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How To Grill Chicken In Air Fryer How To Grill Chicken In Air Fryer


How To Grill Chicken In Air Fryer

Written by: Oliver Mitchell

Learn how to grill chicken in an air fryer with these helpful articles. Discover tips, tricks, and delicious recipes to create the perfect grilled chicken every time.

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Grilling chicken is a fantastic way to infuse delicious flavors and achieve that perfect charred exterior. However, traditional grilling methods can be time-consuming and require extensive cleanup. Fortunately, with the advent of air fryers, you can now enjoy the succulent taste of grilled chicken right in your own kitchen, without the hassle.

Air fryers are versatile kitchen appliances that use hot air circulation to cook food evenly and quickly. They provide a healthier alternative to traditional deep-frying methods, requiring little to no oil while still producing crisp and flavorful results. By using an air fryer to grill chicken, you can achieve that desirable smoky flavor and juicy texture without the need for an outdoor grill.

In this article, we will explore the benefits of grilling chicken in an air fryer, guide you through the process, and provide tips for achieving perfectly grilled chicken every time. Get ready to elevate your cooking game and tantalize your taste buds with irresistible air-fried grilled chicken!

Key Takeaways:

  • Elevate your cooking game with air-fried grilled chicken! Enjoy healthier, faster, and consistent results without the need for an outdoor grill. Say goodbye to the hassle and hello to irresistible flavors.
  • Prepare, season, and savor your air-fried grilled chicken with creativity and joy. From marinating to serving, relish the convenience and versatility of this cooking method. Happy grilling!

Benefits of Grilling Chicken in an Air Fryer

Grilling chicken in an air fryer offers several advantages over traditional grilling methods. Let’s take a closer look at some of the key benefits:

  1. Healthier Option: Air frying requires minimal oil compared to deep-frying or pan-frying. This means you can enjoy the deliciousness of grilled chicken with significantly less fat and fewer calories. It’s a great option for those who are conscious of their dietary intake but still want to indulge in flavorful grilled chicken.
  2. Faster Cooking Time: Air fryers use advanced technology to circulate hot air around the food, resulting in faster cooking times. Grilling chicken in an air fryer takes significantly less time than traditional grilling methods. You can have perfectly grilled chicken on your plate in just a matter of minutes.
  3. No Outdoor Grill Needed: Not everyone has access to an outdoor grill, especially in urban areas or during unfavorable weather conditions. With an air fryer, you can enjoy the taste of grilled chicken without the need for an outdoor grill. It’s a convenient option that allows you to enjoy grilled chicken all year round, regardless of your living situation.
  4. Consistent Results: Air fryers offer precise temperature control, ensuring consistent cooking results every time. This means you can achieve that ideal balance of a crispy exterior and tender, juicy meat consistently, without any guesswork involved. Say goodbye to overcooked or undercooked chicken!
  5. Easy Cleanup: Grilling chicken on a traditional grill often leaves behind a mess of grease, marinade, and charred residue. Cleaning an air fryer, on the other hand, is a breeze. Most air fryer components are dishwasher-safe, making cleanup quick and hassle-free.

With these fantastic benefits, it’s no wonder that grilling chicken in an air fryer has gained popularity among home cooks. Now, let’s dive into the next important aspect – choosing the right chicken cuts for air frying.

Choosing the Right Chicken Cuts for Air Frying

When it comes to air frying chicken, selecting the right cuts is crucial to achieve the best results. Here are some recommended chicken cuts that work well for air frying:

  1. Chicken Breast: Skinless, boneless chicken breasts are a popular choice for air frying. They cook quickly and evenly, with minimal risk of drying out. Chicken breasts are versatile and can be used in various recipes, such as grilled chicken salads, sandwiches, or wraps.
  2. Chicken Thighs: Chicken thighs, whether bone-in or boneless, are another excellent choice for air frying. They have a slightly higher fat content compared to chicken breasts, which adds extra flavor and juiciness. Chicken thighs work well for dishes like teriyaki chicken or BBQ chicken.
  3. Chicken Drumsticks: If you prefer dark meat, chicken drumsticks are a flavorful option. They are easy to handle and have a juicy texture. Drumsticks are perfect for finger-licking good meals and can be paired with various rubs or sauces for added zest.
  4. Chicken Wings: Crispy air-fried chicken wings are a crowd-pleaser for any occasion. They can be enjoyed as an appetizer, game-day snack, or party food. Whether you like them spicy or tangy, air frying chicken wings produces a crispy exterior while keeping the meat tender and juicy.

