Memorial Day picnic ideas: Ina's fried chicken

May 25, 2012 (CHICAGO)

Chicago's 'Breakfast Queen' Ina Pinkney is known for her morning meals. But she's also got one of Chicago's best fried chicken recipes. And she's sharing it with ABC7.

Along with fluffy omelets and toothsome scrapple, Ina's also offers fried chicken -- every day for breakfast and lunch.

Pickney says it's a relatively easy dish to prepare. (NOTE: For Gluten Free version: Call to make a reservation for Friday, June 1 between 5-7 and/or write to for recipe.)


  • 21/2 - 3 pound chicken, natural or organic, cut into 8 pieces
  • 1/2 gallon buttermilk
  • 1 tsp. garlic powder
  • 1 tsp. kosher salt
  • 1 tsp. black pepper, freshly ground
  • 3 qts. Trans Fat Free Oil, like Canola

  • 4 cups all purpose flour
  • 2 tsp. garlic powder
  • 1 tsp. kosher salt
  • 1 tsp. black pepper, freshly ground

Wash the chicken and trim any visible fat.

Mix the garlic powder, salt and pepper into the buttermilk.

Put the chicken into a one gallon self-closing plastic bag and pour in the buttermilk. Close the bag, place on a cookie sheet or into a bowl and refrigerate for 2 hours or overnight.

Into a large heavy 6 qt. pot, put the oil and heat over medium heat until it reaches 275 degrees, using a thermometer.

While the oil is heating, remove the chicken from the bag and place on a rack to drain and air-dry.

Dredge and press the chicken into the flour mixture. Shake off any excess flour. Re-dredge

CAREFULLY AND SLOWLY put the chicken into the hot oil SKIN SIDE DOWN and 'away from you'…not toward you.

Leave it alone (I'm not kidding!) for 10 minutes. Then you can gently turn the pieces to keep them separate.

    Cooking times:
  • Wings 13-15 minutes
  • Legs 15-17 minutes
  • Thighs 18- 20 minutes
  • Breasts 20-25 minutes

If you're not sure the chicken is done, use the tip of a sharp knife and poke to see if the juices run clear or use an instant-read thermometer which should read 160.

1235 West Randolph Street
Chicago, IL 60607

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