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Seoul: Our Top 3 Fried Chicken Brands

When in Korea, eat fried chicken.

· 2 min read

Largely due to the rise of the K-wave, and its constant appearance in Korean dramas, Korean Fried Chicken has risen in popularity so much so that it might be the first thing that comes to people’s mind when they think of food in Korea.

If you are heading to Seoul and looking for a fried chicken joint, you would probably have noticed that there are so many different options that you can choose from! We’ve put together a list of our top three favourite fried chicken chains, which hopefully would help you make a decision of which ones to try out.

Note that these chains listed below have multiple branches across Seoul (and South Korea), and you can search them up on Naver Maps during your trip to find a branch closest to you!

BHC Chicken

Source: BHC Chicken
Source: BHC Chicken

BHC Chicken is one of the most popular Korean fried chicken chains, with over a thousand stores opened across the country.

While BHC Chicken has the regular flavours like Soy Sauce and Garlic, we recommend that you try their Bburinkle series (18,000KRW). The Bburinkle series is one of their signature series, and the fried chicken is sprinkled with a special seasoning, cheese, garlic, and onion. Served with their Bburing Bburing sauce, a yogurt sauce, the combination of flavours make it very refreshing, so you wouldn’t feel like you have eaten too much fried chicken in a short amount of time.

Although it’s a fried chicken chain, our favourite menu item is actually their mozzarella cheese balls. The cheese balls are actually deep-fried glutinous rice balls stuffed with flavoured mozzarella cheese. The thin layer of the glutinous rice balls give it a very chewy texture, while the flavoured mozzarella cheese has a tinge of sweetness to it, making it a great option as a snack.

Noona Holdak

Source: Noona Holdak
Source: Noona Holdak

There are three main ways of having chicken at Noona Holdak - chicken wraps, baked chicken, or roasted chicken.

Of the three different ways, the ‘baked chicken’ is our favourite. While the menu calls it baked chicken, it’s actually more similar to oven fried than actually baking. The chicken has its crispiness like if it was deep fried, while a lot leaner and less greasy. While not as juicy as the ones that are deep fried, the chicken at Noona Holdak was probably the most tender ones.

Noona Holdak has their chicken in the standard flavours of original, soy, yangnyeom, and redholic. Each order of chicken is also served with fries.

BBQ Olive Chicken

Source: BBQ Olive Chicken
Source: BBQ Olive Chicken

While BBQ chicken has been around for a while, it probably started gaining popularity after it appeared in the K-drama, Goblin: The Lonely and Great God.

All the dishes at BBQ chicken are prepared with Extra Virgin Olive Oil, which gives it a fresh and clean after-taste, making it a lot less likely to feel sick from having too much fried food. While we typically like our fried chicken sauced, we typically go for the Golden Olive Chicken at BBQ chicken, as the use of the olive oil makes the chicken sufficiently flavourful as it is.

What we like best about BBQ chicken is that they have 1-person set menus available — which is great for solo travelers, especially since the typical portion of fried chicken is a half-chicken, which could feed two to three people.

Special Mention: Kyochon Chicken

Kyochon chicken is one of the earliest chicken chains that shot to fame, due to their engagement of idol group Super Junior as their model in 2009. It is probably also one of the most commonly recommended chains. Kyochon’s fame is for good reason — their chicken is really flavourful and juicy, and it was the go-to chain for a really long time. However, Kyochon seemed to have reduced their portion sizes, and for a similar price, the other chains offer a better value-for-money.