Recipe: Sourdough Discard Battered Fried Chicken

Y'all thought I was playing when I fried that chicken? There is really no better way to use discard. I know, I know...I just posted the Johnny Cakes and they are delicious. I know cookies, waffles, and pancakes are fun too (full disclosure, discard waffles plus this chicken....whoa). But let's take a moment to understand what is happening here - we are using prefermented flour to coat our chicken and then deep fry it. It is delicious. You will not regret this.


2 packs of chicken tenderloins (or drumsticks/wings/breasts/whatever cut you want)

Canola Oil


For the Discard Wash

500 grams sourdough discard

2 eggs

100 grams whole milk

Pinch Cayenne Pepper

Pinch Salt

Pinch Cracked Black pepper

Pinch Tony's Seasoning (or any seasoned salt blend but...get you some Tony's)

For the Flour Coat:

2 separate bowls of AP flour (no need to measure, just get 2 mixing bowls and fill them halfway with flour)

Tony's Seasoning

Cayenne Pepper


Fine Cornmeal

Dried Oregano

Dried Basil

It is important for you to note that I don't ever really measure any of this. I provided the discard was amounts just to give you a guide. Frying chicken is all about being very relaxed. You want your wash to be thinner than pancake batter but not runny. You will want to keep one bowl of flour plain and one bowl will get the ingredients from the Flour Coat section above - that one should look like it clearly has cornmeal in it, but not in an overpowering way. You should be sneezing after you finish mixing it up from all of the seasoned spice and cayenne. If you didn't sneeze when you mixed it up, you didn't spice it right.

What You Need To Do:

  1. Put a large pot of canola oil on the stove, on medium heat. You are looking to fry your chicken around 365f. You don't want to get any hotter than that so don't try to blast your oil to heat it fast. Keep it consistent and use a thermometer.

  2. Prepare your work station. Frying chicken is all about avoiding mess and being organize. The bowl right next to the pot should be your spice blend flour. Next, further from the pot, will be the discard wash. Finally, your plain flour bowl will be farthest from the pot. So, you will align three bowls right next to the stove in that order.

  3. Prepare a sheet pan with a double layer of paper towels. Get some tongs. Whisk together all of the discard wash ingredients.

  4. Once your oil is up to temperature, put 5 strips at a time into the plain white flour and coat evenly. Make sure you keep that hand dry.

  5. Use your other hand to transfer them to the discard wash and toss until they are all coated.

  6. Use the wet hand to drop into the spiced flour mixture and use the dry hand to scoop some of the flour mixture over the top of them, and turn them. Make sure they get a nice coat.

  7. Transfer into the frying oil and fry for about 15-20 minutes, or until they reach an internal temperature of 165f.

  8. Wash and dry hands as needed and repeat for the rest of your chicken.

  9. When your chicken is done, you can use finishing salt or dried rosemary on top.

  10. Enjoy!

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