden-brown perfection. It’s the ultimate fried chicken hack that will leave you craving more! 🍗🔥
  • 4. 🍽️ Fried Chicken: A Global Obsession 🌎
    • Fact: While the Southern United States is renowned for its fried chicken prowess, this lip-smacking dish has become a global sensation. Almost every culture has its version of fried chicken, each infused with unique flavors and cooking techniques. From Japanese karaage to Korean yangnyeom chicken, fried chicken’s popularity knows no borders. 🌍🍗
  • 5. 🐔 An Iconic Fast-Food Staple 🍟
    • Fact: Fried chicken’s appeal has not only transcended cultural boundaries but has also conquered the fast-food world. Numerous fast-food chains have achieved international fame by offering their signature fried chicken creations. From Colonel Sanders’ finger-lickin’ goodness to spicy chicken legends, these chains have a special place in our hearts (and stomachs!). 🍔🍗


Can I use chicken breasts instead of drumsticks for this recipe?

Yes, you can use chicken breasts instead of drumsticks. Keep in mind that the cooking time may vary as chicken breasts are thicker. Adjust the frying time to ensure they are fully cooked and reach an internal temperature of 165°F (74°C).

Can I bake the Buttermilk Fried Chicken Drumsticks instead of frying them?

Yes, you can bake the drumsticks for a healthier alternative. Preheat your oven to 425°F (220°C) and bake them on a wire rack over a baking sheet for approximately 25-30 minutes, flipping halfway through, until they’re crispy and fully cooked.

How do I avoid oil splatters while frying the chicken?

To minimize oil splatters, use a deep skillet or Dutch oven with high sides. Additionally, consider using a splatter screen or partially covering the pan while frying.

Can I prepare the marinade in advance and freeze it with the chicken?

It’s best not to freeze the chicken in the marinade. Freezing and thawing the chicken may affect the texture. Instead, you can prepare the marinade a day in advance and refrigerate it until you’re ready to marinate the chicken.

How do I know when the chicken is fully cooked?

Use a kitchen thermometer to check the internal temperature of the chicken. The chicken is fully cooked when it reaches 165°F (74°C). Alternatively, cut into the thickest part of the drumstick – it should no longer be pink, and the juices should run clear.

Can I use a different type of oil for frying?

Yes, you can use oils with high smoke points such as peanut oil, vegetable oil, or canola oil for frying. Avoid using oils with low smoke points like olive oil, as they may burn at high temperatures.

How can I make the fried chicken less greasy?

To reduce greasiness, ensure the oil is at the correct temperature before frying. Don’t overcrowd the pan, as it can lead to oil absorption. After frying, place the chicken on a wire rack to drain any excess oil instead of using paper towels.

Can I use store-bought buttermilk instead of making a substitute?

Yes, you can use store-bought buttermilk if you prefer. Just make sure it’s fresh and not past its expiration date.

What side dishes pair well with Buttermilk Fried Chicken Drumsticks?

Popular side dishes that pair well with fried chicken include mashed potatoes, coleslaw, cornbread, macaroni and cheese, or a fresh green salad. Get creative and serve your favorite sides!

Can I reheat the leftovers?

Absolutely! To reheat the leftovers, place the drumsticks on a wire rack over a baking sheet and warm them in a preheated oven at 350°F (175°C) for about 10-15 minutes or until heated through. This will help maintain the crispy texture of the coating.