My fried pickle recipe is probably my most-requested recipe. I first had these fried beauties years and years ago. They are both one of Tuck and I’s favorite (if not the favorite) appetizers and we order them at every restaurant that has them. After refusing to buy them 3 days a week, we looked up a recipe because “How hard could they be to make?” Not hard at all. Here is my tried and true recipe for the most delicious fried pickles ever.
These are no joke the only ingredients you need – the salt is hiding behind the paprika in case you can’t see it. I use buttermilk, or a form of buttermilk, in this recipe because it gives the flour a good, sticky base on which to stick. As you can infer from the above picture, this breading has some kick to it, but there is no need to be skeptical even if you don’t like spice. The cayenne and paprika give the breading flavor and add a warm, subtle spice to the pickles. It may sound weird, it’s good, trust me.
The first thing you want to do is dry your pickles out. Open the jar of pickles and start fishing out the good pickles. These are the pickles that do not have any broken edges. Broken edges make the pickle a lot more difficult to coat with the breading and fry because it’s being loosely held together.
A note about my recipe: I really love these things. This recipe makes enough to make the equivalent of a 32 oz jar of fried pickles. Also, I recommend using the oval sliced or regular round sliced pickles because they’re not super thick. You can easily dip one of these fried babies in your dipping sauce of choice (i love ranch with a little bit of hot sauce) and have the perfect breading-pickle-dip ratio. It’s important.
The key to any fried food is hot oil. I used vegetable oil for frying and used a small coated pickle to test the temperature of the oil. In order to determine if the oil is hot enough, you want the pickle the oil to be bubbling around it within five seconds of dropping into the oil. The coating will begin to change from the floury coating into a golden, crispy crust after about 2-3 minutes. After you remove the pickle from the oil, you want to place it on some paper towel to absorb some of the oil. I lined a cooling rack with paper towels – you can also use a plate or baking sheet.
2 1/2 cups of all-purpose flour
2 1/2 teaspoons salt
2 1/2 teaspoons paprika
1/2 teaspoon cayenne
1 1/2 cups buttermilk*
32 oz jar of dill pickle slices
*You can make your own ‘buttermilk’ by squeezing the juice of half a lemon into regular milk and allowing it to sit for 5 minutes.
- Line a cookie sheet with paper towel and place pickles on the paper towels to dry. Cover with another paper towel to dry off the tops.
- Fill a large pot with vegetable oil so the bottom of the pot is covered with ~3/4 inch of oil. Turn the heat on medium to begin warming the oil.
- Mix the flour, salt, paprika and cayenne together in a dish and set aside. Pour the buttermilk into a separate dish.
- Dip each pickle into buttermilk and then into the flour mixture. Repeat this process so each pickle is coated twice. Set each coated pickle aside on a cookie sheet or plate.
- Test the oil temperature with a small pickle. When bubbles form around the pickle and it rises to the surface of the oil, golden brown the oil is hot enough.
- Fry batches of 4 pickles at a time and remove from oil once they are golden brown. Set fried pickles aside on a sheet pan or cooling rack covered with paper towels.
- Once all pickles are fried, transfer to a plate and serve with ranch dressing with several shakes of hot sauce.
Have you ever had fried pickles? What’s your favorite appetizer?