Ridiculously Good Fried Pickles

Ridiculously Good Fried Pickles

Now you can make your favorite restaurant appetizer at home in less than 30 minutes.  These ridiculously good fried pickles are the bar snacks that you’ve been craving.

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Plate of ridiculously good fried pickles with a side of sauce for dipping.

Who knew that a fried pickle could be so irresistible?  It’s salty, sour, crispy, and even more delicious when dipped in ranch dressing.   Fried pickles make an amazing appetizer, game-day snack, or a side for burgers. 

I like to make them as part of a very Southern meal.  Extra Crispy Bourbon Fried Chicken, Classic Macaroni And Cheese, Vinegar Based Coleslaw, Southern Hushpuppies, and Macaron Peach Cobbler make for a meal worthy of serving on ‘Sunday after church’.  

Where Did Fried Pickles Originate?

This Southern treat was created way back in 1963 in ‘The Pickle Capital Of The World’, Atkins, Arkansas.  

Bernell ‘Fatman’ Austin, the owner of Duchess Drive-In, had the idea to toss hamburger dill chips in leftover catfish batter and deep fry them.  He sold them in baskets of 10 chips for 10 cents.

Mr. Austin passed away in 1999, but his original recipe which is a closely guarded secret is served during the annual Picklefest held each May in Atkins.

Closeup of ridiculously good fried pickles

Ingredients Needed

  • Oil for frying – peanut oil is my preference because it has a high smoke point and is basically flavorless, but vegetable, canola, sunflower, or any other oil with a high smoke point will work.
  • Egg
  • Beer – Use what you enjoy drinking.  I used Corona.  If you don’t want to use beer, club soda also works great.
  • Baking powder – this allows the batter to ‘puff up’ when frying.
  • Seasoned salt – you could also use Cajun or Creole Seasoning, garlic salt, or plain salt.
  • Italian seasoning
  • All-purpose flour and corn starch.  The corn starch is key to crispy fried pickles.  It absorbs any moisture from the pickle and allows the edges of the batter to get golden and crunchy.
  • Pickles – I used Kosher dill pickle chips.  

How To Make This Recipe

  1. Dry the pickle slices very well.
  2. Heat oil in a Dutch oven until it reaches 375 degrees.
  3. Whisk together the batter – egg, beer, baking powder, salt, garlic powder, Italian seasoning, flour, and corn starch.
  4. Coat the pickles in the batter.
  5. Drop the pickles, one by one, into the hot oil and fry until golden brown.

Tips For Making Fried Pickles

  • Dry the pickles before doing anything else.  This will ensure that the batter sticks to the pickles and reduces spattering.
  • If you like spice, add hot sauce to the batter.  Old Bay Seasoning, Greek Seasoning, or Cajun Seasoning are great ways to add heat and tons of flavor.
  • Use a deep-fry thermometer to ensure a consistent oil temperature.  Too hot and the pickles will burn.  Too cool and the breading will absorb too much oil.
  • A wire Chinese spider makes fishing out the fried pickles from the oil super easy.  A slotted spoon will also work.
  • Using a thicker pickle chip works the best and holds up well to the batter.  Look for a pickle about ¼-inch thick.
  • Keep the pickles hot by laying them on a baking sheet and placing them in a 200-degree oven while you fry the remaining pickles.

Plate of ridiculously good fried pickles with a side of dipping sauce

If you liked these Ridiculously Good Fried Pickles, here are a few more appetizer recipes that I think you’ll love!

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Plate of ridiculously good fried pickles with a side of sauce for dipping.

Ridiculously Good Fried Pickles


Now you can make your favorite restaurant appetizer at home in less than 30 minutes.  These ridiculously good fried pickles are the bar snacks that you’ve been craving.



Peanut or vegetable oil for frying

1 large egg

12 ounces beer (I used Corona)

1 tablespoon baking powder

1 teaspoon seasoned salt

1 ½ teaspoons garlic powder

½ teaspoon Italian seasoning

1 cup all-purpose flour

½ cup corn starch

1 (16-ounce) jar dill pickle chips, drained and dried on paper towels


In a Dutch oven, pour 1-1 ½-inches of oil into the pot and place over medium-high heat.  

Insert a deep-fry thermometer and heat the oil until it registers 375 degrees.

Meanwhile, in a large bowl whisk together the egg, beer, baking powder, garlic powder, seasoned salt, Italian seasoning, flour, and corn starch until smooth.

Add half of the dried pickles to the batter and toss to coat.

Use a slotted spoon or Chinese spider to remove the pickles from the batter, shaking to allow the excess batter to drip off.

Add the pickles to the oil, one at a time, and fry until golden brown – about 2 minutes.

Use a spider or slotted spoon to remove the pickles to a paper towel-lined baking sheet to drain.

Allow the oil to return to 375 degrees.

Repeat the process with the remaining pickles.

Serve warm.

  • Prep Time: 10 minutes
  • Cook Time: 20 minutes
  • Category: Starter - Appetizer
  • Method: Fry
  • Cuisine: Southern

Keywords: ridiculously good fried pickles, fried pickle recipes, game day appetizers, Southern food, pickles,

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