Krispy Country Chicken using the Vortex

There are two choices when it comes to making ‘fried’ chicken using a Vortex. You can make your own batter from scratch or you can use a mix from the store. I’ve done both time and time again and have never ever been disappointed. This time I picked up a box of Fry Krisp Krispy Country¬†chicken mix. It’s the easiest mix in the world, giving you nicely crunchy, juicy, flavorful chicken in less than an hour with no oil used for frying.
Krispy Country Chicken using the VortexI do like to brush my chicken with just a bit of oil just before I pull it off the grill. It gives the chicken a bit more crunch and coats any leftover batter that might be hanging around. It’s completely optional, but I always do it.

Also try my easy Cajun fried chicken using the Vortex.

Krispy Country Chicken using the Vortex

Course Main
Cuisine American
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 45 minutes
Total Time 1 hour
Servings 4 -8 pieces
Author Mike

Ingredients

Instructions

  • Fire up your grill with the Vortex BBQ. Let the coals get good and hot.
  • Prepare chicken per package instructions.
  • Transfer chicken to your grill grate around the Vortex and cook until done, about 45 minutes.
  • Lightly brush the chicken with oil the last 5 minutes of cooking to get a crispier skin.

Spicy Buttermilk Fried Chicken using the Vortex

This. Right. Here. Absolutely divine ‘fried’ chicken, hot off my charcoal grill. Yes, grill. Before I got a Vortex, I had no idea that not only could I make fried chicken on a grill, I could make it with almost no effort at all. No deep fryer, no mess.This spicy buttermilk fried chicken is beyond tender and juicy. It has a wonderful spicy kick to it, but it’s not overwhelming. And the skin? Oh, crunchy and delicious. Perfection without the oil.
Spicy Buttermilk Fried Chicken using the VortexThere’s absolutely nothing I would change about this recipe for spicy buttermilk fried chicken. I enjoyed every single bite immensely. I think it’s the perfect fried chicken, and considering that I made it on my grill without deep frying it, I just could not possibly be happier with it.

To make sure the skin crisps up good and that the chicken pieces cook evenly, do not over-crowd them on your grill. Also, I do not flip my chicken as it cooks. I put it on, close the lid, and don’t mess with the chicken for 45 minutes. Just let it do it’s thing.

I also make a crazy good spicy BBQ chicken using the Vortex. And Granny’s Secret fried chicken is amazing too!

Spicy Buttermilk Fried Chicken using the Vortex

Note: To cook 10-12 pieces of chicken at once you'll need at least a 22" charcoal grill
Course Main
Cuisine American
Prep Time 12 hours
Cook Time 45 minutes
Total Time 12 hours 45 minutes
Servings 10 pieces

Ingredients

For the buttermilk marinade

  • 2 quarts buttermilk
  • 1 large onion sliced thin
  • 5 cloves garlic minced
  • 1/2 cup hot sauce
  • 3 tablespoons kosher salt
  • 3 tablespoons black peppercorns
  • 10-12 chicken pieces

For the seasoning mix

  • 1 1/2 tablespoons Kosher salt
  • 2 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon garlic powder
  • 1 tablespoon onion powder
  • 1 tablespoon smoked paprika
  • 1 tablespoon ground cayenne pepper
  • 1 tablespoon white pepper
  • 2 teaspoon chili powder
  • 2 teaspoon celery salt
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1 teaspoon dried basil
  • 1 teaspoon dried thyme

For the chicken coating

  • 3 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 tablespoon baking powder
  • 1/2 of the seasoning mix from above

For the egg wash

  • 3 large eggs
  • 1/2 cup buttermilk
  • 1/2 cup hot sauce
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder

For cooking

  • Vegetable oil

Instructions

  • Combine the buttermilk marinade ingredients (except for the chicken) in a large resealable container.
  • Add the chicken and toss to coat. Cover and refrigerate for at least 12 hours.
  • Combine all of the seasoning mix ingredients. Divide into two equally-sized batches.
  • Fire up your charcoal grill with the Vortex in the center. Make sure the lid and bottom air vents are open.
  • Whisk together the coating ingredients and place into a large resealable bag.
  • Whisk together the egg wash ingredients and place into a pie pan or large bowl.
  • Working in batches, remove the chicken from the marinade and shake off the excess.
  • Sprinkle with one half of the seasoning mix.
  • Transfer to the egg wash and coat well.
  • Shake off the excess and add to the baggie. Seal and shake to coat.
  • Arrange chicken around the edges of your grill (once the coals are hot and ashed over). Cover and cook for 45 minutes, rotating the lid every 15 minutes.
  • The last 5 minutes of cooking lightly brush the tops of the chicken with the oil to help crisp the skin even more.
  • Once chicken is done (165 F as measured in several places), remove and let cool slightly before serving.

