Breaded Air Fryer Chicken

5 from 210 votes

This Breaded Air Fryer Chicken is a healthier alternative to fried chicken. It's made with less oil, so it has less fat/calories but is still juicy & tender

This post may contain affiliate links. Please read our disclosure policy.

This recipe for Breaded Air Fryer Chicken guarantees perfect results every time. It is easy to make and is a great healthy weeknight meal. Air Fryer chicken breast is crispy and succulent, it’s the best way to fry chicken! Lower in fat and calories, fried chicken in an air fryer is now my go to!

Air fryer chicken served with a green salad
Want to save this recipe?
Just type your email below and I’ll send it to you. And as a bonus you’ll get delicious new recipes from me!

The first thing I made with my new air fryer was air fryer potatoes! And the second thing I made was this breaded air fryer chicken. I think those are two essential recipes that most people test out first in an air fryer. Once I tested both and realized how flavorful and easy the recipes were, the air fryer was my new BFF. If you just bought an air fryer and looking for beginning recipes to get you started, start with these two!

You can do straight air fryer chicken if you wanted to, but I think that tastes better on a skillet cooked on the stovetop. But breading the chicken and air frying it creates a golden crisp and very juicy flavorful chicken. It tastes like healthy fried chicken. I used very thinly sliced chicken breast, so these were done in minutes and pair so well with a salad!

What is an Air Fryer?

As the name suggests an air fryer uses air to “fry” food. It’s a kitchen appliance that basically cooks food by using Rapid Air Technology. Think of hot air circulating really fast around a metal mesh cooking basket that contains your food. Because of this speed and hot air combination, an air fryer requires little or no oil. But the end result still gives you that crispy “fried” like food.

Is air fried chicken healthy?

The whole concept of an air fryer is fast-circulating air at very high temperatures. In this process, the moisture from the outside of the chicken gets evaporated, creating a crisp crust. So you get the texture of fried food without frying the chicken in a whole pan of oil.

This way you’ll make chicken healthier because it will have less fat and less calories from not using much oil for cooking. Just like oven baked chicken is healthy, air fried chicken is healthy – of course as part of an overall balanced diet.

How to make breaded air fryer chicken breast

Traditionally, you can bread chicken by dredging it in flour, eggs and breadcrumbs. I made this a little healthier by skipping the flour and eggs. Instead I start with thinly sliced chicken breasts, spray them with olive oil, and then dredge them in seasoned breadcrumbs. The oil helps the breadcrumbs stick to the chicken and create that crisp exterior.

Make sure to cover it completely, which will seal in the moisture and keep the chicken juicy.

Thinly sliced breaded chicken breasts

Many people will ask “how long do I cook chicken in the air fryer?” This will depend on the thickness and cut of the chicken, along with whether or not it has skin. Chicken thighs with skin will take the longest, up to 30 minutes. Chicken tenders without skin will only take 10-15 minutes.

These super thinly sliced chicken breasts (1about ¼ inch thick) only take 9-12 minutes. So they are the easiest and fastest to cook! As always, you can check that the internal temperature of the chicken breast reaches 165°F. I cooked mine in the NuWave air fryer (affiliate link).

Breaded chicken in the air fryer basket after cooking

While I coated the chicken with cooking spray before adding the breadcrumbs, it’s not necessary to also spray with oil on the outside. I tested two with oil (top pictured) and two without oil (bottom pictured). And they pretty much tasted the same. But the one with oil just had a more golden color.

4 thinly sliced air fryer chicken after cooking - showing with and without oil

I love how easy this recipe is in the air fryer and how versatile it is for meals. The texture is similar to a Schnitzel, so don’t expect KFC chicken haha. You can eat it with a side of rice and veggies, throw it into a large salad or next to a side salad or even cut it up and add to sandwiches/wraps. My kids absolutely love this recipe and just eat it straight up with ketchup.

Tips for making fried chicken in an air fryer

  • Adjust temperature setting according to your air fryer. There are many brands and models of air fryers so they all differ in their settings. You may even find that following my exact temperature and time may not be right for your specific air fryer. So use this as a suggestion and tweak to your own.
  • Don’t overcrowd the basket. It’s tempting to throw in a lot of pieces of chicken in there at once. But if you overcrowd the basket and the chicken overlap, you may end up creating a steaming effect instead of crisping effect. If you run out of space, you can also place the chicken on the walls of the air fryer, which works pretty well.
  • Flip the chicken halfway through. The air will circulate all around the chicken, but you’ll get more even crispiness if you flip the chicken halfway.

Frequently Asked Questions

Do air fryers really work?

I’m pretty sure the results speak for themselves!  Look how golden brown the breaded chicken breast is! I also love how easy and mess free it is!

Can you cook frozen chicken in an air fryer?

The good news is, that yes, you can cook frozen chicken in the air fryer! You will need to add between 5 to 12 minutes extra cooking time, depending on how thick your chicken is.

What kind of oil do you use in air fryers?

You can use any kind of grilling or frying oil in an air fryer, as well as animal fat. I like to use avocado oil as it has a high smoke point. Do not use a cold pressed oil, as this can burn at a high temperature.

Plated breaded air fryer chicken breasts served with a side salad

Making air fryer chicken is so easy. It’s a healthier way to enjoy crispy juicy chicken without all the calories and fat of traditional fried chicken. Plus it takes barely 10 minutes in the air fryer, and the result is tender flavorful chicken that takes less time than cooking it in the oven or even stovetop.

