Fried chicken has long been a beloved dish in the United States, gracing dinner tables and restaurant menus since the early 1800s. With roots in various parts of the world, including Scotland and West Africa, this crispy and succulent delight has become an American favorite.

However, achieving that perfect golden crust and juicy interior is often a matter of choosing the right oil for frying. Whether you’re a seasoned chef or a home cook, the right oil can make or break your fried chicken experience.

This guide will introduce you to the 6 best oils for frying chicken, considering factors like smoke point, flavor transfer, health benefits, and cost. Let’s dive into the culinary world of frying oils!

Best oil for frying chicken to buy today

What is the finest chicken-frying oil? An oil with a high smoke point is the ideal choice for frying chicken. Avocado, vegetable, or peanut oil are recommended. However, sunflower oil, high oleic safflower oil, and oil blends can also be used.

BetterBody Foods Pure Avocado Oil

When you cook using avocado oil, the flavor of the avocado will pass to the chicken.

This oil’s high smoke point (500°F) makes it ideal for deep frying and pan-frying. It’s also organically refined, which means it hasn’t been refined with harsh chemicals. Instead, the refining procedure is entirely mechanical.

This oil is gluten-free, non-GMO, and has a pleasant taste. It may be used not only for frying but also for salad dressings and sauteeing. Because of its high smoke point, this is a relatively healthy choice for frying chicken. 

Avocado oil contains about 50% monounsaturated fats. This is why avocado oil is so good for frying since it’s more stable. Monounsaturated fats are “stable” because they do not react with oxygen when heated. It is, however, rather costly.

Planters Peanut Oil

This brand only utilizes 100% pure peanut oil. Peanut oil has a high enough smoke point to fry chicken without burning it, and it will flavor anything with a subtle nutty flavor. In addition, this peanut oil has no trans fats, no additives, and has a smoke point of 450 degrees Fahrenheit, allowing you to fry chicken to perfection.

Peanut oil is inexpensive, and despite its nutty flavor when pan-frying, flavor transfer from one component to the next is limited when deep frying.

Happy Belly Vegetable Oil

People who enjoy deep-fried chicken frequently use this vegetable oil. A deep fryer’s temperature will most likely be about 375 degrees Fahrenheit. This is 75 degrees below the smoke point of this oil, which is 450 degrees Fahrenheit.

It has a neutral flavor and is manufactured from soybeans. Therefore, it won’t give your fried chicken any unpleasant flavors or overtones. Cooking with this oil at a high temperature ensures that your chicken is crispy rather than greasy. The chicken won’t absorb any oil if the temperature is too high.

This soybean-based oil has a mild taste and is low in fat, making it ideal for deep frying. It isn’t very nutritious, but neither is fried chicken. In comparison to other oils, vegetable oil is also quite inexpensive.

Mazola Pure Corn Oil

This corn oil works nicely in stir-fries and deep-frying. Its widespread availability, high smoke point, and low cost make it a popular option. In addition, this oil is cholesterol-free and has 0 grams of fat per serving. It also has no additives other than corn oil.

Corn oil does not have a neutral taste. It has a mellow flavor that some people compare to slightly sweet butter, which makes it ideal for fried chicken. Corn oil isn’t a healthy cooking medium, but fried chicken isn’t a nutritious food either. It shouldn’t be an issue if you only eat it as a treat once in a while. Salad, vinaigrettes, and even baking may all benefit from this corn oil.

Native Harvest Sunflower Oil

Another wonderful alternative for individuals seeking a neutral-tasting oil is Native Harvest sunflower oil. Sunflower oil from Native Harvest is expeller pressed. This indicates that no chemical solvents are employed in oil production.

This oil production technique also yields a greater oleic content in sunflower oil, which is an added benefit over solvent-extracted sunflower oil. In addition, this sunflower oil is healthier than normal sunflower oil due to the manufacturing procedure.

Sunflower oil has essentially little taste, one of its key advantages. Thus, sunflower oil is an excellent alternative for frying chicken if you want to enjoy the crispy skin and juicy chicken. In addition, sunflower oil’s high smoke point is another marketing factor.

Chosen Foods Organic Blend Oil

This Chosen Foods Organic Blend oil is what you need if you’re looking for a unique oil for frying chicken. Safflower oil, organic avocado oil, and organic coconut oil are used to make this oil blend. Because all three have high smoke points, they’re perfect for frying chicken.

Including avocado and safflower oils balances the coconut oil’s stronger flavor, resulting in a gentler combination. It has no GMOs or artificial preservatives. This oil is ideal for high-temperature cooking. Because the smoke points of safflower oil, avocado oil, and coconut oil are 510°F, 520°F, and 450°F, respectively, you may crank up the heat on this combined oil.

Hand holding Fried chicken

Factors to Consider When Using the Best Oil for Frying Chicken

When frying chicken, it’s not just about the type of oil but also the method and considerations that make your chicken perfectly golden and delicious. Let’s explore these factors:

  • Smoke Point: Choose an oil with a high smoke point to avoid burning.
  • Transfer of Flavor: Select an oil that resists flavor transfer to maintain the chicken’s authentic taste.
  • Oil Flavor: Neutral-flavored oil is preferred to let the chicken and seasoning shine.

More Great Oils for Frying Chicken


  • Smoke point: 370°F
  • Lard imparts an exceptional taste and crispy exterior.

Peanut Oil

  • Smoke point: 450°F
  • Cost-effective with a high smoke point.

Coconut Oil

  • Smoke point: 450°F
  • Odorless and flavorless, with healthy fats.

Vegetable Shortening

  • Smoke point: 360°F
  • Traditional choice in the South for frying chicken.

Avocado Oil (Refined)

  • Smoke point: 482-520°F
  • Delicate flavor absorbs well into a chicken but is quite costly.

Soybean Oil

  • Smoke point: 453°F
  • Versatile oil works well in nearly all recipes.

Conclusion: Choosing the Right Oil for Your Fried Chicken Adventure

Finding the perfect oil for frying chicken doesn’t have to be a complex task. By considering factors such as smoke point, flavor, and cost, you can select the right oil that matches your preferences and dietary needs. Whether you go for the rich flavors of avocado and peanut oils or the neutrality and health benefits of sunflower and coconut oils, the choice is yours. The result? A fried chicken experience that is golden, crispy, and utterly satisfying.

Last update on 2024-04-05 / Affiliate links / Images from Amazon Product Advertising API

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