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What's your favorite skin?

Is it chicken? Turkey? Pork maybe? How about salmon or some other fish? Perhaps, um, beef?

Personally, I think a perfectly roasted, cracklin' Peking duck skin that's nicely glazed and a bit charred is my favorite. Followed closely by Fuji apple skin (yes, just the skin).


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  1. Pork, from a slow roast, real crisp please.

    1. I'd say ultra crispy chicken skin is my favorite. I prefer bone-in/skin-on breasts. Whether I bake/roast or grill, will pull skin off when it's done. Then I put in large non-stick skillet, under weight (bacon presses work fine) and just let it go on VERY low flame til brittle crispy.... a cook's treat!!

      1. Second your duck skin rec. On the other end of the scale of texture and source, yuba.

        1. Chocolate pudding skins: long live George Costanza!
          Or was that Kramer?

          3 Replies
            1. re: greygarious

              When my parents made pudding for me, I always uncovered one so that I would have a skin to peel and eat.

              1. re: greygarious

                Yes! I love the skin from chocolate pudding too! And also the skin from Thanksgiving gravy! I'm sooooo wicked! '-)

              2. I can't choose a favorite in this category; I like every skin I have tasted. Chicken, turkey, duck, goose, pig, fish, potato, pudding, citrus. I never pare sweet fruit (mmm...pear skins, or the fun contrast between a fuzzy peach skin and the soft interior), and wouldn't bother peeling tomatoes for, say, gazpacho, as I love the resulting texture of a tomato purée made with skins included. The skin in canned salmon? Yes on that, too.

                But: beef skin? I've never thought about it specifically before and have never had any. The Wiki tells me that Argentina uses beef for chicharrón; does anybody have experience with that? I'd definitely want some if it were available to me.

                  1. re: Veggo

                    Also known in this household as "fried wallet." Mmmm, fried wallet...

                    1. re: Veggo

                      Veggo, try adding some crunbled chicharrónes to your favorite guacamole and then use bigger pieces as the dippers. Gilding the lily ;-D

                      1. re: DiningDiva

                        DD, I haven't tried adding crumbles, but I frequently break off pieces of a chicharron "hat", as I call them, for dipping. With a bottle of hot sauce nearby. Muy sabroso!

                    2. For me it's pork, love a bit of cracking.
                      It has got me thinking though of a skin sandwich. Two pieces of crackling spread with plum sauce and a crispy piece of duck skin in between.

                      1. Pig skin, the kind that's thrown every Sunday starting next week!

                        1 Reply
                        1. re: jrvedivici

                          Are you ready for some fooootball!!! Hell yeah!

                        2. For some reason, I'm a little skeeved by meat skin. I was a vegetarian for decades, but I now eat meat with no qualms. Skin isn't my thing, I guess. That said, at Thanksgiving, I'll try a bite of the turkey skin--that holds me for a year.

                          1. On the land animal side, it`s a toss-up between pork and duck.

                            I have been partial to skin from Chilean sea bass, lightly basted with a soy-based glaze before being blowtorched.

                            1. Pork.

                              Whole hog cooked direct over live coals. North Carolina barbecue cooked perfectly. Crispy skin with a hint of fat remaining.


                              1. yuba. fresh, reconstituted, or fried.

                                and concord grape skins, or other similar varieties with more substantially flavorful skins.

                                1. Crispy duck skin! There is nothing like it. One of the most perfect foods in existence. Giving off one of the other most perfect ingredients... Duck fat. A 2-for-1!!!

                                  3 Replies
                                    1. re: Phoebe

                                      Goose skin is EVEN BETTER than divine duck skin.

                                    2. Chicharrónes, especially those with little bits of crispy meat still attached to them.

                                      Potato skins...not the overfilled appetizer version, but the skin of a baked potato, preferrably a baker where the skin has gotten a little brittle, but the skin on a regular old baked potato is just fine. I'll eat the whole thing with a knife and fork

                                      1 Reply
                                      1. re: DiningDiva

                                        Our Latino market has 'regular' chicharrones but also chicharrones with a lot of meat attached. It's REALLY good when they do chicharrones en salsa verde!

                                      2. Smoked salmon skin charred under the broiler. Just hard to find a source for it!

                                        1. #1 Chicken---rendered with an ionion to make gribenes (cracklins)
                                          #2 Duck-roasted extra crispy
                                          #3 Goose--cut the skin in a diamond pattern before raosting to let out the fat, skin roasted to a mahogany color

                                          I'm not fond of turkey skin, the bird is too lean to have great tasting skin

                                          I don't care for fruit skin-apples, plums, pears all get peeled before I eat them

                                          2 Replies
                                          1. re: bagelman01

                                            Disagree about the turkey skin.
                                            Also the fruit skins. It drove me nuts when my son was little and all the old women would peel his damn fruit for him. How's a little kid supposed to get pectin and fiber??