Copycat Church’s Fried Chicken Using the Vortex

I could make (and eat) ‘fried’ chicken using my Vortex BBQ all day long. It has never let me down. It has never been anything but easy. This copycat of Church’s fried chicken was no exception. Incredibly crunchy skin. Unbelievably moist and flavorful meat. And as easy as coating it, grilling it, eating it. Done.
Copycat Church's Fried Chicken Using the VortexThere are no tricks or special handshakes that you need to know to get fried chicken right using the Vortex. And although a lot of sites say to rotate the lid every 15 minutes while cooking, I’ve not found that it makes a difference. I don’t over-crowd my grill and I make sure I have a super-hot fire. If you’ve found that rotating the lid is a requirement, let me know but so far, I’ve not had anything but success just keeping the lid right where it is. I also do not flip my chicken while it is cooking. Doing so will result in ‘batter loss’, a bad thing. Just keep it right where it is.

Also try my insanely-awesome proper pub fried chicken, another fantastic recipe for deliciously crispy tasty chicken cooked using the Vortex. You can also use off-the-shelf fried chicken coating to make spectacular chicken on the Vortex. Check out my Kentucky Kernel chicken too!

Copycat Church's Fried Chicken Using the Vortex

Course Main
Cuisine American
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 45 minutes
Total Time 1 hour
Servings 4 servings

Ingredients

  • 4-8 pieces of chicken I prefer bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs

For the dry mixture

  • 1 tablespoon sugar
  • 1 1/2 cups self-rising flour
  • 1/2 cup cornstarch
  • 3 teaspoons seasoned salt
  • 2 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 cup Bisquick
  • 1 envelope Italian dressing mix
  • 1 envelope onion soup mix

For the wet mixture

  • 2 eggs
  • 1/4 cup cold water

For a crispier coating

  • Vegetable oil

Instructions

  • Fire up your grill with the Vortex BBQ. Let the coals get good and hot.
  • Combine all of the dry mixture ingredients in a pie plate.
  • In another pie plate, whisk together the eggs and water.
  • Working in batches, dip the chicken into the wet mixture, then into the dry mixture.
  • One more time, dip the chicken into the wet mixture and then the dry mixture.
  • Transfer chicken to your grill grate around the Vortex and cook until done, about 45 minutes.
  • Lightly brush the chicken with oil the last 5 minutes of cooking to get a crispier skin.

Chicken Fingers using the Vortex

I’m a huge fan of cooking chicken wings using the Vortex BBQ. I’m also a huge fan of ‘frying’ chicken using the Vortex BBQ. And now, I’m a huge fan of making chicken fingers using the Vortex BBQ. Just as easy as wings or fried chicken, these fingers came out tender and super tasty. They have a very nice coating that is light on crunch but heavy on flavor. And nothing could be easier to make, either!
Chicken Fingers using the VortexChicken fingers on the Vortex BBQ cook a whole lot quicker than do wings or chicken thighs. Don’t throw them on and ignore them. They’ll be done in no time.

As I mention in the recipe note, I put foil on my grill grates before I added the chicken. I’m not 100% sure if that’s required, but the chicken didn’t stick.

If you’re looking for a great side dish for your chicken fingers, make a batch of seasoned skinny fries, also made using a Vortex. For dipping sauces, try my copycat of Chick-fil-A’s dipping sauce, firecracker dipping sauce or my chili dipping sauce.

Also try making pizza rolls on the Vortex. They’ll disappear like that!

Chicken Fingers using the Vortex

Note: I covered my grill grates in foil and brushed on a light coating of oil because I thought the fingers might stick. I haven't tried to make them yet without foil. You might want to foil yours also, or at least oil them before adding the chicken.
Course Main
Cuisine American
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 20 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes
Servings 4 servings
Author Mike

Ingredients

  • 2 pounds chicken tenderloins
  • 2 3/4 cups all-purpose flour
  • 1 teaspoon Kosher salt
  • 1 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 1 cup buttermilk
  • Hot sauce optional, to taste
  • Vegetable oil

Instructions

  • Fire up your charcoal grill with the Vortex BBQ insert. Let the coals get good and hot.
  • Combine the flour, salt and pepper in a pie plate.
  • Pour the buttermilk into another pie plate. Whisk in the hot sauce if using.
  • Working in batches, dip the chicken into the flour mixture, then the buttermilk, and then once again in the flour.
  • Transfer to your grill and cook for 15-20 minutes or until done. Lightly brush the chicken with the oil the last 5 minutes of cooking.
  • Serve hot.

