Pan-fried rabbit is one of the simplest ways to enjoy rabbit, yet also one of the tastiest. I’ve tried this method of preparing rabbit in so many ways, and I always come back to keeping it simple.
Many people claim that rabbit tastes like chicken, and while I agree to some degree, rabbit offers something a little more.
I’ll always choose rabbit over chicken; whether pan-fried, grilled, or stewed, rabbit holds flavor much better than chicken, in my opinion.
As I mentioned above, it’s best to keep this recipe simple. Rabbit is a mild meat that absorbs flavor exceptionally well.
For this reason, we allow the marinade to do all of the heavy lifting. Because although rabbit absorbs flavor well, it is generally tough.
So by using a simple marinade, we achieve two things. Tenderness and flavor.
Perhaps one of the most important ingredients here is buttermilk. Unlike some other marinades, buttermilk is a gentle marinade with a slightly acidic content.
Another great benefit of buttermilk is that it leaves the rabbit ready for breading and deep frying.
While cooking pan-fried rabbit is simple, it does require some overseeing. It’s not a set-and-forget type of dish.
The most important part of cooking pan-fried rabbit is regulating the temperature. If the oil gets too hot, you will burn the coating, and if it’s not hot enough, it will get greasy.
I find the perfect temperature between 310-325f. This allows the rabbit to cook all the way through without burning the coating.
I recommend using a meat thermometer to check the internal temperature of the rabbit, which should be 160f when it is done.
Crispy Pan-Fried Rabbit
- Rabbit broken down
- Vegetable oil for cooking
- 2 cups buttermilk
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 2 teaspoons paprika
- 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 cup cornflour
- 1 teaspoon salt
- 1 teaspoon black pepper
- Combine buttermilk, garlic, paprika, cayenne, and salt in a container and mix. Pour over the rabbit and cover with film. Set mixture in the refrigerator for 4-24 hours.
- Remove the rabbit from the mixture and place it onto a wire rack to drip. Do not remove all the mixture from the rabbit.
- Add 1 cup of cornflour to a large bowl and mix in the salt and pepper
- Add enough oil to reach about half the rabbit to a cast iron pan and heat over medium heat.
- Toss the rabbit in the bowl with flour to coat it evenly.
- When the oil has reached 320F, gently place the rabbit in the pan. Cook for approx 4-5 minutes, then carefully turn and cook for another 4-5 minutes.
- When the internal temperature of the rabbit reaches 160F, remove it from the pan and place it over some paper towel to drip.