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How to Cook Chicken in Air Fryer? Beginners’ Guide


The boneless chicken seems to be drier and less flavorful than the bone-in chicken. With an air fryer, you can easily change the chicken into a dish with a perfectly crispy exterior and a tender, juicy interior in no time, but with less oil than traditional deep frying. In this article, we’ll guide you through the process of how to cook chicken in air fryer. Whether you’re working with breast, thighs, wings, or even a whole chicken, we’ve got tips and tricks to ensure your chicken is not only cooked through but also deliciously golden and satisfyingly crispy. So, let’s start air-frying healthier, quicker, and more flavorful chicken dishes.

Air Fryer Chicken Recipe Ingredients

Discover our air-fried chicken air fryer recipe with simple yet flavorful ingredients for a mouthwatering dish. Here’s what you'll need to create your chicken masterpiece in the air fryer.


  • 2 skinless, boneless chicken breasts
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 2 teaspoons of olive oil
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1/4 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoon onion powder

How to Cook Chicken in the Air Fryer?

After all the ingredients are prepared, it is time to cook chicken with the best air fryer chicken recipe.

1. Position the chicken on a chopping board and dry it with paper towels.

2. Season the chicken with the salt, and refrigerate it for at least 30 minutes.

3. Remove the marinated chicken from the refrigerator and warm it up to room temperature for about 15 minutes before cooking.

4. Mix the garlic powder, onion powder, paprika, and black pepper in a small bowl.

5. Spray a little oil on the chicken and sprinkle the mixture on both sides of the chicken. Rub it to make the chicken thoroughly seasoned.

6. Preheat the air fryer in advance. Put the chicken into the air fryer basket, and cook it at 375 degrees F for 6 minutes.

7. Flip the chicken halfway through, and continue cooking for 3–8 minutes. You can check the interior temperature of the fried chicken in air fryer with a meat thermometer. If it shows around 165 degrees F, the chicken is safe to eat.

8. Remove the chicken from the air fryer and rest for 5 minutes. Slice it and serve with your favorite side dishes.

How Long to Cook Chicken in Air Fryer?

The cooking duration for chicken in an air fryer varies depending on the size of the chicken. Here's the estimated cooking time for different ounces of chicken:

  • Chicken breasts weighing between 6 and 7 ounces typically require around 10 to 11 minutes of total cooking time.
  • For those weighing 8 to 9 ounces, the cooking time extends slightly to approximately 11 to 12 minutes in total.
  • Larger chicken breasts, around 10 ounces or more, should be cooked for about 13 to 15 minutes to ensure thorough cooking.

It's essential to note that cooking times can vary based on the specific air fryer model and the size and thickness of the chicken pieces. Always ensure the chicken reaches the safe internal temperature of 165°F by using an instant-read thermometer.

What to Serve with Air Fryer Chicken?

When serving air fryer chicken, consider pairing it with a variety of side dishes to complement its flavors. Options include air-fried or roasted vegetables like Brussels sprouts, carrots, or asparagus, and potato sides such as mashed potatoes, baked potatoes, or sweet potato fries, salad, and pasta. These side dishes can enhance the meal by adding texture, color, and nutritional balance.

Tips for Cooking Chicken in the Air Fryer

Cooking chicken in an air fryer is a great way to achieve a crispy exterior while keeping the inside juicy and tender. Here are some tips to help you get the best results when cooking chicken in an air fryer:

  • Preheat the Air Fryer: Just like an oven, preheating your air fryer ensures that the cooking environment is at the ideal temperature when the chicken is placed inside. This can help achieve a more even cook and crispier skin.
  • Pat the Chicken Dry: Before seasoning or cooking, pat the chicken dry with paper towels. Removing excess moisture helps the skin become crispier during cooking.
  • Use the Right Seasoning: Season the chicken according to your recipe or preference. Oil or a light spray of cooking spray can help the seasoning stick to the chicken and also contribute to a crispy finish.
  • Don’t Overcrowd: Place the chicken pieces in a single layer in the air fryer basket, ensuring there is space between them. This allows the hot air to circulate freely around the chicken, cooking it evenly and crisping up the skin.
  • Flip the Chicken: Halfway through cooking, flip the chicken pieces over. This promotes even cooking and ensures that both sides get a deliciously crispy exterior.
  • Use a Meat Thermometer: To ensure your chicken is cooked through safely, use a meat thermometer. The safe internal temperature for cooked chicken is 165°F (74°C). Insert the thermometer into the thickest part of the chicken to get an accurate reading.
  • Let it Rest: Once cooked, let the chicken rest for a few minutes before cutting into it. This allows the juices to redistribute throughout the meat, ensuring your chicken is moist and tender.
  • Adjust Cooking Time for Different Cuts: Different cuts of chicken will require different cooking times. Generally, boneless cuts cook faster than bone-in pieces. Chicken thighs and wings have more fat and may take longer to cook than chicken breasts.

Tips for Storing Air-Fried Chicken

Here are some storage tips to ensure your air-fried chicken remains as delicious as when you first cooked it: Label for Storage:

Label your containers with the date the chicken was cooked. Keep chicken in a sealed storage container in the refrigerator for a maximum of 4 days.

Refrigerate Promptly: Once cooled, refrigerate the chicken within two hours of cooking to prevent bacteria from developing. The "danger zone" for bacterial growth is between 40°F and 140°F (4°C and 60°C), so it’s important to minimize the time the chicken spends at these temperatures.

Thawing and Reheating: When ready to eat, thaw the chicken in the refrigerator if frozen. To recapture the crispiness, reheat it in the air fryer at 350°F for a few minutes or until heated through and crispy.

Freezing for Longer Storage: Wrap the chicken tightly in plastic wrap or aluminum foil, then place it in a freezer bag or airtight container. Frozen chicken is best used within 3 months.


In conclusion, learning how to cook chicken in air fryer means picking good ingredients, knowing the steps, timing it right for each type of chicken, and choosing sides that go well with it. By doing this and following clear instructions, you'll get tasty chicken every time. This method makes cooking easier and adds to your cooking skills, showing that using an air fryer for chicken is not only healthier but also delivers flavorful and healthy dishes. Whether you're just starting or you're already good in the kitchen, the air fryer is a great tool for making delicious chicken dishes that will wow everyone.

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