Easy Crispy Fried Chicken using the Vortex

There’s definitely no wrong way to make ‘fried’ chicken on your charcoal grill using the Vortex. I absolutely love it. For a long time I’ve been making my chicken using batter made from scratch. This time I decided to try an off-the-shelf batter mix usually meant for actual deep frying in oil. The result? Absolutely delicious, crunchy, moist fried chicken with about as little fuss and mess as possible. And no oil.
Easy Crispy Fried Chicken using the VortexAny good fried chicken batter mix will work. It’s called easy crispy fried chicken for a reason. Just dip and put onto the grill. I prefer to use split bone-in chicken breasts or thighs. I recommend bone-in chicken because it will have more flavor and won’t dry out as easily as boneless.

You can use boneless chicken but you might have to adjust the cook time. When I do need boneless ‘fried’ chicken I still cook it bone-on then remove the meat from the bone when done. If you prefer to make your own batter from scratch, try my super easy Vortex fried chicken recipe. For something a bit more fru-fru, make my spicy BBQ fried chicken. You’ll quickly see why fried chicken on the Vortex is fantastic!

Easy Crispy Fried Chicken using the Vortex

Note: I've found that rotating the lid isn't very necessary, specially on smaller grills. You can experiment by not rotating and checking the chicken after 30 minutes. If the pieces are cooking evenly you can skip rotating the lid.
Course Main
Cuisine American
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 45 minutes
Total Time 55 minutes
Servings 6 servings
Author Mike

Ingredients

Instructions

  • Fire up your charcoal grill with the Vortex insert. Get the coals good and hot.
  • In a large bowl combine 5 tablespoons of the batter mix with 1/4 cup of cold water.
  • Place the remaining batter mix in a shallow pie pan.
  • Working piece-by-piece, dredge the chicken in the wet batter mix. Shake off any excess then roll the chicken in the dry batter mix.
  • Transfer chicken to the grill, placing along the edges.
  • Cover and cook for 45 minutes, rotating the lid 90 degrees every 15 minutes.
  • Check for doneness (165 F as measured in the thickest pieces of chicken), remove and serve.

Nashville Hot Chicken using the Vortex

I recently made ‘fried’ chicken on my Weber Performer grill using the Vortex insert. The chicken came out fantastic, which inspired me to then try making Nashville hot chicken also using the Vortex. Wow, oh wow, was it absolutely great chicken. Lightly crunchy, and a little spicy, it was a dish to remember. This method is definitely a great substitute for the traditional way of making Nashville hot chicken in a deep fryer.

Nashville Hot Chicken using the VortexI used split bone-in chicken breasts when I made this Nashville hot chicken using the Vortex. It’s our preferred cut of chicken, but you can use any cut you like. Just keep in mind that if you mix pieces that are greatly different in size some may be done before others. Smaller pieces can be checked for doneness after the 45 minutes cooking time.

Nashville Hot Chicken using the VortexAlso check out my recipe for making ‘fried’ chicken using the Vortex. For a more southern twist, try my Buzznbeez southern fried chicken. My Cajun injected chicken, also cooked up perfectly using the Vortex, is another big hit!

Nashville Hot Chicken using the Vortex

Course Main
Cuisine American
Prep Time 1 day
Cook Time 1 hour
Total Time 1 day 1 hour
Servings 4 -8 servings
Author Mike

Ingredients

For the dry brine

  • 3 pounds chicken cut into pieces I used 4 large split bone-in breasts
  • 1 tablespoon Kosher salt
  • 1 1/2 teaspoons freshly ground black pepper

For the dip

  • 1 cup milk I used buttermilk Note: If you have pickle juice on hand, use 1/2 cup milk and 1/2 cup pickle juice instead
  • 2 large eggs
  • 1 tablespoon Louisiana-style hot sauce

For the dredge

  • 2 cups all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons Kosher salt

For the spicy coating

  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 1-3 tablespoons cayenne pepper I used 2 and found the flavor to be perfect, and not too terribly hot
  • 1 tablespoon light brown sugar
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder

For serving

  • Dill pickle slices
  • White bread slices

Instructions

For the dry brine

  • Season chicken and place into a baggie or resealable container.
  • Seal and refrigerate overnight or up to 24 hours.

For the dip

  • Whisk together the milk, eggs and hot sauce in a pie pan or shallow bowl.

For the dredge

  • Whisk together the flour and salt in a pie pan or shallow bowl.

