This post may contain affiliate links. Please read our disclosure policy.

Learn how to turn tofu into the crispiest, most flavor-packed vegan fried chicken you’ve ever had. This Vegan KFC Fried Chicken recipe will blow the minds of anyone who tries it.

straight forward image of vegan KFC fried chicken in bowl on white background

As a kid, fried chicken was always one of my favorite foods to have. Whether it was homemade, KFC, Popeye’s, or otherwise, I was all about it. I am not joking when I say that this tofu fried chicken is SPOT ON to the real thing. Crispy and flaky on the outside, and tender and juicy on the inside—absolute perfection.

Overhead image of ingredients on cutting board

When creating this recipe, I did a bunch of research on KFC’s famous seasoning blend. While their method is technically “top secret,” I did find some base recipes for the blend that I was able to tweak and make my own. There are quite a few components to the seasoning blend, but chances are, you already have most of the spices at home. Here’s what you’ll need:

  • Italian Seasoning
  • Garlic Salt
  • Celery Salt
  • White Pepper
  • Black Pepper
  • Paprika
  • Ginger
  • Mustard Powder
overhead image of vegan fried chicken cut in half

In addition to this seasoning blend, all you need for this recipe is some medium-firm tofu, all-purpose flour, unsweetened plant-based milk, apple cider vinegar, and corn flakes. We like to use medium-firm tofu because it has the perfect consistency when prepared properly.

overhead image of vegan KFC fried chicken on cutting board

The method of preparing the tofu is quite time consuming, but with a little planning, it is well worth doing. We are using a method from Mary’s Test Kitchen. Essentially, we will freeze the package of tofu and allow it to completely defrost twice. Once it has defrosted for the second time, we will open the package, drain the liquid out, and press the tofu until it is as dry as you can get it. The full method can be found below on the recipe card.

Overhead image of vegan fried chicken pieces

This recipe uses a similar breading technique to our vegan mozzarella sticks and veggie chicken nuggets if you’ve ever made those. There are some differences, but it is relatively similar. If you are looking for some other tasty recipes, these are a must-try!

Print
clock clock iconcutlery cutlery iconflag flag iconfolder folder iconinstagram instagram iconpinterest pinterest iconfacebook facebook iconprint print iconsquares squares iconheart heart iconheart solid heart solid icon
straight forward image of vegan KFC fried chicken in bowl on white background

Vegan KFC Fried Chicken (Copycat)


5 Stars 4 Stars 3 Stars 2 Stars 1 Star

5 from 19 reviews

  • Author: Sweet Simple Vegan
  • Total Time: 24 hours 10 minutes
  • Yield: 8-10 pieces
  • Diet: Vegan

Description

Learn how to turn tofu into the crispiest, most flavor-packed vegan fried chicken you’ve ever had. This incredible recipe will blow the minds of anyone who tries it.


Ingredients


Instructions

  1. Freeze entire package of medium-firm tofu. Once it is frozen, remove it from the freezer and allow it to defrost. Repeat this step twice. 
  2. Once the tofu is fully thawed for the second time, open the package and fully drain out all of the liquid. Press the tofu between two cutting boards to remove the liquid as best as you can. Once drained, use a towel to absorb any additional liquid. 
  3. Break up the tofu into medium sized pieces. A block of tofu should yield about 8-10 pieces and maybe some smaller pieces. The tofu should naturally tear apart as well. 
  4. Place the tofu pieces in casserole dish and pour in 2 cups of vegan chicken broth. If you’re using no-chicken bullion cubes, mix with 2 cups of hot water prior to pouring over the tofu. Once the tofu is fully submerged in the broth, set the container aside to marinate while you set up the breading station. 
  5. In a medium bowl, add in unsweetened plant milk and apple cider vinegar. Mix together and set aside. This will create a vegan buttermilk. 
  6. In another medium bowl, mix together the all purpose flour with all of the spices listed in the ingredients. 
  7. Now we are going to arrange our breading area. In a line we will arrange the marinated tofu, buttermilk, and seasoned flour mixture. Grab an additional large plate and place it on the side to use once the tofu has been breaded. 
  8. One by one, take a piece of marinated tofu and gently squeeze any excess broth from it. Dunk it in the buttermilk and then dredge it in the seasoned flour, coating it on all sides. Set on a plate, and repeated process with all of the tofu pieces. Place the breaded tofu pieces onto the plate that you set aside. 
  9. After the first round of breading, take one cup of corn flakes and use your hands to crumble them into the seasoned flour mixture. Mix through to evenly distribute the corn flakes and the flour.
  10. Repeat the process of coating the tofu by dipping each piece again in the buttermilk and then dredge in the flour and corn flake mixture. Repeat until all of the tofu is coated. 
  11. Heat frying oil in large and deep pan to 350-375 degrees F. Line a plate with paper towels and set it aside.
  12. Place tofu pieces into the hot oil and deep fry until golden brown on all sides. Should take between 4-7 minutes, flipping as needed.  Place finished pieces on a paper towel lined plate to cool. 
  13. Serve with vegan ranch or a dipping sauce of your choice. Enjoy!

Notes

  • Once fried, the pieces can be frozen and reheated in a toaster oven or air fryer. 
  • Baking instructions: Preheat oven to to 425 degrees F, lightly coat the outside of each breaded piece of tofu with oil, place on a lined baking sheet and bake for 20-30 minutes, flipping halfway through. 
  • Air fry instructions: lightly coat the outside of each breaded piece of tofu with oil and air fry at 400 degrees F for 8-10 minutes.
  • Tofu prepation method from Mary’s Test Kitchen
  • Prep Time: 24 hours
  • Cook Time: 20 minutes
  • Category: Entree
  • Method: Deep Fry

Make sure you tag us on Instagram @sweetsimplevegan and @consciouschris and hashtag #sweetsimplevegan if you recreate any of our recipes, we love to see your photos!

