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Best Way to Fry Vegan Chicken

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These are the 4 Best Ways to Fry Vegan Chicken! They all have Pros and Cons, so let’s go over them!

I’ve made a ton of Vegan Fried Chicken on this page. Which makes sense seeing as Fried Chicken was one of my favorite things to eat before going vegan.

There’s so many different vegan chicken alternatives out there too. There’s Tofu, Seitan, jackfruit, the list goes on. You can also use store-bought vegan chicken like I did in my Vegan Chick-fil-A recipe too!

And there’s a bunch of different ways to bread and fry it, so let’s go over the 4 most common ways, and the pros and cons of each!

deep fried vegan chicken

Deep Frying is the obvious place to start! This is quite simply where we bread our fillet in some seasoned flour and vegan buttermilk. Then we’ll deep fry it in some neutral oil at around 375 F until golden brown!

This is probably my favorite way to fry as it’s the classic way to do it. And for good reason, it’s amazing! Nothing really beats a well seasoned fried fillet!

Check out my Tofu Fried Chick’n or Seitan Fried Chick’n recipes for more info.

What’s the downside to deep frying?

The biggest downside is all the oil you have to deal with. This can be expensive and messy. And if you are avoiding oil for health reasons, you probably want to stay away from it too.

Also, deep frying can be dangerous too unless you follow these tips!


  • Don’t leave the pot unattended.
  • Keep children away from the pot.
  • Don’t fill the pot more than halfway with oil. Don’t overcrowd it as well.
  • Turn the handles of the pot away from you to avoid accidental spills.
  • I highly recommend a Deep Fry Thermometer to monitor the oil temp.
  • Keep a lid nearby so you can cover the pot if it catches fire.
  • Never use water to put out an oil fire.
  • Get a Fire Extinguisher just to be extra safe. This isn’t just good for deep frying, but for having in the house in general!


  • Use a heavy bottomed pot (Stainless SteelCast IronCarbon Steel etc)
  • I highly recommend a Deep Fry Thermometer to monitor the oil temp.
  • Use a neutral tasting, high smoke point oil (Canola, Vegetable, Peanut etc.)
  • Make sure to use UNSWEETENED plant milk. I like RIPPLE the best.
  • Add flour as needed to thicken the vegan buttermilk mixture.
  • Shake off the excess flour and batter when you dredge.
  • Fry a test nugget to test the seasoning and adjust as needed.
  • Let the chick’n rest on a Wire Rack after frying to prevent soggy chick’n.

You can also save your used oil and reuse it 3 – 4 times. I like to line a fine mesh strainer with a paper towel. Then strain the oil through that and reserve in a jar for later.

is shallow frying as good as deep frying?

I’ve been deep frying for years, so I was quite surprised to find out that I enjoyed a shallow fried fillet almost a much as a deep fried one. You need way less oil, probably about 1/3 or less. Just enough to cover the fillet by about half.

I also think breading the fillet in Panko Breadcrumbs is ideal for this kind of frying.

So if you want something deep fried, but don’t want to use so much oil, I definitely think shallow frying is the way to go! The flavor and CRUNCH are fantastic!

I’d suggest using either my Tofu Fried Chick’n recipe or my Air Fried Chick’n recipe for the breading and frying in about 1/2″ of oil.

air frying for less oil

So if you want nothing to do with oil, air frying might be your best bet! Although, admittedly, I do think you need a little bit of oil, otherwise they will never get brown or crispy really!

But air frying is a great alternative if you want something crunchy without the hassle of the oil involved with deep frying. I will say, for me personally, the flavor and texture of a deep fried fillet is way better and worth it to me!

That said, check out my Air Fried Chick’n recipe!

is air frying better than baking?

You can also bake the fillets if you don’t have an air fryer. During my tests I found that this was my least favorite option however. It takes a lot longer and the results are not as good as an air fryer. So no, I don’t think baking is as good as air frying unfortunately!

But they are still tasty and delicious, so have no fear if you have an oven and want to make some vegan fried chick’n! I have directions for that on my Air Fried Chick’n recipe as well.

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