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How to Reheat Fried Chicken

The best apart about eating fried chicken is biting into that crispy coating and tasting juicy, tender, chicken on the inside. You get that experience when the chicken’s just been made.

But what about reheating leftover fried chicken? Can some of that crispy texture be revived?

Popeye's Chicken Photo

The answer is…a little bit, if you choose the right method to warm up your chicken.

The most important tip is to let your leftover fried chicken sit at room temperature for 30-60 minutes before reheating it in the oven or frying it again on the stove. This will help ensure the chicken warms up evenly and more quickly.

Popeye's Chicken Picture

Warming up Fried Chicken in the Oven

  • Take the chicken out of the refrigerator and out of its packaging. Set it on a plate or platter and let it come to room temperature for 30-60 minutes.
  • Preheat your oven to 375 degrees F. Place the chicken on a sheet pan. If you have a wire rack that fits in your sheet pan, you can place the chicken on the rack, so the air will circulate around it, making the fried chicken crispier.
  • Heat the pan of chicken on the center rack of your oven for 10 minutes
  • Check to see how warm the pieces are, keeping in mind that breasts and thighs will take longer than wings and drumsticks. Continue baking the chicken as needed, removing smaller pieces earlier than the larger ones. It should take at least 15-20 minutes for the smaller pieces, and up to 25 minutes for the larger ones.
  • If you’d like to use an instant read thermometer, the chicken is warmed up enough when it reaches an internal temperature of 120 degrees F.
  • When the chicken is heated through, remove it from the oven and let it sit on a wire rack to cool off for a few minutes.
Popeye's Chicken Image

Refrying Chicken

Did you know you can refry chicken? This method helps to bring back that crispy texture.

  • Take the leftover fried chicken out of the refrigerator and let it come to room temperature for 30-60 minutes.
  • Cover the bottom of a cast iron skillet or Dutch oven (cast iron conducts heat evenly) with canola or peanut oil, until the oil is at least ¼-inch high. (You need oil that has a high smoke point.)
  • Heat on high until the oil is rippling.
  • Fry the chicken for 2-3 minutes total, making sure to flip it at least once. When the chicken has crisped up, transfer it to a wire rack, set over a pan, to drain for a few minutes.
Gluten Free Oven Fried Chicken Photo

Reheating Fried Chicken in the Microwave

Reheating fried chicken in the microwave will result in a soggy coating. But, if you don’t care about crispiness, the microwave is a quick, no-fuss way to warm up your fried chicken.

Take the fried chicken out of the refrigerator and place it on a microwaveable plate. Loosely cover it with wax paper.

Heat on high, starting with 30-50 seconds. Check to see how warm the chicken feels and reheat some more if needed.

Let the chicken rest for a minute in the microwave to cool off a bit before eating it.