Crispy air fryer fried chicken breast is a Kentucky Fried Chicken copycat recipe you’ll love. Tender meat with light crunchy breading outside.
If you love KFC you’ll love this air fryer fried chicken breast recipe! Using boneless skinless pieces this easy air fryer recipe will remind you of your favorite fast food joint every single time. (affiliate links present, originally published 5/21)
Fried Chicken Breast in Air Fryer
Years ago we made this copycat Kentucky Fried Chicken recipe in the oven and yes that was fantastic. BUT now that I have this magic hot air machine I can make this even faster and not heat up my kitchen.
It’s best to get boneless skinless so the flavors really sink in if you ask me. Add lots of seasonings into the mix and they’ll knock your socks off. You may never go to “that fast food joint” again after this. 😉
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Fried Air Fryer Chicken Breast
If you’ve ever made any sort of fried chicken you know that it is best to soak it for a while in buttermilk first. Not only does it give it a bit more flavor but it tenderizes the meat too.
An easy step to do and makes a big difference. Beyond that it is all about the seasonings in your flour coating mixture. If you have your own “go to” mix then by all means use that. There is a recipe for this one below though.
Fried Chicken Seasoning
You can buy this boxed mix too if you want to go super simple. It doesn’t take long to make what we list below in the printable recipe card.
KFC Chicken Breast
All you need to throw this together you already have in your pantry though I am sure. As far as seasonings go in your flour use what you like but the mixture below is close to your favorite fast food joint.
- All purpose flour
- Celery seeds
- Salt and pepper
- Garlic powder and onion powder is good too if you have it
- Ground ginger
And a bowl of course. Give it a good 20 minutes in the fridge submerged in the last ingredient. Then throw the coating together and roll each piece around. Shake off excess before adding it into the basket.
Air fryer fried chicken breast with flour
Oh yeah, do NOT forget to spray that basket first! You will surely regret it if you don’t. The coating is a bit sticky and wet as opposed to making something like our air fryer popcorn chicken.
Generally I don’t recommend anything that is wet sorta’ speak. Tempura batter definitely is a hot mess but with the flour this is a good in between.
If you love the flavors and texture of this you could easily use chicken thighs as well. Those tend to be a bit thinner so timing may decrease by 2 minutes or so.
Is air frying chicken breast healthy?
For sure! Since you only need a light spritz of oil to get the outside crispy it is far better for you than deep frying. BUT with the benefits of air frying is that you get that same great texture on the outside still.
I kid you not if you haven’t tried this method of cooking crispy chicken it will be a game changer for you too. Betting you’ll never bake it or fry it ever again and wonder why you didn’t try this sooner.
How long do you air fry boneless skinless chicken breast?
About 8 minutes depending on how thick they are. I always suggest medium sizes but if they are quite large just slice in half to create chicken cutlets.
- Add flour and seasonings together in a bowl, mix.
In another bowl whisk egg and buttermilk together. Put chicken pieces in, submerge and let them sit in it for 20 minutes.
- Dredge chicken in flour mixture one at a time. Place on a piece of parchment paper to sit for an additional 15 minutes.
- Preheat air fryer to 380 degrees F for 5 minutes. Spray air fryer basket with non stick cooking spray and lay chicken down in one single layer. Spray tops with olive oil spray and close basket.
- Then cook for 8 minutes total cook time. Flip the chicken and spray with olive oil again after 4 minutes.
- Air fryer chicken breast timing will vary depending on thickness of your meat and how brown you want outsides.
What temp should chicken breast be?
Check internal temperature to ensure middle of thickest piece is 165 F. You don’t want to overcook them, they’re tender and juicy right at that temp. Remove and serve immediately.
How to Fry Chicken in Air Fryer
Looking to cook other pieces of the bird too? We have them all!! From air fryer chicken wings with dry rub to air fryer frozen chicken breast you can find directions on our site.
Remember that you can just rinse, dry, spray oil and sprinkle some seasonings on top to make it. If you are following a low carb keto diet that may be the best option. If you’re going all out though for bold flavors this will be your next family favorite!
- Frozen chicken wings in air fryer make for a great side dish or main dinner really.
- Cooking chicken breast in Ninja Foodi with bbq sauce is easy as ever. I love that pot I tell you.
- If you want a really cheap meal you could try air fryer leg quarters. These get overlooked a lot but really you get tons of meat and the brown meat has a lot more flavor than white really.
Of course chicken legs are my kids’ favorite and yours probably too. You can make them the traditional way with packaged poultry or if you have heard of mock chicken legs we talk about those here too.
Air fryer fried chicken breast buttermilk
As far as nutritional information, calories and saturated fat, that is going to vary depending on the cuts you chose. Refer to the package for that and then add what it says on the back of the buttermilk container etc.
Allow the meat to reach room temperature. Then wrap it in foil and store in the fridge for up to a few days.
The best way to reheat chicken in air fryer is listed here. Microwave won’t cut it y’all.
Many times I will serve this with white rice, or just a few different sauces. Fry sauce and bang bang sauce are probably our favorite followed by this mustard dip.
For another idea, we have made air fryer fried chicken thighs as well. Similar to these but with a different cut but just as delicious.
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Buttermilk Fried Chicken Air Fryer
Air Fryer Fried Chicken Breast
- 2 lbs chicken breast boneless, cut into 2" chunks
- 2 c all purpose flour
- 1 tsp celery seeds
- 1 tsp pepper
- 1 tsp garlic powder
- 1 tsp ginger ground
- 1 tsp salt
- 1 tsp paprika
- 1/2 tsp thyme
- 1/2 tsp basil
- 1/2 tsp oregano
- 1/2 tsp Lawrys
- 1 c buttermilk
- 1 egg
- olive oil spray
- Add flour and seasonings together in a bowl, mix well.
- In another bowl whisk egg and buttermilk together. Put chicken pieces inside, submerge and sit for 20 minutes.
- Dredge chicken in flour mixture one at a time. Then place on a piece of parchment paper to sit for another 15 minutes.
- Preheat air fryer to 380 degrees F for 5 minutes. Spray basket with non stick spray and lay chicken down in one single layer. Spray tops with olive oil spray and close basket.
- Cook for 4 minutes, flip spray with olive oil spray and cook for another 4 minutes. * Timing will vary depending on thickness of meat and how brown you want outsides.
- Check internal temp to ensure middle of thickest piece is 165 F or higher. Remove and serve immediately.
Thursday 20th of May 2021
Rather than spray the basket with non-stick spray, has anyone used aluminum foil to line the air-fryer basket?
Saturday 10th of July 2021
I haven't used aluminum foil, but I have used parchment paper successfully.