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Beer-Batter Chicken and Waffles

Scott Phillips

Servings: 4

Popular in the southern United States but with a following all across the country, fried chicken served with waffles is an addictive, comforting classic. In this version, hefeweizen, a golden-hued wheat beer, adds flavor and lift to the waffles and to the fried chicken’s crisp, golden crust. If you can’t find it, try using a golden lager.


  • 11-1/4 oz. (2-1/2 cups) all-purpose flour
  • 4 tsp. granulated sugar, plus a pinch
  • 1-1/2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1/4 tsp. baking soda
  • Kosher salt
  • 1 12-oz. bottle chilled wheat beer, such as hefeweizen
  • 5 Tbs. vegetable oil; more for frying
  • 1/4 cup buttermilk
  • 1 large egg
  • 1 tsp. garlic powder
  • 1/2 tsp. cayenne
  • Freshly ground black pepper
  • 1-1/4 lb. (about 12) chicken tenders
  • Pure maple syrup, for serving

Nutritional Information

  • Calories (kcal) : 650
  • Fat Calories (kcal): 240
  • Fat (g): 28
  • Saturated Fat (g): 4
  • Polyunsaturated Fat (g): 11
  • Monounsaturated Fat (g): 11
  • Cholesterol (mg): 125
  • Sodium (mg): 650
  • Carbohydrates (g): 55
  • Fiber (g): 2
  • Protein (g): 38


  • Position a rack in the center of the oven and heat the oven to 425°F. Heat a waffle maker.
  • To make the waffle batter, combine 1‚ cup of the flour, 4 tsp. of the sugar, 3/4 tsp. of the baking powder, the baking soda, and 1/2 tsp. salt in a medium bowl.
  • In a small bowl, whisk 1/2 cup of the beer with the vegetable oil, buttermilk, and egg. Pour into the dry ingredients and stir until just combined. Set aside.
  • To make the chicken batter, combine 1 cup of the flour, the remaining 3/4 tsp. baking powder, the garlic powder, cayenne, the pinch of sugar, 1 tsp. salt, and 1/2 tsp. pepper in a shallow baking dish. Stir in the remaining 1 cup beer until just combined. If the batter seems thick, thin with up to 2‚ Tbs. water. Cover and set aside.
  • Cook the waffle batter in batches according to the manufacturer’s directions until golden and crisp. Set aside while cooking the chicken.
  • Season the chicken with salt and dredge in the remaining 1/2 cup of flour. Pour enough oil into a 12-inch nonstick skillet to reach a depth of 1/4 inch, and heat over medium-high heat until shimmering. Coat the chicken in the batter and fry, flipping once with tongs, until the crust is golden and puffed and the chicken is just cooked through, 2 to 3 minutes per side. Quickly blot the chicken on paper towels and sprinkle with salt.
  • Meanwhile, arrange the waffles directly on the oven rack to re-crisp, about 2 minutes.
  • Divide the waffles among 4‚ plates, top with the chicken, and serve with the maple syrup.

Start the meal with Mesclun Greens with a Simple Vinaigrette.


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Reviews (4 reviews)

  • user-5682840 | 07/26/2020

    Love this recipe. Probably make it 3 to 4 times a year. Simple and delicious. This waffle is made to go with savory foods which it complements very well. This is not your usual breakfast waffles.

  • sherryt88 | 12/07/2015

    Made this last night and overall it was really good. Followed recipe and instructions as written. The beer-batter chicken turned out very good and flavorful. The waffles were a disappointment, the batter was too runny thus resulted in soft waffles, not crispy.

  • dmc154 | 02/03/2012

    Mmmmm Good!!! Fried Chicken & Waffles is not something I am accustom to, but after seeing it on cooking shows, magazines, etc. I finally had to try it for myself. Used the recipe as stated except used lowfat buttermilk, canola oil, & chicken breast. The batter for both the waffles & chicken had a light texture. Chicken didn't look or taste greasy - something I was concerned about. Since it was just hubby & me, I cut recipe for waffle recipe in half which gave me enough waffle batter for 2 waffles. However, since I was using a whole chicken breast & it was big, I did not cut the recipe for the chicken batter in 1/2. I sliced the breast in into smaller pieces and the extras will come in handy for snacks.

  • Ned_Dougherty | 01/20/2012

    A great southern treat. A little bit of work to get the batters together, but once that is done the cooking goes quickly. My chicken tenders took only about a minute and a half on each side in oil that was about 250 degrees.

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