Air Fryer Fried Chicken

close up of crispy-skinned air fryer chicken on a white plate

Site Index Air fryer Chicken Chicken breast Chicken thighs Old Bay

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This Air Fryer Chicken recipe has had rave reviews from readers for years upon years now- and for good reason! This fried chicken uses no oil and has a crispy, delicious skin over tender chicken meat that your whole family will love!

You’ll love this crispy-skinned air fryer chicken, it’s incredibly satisfying and the recipe is super simple! Don’t forget to also try my air fryer fish recipe or for something totally different, my air fryer eggs!

crispy-skinned air fryer chicken on a white plate
Air Fryer Chicken

How to Make Crispy Air Fryer Chicken

This recipe has a coating on the chicken that makes the skin crispy and perfect!

  • Preheat your air fryer to 390 degrees.
  • Whisk together the flour, salt, and the Old Bay.
  • Dredge the chicken through the flour mixture, then into the egg, then back into the flour mixture again. Shake off excess flour very well.
  • Place the 4 chicken thighs into the bottom of the cooking compartment. Cook for 25 minutes or until the chicken reaches 180 degrees.
  • Remove and serve.

flour coated slice of raw chicken dipped in egg on a bowl

Air Fryer Chicken Breasts

Cooking chicken breasts in the fryer is just as easy as cooking any other pieces, except that chicken breast can dry out faster. It’s better to use a batter-like my recipe to seal in the moisture. If you use skin off you can be prepared for dryer chicken, so if you don’t want to eat the skin simply cook the chicken breast with the skin on and then remove it before eating.

  • Prepare the skin-on chicken breasts in the batter according to the recipe
  • Cook the chicken breast in the Air Fryer for 25 minutes depending on how thick the chicken breasts are.
  • If you have large ones they will take longer.
  • Chicken breasts should be cooked until 165 °F.

a box of Philips brand airfryer

How Long Do I Cook Air Fryer Chicken?

These chicken thighs were done in 25 minutes, but it depends on the thickness of the meat, if you are using skin on or skin off and what cut of chicken you are using.

  • Chicken thighs – cook chicken thighs in the Air Fryer for 25-28 minutes until they reach a temperature of 180-185°F. While you can cook them to 165 °F for safety sake,  it’s a widely accepted knowledge among professional cooks that cooking chicken thighs to a higher temperature breaks down the meat fibers more and you end up with more tender chicken thighs.
  • Chicken breasts– cook chicken breast in the Air Fryer for 25 minutes depending on how thick the chicken breasts are. If you have large ones they will take longer. Chicken breasts should be cooked until 165 °F.
  • Chicken tenders – Chicken tenders in the Air Fryer will take only 15-16 minutes to cook, depending on their thickness


close up of crispy-skinned air fryer chicken on a white plate

The Air fryer cooks your food by circulating hot air around it evenly, so that means that for the cooking to happen properly all the surface of your food needs to be exposed to the hot air. I made three chicken thighs in the air fryer and they were perfectly crispy.

Look at how crispy that skin came out! My son devoured these – as 12-year-olds are wont to do – and asked for more! So while I would only place 4 small chicken thighs in the air fryer, this would also work with chicken wings!

The air fryer can only handle a certain capacity – see the manual- so it makes only a small meal, say for two people. You can stack the chicken on its side if you want, just make sure that there is lots of surface area to cook.

four stack of crispy-skinned air fryer chicken in white plate

What I really loved about this air fryer chicken is that I used no grease at all. None. I put the chicken in there and it cooked up beautifully without a drop of grease added.

flour coated raw chicken on the left side and air fry chickens on the right side

The container itself is SO easy to clean.  As you can see, you can fit another chicken thigh or random piece of chicken in there, but you want to make sure that you follow the instructions as to the amount of meat that you can place in there. You simply place the food into this little basket and away you go! It’s so easy!

container with chicken inside the air fryer

Tips and Tricks

  • Some readers put a small bit of water in the bottom of their Air Fryer to prevent smoking, you can try this at your own risk! Apparently putting a little water in the container under the basket can keep the grease from the food from causing smoke.
  • Other readers have sprayed the chicken with cooking spray with good results, but I don’t usually bother as the chicken skin has enough grease in it
  • If you are getting a floury skin, then definitely use the cooking spray on the chicken. That means that the flour isn’t absorbing into your egg layer and that you didn’t have enough moisture.


Recipe Video

Some More Recipes for You to Try:


This recipe uses one of my very favorite seasonings in the world: Old Bay Seasoning. It’s a very East Coast spice mix ( I was SO happy to have it in New Jersey when we visited) but this Alberta girl has been using it for years already. Mike and I will simply sprinkle Old Bay onto our chicken drumsticks and roast them thusly, with nothing else on it. You could easily do the same with the chicken drumsticks in the Phillips Airfryer as well if you want a gluten-free option!