It’s important to note that regardless of the chicken cuts you choose, it’s recommended to use skinless or lightly trimmed cuts for air frying. Excess fat or skin can create excessive smoke and may result in a greasy final product.

Now that you know the ideal chicken cuts for air frying, let’s move on to preparing the chicken before it hits the air fryer.

Preparing the Chicken for Air Frying

Properly preparing the chicken before air frying is a crucial step to ensure the best possible results. Follow these steps to prepare the chicken for air frying:

  1. Defrost and Pat Dry: If using frozen chicken, make sure to defrost it completely in the refrigerator before cooking. Once defrosted, pat the chicken dry with paper towels to remove excess moisture. Dry chicken promotes better browning and crispiness.
  2. Trim Excess Fat: If there are any visible excess fat or skin on the chicken cuts, it’s advisable to trim it off. This helps prevent excessive smoke and ensures a cleaner cooking process.
  3. Marinate (Optional): While marinating is not necessary, it can add extra flavor and juiciness to the chicken. You can use your favorite marinade or a blend of herbs, spices, and oil to infuse the chicken with your desired flavors. Marinate the chicken for at least 30 minutes or up to overnight in the refrigerator for maximum flavor.
  4. Bring to Room Temperature: Before air frying the chicken, allow it to come to room temperature. This ensures more even cooking throughout the chicken and helps prevent cold spots.

By following these simple steps, you’ll ensure that your chicken is ready for the air fryer, allowing for optimal flavor and texture. Now, let’s move on to the exciting part – seasoning the chicken!

Seasoning the Chicken

Seasoning is a key step in elevating the flavor of grilled chicken, even when cooked in an air fryer. Here are some popular seasonings and marinades to consider:

  1. Classic BBQ Rub: A blend of paprika, garlic powder, onion powder, brown sugar, salt, and black pepper creates a classic BBQ rub that adds smoky and savory flavors to the chicken. Rub the seasoning generously all over the chicken, ensuring it’s well coated.
  2. Lemon Herb Marinade: Combine fresh lemon juice, minced garlic, dried herbs like thyme, rosemary, and oregano, along with olive oil to create a bright and aromatic marinade. Let the chicken marinate in this mixture for at least 30 minutes to infuse the flavors.
  3. Tandoori Spice Blend: For a burst of Indian-inspired flavors, mix together spices like turmeric, cumin, coriander, paprika, ginger, and garlic powder. This spice blend gives the chicken a vibrant color and a flavorful kick.
  4. Buffalo Sauce: If you’re a fan of spicy flavors, toss the chicken in a tangy buffalo sauce made with hot sauce, melted butter, vinegar, and spices. This seasoning provides a fiery heat and a zesty taste that pairs perfectly with crispy chicken.

Remember to season the chicken according to your personal preference. Adjust the amount of seasoning to suit your taste buds. Don’t be afraid to experiment and create your own unique seasoning blends as well.

Once the chicken is thoroughly seasoned, it’s time to preheat the air fryer before grilling. Let’s move on to the next step.

Before grilling chicken in an air fryer, make sure to preheat the air fryer for a few minutes to ensure even cooking and a crispy exterior. This will help to achieve the best results for your grilled chicken.

Preheating the Air Fryer

Preheating the air fryer is an important step for achieving perfectly grilled chicken. Follow these steps to preheat your air fryer:

  1. Check the Manufacturer’s Instructions: Different air fryer models may have slightly different preheating methods. It’s essential to refer to the manufacturer’s instructions to determine the appropriate preheating temperature and time for your specific air fryer.
  2. Preheat the Air Fryer: Start by setting the air fryer to the recommended preheating temperature (typically around 400°F/200°C) and allow it to preheat for a few minutes, usually 3-5 minutes.
  3. Preheating Lid Open or Closed: Some air fryers require preheating with the lid open, while others may require it closed. Make sure to follow the instructions provided by the manufacturer. This ensures the air fryer reaches the desired temperature before you begin grilling the chicken.
  4. Monitor the Preheating Process: Keep an eye on the air fryer as it preheats to ensure it reaches the desired temperature. Many modern air fryers have indicator lights or timers that indicate when it’s ready for use. Once the air fryer has reached the recommended temperature, it’s time to start grilling the chicken.

