The beautiful state of Maryland is usually synonymous with two things. #1) Blue crabs. And, #2) Maryland Fried Chicken. Incidentally, they usually go hand-in-hand together too. I don’t know a single crab house that doesn’t serve you a basket of fresh fried chicken before the crabs arrive (a feeble attempt to limit crab intake – don’t be a sucker). I was interested in what differentiates Maryland fried chicken, from a traditional Southern fried chicken. But, I couldn’t really find a straight answer anywhere.

So, I took the one thing that makes just about anything scream Maryland, and threw that into the mix. Old Bay! It’s such a great mix of spices; celery seed, paprika, chili pepper, allspice, and cardamom – just to name a few! I’ve always used it on my chicken that I throw on the grill, so why not fried chicken as well? I start the chicken off in a cast-iron skillet, and get a nice brown scald on it. Then I finished it off in the oven for about 15 minutes. I find that if I try to cook it all the way through in the cast-iron, it ends up getting browner than I’d like. This method produced tender, juicy results.

I’ve played around with several different variations, and this one is definitely a winner! I went all out and served it with mashed potatoes and gravy, corn, and buttermilk biscuits. Eat your heart out, Colonel Sanders.


  1. Maryellen
    Posted April 11, 2012 at 1:43 PM | Permalink

    Where are your Bush’s Grillin’ Beans?? I guess you can’t turn in her recipe for a trip to the Ranch. Ha. I am sure you have already submitted a recipe.

  2. Posted April 11, 2012 at 3:43 PM | Permalink

    Oh, man. I knew clicking over while starving was a terrible idea. I love the use of Old Bay! And now I want fried chicken.

  3. Mary
    Posted April 11, 2012 at 9:36 PM | Permalink

    My fiancee and I are planning a picnic this weekend and this is perfect for us! Your chicken looks so good- wish I had smell-o-vision *DROOL* :)~

  4. Posted April 12, 2012 at 10:59 AM | Permalink

    Oh, you’re tugging on my heartstrings with this one, Laura! This definitely reminds me of my childhood. Thank you for sharing your mouthwatering recipe and photo! Makes me want to make a batch and bring it on a picnic.

  5. Posted April 12, 2012 at 9:10 PM | Permalink

    Ahhh yes….Old Bay! Good addition!

  6. Sarah
    Posted April 17, 2012 at 7:34 PM | Permalink

    Can’t wait to start making dishes like this in the fall when I start school at Kendall College!!!!

  7. Posted August 1, 2012 at 12:19 PM | Permalink

    I think I’ll try it with white meal cornbread!

  8. Sarah
    Posted August 20, 2012 at 1:24 PM | Permalink

    Maryland Fried Chicken is technically fried at the beginning and then finished covered, on low slow heat, smothered in a milk and butter gravy, so it is not fried but simmered.

    I have only found one authentic Maryland Fried Chicken recipe on the web so far, after a long time looking. I’m going to keep looking.

    This looks good, but it’s not quite authentic. You ask what differentiates what is known as MFC from southern fried chicken; it’s the cream-sauce simmering step.

    • Laura
      Posted August 20, 2012 at 1:29 PM | Permalink

      Sarah, the dish you’re speaking of is known as Chicken Maryland – not Maryland Fried Chicken. Perhaps you should try searching for that for better results!

  9. CIndy
    Posted April 30, 2014 at 10:50 AM | Permalink

    Looks super yummy! I think I will try it with boneless breast first!

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