                                            I must have some duck and/or goose skin one day soon. I think i'd love it more than just about anything.

                                            1. re: EWSflash

                                              I am far from a little kid (pushing 60) and I get my pectin in jams and jellies. I find that fruit skin either gets caught in the roof of my mouth or trachea causing gagging attacks. I get my fiber from beans, oats, etc, not fruit skin.

                                              As to turkey skin, I buy locally raised heritage birds which tend to be much leaner than the factory farmed birds, thus my comments on the skin.

                                              I roast duck each year for the Jewish New Year and a goose for Chanukah-these traditions go back many generations in my family. Since I carve and arrange the platters in the kitchen before they are sent to the dining room, I take my extra share of the crispy skin. This is a prime benefit of being the cook and host.

                                          2. Took about 40 minutes

                                            1. Pork crackling - whether in Germany, Spain, Bali (Indonesia), the Phlippines, China, wherever.

                                              1. The local salmon being caught now. Pan fried on low, skin side down. I love the skin.

                                                1. I like Yak, but without the hair.

                                                  No wait, my wife tells me that we did not like the Yak skin, though I really thought that we did. She tells me that we like pork rinds better, so I must do, as she says - Pork is my answer, and I am sticking to that.


                                                  PS - I do think that the Yak skin was good...

                                                  1. I would have to say that my most favorite skin is the skin of my teeth, because in my lifetime it has allowed me to get away with sooooooooooo much!

                                                    Second would probably be pork skin, but NOT crispy, and NOT on ham, but the pork skin on uncured bacon, aka "pork belly", in the Chinese classic dish called dongpo rou. in which the pork belly is cut into cubes about 2 inches square (including the skin still attached) then tied with butcher's twine so they look like little gifts, then cooked low and slow for a VERY long time with wonderful spices and wine and good things, until it is almost gelatinous and so soft and tender and flavorful that it just melts in your mouth. Pork skin!

                                                    But I've also been known to peel and eat large segments of skin from a freshly roasted crispy skinned chicken. It's always at its prime when it surrounds the Pope's Nose...!

                                                    Except for the skin of my teeth, this ain't diet food! '-)

                                                    5 Replies
                                                    1. re: Caroline1

                                                      Caroline, it's not even 8am on the Sunday of Labor day weekend and I'm now thinking about heading out and waiting for H-Mart to open so I can get some pork belly to braise.

                                                      1. re: JMF

                                                        Just in case temptation gets the better of you, here's a pretty good recipe: http://tinyurl.com/m57z9rg
                                                        The Chinese sand pot is not required, but if you happen to own one, so much the better. And if not today, maybe soon! It is drop dead delicious!

                                                        1. re: Caroline1

                                                          Oh, C1, that sounds and looks wonderful! Only ingredient missing is the PB. Soon. Thanks.

                                                          1. re: Caroline1

                                                            I will have to try that. Still haven't made it to the store but plan on it later.

                                                      2. Apple skins ipse???, really?? you've been working too hard and need to get out and take several deep breaths! Oh.... and no Durian!

                                                        1 Reply
                                                        1. re: treb

                                                          I like apple skins too. When my mom made pies, I always feasted on the bowl of appleskins after she got done peeling for the pies.
                                                          I still love them, to this day.

                                                        2. Pork.

                                                          Hot Cracklins. Straight out of the pot and lightly seasoned with salt etc.

                                                          1. Turkey
                                                            Canned Salmon

                                                            I've been known to roast whole chickens when they are on sale just for the crispy skin.

                                                            Although I'm ashamed to admit it, one of the best cocktails I've had was the Moby Dick cocktail at Nightjar in London. It was made with Laphroaig scotch infused with whale skin, Drambuie, ale, and bitters. The smoke from the scotch with this deep maritime and meaty essence with a hint of oiliness was quite remarkable. The drink has since been removed from the menu after the cocktail was brought to the attention of the authorities.


                                                            9 Replies
                                                              1. re: JMF

                                                                Is that star anise and honeycomb as the drink's garnish? Gee, and I remember when two olives in a martini was considered exotic!

                                                                1. re: Caroline1

                                                                  If you want to see some great garnishes for more of their cocktails check out the links I made in this post.