Preheating the air fryer helps to create an ideal cooking environment and ensures that the chicken cooks evenly and efficiently. By taking this step, you set the stage for a delicious grilling experience. Now that the air fryer is preheated, it’s time to move on to the next step – air frying the chicken.

Air Frying Chicken: Step-by-step Instructions

Now that your air fryer is preheated and ready to go, it’s time to dive into the step-by-step process of air frying chicken:

  1. Place the Chicken in the Air Fryer Basket: Carefully arrange the seasoned chicken in a single layer in the air fryer basket. Avoid overcrowding the basket, as this can result in uneven cooking. If necessary, cook the chicken in batches.
  2. Set the Cooking Temperature: Set the air fryer to the recommended cooking temperature for the specific chicken cut you’re using. For example, chicken breasts typically cook well at around 375°F/190°C, while chicken thighs may require a slightly higher temperature.
  3. Set the Cooking Time: Depending on the thickness of the chicken and the desired level of doneness, set the cooking time accordingly. As a general guideline, boneless chicken breasts may take around 15-20 minutes, while chicken thighs may cook in about 20-25 minutes. However, it’s essential to refer to the specific recipe or manufacturer’s instructions for precise cooking times.
  4. Flip the Chicken Halfway Through Cooking: To ensure even browning and cooking, carefully flip the chicken halfway through the cooking process. This helps to achieve a uniform exterior and guarantees that each side is evenly cooked.
  5. Check for Doneness: As the cooking time approaches the recommended duration, use a meat thermometer to check the internal temperature of the thickest part of the chicken. Chicken should reach a minimum internal temperature of 165°F/74°C to be considered safe to eat.
  6. Rest the Chicken: Once the chicken is cooked to perfection, remove it from the air fryer and let it rest for a few minutes. This allows the juices to redistribute throughout the meat, resulting in a more tender and flavorful grilled chicken.

By following these step-by-step instructions, you’ll be able to achieve beautifully grilled chicken with a golden-brown exterior and juicy interior. Now, let’s move on to some tips for ensuring perfectly grilled chicken every time.

Tips for Perfectly Grilled Chicken in an Air Fryer

To ensure that your chicken turns out perfectly grilled in the air fryer, here are some valuable tips to keep in mind:

  1. Prep and Season in Advance: For maximum flavor, allow the chicken to marinate for at least 30 minutes or overnight. This allows the flavors to penetrate the meat and makes it incredibly tasty.
  2. Avoid Overcrowding: To promote even cooking and achieve that desirable crispy exterior, avoid overcrowding the air fryer basket. Cook the chicken in a single layer, leaving space between each piece.
  3. Monitor Cooking Time Closely: Cooking times can vary based on the thickness of the chicken and the air fryer model. It’s important to monitor the cooking process closely, especially towards the end, to prevent overcooking or undercooking.
  4. Use a Meat Thermometer: To ensure that the chicken is cooked thoroughly, use a meat thermometer to check the internal temperature. The recommended safe internal temperature for chicken is 165°F/74°C. Insert the thermometer into the thickest part of the chicken to get an accurate reading.
  5. Baste with Sauce: If you want to add an extra layer of flavor, baste the chicken with sauce during the last few minutes of cooking. This creates a glaze and enhances the taste of the chicken.
  6. Let it Rest: After cooking, allow the chicken to rest for a few minutes before serving. This allows the juices to redistribute, resulting in more moist and flavorful meat.
  7. Experiment with Seasonings and Sauces: Don’t be afraid to get creative with your seasonings and sauces. Try different marinades, rubs, or glazes to amplify the flavors of your grilled chicken. The options are endless!

By following these tips, you’ll be well on your way to achieving perfectly grilled chicken every time using your air fryer. Now, let’s move on to the final step – serving and enjoying your delicious grilled chicken.