For more air fryer recipes:

And for more healthy chicken recipes:

If you’ve tried this healthy-ish feel good Breaded Air Fryer Chicken recipe or any other recipe on FeelGoodFoodie, then don’t forget to rate the recipe and leave me a comment below! I would love to hear about your experience making it. And if you snapped some shots of it, share it with me on Instagram so I can repost on my stories!

order MY book

The Feel Good Foodie Cookbook is now available everywhere books are sold!

Breaded Air Fryer Chicken

This Breaded Air Fryer Chicken is a healthier alternative to fried chicken. It’s made with less oil, so it has less fat/calories but is still juicy & tender
5 from 210 votes
Servings 4 servings
Course Entree
Calories 221
Prep Time 10 minutes
Cook Time 15 minutes
Total Time 25 minutes
Email This Recipe
Enter your email and I’ll send this directly to you. Plus you’ll get new recipes from me every week!



  • Preheat the air fryer to 390°F.
  • In a medium bowl, mix the breadcrumbs with oregano, paprika and garlic powder until well combined.
  • Spray the chicken with cooking spray, then dredge in the breadcrumbs mixture. Shake off excess breading. Repeat for the remaining chicken.
  • Spray the air fryer pan with cooking spray. Then spray the outside of the breaded chicken with cooking spray, if desired. Place the chicken in the basket of the air fryer, without over crowding the pan. You may need to work in batches.
  • Cook 5 minutes. Turn chicken and spray with additional cooking spray; cook until chicken is golden brown, about 4-7 more minutes. Cook time will depend on the size and thickness of your chicken breasts.
  • Remove and enjoy immediately with a side salad, if desired.


Storage: Store any leftovers in an airtight container. They will last about 3-4 days in the fridge. To reheat, just place in the airfryer at 360°F for 2-3 minutes until heated through and crispy. You can also reheat in the microwave but the chicken won’t retain its crispy texture that way.
Make Ahead Tips: To make the recipe even faster, you can assemble the breading ahead of time or use seasoned breadcrumbs
Substitutes: For best results, follow the recipe as is. However you can switch out the spices if you’d like. You can also use panko breadcrumbs instead of traditional breadcrumbs.
Equipment: I just bought the NuWave air fryer a couple months ago and I used this to make this recipe and many more recipes. It’s easy to use with guides on the appliance, easy to clean up and I’ve been very happy with the results!
* Please note the nutrition label does not include any dip or sauce.


Calories: 221kcal, Carbohydrates: 5g, Protein: 37g, Fat: 4g, Saturated Fat: 1g, Cholesterol: 108mg, Sodium: 246mg, Potassium: 642mg, Vitamin A: 65IU, Vitamin C: 2.1mg, Calcium: 21mg, Iron: 1mg

Nutrition information provided is an estimate. It will vary based on cooking method and specific ingredients used.

Cuisine American
Course: Entree
5 from 210 votes (197 ratings without comment)

Rate and comment

Recipe Rating


  1. Jasmina Donners says:

    Hi! I just made this with my ninja air fryer on its virgin voyage together with your recipe for roast potato and they w
    Both were super delicious! Thanks for the great recipes! Greetings Sweden

    1. Yumna J. says:

      Thank you so much!! So glad you enjoyed both recipes!

    2. Casey says:

      Hello, I have a ninja airfryer and wanting to make this, what temp did you cook it on and how long for? 🥰

  2. Linda Holland says:

    I had a box of turkey stuffing mix leftover from Christmas. I put it in the blender and made bread crumbs. The chicken turned out fantastic.

    1. Yumna J. says:

      Love this! Such a creative idea, thanks for sharing!

  3. Dennis Sweatt says:

    I was good with your article until you wrote, “Sunflower, vegetable and canola are all solid choices.”
    Seed oils are cancer-causing and linked to poor gene expression.

    1. Yumna Jawad says:

      Thank you for pointing that out! This recipe was written a few years ago, so we’ve updated it to reflect what oil we suggest based on what we know now.

  4. Lori says:

    Hello! I have some frozen cutlets already prepared, so I will try this out tomorrow! Mine might be about 1/2in thick, so it should be fine as long as I adjust the cooking time? I might try it out dipping the chicken in eggs too thank you!

    1. Yumna Jawad says:

      Can’t wait for you to try it! Yes, it should be fine – you can also use a thermometer to make sure it’s fully cooked throughout.

  5. Gilbert Broskey says:

    Loved it!!! Used the breasts for chicken Parm. Everyone loves it! Thanks so much for posting.

    1. Yumna Jawad says:

      Yay!! That’s so great to hear! You’re welcome!

  6. Monika Wendehorst says:

    We had it for dinner today and I got two thumbs up from my husband.

  7. Emily says:

    Best breaded chicken ever

    1. Yumna J. says:

      Thank you so much!

  8. Margaret Carmen says:

    This looks so good! I will definitely add this to my repertoire of air fryer recipes. I think your suggestion to spray the outside with oil before cooking makes perfect sense. That will guarantee that your chicken gets crisp and develops good color.

    1. Yumna J. says:

      Yay! Let me know what you think when you give this a try!

See All Comments