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Thai Fried Chicken | Gai Tod | ไก่ทอด

To call the boyfriend a Thai fried chicken (gai tod/ไก่ทอด) connoisseur would be an understatement.  You see, about 2 years into our relationship, he took a work assignment in Thailand for 8 months.  Every day before he was going to bed (and I was just getting up for the day), we would talk on the phone.  I’d ask him what wonderful Thai foods he had eaten that day and, at least a few times a week, his answer would be “fried chicken”.

So you can understand why I was a little hesitant to try to make Thai fried chicken, knowing that it would be hard to come close to what he ate in Thailand almost every day.  But with enough insistence (and a good sale on chicken wings at the store), I caved.  I started with a wonderful recipe from SheSimmers.com and tweaked it ever so slightly, one painstakingly slow wing at a time, until the boyfriend declared it “good enough”.  Given his expertise in this area, I’m not sure I can do much better than that :)   Try it and let me know what you think!


Thai Fried Chicken | Gai Tod | ไก่ทอด

Makes 3-4 servings

Thai Fried Chicken | Gai Tod | ไก่ทอด


    Marinade Ingredients:
  • 2 pounds chicken pieces (I used wings and drumsticks)
  • 1 head of garlic
  • 2 teaspoons coriander seeds
  • 1 tablespoon ground white pepper
  • 2 tablespoons cilantro root/stem, chopped finely
  • 3 teaspoons fish sauce
  • 3 tablespoons oyster sauce
  • 2 teaspoons red chili powder
  • Batter Ingredients:
  • 3/4 cup rice flour
  • 3/4 cup wheat flour
  • 2 teaspoons baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1.5 cups water


  1. Combine the garlic, coriander seeds, white pepper, cilantro root/stems, and fish sauce in a large mortar and pestle and grind until they become a paste. If you don't have a mortar and pestle, a small blender will work as well.
  2. Marinate the chicken with this paste, the oyster sauce, and the red chili powder for at least 1 hour. I had some marinating for about 2 days in the refrigerator and it just got better with time.
  3. When you're ready to fry, heat oil in a large pan or deep fryer to 350 degrees. Prepare the batter by mixing all ingredients until they form a somewhat watery batter. Dip the chicken in the batter and immediately fry in the hot oil until done. It's wonderful by itself and even better with Thai sticky rice and chili dipping sauce.

Recipe adapted from SheSimmers.com

15 comments… add one
  • Don Edward Ward July 9, 2018, 11:37 pm

    I’m a lover of fried chicken and was following the rescue efforts and progress as well as hoping&praying for The Coach and The Soccer ⚽️ Team in Thailand and so, the Doctors and psychiatric care providers are corresponding with the boys on things of they’re instrest, and desires, trying to keep their optimism up I would imagine ; and of course they all have various responses; but ☝ happen to say, that WHEN he is rescued he is looking forward to some fried chicken….
    Me being a ‍ Chef, that somehow stuck with me all day. So now I have searched out recipes and judging from the writer, the story, the picture, the recipe, and of course, The Results from the “Judge” over this Thai Fried Chicken, I know that this will be the one to go buy Friday when I prepare this dish, as tribute to The Team…..
    At this point nearly 1/2 of them have been rescued, I hope&pray that by Gods love&kindness his Mercy&Grace, HE continues to lead the rescuers in perilous path and Havecthem all Rescued before/By Friday….

  • nubwaxer April 1, 2015, 8:22 pm

    yum, i want some.

    • Don Ward July 14, 2018, 6:42 pm

      There’s plenty for everyone

  • Laura July 4, 2013, 9:27 am

    Hello Rachel!

    I have been following your blog for a while and love it! Keep up the good work. :)
    I was looking for ideas to cook this weekend on your “recipe” sections and the picture of this recipe caught my attention because I bought one of those bamboo “baskets” on my last trip to Thailand but I don’t know how to use them to cook the rice on them, or is it only used to serve it… :( could you help? Thanks!

    • Rachel July 4, 2013, 1:03 pm

      Thanks for the kind words, Laura! Yes, these baskets are generally used to serve sticky rice. You can find the traditional sticky rice steamer basket here: http://amzn.to/1257ujZ

  • Dheva February 21, 2013, 3:50 pm

    Hi rachel!

    I came accross your site looking for thai food and voila! i saw this recipe..I’ve made this version of fried chicken before, and one suggestion I would make is for you to add lemon grass (key Thai ingredient in any Thai food ) and a small amount of galangal and I like adding some kaffir lime leaves to the oil used for frying and then removing them just to infuse the kaffir lime flavor and fragrance to the chicken.

    • Rachel February 22, 2013, 3:44 am

      Thanks for the suggestions, Dheva… I’m excited to try it!

  • Rachel April 25, 2012, 10:56 pm

    How unfortunate that your hubby doesn’t like fish sauce! My first instinct would also be to use thin soy sauce instead, but if that didn’t work then perhaps just salt? I haven’t tried any of these variations, so your guess is as good as mine! Good luck!

  • Aphinya April 25, 2012, 6:07 am

    Hi Rachel!!
    I accidentally stumbled onto your site while looking for Khanom chan recipe and have fell in love with your blogs!! Question though, my hubby loves Thai fried chicken but doesn’t like fish sauce.. I know weird but when we go out to eat at Thai restaurants I simply “forget” to tell him ALL the ingredients.. Oops.. Making it at home though is different and normally I use the thin soy sauce but in this case I’m not sure how it’ll turn out and want to do it justice.. Any suggestion on a substitute? Thanx!!

  • Paula October 27, 2011, 2:02 pm

    Hi Rachel,
    I love your blog as well, it is hard to find authentic Thai recipes on line with beautiful pictures, too! I just had to say that I had Thai chicken wings today and they were so delicious at a restaurant called Dok Bua not to far from where I live. I am going to try this recipe next time I buy chicken wings and let you know how they came out! Thanks so much!

  • souda June 14, 2011, 9:48 am

    looks so good im gonna try to make this

  • Rachel May 30, 2011, 7:38 am

    Thanks so much for your comment, Pratana! That’s awesome to hear…

  • Rachel May 30, 2011, 7:25 am

    Hi Leilani – Regular rice flour is definitely the way to go. I also tried it with glutinous flour and it wasn’t as good (the crust bubbled up in a weird way and it wasn’t as crispy). Let me know how it turns out for you!

  • Leilani May 29, 2011, 1:45 pm

    Hi, Rachel! I have just found your site through tastepotting. This looks wonderful but I have a question. . . is the rice flour that you used a glutinous flour or is it the regular rice flour? I can’t wait to try your recipe!

  • Pratana May 29, 2011, 1:19 pm

    Hello Rachel! I am a huge fan of your site! I’m Thai and hilariously do not know how to cook most Thai food! Learning from you has been awesome especially because you do it the “right”authentic way! Please keep up the awesome posts, you are def. A favorite part of my Flipboard. Cheers!

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