The Secret To Reheating Fried Chicken

Fried chicken just might be the perfect food. In fact, it's so perfect that Steven A. Witherly, Ph.D., dedicated an entire chapter of his book, Why Humans Like Junk Food, to the dish in general, and KFC in particular. While he spends time extolling the offerings of the fast-food chain, Dr. Witherly also hones in on the fact that all fried chicken gives us the satisfying taste-bud sensation of biting through different textures — crunchy breading, crisp skin, tender chicken — which is why we love it so much (via Business Insider).

But these are the same reasons why something as magnificent as fried chicken ends up being a big disappointment when it's reheated in the microwave the next day. But if you really have no choice, you can take out the leftover chicken, let it reach room temperature, then microwave it in 30-second intervals until warm, suggests Southern Living. Also smart: Be sure to flip the pieces in between and avoid too much microwave time, as your chicken will dry out.

It's best to reheat fried chicken in a conventional oven

It means something when everyone agrees on one method for carrying out a task in the cooking world — and that happens to be the case where cold fried chicken is concerned. Most foodies concur that leftover fried chicken should only be reheated in a conventional oven.

First, it's important to take your fried chicken out of the fridge and let it sit for up to 30 minutes before continuing to the step of reheating the dish, per Country Living. Not having your fried chicken ice-cold before popping it in the oven helps it retain moisture and cook evenly. While you're letting your fried chicken sit, you can preheat your oven to 400 degrees. When you've got the right temperature, place the fried chicken on a wire oven rack, so the heat can work its magic around all sides, and leave it in for about 20 minutes. You can also check its internal temperature, per Cooks IllustratedYou want it to reach roughly 120 degrees (14 to 18 minutes for breasts, eight to 12 minutes for thighs and legs), which will make the chicken perfect and ready to enjoy.