                                                                  1. re: JMF

                                                                    Thanks for sharing! And I mean that, but...

                                                                    Maybe it's just my age showing, but is there anyone left in the world today who likes their scotch neat, or who considers a balloon of fine cognac in front of a cozy fire "living high"?

                                                                    I know I'm no longer "hip," but while the garnishes look great (I LOVE the rubber ducky and would order one of those just so I could have it), I do cringe at the "recipes" for the drinks themselves... (CAUTION: rant ensues!) I love a fine liqueur with a cup of great coffee as a cap to a great meal, and I cringe when I see world class liqueurs such as Drambuie being muddled into cocktails. It's a criminal act!

                                                                    See? See? I keep telling all of you that the world is going down that slippery slope that is turning ALL of the great foods and cuisines -- and now drinks! -- into one giant hodge podge of New Millennium Spartan Soup! '-)

                                                                    Oh, and all of this from a mother whose kids both earned their pocket money in college as bartenders! They mixed this kind of stuff! "Hey, Mom, you gotta taste this, it's GREAT," used to make me cringe... <sigh>

                                                                    But I do like many classic cocktails. A "Gardenia Cocktail" (rum) of the 70's Tiki Bar era actually tasted like a gardenia, was served in a large stemmed champagne saucer with a shaved ice "Spanish comb" sheltering a real gardenia, and it was delicious! And it looked fabulous too! It's just that I fear that in today's world it would come with a miniature of Billie Holliday Barbie Doll with a gardenia pinned in her hair as the garnish! <curmudge> <curmudge> <curmudge>

                                                                    Hey! Wait a minute! Maybe there's nothing wrong with me after all... Maybe I'm just "retro"! '-)

                                                                    1. re: Caroline1

                                                                      Darlin', you are such a wonderful and entertaining hostess. You make me wish I were still in town.
                                                                      Your pal forever, Veg

                                                                      1. re: Caroline1

                                                                        Caroline, my friend, I assure you that I prefer most every spirit neat. While gin does get to marry and be chilled before hitting a glass, booze may be the only thing in my life that is ever neat. Hell, if not for the Mrs. bein' close enough to see, I'd even forego dirtyin' glassware for Irish whiskey, tequila, and rum.

                                                                        That being said, if I'm ever going to go on a cocktail bender, I'm gonna follow JMF's advice.

                                                                        1. re: Caroline1

                                                                          As my grandfather taught me 50 plus years ago. Liqour goes in the glass, nothing goes in the liquor. If you want your whiskey chilled, the bottle goes in the icebox, ice doesn't go in the glass.

                                                                          1. re: Caroline1

                                                                            And "retro" is so cool. Or is it still???

                                                                    2. This inquiry is the culinary equivalent of that tricky, next to last question on the last page of a standardized test. You're sittin' there tired, brain racin' as you're readin' through it, thinkin', "'D' damn well better be 'all of the above'"!

                                                                      1. Potato skins.

                                                                        Heirloom organic sustainably grown. Humanely tined by barefoot virgins in the light of a new moon. Individually wrapped in non-GMO straw and purveyed to market in wagons by Percherons.

                                                                        Cleaned and halved by third year apprentices using angora brushes and knapped flint knives, fifth year apprentices scoop out the flesh to a precise 3 millimeter thickness before being dipped in a fleur de Sal brine and placed in a wood oven. It is then conveyed on a cedar plank to the chef where she awaits the orders of the patrons.

                                                                        While the novitiates may ask for quail egg omelet with crème fraiche' and caviar, or thin sliced pork belly with a mamey habanero glaze, you will only get her respect if you go with the classics. So the app should be sliced jalapenos fresh from the can with a dollop of Chi Chi's mild salsa and melted Velveeta. The main is naturally a double stuffed skin with bottom shelf cheese, sour crème, and frozen chives. Finally, one should finish on a light note with Bac-O's and yellow cheese dusted with chili powder.

                                                                        It doesn't get any better than that!!!

                                                                        1. I had an appetizer at Husk in Nashville, TN. It was fried chicken skins with a sweet and spicy sauce drizzled over them. Yum!

                                                                          I don't know how I could get enough to replicate the dish. A friend from the Netherlands told me they buy chicken skins by the kilo there.

                                                                          8 Replies
                                                                          1. re: Candy

                                                                            I wish I could buy chicken skin here. I've asked several markets and butchers to no avail.

                                                                            1. re: JMF

                                                                              I wonder if WF would sell it since they actually breakdown their animals. Worth an ask.