Nutrition facts label provided by Nutri Fox.

Disclaimer: The nutritional information shown is an estimate provided by an online calculator. It should not be considered a substitute for a professional’s advice. This page may contain affiliate links, which simply means that we earn a commission if you purchase through those links, but your price remains the same. Thank you for supporting Sweet Simple Vegan!

Meet The Bloggers

hey there! we’re jasmine & chris.

Hi, we’re Jasmine and Chris! We share fresh and fun recipes to show you that vegan cooking is easy, approachable and delicious. When we’re not blogging, you will probably find us enjoying live music, tending to our backyard garden or playing with our dogs Berry and Louie

You May Also Like

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe rating 5 Stars 4 Stars 3 Stars 2 Stars 1 Star

68 Comments

  1. This was amazing. I just made a test batch for a party next week. I used extra firm tofu by mistake and it came out great. Should I stick with that or switch to the medium firm?

    1. So happy to hear that! If extra firm worked for you, you can totally stick with that. The medium firm might give it a softer inside texture, but it’s totally up to you!

  2. What is “medium firm” tofu? I’ve done all kinds of googling, but none of the grocery stores near me sell it. My options are silken, firm, extra firm, and super firm. Do you think “medium firm” is just that brand’s way of saying firm?

    Thank you!

  3. We tried this tonight and it was excellent! My husband has been vegan for almost 25 years and he said this is the best vegan fried chick’n he’s ever had, the best fry. Thanks for this great recipe!






  4. I can’t wait to try this. I have never really liked fried chicken, it’s the crust for me!!! Even before I went plant based, eating a piece of dark meat chicken always kinda grossed me out. But I will definitely try this-I’m excited about it! Question though, what does the double freezing/thawing do for it?

    1. It helps make the texture more “chicken” like – it’s not totally necessary but definitely takes the recipe to the next level!

  5. I am impressed! I am a carnivore (to the max). As a matter of fact, my first word was “meat”. Anyway, every year my church does a corporate Daniel Fast where meat is one of the items omitted from our diet for 21 days. So I found this tofu faux fried chicken recipe and it looked so good, I couldn’t resist trying it. Regardless of the many steps to prepare it, the dish was well worth the effort. And my family LOVED it. I also made some buffalo wing sauce and dipped these glorious nuggets into it, which further enhanced the almost meat taste. I’m keeping this recipe!

  6. This KFC style Fried Chicken seems delicious , Yummmm !!!! I am surely gonna try this fried chicken this weekend , thanks for sharing this with us.






  7. I absolutely love Vegan KFC Fried Chicken. I am a meat-lover, but the Vegan KFC Fried Chicken recipe is one of my favorites! It’s delicious and surprisingly easy to make, considering it’s vegan and gluten-free! The vegan milk really helped the dish be more moist and flavorful.






  8. Well…really enjoyed the recipe and will definitely make again. I airfried it and have to say it’s a bit lacking compared to frying. NTL, I can’t stand oil much, so will probably do the same thing next time, unless I break down and try it fried which I’m pretty sure will be over the top, and I already gave it 5 stars!!!. The taste is spot on and hubs and I both enjoyed it. He kept saying “It looks just like chicken pieces.” Marinating in the vegan ch’kn broth adds a great flavor, and plan to try that for some other recipes too. I think I will get more crunch if I do a better job crushing the cornflakes. 🙂






  9. This was the best recipe, my family love them. Very easy to make and I bakes mine in the oven for 50 mins but that’s bc I like them extra crispy. Also made some dipping sauce to go with them and it was delicious. Thanks for sharing this awesome recipe. Followed all the directions and it came out perfect.






  10. My last comment was misinformed! A friend sent me this recipe and said it included real chicken broth, it does not. Recipe is great !






  11. My last comment was misinformed! A friend sent me this recipe and said it included real chicken broth, it does not. Recipe is great !






  12. I tried a recipe on Google that uses mushroom instead and I replaced using firm tofu because of other recipes 🪱

    Not sure why my vegan fried chicken came out to be a bit bitter and bland 🐃

    I want to try this recipe soon 🦃

    This is the recipe that I tried and it tasted bitter! https://www.sidechef.com/recipes/31625/kfc_style_vegan_fried_chicken/

    No wonder there is only 1 5 star review 🐁 I need to check the reviews next time 🐘 or maybe someone who is a food expert who would know the reason why mine tasted bitter? 🐖 which ingredient is it that caused the vegan fried chicken to tasted bitter 🦤






  13. Just wondering if you can air fry these? I have a new air fryer and am looking forward to learning some recipes to use.

  14. I am thinking about making this Vegan KFC Fried Chicken for my brother whom is vegan. A few appetizers will be first before dinner. Can I keep this in the oven on warm or a lower degree for about 1 hr. Thank you.

  15. Amazing. Also want to tell you I am not vegan but vegetarian. Since that change I have gone from 469 lb. To 298. I also brought my sugar , cholesterol and triglycerides down to dead central of normal.. blood pressure too is in my Dr. words “as good as a 25 year old. I’m 64. You guys are wonderful for my journey to good health with your wonderful recipes thank you very much.






  16. Love Love Love this recipe. Do you have any Nutritional Information for this recipe as listed? Just wondering. Thank you so much!!