For cooking

  • Fire up your grill with the Vortex insert full of charcoal.
  • Let the coals get good and ashed over.
  • Working in batches, dredge the chicken in the flour. Shake off excess.
  • Dip chicken into the milk mixture. Shake off excess.
  • Return the chicken to the flour and dredge again. Shake off excess.
  • Transfer chicken to the grill, placing it along the edges of the grill.
  • Cover and cook for 15 minutes.
  • Rotate the lid 90 degrees and cook another 15 minutes.
  • Brush the chicken with the spicy coating. Rotate the lid 90 degrees and cook another 15 minutes
  • Brush the chicken with the spicy coating. Rotate the lid 90 degrees and cook another 15 minutes
  • Check for doneness. Remove when done and let rest 10-15 minutes before serving.

For the spicy coating

  • Heat the oil in a small saute pan.
  • Whisk in the remaining ingredients.
  • Keep warm until ready to use.

For serving

  • Serve garnished with dill pickle and white bread slices, if desired.

‘Fried’ Chicken using the Vortex

This is the first time I tried making ‘fried’ chicken using the Vortex insert on my Weber charcoal grill. I use my Vortex a lot for making chicken wings, which are always fantastic, but I wasn’t sure how mimicking that great fried flavor would come out.

My worries were completely unfounded since the chicken came out absolutely fantastic. I swore I was eating chicken right out of a deep-fryer. Great Southern-inspired coating, tender meat and yes, very, very crunchy skin.
Fried Chicken using the VortexSince this was my first time I didn’t want to over-crowd my Performer with chicken. But now that I’ve got the process down, I could’ve easily added a few more pieces. And you don’t have to just use split bone-in chicken breasts like I did. Wings, legs, thights… you name it, all will come out great ‘fried’ using the Vortex. Just don’t let the pieces overlap, because wherever they touch, they won’t get crispy.

Fried Chicken using the VortexMaking ‘fried’ chicken (some folks call it KFC – Kettle-Fried Chicken) on the Vortex really can’t get any easier. Also, check out my Nashville hot chicken recipe for the Vortex! For something super easy, make my crispy fried chicken on the Vortex.

And nothing beats my fried chicken with gravy, also using the Vortex!

'Fried' Chicken using the Vortex

Course Main
Cuisine American
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 45 minutes
Total Time 1 hour
Servings 4 servings
Author Mike

Ingredients

  • 4 large bone-in skin-on chicken breasts (or whatever cuts you prefer)
  • 1 1/2 cup all purpose flour
  • 3 teaspoons celery salt
  • 2 teaspoons black pepper
  • 2 teaspoons paprika you can use smoked paprika for more grilled-like flavor
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon cayenne
  • 1 teaspoon Kosher salt

Instructions

  • Fire up your Kettle grill with the Vortex loaded with charcoal. Don't start cooking until the coals are all lit and starting to ash over.
  • Rinse the chicken and pat dry.
  • Mix the remaining ingredients in a large baggie.
  • Lightly brush the chicken with vegetable oil.
  • Working in batches, place chicken pieces in the bag. Seal and shake. Shake off excess.
  • Transfer chicken to the grill along the edges, skin-side up.
  • Cover and cook for 40 minutes, turning the lid 90 degrees every 15 minutes.
  • Lightly brush the chicken with more vegetable oil. Use caution as the grill will be hot. Note: If you are using pieces other than split chicken breasts, you'll want to rotate the pieces at this time.
  • Cover and cook another 5 minutes or until the chicken hits 160 F.
  • Remove and let rest and come to 165 F before serving.

Buffalo Wings using the Vortex

I love the Vortex insert. I’ve had one for quite a while, using it to cook entire family packs of great chicken wings on my Weber Performer grill. But sometimes I don’t need 4 or so pounds of wings. I just need to cook enough for one or two people. That’s where the smaller model comes in. It fits perfectly into my Weber Smokey Joe grill, perfect for making dynamite Buffalo wings using the Vortex!
Buffalo Wings using the VortexOf course you can use the Vortex for more than just Buffalo wings, and on more than just a charcoal grill, but I bought mine to make wings. Wings. Wings. And more wings. And it does wings great. Super high heat makes for super crispy tasty wings in the end, with about as little effort as you can possibly get.

TGI Friday’s makes a great bottled wing sauce that is perfect on wings made using the Vortex.