                                                                              1. re: c oliver

                                                                                I had not thought about asking my local independent butcher shop to save me skins. I'll check tomorrow. They buy locally sourced chickens and always have skinless, boneless parts available. Good idea.

                                                                              2. re: JMF

                                                                                Don't know where 'here' is....
                                                                                In our area, the chain supermarkets wouldn't do it, but the IGA grocery Stores still cut up fresh chicken in the store for both boneless breasts and boneless thighs (the big chains bring it in already packaged). At the IGAs I have been able to request packs of thigh bones, breast ribcages, backs, necks and skin to make soup/stock. Usually have to ask the meat manager on Monday for pickup on Wednesday. They pack about 15 lbs and charge 59 cents per pound. I usually use this to cook up a soup base for our dogs, the bones eventually get thrown out, but the skin gets cut up for the dogs and mixed in with their food. I've never asked about buying just the skin, but I imagine they'd pack it that way for me if I did.

                                                                              3. re: Candy

                                                                                I had an appetizer at Husk in Nashville, TN. It was fried chicken skins with a sweet and spicy sauce drizzled over them. Yum!

                                                                                They stole my idea! Yum, indeed!

                                                                                  1. re: Candy

                                                                                    This just went into my "untried recipes" file. If you make it before I do :) please let us know. I am thinking WF, for me, may be the only place to source. Trying to remember if my Latino market sells BSCB. Thanks, C.

                                                                                    1. re: c oliver

                                                                                      My butcher shop is closed today or I'd be on my way. G&G is my favorite magazine. I just pulled that issue out and sure enough, there it was. If I can get some this week I certainly will make some and let you know.

                                                                                1. I love crispy fish skin - favorite are salmon and swordfish.

                                                                                  Do pork rinds count? If so, that's a close second.

                                                                                  2 Replies
                                                                                  1. re: fldhkybnva

                                                                                    Pork rinds -- the ideal snack with beer.

                                                                                    1. re: Tripeler

                                                                                      ...with the Crystal sauce you keep in the glovebox.

                                                                                  2. Pork is King. I love crackling.

                                                                                    1. Skin on the hamachi kama, then turkey tail skin, fried chicken skin, and roasted pork skin.

                                                                                      May rate pork higher if I ever had it done right. ;)

                                                                                      It's been too many years since I lived in Guam and had a proper pig roast.

                                                                                      1. Render chicken skins and fat down to get the chicken fat out, what you are left with Gribenes (Jewish cracklin')

                                                                                        1. what a great thread! Love the crispy skin of perfectly seared salmon, crispy skin of fresh southern fried chicken, and the skin of a roasted Thanksgiving turkey

                                                                                          1. I think I like it all, but my favorite just might be pork skin. I love love LOVE crispy pata (deep fried pig knuckle); the crispy skin is awesome. I also love chicharrones tacos with salsa verde.

                                                                                              1. re: Cheese Boy

                                                                                                Oh, my, I forgot about tofu skin. LOVE it!

                                                                                                Roasted my first duck last night so now duck skin is ONE of my faves.

                                                                                              2. Pork, chicken, duck as long as it's crispy!

                                                                                                1. Definitely the crispy crackling goodness of Chinese style roast pork skin.

                                                                                                  1. Either chicken or duck. Chicken, I think. If cracklings are skin then cracklings. Oh, and fatty fish skin, like salmon. But still chicken.

                                                                                                    1. Duck skin from Hong Kong style Chinese BBQ.

                                                                                                      Pan seared fish skin.

                                                                                                      1. It's a multi-way tie between chicken, duck, turkey, roast pig, and shrimp.

                                                                                                        (Does shrimp count?)

                                                                                                        2 Replies
                                                                                                        1. re: ricepad

                                                                                                          It'd be quite the chore skinning shrimps I'd say... :)

                                                                                                          1. re: ricepad

                                                                                                            I'd say shrimp skins count just fine.

                                                                                                            We love fried shrimp heads as well as the crispy tails that are left on fried shrimp. The shell is sort of a skin...so to speak. Good stuff when fried crisp.

                                                                                                          2. I checked with my independent butcher shop today. I'll have chicken skins for frying tomorrow. :-) !

                                                                                                            7 Replies
                                                                                                            1. re: Candy

                                                                                                              Gotta ask: what are you going to "serve" them with? Or will it be a snack? With a dip? Inquiring minds want to know...and emulate :)

                                                                                                              1. re: c oliver

                                                                                                                Maybe I'll make a salad of some sort. I just want to inhale the fried skins. We had Buffalo Hot Wings tonight. I added a drizzle of honey and it changed the profile.