So, who has an air fryer, and what do you think about it? Who has been wanting to try an Air fryer as I have?  Stay tuned for two more posts where I delve into this appliance and really try it out!

Love you more than chocolate,



Need a delicious airfryer fried chicken recipe? Look no further, this air fryer chicken recipe is simple, delicious & the skin is so incredibly tasty! #chicken #airfryer #friedchicken

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Air Fryer Fried Chicken

Delicious "fried" chicken done in an Air Fryer! This air fryer chicken is the best recipe out there!
4.94 from 399 votes
Prep Time
4 minutes
Cook Time
25 minutes
Total Time
29 minutes
Main Course
Karlynn Johnston


  • 1/2 cup all purpose flour
  • 1 egg beaten
  • 4 small chicken thighs skin on
  • 1 1/2 tablespoons Old Bay Seasoning
  • 1 teaspoon seasoning salt
  • cooking spray if desired


  • Pre-heat the Air Fryer to 390 degrees.
  • Whisk together the flour, salt and the Old Bay.
  • Dredge the chicken through the flour mixture, then into the egg, then back into the flour mixture again. Shake off excess flour very well. If you want to, you can spray the chicken with cooking spray lightly at this point, but I don't bother.
  • Place the 4 chicken thighs into the bottom of the AirFryer cooking compartment. Cook for 25 minutes or until the chicken reaches 180 degrees.
  • Remove and serve.

Recipe Video

Recipe Notes

Old bay is what makes this so good!

Nutrition Information

Calories: 327kcal, Carbohydrates: 13g, Protein: 21g, Fat: 20g, Saturated Fat: 5g, Cholesterol: 151mg, Sodium: 686mg, Potassium: 321mg, Fiber: 1g, Vitamin A: 1405IU, Calcium: 21mg, Iron: 2.2mg

All calories and info are based on a third party calculator and are only an estimate. Actual nutritional info will vary with brands used, your measuring methods, portion sizes and more.

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Karlynn Johnston

I’m a busy mom of two, wife & cookbook author who loves creating fast, fresh meals for my little family on the Canadian prairies. Karlynn Facts: I'm allergic to broccoli. I've never met a cocktail that I didn't like. I would rather burn down my house than clean it. Most of all, I love helping YOU get dinner ready because there's nothing more important than connecting with our loved ones around the dinner table!

Learn more about me

Site Index Air fryer Chicken Chicken breast Chicken thighs Old Bay

Reader Interactions

Comments & Recipe Tips Share a tip or comment!

  1. Leah says

    I was so excited to try this recipe and followed it exactly, but neither my husband nor I were impressed at all. In fact, we ate about half of one piece each and threw the rest away. The Old Bay seasoning just didn’t work well at all. I guess technically it’s fried chicken, but it isn’t GOOD fried chicken IMO.

  2. JennainCO says

    This recipe is amazing! Aside from my own mistake or using boneless chicken tenders and cooking as the directions… just an FYI chicken tenders shouldn’t go to 180… that was my bad and realized it when I took it out. The flavor of the breading is delicious and simple! Will try again and make sure I pay attention to the meat temp for what I’m cooking. Thank you so much!!

  3. Dave says

    My family is “Boneless Breasts Only” !!! I agree…They’re wierd! They don’t understand that the flavor is in the bones. Will this recipe work with boneless skinless breasts as well? Just got my air fryer last week and all we’ve made was Kabobs and cheesesticks and egg rolls. Pleeeeeeeeeeeeeeease help!!! Hoping to make the chicken this weekend.

  4. Gayla Jaworowicz says

    Do pass a review once you’re done reading this book.

  5. Emma says

    This is a great recipe. We actually used skinless boneless thighs and sprayed them with oil prior to putting them in the air fryer. Worked great at 390 for 22 minutes. No drips or messes. The instructions are straight forward and easy to follow.5 stars

  6. Laurel says

    I’d really appreciate if the recipe was fixed to be clearer. I looked everywhere online for Old Bay Cajun seasoning, and apparently, it doesn’t exist. If the author simply meant regular Old Bay, that should be stated clearly! (Original Old Bay is NOT a Cajun seasoning, so that is not a reason.) I’m guessing maybe they meant the blackened Old Bay seasoning? It’s crazy expensive online, so I doubt I’ll splurge for that. Apologies if I offended, please make it clear what specific ingredients you mean. I ended up trying to make my own cajun seasoning and followed the recipe otherwise, and I can’t say I was super impressed…4 stars

    • Mr. Kitchen Magpie says

      It is standard old bay, I’ve updated the recipe to reflect this.