Buffalo Wings using the Vortex

Course Appetizer
Cuisine American
Prep Time 3 hours
Cook Time 45 minutes
Total Time 3 hours 45 minutes
Servings 2 -4 servings
Author Mike

Ingredients

  • A Vortex
  • 2 pounds chicken wings flats and drumettes (tips saved for making broth)
  • 2 tablespoons vegetable oil
  • Buffalo seasoning
  • Frank's wing sauce

Instructions

  • Place the wings into a large resealable container or baggie.
  • Add the oil and seasoning. Seal and shake to coat well.
  • Refrigerate for 3 hours.
  • Light a charcoal chimney full of charcoal. Alternatively, you can fill your Vortex with charcoal and light them inside the unit.
  • Let the charcoal get fully ashed over.
  • Place the Vortex into the center of your grill and add in the charcoal.
  • Open the bottom vents on your grill by 1/3, while keeping the top vent open completely.
  • Close the gill and let it get hot, about 15 minutes.
  • Add the chicken as shown in the picture above. For the flats have the skin side up, and for the drumettes keep the meaty part away from the fire.
  • Close the grill and cook for 15 minutes.
  • Rotate the lid 90 degrees and cook for another 15 minutes.
  • Flip the wings. Rotate another 90 degrees and cook 15 more minutes.
  • Check if the wings are as crispy as you like. If not, rotate another 90 degrees and cook another 15 minutes.
  • Brush the wings with wing sauce and cook 1-2 more minutes.
  • Flip wings and brush with more wing sauce. Cook 1-2 more minutes.
  • Transfer wings to a bowl and toss with more wing sauce, if desired.
  • Serve with dipping sauce.


Vortex Chicken Wings

If you follow our blog at all you know that I cook up a LOT of chicken wings. Sometimes I make them in the fryer, sometimes on the charcoal grill, sometimes on the gas grill, sometimes on the smoker, and often on the Char-Broil Big Easy. I even have a free eCookbook full of wing recipes.

I am always on a quest for the next best wing cooking idea. Recently, I discovered the best way for making crispy wings on the Char-Broil Big Easy, which came out fantastic. But, I was still looking for the best way to get crispy wings on my charcoal grill. That’s when I discovered the Vortex. The Vortex is an insert for your grill that let’s you concentrate the charcoal heat, making for an incredibly hot fire. As you can see below, the wings ring the Vortex, getting super hot and in just a while, crispy. And it couldn’t get any easier.
Vortex Chicken WingsI couldn’t be more happy with my Vortex purchase. I purchased the small-sized model, which works fantastic on my old 18″ Weber kettle and 22″ Weber Performer grills. A larger model is available for the 22″-26″ cookers.

The Vortex isn’t just for high-heat cooking of wings. Check out the Vortex web site for tons of other ways you can cook using the insert. Love Buffalo wings? Making them is easy using the Vortex.

Note: Since posting this, I’ve made wings on my Vortex hundreds of times. I’ve found that rotating the lid isn’t so critical (specially when cooking on a smaller grill such as the Jumbo Joe). For a little smoky flavor, throw a nice chunk of your favor wood (I like hickory or cherry) over the Vortex about 5 minutes before you put your wings on.

I absolutely love chicken wings, cooked any way, with any sauce (or without). I love them so much that I created a free eCookbook that is full of my favorite wing recipes.

Vortex Chicken Wings

Course Appetizer
Cuisine American
Prep Time 3 hours
Cook Time 1 hour
Total Time 4 hours
Servings 4 -6 servings
Author Mike

Ingredients

  • A Vortex
  • 1 family pack 3-4 pounds chicken wings, flats and drumettes (tips saved for making broth)
  • 1/4 cup vegetable oil
  • 1/4 cup Cajun seasoning or your favorite rub
  • Your favorite wing sauce and dipping sauce.

Instructions

  • Place the wings into a large resealable container or baggie.
  • Add the oil and seasoning. Seal and shake to coat well.
  • Refrigerate for 3 hours.
  • Light a charcoal chimney full of charcoal. Alternatively, you can fill your Vortex with charcoal and light them inside the unit.
  • Let the charcoal get fully ashed over.
  • Place the Vortex into the center of your grill and add in the charcoal.
  • Open the bottom vents on your grill by 1/3, while keeping the top vent open completely.
  • Close the gill and let it get hot, about 15 minutes.
  • Add the chicken as shown in the picture above. For the flats have the skin side up, and for the drumettes keep the meaty part away from the fire.
  • Close the grill and cook for 15 minutes.
  • Rotate the lid 90 degrees and cook for another 15 minutes.
  • Flip the wings. Rotate another 90 degrees and cook 15 more minutes.
  • Check if the wings are as crispy as you like. If not, rotate another 90 degrees and cook another 15 minutes.
  • Transfer wings to a bowl and toss with the wing sauce.
  • Serve with dipping sauce.