Air Fryer Chicken Nuggets

These Crispy Air Fryer Chicken Nuggets are perfectly seasoned and deliciously tender. Serve with ranch dressing, ketchup, marinara or your favorite barbecue sauce.

air fryer basket with crispy chicken nuggets

I have been late hopping onto the air fryer train, but glad I did!

Frozen chicken nuggets was one of my children’s go to meal when they were younger and occasionally it was ours as well on a busy day. Eventually, I began baking them at home and soon became an adult favorite.

Air fryer comes in handy when you want to make them in a hurry or don’t want to turn on the oven. Air fryer cooks food by circulating hot air around, like a convection oven. It is faster and a great option for folks who do not have access to an oven.

Air fryer Chicken Nuggets –

  • Crispy
  • Tender
  • Well seasoned
  • Kid friendly
  • Healthier
  • Made with real ingredients

Main ingredients:

Chicken – Chicken thighs, but boneless, skinless breasts can be substituted. Cut one pound chicken breast into 1/2 inch strips and then cut each into 2 to 3 nuggets.

Egg – Helps in binding the crust

All purpose flour – Just one tablespoon for binding

Panko breadcrumbs – Gives a light, airy crispy coating (the secret to a crispy air fryer chicken nuggets)

Parmesan – Parmesan gives a wonderful salty, nutty flavor to the chicken

Seasonings – A combination of salt, pepper, red pepper flakes and dried parsley.

Air fryer chicken nuggets served on a rectangular platter with small bowls of ketchup and ranch for dipping

How do you cook chicken nuggets in the air fryer?

Trim any fat from boneless, skinless chicken thighs and then cut them into 1 inch pieces. Toss cubed chicken thighs with lightly beaten egg, salt and pepper. Stir in a tablespoon of flour. Dredge each chicken nugget with a mixture of panko, parmesan, red pepper flakes and dried parsley.

Place in a greased air fryer basket, cook at 400 degrees for 8 minutes, until cooked through.

Tips and tricks

Dredge well – Using hands or tongs, make sure to press bread crumb mixture well on all sides of the chicken nuggets to help it adhere well and give a thicker coating.

Do not over crowd the air fryer basket – Place airfryer chicken nuggets in a single layer, and leave a little space around for the air to circulate, which helps in crisping the nugget. OVER CROWDING will NOT make a crispy chicken nugget.

Make it gluten free – Use gluten free flour and gluten free Panko bread crumbs.

Panko breadcrumbs – If you don’t have panko, then regular regular bread crumbs may be used (but, the nuggets won’t get as crispy).

ParmesanFinely shredded parmesan cheese is highly recommended. If you are using pre shredded cheese (that is very coarse), then process for a few seconds in a small food processor or dry grinder.

Serving suggestions

Serve them with ranch dressing, marinara sauce, ketchup or your favorite barbecue sauce.

Make it a meal – Serve these marinara sauce, sweet potato fries and steamed broccoli for a healthy weeknight meal that kids and adults will enjoy.

Storage and Re heating

Leftover nuggets can be refrigerated for up to 3 days or frozen for up to 2 months.

From the refrigerator – Simple microwave them for couple of minutes to quickly re heat (the breading will be soft). However, to revive the crispy coating, re heat them in the air fryer for 5 minutes or bake at 375 degree oven for 10 minutes.

From the freezer – Placed in zip lock bag, tightly sealed and frozen for up to a month. Simple microwave them for few minutes to quickly re heat (the breading will be soft). However, to revive the crispy coating, Re heat them in the air fryer for 10 to 15 minutes or bake at 375 degree oven for 15 to 20 minutes.

How long does it take to air fry chicken nuggets?

Chicken nuggets takes about 8 minutes in a 400 degree air fryer.

What is an air fryer?

As the name indicates, an air fryer fries food by circulating hot air around, more like a convection oven. It is a counter top appliance that cooks food faster, browns evenly and with almost no oil when compared to the traditional deep frying methods.

