Fried Rabbit

by Jenna Sprafkin

This process needs to begin 3 days before you intend to serve the rabbit.


  • 4, 2 (to 2-1/2) pound rabbits, broken down into 6-8 pieces
  • 1/2 cup kosher salt
  • 1/2 cup light brown sugar
  • 1 Tbsp. allspice
  • 1 Tbsp. cinnamon
  • 1 Tbsp. black pepper
  • 1 Tbsp. onion powder
  • 1 Tbsp. smoked paprika
  • 1 gallon rendered chicken fat, duck fat, or lard
  • 1 bunch sage
  • 1 quart buttermilk
  • reserved fat from confit
  • 6 cups all purpose flour
  • 1/4 Tbsp. kosher salt
  • 1/4 cup ground allspice
  • 1/4 cup smoked paprika
  • 1/4 cup onion powder
  • 2 Tbsp. ground cinnamon
  • 2 Tbsp. ground black pepper
Fried Rabbit

Danielle Mulcahy

Mix (1/2 cup salt, 1/2 cup light brown sugar, 1 Tbsp. allspice, 1 Tbsp. cinnamon, 1 Tbsp. black pepper, 1 Tbsp. onion powder,  1 Tbsp. smoked paprika) ingredients together. Coat each piece of rabbit evenly in the cure and place in an airtight container, layering pieces on top of one another is totally fine. Place in the refrigerator for 48 hours.

After 2 days of curing, remove rabbit pieces and quickly rinse them under cold water to remove most of the excess cure.

Preheat oven to 250°.
In a single layer, place rabbit in an ovenproof dish. Scatter the sage on top. Pour melted but not hot fat over the rabbit until it is completely submerged. Cover pan with foil and place in oven. Check rabbit after 3 hours. Meat should be tender and just about to fall off the bone. Remove pan from the oven and let cool at room temperature for 30 minutes. Carefully remove the rabbit pieces from the fat into a single layer container that can be stored in the refrigerator. You will want the rabbit to firm up overnight in the refrigerator before frying it. Once all the rabbit is removed from the fat, strain the fat and place it in the refrigerator to store. (It will be used later to fry the rabbit.)

Combine the flour, 1/4 Tbsp. kosher salt, 1/4 cup each of allspice, smoked paprika, and onion powder, 2 Tbsp. cinnamon, and 2 Tbsp. black pepper. This is the dredge.

Remove the confiit rabbit pieces from the fridge and place them in a dish, soaking the rabbit in butter- milk. Carefully take each piece from the buttermilk and coat completely in the dredge. Once pieces are all coated they are ready to fry. You can coat the rabbit ahead of time and store it in the refrigerator until ready to cook.

Place a heavy-bottomed cast iron skillet on the stove. Place enough of the confit fat in so that it comes halfway up the sides of the pan. Heat oil between 325 and 350°. Carefully place rabbit pieces in the pan, making sure to not overcrowd. Pieces should be nice and crispy after about 4 minutes in the oil. With caution, flip each piece so the other sides can also get crispy, and fry another 3 minutes. Remove rabbit from oil and place on paper bags to drain off excess oil. Rabbit can be kept warm in a 250° oven while frying batches, however, this is best served at room temperature so it can be eaten with your hands.

Yield: 6-8 servings