Jalapeños are the star of this fried chicken recipe. Jalapeño brining keeps the chicken moist and spicy on the inside, while the buttermilk breading makes it extra crunchy on the outside. This recipe is a memorable alternative to your traditional fried chicken recipe that is sure to be a hit at barbecues and family gatherings. Try this recipe with boneless chicken breasts for an amazing fried chicken sandwich!


Makes 4-6 Servings 1x 2x 4x
  • Zesty Jalapeño Sauce
  • 1 cup Greek yogurt
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt
  • 1/2 cup Sliced Tamed™ Jalapeño Peppers drained
  • 1 lime juiced
  • 2 tablespoons chives thinly sliced
  • Fried Chicken
  • 1 (16 ounce) jar Sliced Tamed™ Jalapeño Peppers
  • 1 (4-5 pound) chicken cut into 8-10 Pieces*
  • 2 cups buttermilk
  • 6 cups canola oil for frying
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 1/4 cup cornstarch
  • 2 teaspoons kosher salt plus more for finishing
  • 3/2 teaspoons ground black pepper
  • Lime wedges for serving
  • Good with Mediterranean Hot Sauce Sampler


  1. Make the sauce: Add the Greek yogurt, garlic powder, onion powder, salt, Mezzetta® Sliced Tamed Jalapeños, and lime juice to a blender and blend until smooth. Thin the mixture out with a tablespoon or two of the jalapeño brine if needed. Transfer to a bowl and stir in the finely chopped chives. Yields 1 cup. Store in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.
  2. Make the chicken: To a blender, add the entire jar of Mezzetta® Sliced Tamed Jalapeños, brine and all, and blend until smooth.
  3. In a large resealable bag, add the chicken pieces, buttermilk, and the blended jalapeño mixture and place in the refrigerator to brine for at least 8 hours up to 24 hours.
  4. Once the chicken has brined, heat the oil to 350°F** in a heavy bottomed pot or Dutch oven. 
  5. Add the flour, cornstarch and salt and pepper to a large bowl and whisk together to combine. Add 3 tablespoons of the buttermilk brine to the mixture to create a shaggy flour mixture.
  6. Add the chicken pieces, 2-3 at a time from the buttermilk marinade into the flour mixture and toss to fully coat, using your hands to press the flour mixture onto the chicken. 
  7. Add the chicken to the oil and cook, in batches, until golden brown and crispy and the internal temperature reaches 165°F, 8-10 minutes. The oil temperature will drop once the chicken is added so adjust the heat on the stove as needed. Transfer to a paper towel lined plate or baking sheet and sprinkle with salt to taste. Repeat this process with the remaining chicken, cooking them 2-3 pieces at a time.
  8. Transfer the fried chicken to a large platter, sprinkle all over with Mezzetta® Sliced Tamed Jalapeños and serve with lime wedges and the zesty jalapeño sauce.
  9. Enjoy!

Chef's Note

*You can have your butcher do this or you can use a combination of chicken thighs and drumsticks. You can also use boneless skinless chicken thighs or chicken breasts to make delicious fried chicken sandwiches!
**The best way to regulate the temperature of the oil is to use a candy or oil thermometer.