  7. lisha says

    Flour was in cooked on the surface even after I had sprayed inside and chi ken with spray? And turned midway and resprayed


  8. Jerry pearson says

    Just now finished the chicken, awesome recipe, easy for this single guy to prepare. You don’t happen to have a single sister do ya? Lol
    Thank you.

  9. Tina says

    I tried this recipe with chicken tenders and changed the spices a bit since I didn’t have old bay. This turned out amazing and I will definitely make this again.5 stars

  10. Betty Jo says

    Made this last night! It was so good! Crispy skin, well seasoned and so tender and juicy! Won’t have to get takeout fried chicken anymore! Thank you Karlynn!5 stars

    • Martha Christian says

      Delicious…used chicken drumsticks and there were NO leftovers. Highly recommend.5 stars

  11. Kelli R Schobelock says

    My batter burned and was very dry — the chicken was moist though. I used skinless/boneless thighs and added extra cayenne pepper to the flour. Flour was black and burnt in large patches. 390 for 25 minutes5 stars

  12. Mary says

    First recipe I have tried in my new air fryer and followed instructions exactly. It was great! Crispy skin, succulent chicken thighs. A bit different seasoning than we’re used to…We only used Old Bay previously for clam chowder and crab cakes, but it worked well here and had a great taste. Change your seasoning as you see fit, but keep the flour/egg breading. It works! Follow instructions. Try it. It’s good “fried” chicken, and isn’t that what we’re using the air fryer for? Way healthier than frying.5 stars

  13. brooklyn grill says

    That’s so great!!! Your share is very awesome. I love cooking too. Thank you.5 stars

  14. backbeat says

    Wow, it looks so tasty . I love your recipe very much. I think your dish is very delicious. I will make this recipe for my family and my friend. I hope you have more recipe like this. Thank you for sharing.5 stars

    • Jerry pearson says

      Just now finished the chicken, awesome recipe, easy for this single guy to prepare. You don’t happen to have a single sister do ya? Lol
      Thank you.5 stars

  15. bistro sk says

    Wow, your recipe is so amazing. I have never known this recipe. Thank for sharing. I will share this recipe for my friends and my family. I think they love it too.5 stars

  16. Mrs. Howell says

    I followed the instructions exactly how it is and my chicken thighs came out AMAZING! Nice golden brown and crunchy! Thank you for this.
    I used my Ninja duel zone double basket air fryer everything was perfect.5 stars

    • Kelly Schindler says

      Help my chicken still has dry flour all over after cooking. What should I do differently next time? I followed the recipe.

      • Tamara Keene says

        Hi Kelly, you need to spray with cooking spray if there is still flour on your chicken. I even spray mine as it’s cooking to ensure it gets crispy with no “flour” spots. Hope this helps!

  17. Amanda says

    I loved this so much! I used a tray that came with my dryer instead of the basket and it still came out great. I’m of Irish aka can’t handle spicy decent so i only used a tbs of old bay and 1tsp garlic salt (mainly because i couldn’t locate my salt)

    I loved it! I think i needed less time but I’m sure that’s just one air fryer to the next 🙂 thanks for sharing

  18. Farm raised in Dallas Texas says

    I bought an air fryer/convection oven with rotisserie and this is the first “fry” recipe I tried.
    I made this according to the recipe but concerned with using Old Bay for seasoning and an air fryer for cooking. Unfortunately my concerns were confirmed. IMHO this would have been better with salt, pepper, garlic/onion powder and maybe some parsley and a thinner coating.
    Born in Texas to a Southern Father and New York Mother (who knew how to cook) I had a good mix of cooking styles and learned how to cook pretty well. This recipe is definitely a Northern construct. If you like it I’m happy for you but it doesn’t taste or give you the mouth feel like (Southern) fried chicken.
    BTW, Old Bay IS Cajun. You won’t find it on the bottle.
    Another point. If you don’t cook in some type of oil, how are you going to make the gravy…4 stars

    • Mr. Kitchen Magpie says

      Thanks for the suggestions. To be fair, however, we’ve never claimed that this was going to be southern fried chicken, simply air fried so the intent was never there to have anyone assume otherwise. Our preference is Old Bay and always has been but I’m glad to see other suggestions too!5 stars

    • Porter says

      We also live in Tx but are originally from NH. Old Bay is from Maryland and doesn’t make a “Cajun” seasoning, only original, Hot & Blackened. I agree with you and only used granulated onion & garlic (HATE the powder) and salt & pepper. I also lightly sprayed with oil and it was great.

      • Les says

        I am looking forward to trying this recipe. Born and raised in Maryland so suggest correction to recipe. No such thing as Old Bay Cajun seasoning and I am not aware of a hot and blackened version.