More Air Fryer Recipes:

Air Fryer Broccoli

a rectangular platter with crispy breaded chicken nuggets along with small bowls of ketchup and ranch

More kid friendly recipes:

Garlic Bread Grilled Cheese Sandwich

Ramen Alfredo Noodles

5 Ingredient Egg Fried Rice

Garlic Butter Shrimp and Rice

Soft Garlic Knots 

Baked Spaghetti and Meatball Cups

or more lunch for kids

Yield: 4

Air Fryer Chicken nuggets

Air Fryer Chicken nuggets

These Crispy Air Fryer Chicken Nuggets are perfectly seasoned and deliciously tender. Serve with ranch dressing, ketchup, marinara or your favorite barbecue sauce.

Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 16 minutes
Total Time 31 minutes

Ingredients

Group-1

  • 1 pound boneless, skinless chicken thighs  
  • 1 large egg, lightly beaten
  • 1/4 teaspoon salt or to taste
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 1 tablespoon all purpose flour

Group-2

Equipments used

Instructions

1. Trim excess fat from chicken and then cut into 1-inch pieces. Mix chicken along with lightly beaten egg, salt and pepper together in a medium bowl, until well combined.

2. Sprinkle all purpose flour on top and toss around to coat the chicken and keep aside.

3. In a shallow bowl, stir together panko, parmesan, red pepper flakes and pasrley (if using).

4. Working with one chicken piece at a time, dredge into the panko-parm mixture, turning and pressing on all sides to coat evenly and place on a plate (try to to pack the breadcrumbs well on the chicken).

5. Pre heat air fryer at 400°F for 8 minutes. Place half the chicken nuggets into the air fryer basket (spacing evenly), spray a generous coating of non-stick cooking spray.

6. Cook, flipping halfway, spray with non-stick cooking spray and finish cooking, until cooked through.

7. Transfer chicken nuggets and repeat process with the remaining batch.

8. Serve chicken nuggets hot with ranch dressing, ketchup, marinara or your favorite barbecue sauce.

Notes

To use boneless, skinless chicken breast - Cut one pound chicken breast into 1/2 inch strips and then cut each into 2 to 3 nuggets.

Dredge well – Using hands or tongs, make sure to press bread crumb mixture well on all sides of the chicken nuggets to help it adhere well and give a thicker coating.

Do not over crowd the air fryer basket – Place chicken nuggets in a single layer, and leave a little space around for the air to circulate, which helps in crisping the nugget. OVER CROWDING will NOT make a crispy chicken nugget.Make it gluten free – Use gluten free flour and gluten free Panko bread crumbs.

Panko breadcrumbs – If you don’t have panko, then regular regular bread crumbs may be used (but, the nuggets won’t get as crispy).

Parmesan – Finely shredded parmesan cheese is highly recommended. If you are using pre shredded cheese (that is very coarse), then process for a few seconds in a small food processor or dry grinder.

Nutrition Information:

Yield:

4

Serving Size:

1

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 317Total Fat: 14gSaturated Fat: 5gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 8gCholesterol: 196mgSodium: 675mgCarbohydrates: 13gFiber: 1gSugar: 1gProtein: 35g

I am not a certified dietician or nutritionist. You are ultimately responsible for all decisions pertaining to your health. This information is provided as a courtesy and should not be construed as a guarantee. This information is a product of online calculator such as Nutrifox.com.. Although Kitchen at Hoskins attempts to provide accurate nutritional information, these figures should be considered estimates. Varying factors such as product types or brands purchased, natural fluctuations in fresh produce, and the way ingredients are processed change the nutritional information in any given recipe. Furthermore, different online calculators provide different results depending on their fact sources and algorithms. Under no circumstances will Kitchen at Hoskins be responsible for any loss or damage resulting for your reliance on the nutritional information. To obtain the most accurate representation of the nutritional information in a given recipe, you should calculate the nutritional information with the actual ingredients used in your recipe, using your preferred nutrition calculator. You are solely responsible for ensuring that any nutritional information provided is accurate, complete, and useful.

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