Chicken liver recipes, esp breaded fried, and chicken liver pâté?

My MIL on Sunday mentioned she’s really been craving breaded fried chicken livers. She’s not really well enough to visit her favorite restaurant for them, so I figured I’d give it a go. I’ve not done it before, but thought that a 25 minute drive with a carry out order would be a soggy mess, so I didn’t want to try that.

I looked up some recipes for breaded/fried and one thing that struck me was that half the recipes were very detailed about removing connective tissue between the lobes of the liver, but the other half completely ignored the issue of connective tissue.

So does the connective tissue matter or not vis-a-vis breaded fried livers? FWIW, this time I did carefully clean them.

Does anyone have any favorite recipes for breaded fried chicken livers?

The other thing is technique advice would be very helpful. Even though I took my spatter guard over to her house to cook the livers (I’d already made mashed taters, steamed/buttered green beans and Brussels sprouts), these livers POPPED and sent oil spewing 3 feet out from the stove onto the floor, backsplash, etc. Even with the spatterguard atop the skillet.

I had about 1 inch of peanut oil in the pan at about 360F (trying hard to keep it around there). Would I get less spatter with shallower oil? Or deeper oil? Just asking if anyone has a foolproof (or more foolproof) technique here.

The second part of my question relates to making chicken liver pâté. I see several highly rated online recipes, but if anyone can speak personally to a particular recipe, that would be very helpful.

Many thanks, folks.

ETA - she (my MIL) is not in good health and is low in lab tests on both protein and iron, so I’m kind of focusing my cooking toward that.

She loved the livers and potatoes and gravy (I made a milk/chicken gravy using drippings etc.) and she ate about 2x more than I’ve seen her eat in a meal in the last month. We’ll see if she has any room for breakfast tomorrow, though. Hopefully.


My late BFF would soak them in homemade teriyaki sauce, roll them around a half a water chestnut, wrap a half a slice of bacon around that and toothpick them and broil on her little Faberware unit. (Rumaki? I’d watch her make these by the dozens before a party. I’d never touch chicken livers if you paid me. Breading and frying doesn’t sound too difficult, they’d need some kind of pronounced seasoning, tho.
My favorite recipe is buying a tub of them, cleaning up the extra stuff, chopping them fine, putting them in a 1/4 cup silicone mold and freezing them. I pop the cubes into a zipper bag and put them in the freezer. For a treat for the 15+ lb therapy cat, I pull out a cube place it on a small plate to defrost and let him lap up the mess when it comes to room temp. He actually shared a cube this week end with his 5# kamakaze girl friend.Bowl buddies and bed buddies.


Nice! When I was in the Army, I adopted 2 really big boys (22 and 25 pounds, both neutered males (ETA, not super fat, just really big cats)) from a lady in the apartment complex who’d posted that she was getting married and her fiancé couldn’t abide cats. I kinda wondered how that was going to work out…

Three years later I was facing my exit from service and wondering what to do with them, seriously worried because she’d had them declawed :angry: as babies, and they wouldn’t survive among the coyotes back where I was going.

About a month before my ETS she called me and asked to visit with them, then on the visit explained that the marriage hadn’t worked out and she was moving back into our complex. I said sure, you can have your guys back but I’ve trained them and you’ll have to keep that up. They like to be leash walked 3 times a day and, oh, they never knew the names you gave them (she was also an Avon Lady and had named them after Avon perfume names) but they know they are Andrew Jackson (stubbornest cat I ever met) and Silent (because he cannot meow).


It probably depends on whether the end audience is okay with some chewy bits or not. I always remove them because I don’t want tough strings in my livers, but others may not mind.


I use a Jacques Pepin recipe where he poaches the livers is a sieve set in boiling water, for about a minute, then drains them and sautés them in oil (tons of splatter!). After removing the livers he deglazes the pan with balsamic vinegar. This is from memory (I don’t make them often because of the mess to clean up; I can post the full recipe if you like.

JP serves them pink in the middle, but I’m leery of eating anything chicken-related pink.

Cleaning up the sieve after is a PITA, as is cleaning up the splatter.

A book I have on foie gras states that you should devein the lobes only if you are going to cook them “Au torchon” as the veins would be unsightly in the end product, but you don’t need to if you’re just going to slice and sear them.

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Me neither… UNTIL I tried Rumaki at a tiki joint in So Cal. Delicious… and even more so with duck livers. We had them with a small dish of light cocktail sauce with a puddle of English mustard in the middle.

You can bake or broil, but if you bake them… pre-bake the bacon 'till partially cooked but still flexible. Then roll them up and finish in the oven.

Wow… haven’t had these in years. I usually made a pretty simple marinade but guessing these would be stellar using my fav Soy Vay teriyaki!