  19. Think Travel Eat says

    Crispy breading and tender chicken as promised! I prepped this recipe as stated using chicken drumsticks and standard Old Bay seasoning. I opted to spray my drumsticks with cooking spray, and I’m glad I did. A small spot that I missed with the spray actually turned out powdery. I also sprayed the fryer basket. I didn’t find the recipe to be all that messy in my air fryer as others have commented. A little breading dropped through, but not enough to matter. I’m looking forward to trying this again with chicken breast for sandwiches. Very tasty!5 stars

  20. Marilyn says

    I don’t think Old Bay makes a CAJUN seasoning. I’ve looked everywhere for it….

    • Think Travel Eat says

      I’m pretty sure there’s only one type of Old Bay Seasoning, which is what I used here in conjunction with Lawry’s seasoned salt. I’m a huge fan of Old Bay, and I thought it flavored the breading beautifully. That said, I also think Cajun seasoning would work very here as a substitute.

      • Kylie says

        I’m actually from the mid Atlantic and I put old Bay on everything and yes matter fact they do have a blackening old Bay seasoning along with a hot sauce that comes in a glass bottle

    • Doug Depp says

      Just Old Bay seasoning use a lot on the Atlantic coast

      • Darlena Dement says

        I have made this recipe several times now in my air fryer and in oil to get dinner cooked faster and so far it’s absolutely delicious!!! We use skinless chicken thighs and just make sure that the basket is sprayed well and both sides of the thighs are sprayed. When I originally made the recipe I didn’t use Cajun because my tummy says no to spicy food but I had 30% less sodium old bay on hand but tonight were using regular old bay. To my family it tastes a lot like KFC but better because it’s not greasy!!! Thank You for the Amazing Recipe!!!5 stars

  21. Jayne says

    Well said Mr. Kitchen Magpie, Karlynn’s recipes are always fantastic and I look forward to seeing what new recipes appear. Always a great job!!!! Perhaps some of these negative nellies should start their own recipe blog!

  22. Julianne says

    Wow. This was absolutely amazing! I used different seasonings, but followed the recipe otherwise, and it resulted in a super crispy skin and the most tender chicken thigh I’ve ever eaten. My only complaint would be that the bottom part was a little soft, so next time I will flip midway, but this is definitely the best recipe I’ve tried with my air fryer yet! I don’t have a basket fryer, which may be why my didn’t crisp on the bottom.5 stars

  23. Angel says

    Just made this and ate it all up! Delicious! Crispy on the outside, tender and juicy meat underneath! Will make again a thousand times I’m sure!5 stars

  24. Brender22 says

    This chicken was AMAZING! I followed the recipe except for some minor changes. Along with the Old Bay, I added a little garlic powder, salt, and pepper to the flour. Then, I dredged egg – flour – egg – flour, and I did spray the tops with olive oil cooking spray. HOLY YUMMY FRIED CHICKEN! My husband was skeptical it would come out well, but he, my 5 year old, and I LOVED it! Thank you for this brilliant recipe!5 stars

  25. Shanell says

    Ok, first time leaving a recipe review, but just had to come back and give you mad props! This chicken was so easy and turned out PERFECT! Omg I’m obsessed and my kids loved it! Thank you!!

  26. Mary Curtis says

    This is not Popeye’s chicken. Most disappointing.

    • Mr. Kitchen Magpie says

      Sorry but of course not? We didn’t claim it was?5 stars

      • Marsha says

        I don’t think they have Popeyes chicken on the Canadian Prairie where Karlynn is from.😁

    • Lily Q says

      Ha! You’re right, Popeye’s is greasy and so-so quality.

    • S.D. Ladnier says

      Lol !!!I Why would you even think it would be ?!

    • Dave says want greasy Ass Popeyes….go to Popeyes…🤦‍♂️🤦‍♂️

  27. Julie says

    Can you use bone-in chicken breasts and thighs?

  28. Micah Stupak says

    I have no idea why this recipe is so highly rated: the flour-egg-flour technique is a disaster. It works *very* well for frying chicken traditionally, but here, the flour and egg dehydrate under the chicken on the basket, forming a dried out hard crust that actually drips through the holes and makes a nice seal. Egg + flour makes a fine glue when dried out. So much so that it even holds onto the chicken as you try to scrape it off the bottom of the basket. The egg can be skipped here. Don’t use a protein: I’ve done chicken before with breading using oil mixed with mustard or BBQ sauce or even hot sauce as the middle layer.1 star

      • Mr. Kitchen Magpie says

        Sorry it didn’t work out for you. Next time be sure to follow the instructions to ensure a successful end result.

      • Giovani says

        I agree. Just made it and it was a disaster.

    • Mr. Kitchen Magpie says

      It has a high rating because people like it. If you don’t like how it’s done that’s fine but rating a recipe because you disagree with the method is not appropriate – the recipe works well as is without tweaks. If you have tweaks you’d like to make that you think are better, by all means publish your own recipe for people to enjoy. Thanks.5 stars

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