                                                                                                                When we came here in '81 hot wings were unheard of. I worked for Kroger as a home economist. I was charged, other than helping customers with dietary questions and food prep, do handle all in-store food preps. I introduced the town to hot wings. They did take off.

                                                                                                              2. re: Candy

                                                                                                                So how come my supermarket doesn't have bags of gribenes on the shelf right next to the pork rinds? And it seems to me that KFC or Church's or Popeye's or somebody should have them at a drive-through window! It's a sad world we live in... <sigh>

                                                                                                                1. re: Caroline1

                                                                                                                  A lot of the "new" Chefs are using chicken skins in some of their dishes(garnish) and on their own(appetizer).
                                                                                                                  One restaurant I recently dined at,had the nerve to charge $8. for a plate(maybe 6 of them) of fried chicken skins. The funny thing was I didn't see any chicken dishes on their menu..
                                                                                                                  I doubt it'll be long before this "trend" trickles down to the large chains like everything else..

                                                                                                                  1. re: petek

                                                                                                                    For what it's worth, here's a two year old discussion borne out of newspaper reports considering the increasing demand for chicken skins. Some interesting ideas for 'em are discussed too.


                                                                                                                    1. re: MGZ

                                                                                                                      Yeah, but there ain't nothing there about "Lay's Jewish Chicharones"! '-)

                                                                                                                      1. re: MGZ

                                                                                                                        Well I'll be...
                                                                                                                        Guess we're a little behind the times up here :)

                                                                                                                2. Potato skin roasted hard w/ a little salt and olive oil or butter or maybe bacon.

                                                                                                                  1. I like most, but I'll have to go with mackerel. Absolutely love it.

                                                                                                                    1. The skin covering Brad Pitt's body.

                                                                                                                      3 Replies
                                                                                                                      1. re: LA Buckeye Fan

                                                                                                                        Ouch! But I suppose that's a-peeling to a blue blooded woman...:)

                                                                                                                        1. re: Veggo

                                                                                                                          Baked, broiled, or fried? Maybe just licked? Meant to reply to LA Buckeye Fan, by the way.

                                                                                                                      2. Pork, from Lexington BBQ in NC.

                                                                                                                        1. Sweet Potato skins when they are roasted until nice an crispy and caramelized.
                                                                                                                          Crispy duck skin

                                                                                                                          3 Replies
                                                                                                                          1. re: MissBubbles

                                                                                                                            speaking of sweet potato skins and "caramelized"--try either with a peanut butter or a (real) caramel sauce. Even more heavenly.

                                                                                                                            1. re: MissBubbles

                                                                                                                              How long do you bake your sweet potatoes?

                                                                                                                              1. re: fldhkybnva

                                                                                                                                I get the super thin ones. I bake for 70-90min. I just keep checking until they are close then I pull them out. 15 min before serve time I put them back in to crisp up again. With sour cream s&p. mmmmmm

                                                                                                                                1. re: Veggo

                                                                                                                                  Not to worry. He's a LOUSY speller!

                                                                                                                                  1. re: Caroline1

                                                                                                                                    Probably lousy at golf, too....;)

                                                                                                                                      1. re: Veggo

                                                                                                                                        I was actually a pretty good golfer, until I had 7 hours of back surgery....so now I cook!

                                                                                                                                2. Chicken from dhs perfectly roasted tarragon chicken and potatoes. Chicken skin on wings or chicken feet...

                                                                                                                                  1. Re my post below. My butcher shop saved a half pound of chicken skins for me. I should have cut them into strips, next time I will. I soaked them in buttermilk then dredged them in seasoned flour, fried to golden crisp and drizzled with honey and some hot sauce. Delish!

                                                                                                                                    1 Reply
                                                                                                                                    1. re: Candy

                                                                                                                                      Not fair to tell us a bout it and not pass it around! I'm thinking if I had a chicken in the house, I'd be skinning it right now! I'm also wondering how it would turn out if I fried it under a bacon press? hmmmm.... Guess some chicken skin shopping is in order.

                                                                                                                                      1. A month ago I would have said turkey but I stuffed and then slow grilled a pork belly two weeks ago.

                                                                                                                                        Dang!! That cracklin was good.

                                                                                                                                        1. crispy salmon skin, deeelish

                                                                                                                                          1. Can't choose. I like turkey, chicken, duck, and pork (all roasted). Sometimes I'd rather eat the skin than the actual meat.