There was a time when you could get fried livers at KFC. Tasty.


And gizzards, too. I only got to visit a KFC a couple times as a kid/teen, but I always enjoyed breaded, fried gizzards when chicken was fried at home, and had them mostly to myself as others in the family didn’t care for them. So I was surprised KFC would sell them. At least, I’m pretty sure it was a KFC (foggy mists of time, and what not).

Wonder when/why they stopped the gizzards and livers? Maybe just not enough demand. In a quick search I also ran into this nugget.

I make breaded fried chicken livers from time to time. I rinse them (in a strainer & shake off excess water), dredge in flour (shake off excess flour), dip in egg wash (2 eggs + 2 teaspoons of water – beaten together), then into breadcrumbs (with a little garlic powder & salt in breadcrumbs… not too much, though).
Into my pre-heated cast iron skillet with a little oil, fry one side, flip them, then into a 400 Degree (F) oven to finish. I’ll start checking the internal temperature after about 10-12 minutes, when they hit 165 (F), I pull them out and serve.
I think I’m going to add a little cayenne pepper powder to the breadcrumbs next time for a little “Southwest Kick”. I imagine you could add your favorite spices to the breadcrumbs.

I usually serve them with mashed potatoes and peas – on the side. I might make some brown gravy (from an envelope) for dipping – (next time).

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Thanks Dan. The recipe I was following was similar, except the dredge was a mix of flour and breadcrumbs and called for a lot of garlic powder, some Lawry’s seasoned salt, and a bunch more salt and pepper.

It also called for a 1-inch depth of oil. I see yours is considerably less oil and look like they turned out nice. Does cooking with just a little oil solve the pop/splatter problem?

For your gravy you should consider making a roux (light tan only) with your pan drippings and crusty bits, and mixing in equal parts milk and chicken broth. For about 2 cups gravy, I generally use 4 Tbs flour per 2 cups total liquid. But I drop the fat some by mixing 2 of the 4 Tbs of flour into the cold liquids (whisk or shaker jar) along with a bit of salt & pepper. That way I only need 2 Tbs fat because I’m making the roux with only half the flour.

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Thanks. Have you tried the Greek pan-fried recipe? It sounds interesting, but that part about boiling or simmering for 15-20 minutes makes me nervous.

Haven’t tried the recipe, but I generally like Akis’ recipes. My family pan frys them Greek-style, but we don’t boil them first, and don’t use a recipe :joy:
Let me look for another one.

I only eat liver in the form of pâté.

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I’ve always soaked chicken livers in milk and then dredged in seasoned flour and then fry like @Desert-Dan does except I finish in the skillet. And yes they still pop and splatter.
This is the only recipe I have used to make pâté. It was very good.

ETA: Some recipes recommend poking several times with a fork to reduce splatter.


Wow, 5.0 stars after 5200 ratings.

I guess the fork poking lets some of the water-based liquids get out without having to form a steam bubble and pop their way out.

That’s next on my list. One of my MIL’s bridge friends used to give her some that she liked, but I found it grainy, rather than “Silky smooth” as F&W describes Pépin’s at the link Beefeater posted. I’m going to give that one a shot.


I’ve read through the recipe and see it just calls for salt to taste at the food processor stage. Just to get a round idea - how much do you blend in at the end?

I marinate mine in buttermilk and hot sauce. Yes, poking them does help. And salt when they com off.


I’m not going to be much help. It has been a couple of years since I made this. I rarely have unsalted butter so I probably used salted butter and left it at that. I not a person who uses a lot of salt when I cook. I guess my advice would be to taste after you have added the butter and let your taste buds be your guide.


I have made Julia Child chicken liver mousse many dozens times. Stupid easy, always rave reviews. Re textural (grainy) issues, just let the blender rip! Most recipes suggest the minimum. A minute or so extra → silk!

Next level = Rumaki pate. Everything you love about the classic chicken liver/water chestnut/bacon appetizer in a spreadable paté.

Consider doubling either recipe because these spreads WALK!


i just put about 1 tablespoon of oil in the skillet, maybe a touch more if they look dry when I flip them.

As far as spatter, I do have a lid for my skillet. Like most of my cooking equipment, I found it at Goodwill. It says Caphalon on it and appears to be oven-safe. So my oven stays clean – no splatters.

Thanks for the gravy idea. Making a roux has been one of those challenges I have not been all that successful with – maybe one day I’ll master it.

My flour, egg wash, breadcrumb dredging process I learned from my mother. I really don’t know its origins, I can only assume her father taught her this method. It’s funny… a lot of times I do a procedure out of habit and don’t really know why.

Sunshine HATES black pepper, so I always substitute something else for pepper in recipes, usually some type of chili powder. But yes… you should definitely use the spices you like.

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