Serving and Enjoying Your Grilled Chicken

Now that your grilled chicken is cooked to perfection in the air fryer, it’s time to plate it up, garnish it, and enjoy! Here are some suggestions on how to serve and savor your delicious grilled chicken:

  1. Garnish and Presentation: Sprinkle some fresh chopped herbs, such as parsley or cilantro, over the grilled chicken to add a pop of color and freshness. You can also garnish with lemon wedges for a tangy citrus twist.
  2. Sides and Accompaniments: Pair your grilled chicken with an array of delectable sides. Consider serving it with a refreshing garden salad, roasted vegetables, mashed potatoes, or a side of rice. These sides will complement the flavors of the grilled chicken and provide a well-rounded meal.
  3. Sauces and Dips: Enhance the taste of your grilled chicken by serving it with a selection of sauces or dips. Barbecue sauce, honey mustard, tzatziki, or chimichurri are excellent choices. They add a burst of flavor and allow you to customize each bite to your liking.
  4. Wrap or Sandwich: Transform your grilled chicken into a mouthwatering wrap or sandwich. Spread some mayonnaise or a flavorful spread on a tortilla or bread, layer the grilled chicken with fresh veggies, and roll it up for a satisfying handheld meal on the go.
  5. Leftover Transformations: If you have any leftover grilled chicken, repurpose it in other dishes. Shred it and use it in tacos, add it to salads, or stuff it in a quesadilla. The versatility of grilled chicken allows you to enjoy it in various ways throughout the week.

Remember, the joy of eating grilled chicken is in savoring each bite. Whether you decide to enjoy it as a standalone main course or incorporate it into other dishes, make sure to relish the flavors and appreciate the efforts you put into creating a delicious meal.

With these serving suggestions in mind, you’re now ready to enjoy the fruits of your labor and indulge in the incredible flavors of your air-fried grilled chicken. Happy eating!


And with that, we conclude our comprehensive guide on how to grill chicken in an air fryer. By following the steps outlined in this article, you can achieve delicious, flavorful, and perfectly grilled chicken right in your own kitchen. So go ahead, fire up your air fryer, and start grilling your way to delectable meals!


Air frying has revolutionized the way we cook, and it’s no different when it comes to grilling chicken. Using an air fryer to grill chicken offers numerous benefits, including healthier cooking, faster preparation time, and consistent results. Plus, you can enjoy the flavors of grilled chicken all year round, regardless of the weather or access to an outdoor grill.

Choosing the right chicken cuts, preparing them properly, and seasoning them well are essential steps in achieving delicious grilled chicken in an air fryer. Take the time to defrost and pat dry the chicken, trim excess fat, and consider marinating the chicken for added flavor.

Preheating your air fryer ensures that the chicken cooks evenly, while monitoring the cooking time and using a meat thermometer guarantees that it’s perfectly cooked. Remember to flip the chicken halfway through for even browning.

Implementing tips like avoiding overcrowding, basting with sauce, and letting the chicken rest before serving will elevate the taste and presentation of your grilled chicken.

When it’s time to serve your grilled chicken, get creative with garnishes and consider pairing it with delicious sides, sauces, or using it in wraps and sandwiches. Leftover grilled chicken can be repurposed into various dishes, ensuring that you can enjoy its flavors in multiple ways.

Now that you have the knowledge and techniques to grill chicken in an air fryer, you can experience the joy of perfectly grilled chicken at any time. So don’t hesitate to try out this convenient and flavorful cooking method, and delight your family and friends with mouthwatering grilled chicken right from your own kitchen.

Happy grilling!

Frequently Asked Questions about How To Grill Chicken In Air Fryer

Can I use a marinade when grilling chicken in an air fryer?

Yes, you can definitely use a marinade when grilling chicken in an air fryer. However, it’s important to pat the chicken dry before placing it in the air fryer to ensure it cooks evenly and gets that crispy exterior.
What is the ideal temperature and cooking time for grilling chicken in an air fryer?

The ideal temperature for grilling chicken in an air fryer is around 360°F to 400°F. As for the cooking time, it typically takes about 20-25 minutes, but it’s important to check the internal temperature of the chicken to ensure it’s fully cooked.
Can I grill frozen chicken in an air fryer?

Yes, you can grill frozen chicken in an air fryer, but it will require a longer cooking time. It’s best to thaw the chicken first for more even cooking, but if you’re short on time, you can still achieve delicious results with frozen chicken.
How do I prevent the chicken from drying out when grilling in an air fryer?

To prevent the chicken from drying out, you can brush it with a little oil before grilling and avoid overcooking. You can also use a meat thermometer to check the internal temperature and remove the chicken from the air fryer once it reaches 165°F.
What are some delicious seasoning options for grilled chicken in an air fryer?

There are endless seasoning options for grilled chicken in an air fryer, such as garlic powder, paprika, cumin, Italian seasoning, or a simple salt and pepper mix. You can also experiment with different marinades and sauces to add flavor to your grilled chicken.

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