Some days cooking a massive feast with 100 elaborate elements is the only thing I want to do, others I would rather crawl in a hole than fix dinner! That is why I am so grateful to the inventor of the air fryer. This machine is a countertop wonder.
I used to deep fry things on my stove, and the mess would be apocalyptic; for days I would clean grease off the counters and stove, but now I can have freshly fried food in minutes with no mess. It’s a miracle!
When my family got our air fryer there was one weeknight staple we could not wait to use it for, chicken fries! These fun sticks of poultry are sure to please, and can be whipped up in the air fryer in just a few minutes! The best part of chicken fries is the dipping sauce, so be sure to have plenty of yummy sauces on hand for this family favorite!
Can You Cook Chicken Fries in an Air Fryer?
Yes, you can cook chicken fries in an air fryer, whether you’re cooking from frozen or fresh, the air fryer is bound to save you time, both in preparation and cooking.
The air fryer is such a great kitchen tool because it cuts the cooking time of many fried foods. There is little to no prep involved in air frying, especially frozen products, so you can have food on the table in no time.
The wild and brilliant thing about the air fryer is how it cooks. An air fryer doesn’t use deep fat frying to cook, but rather convection cooking to evenly circulate heat creating a perfect oven-like fry every time.
This type of “frying” can cut down on the amount of oil or fat absorbed by the food, making this a healthier way to fry!
Frozen Chicken vs Fresh Chicken Fries
Whether you’re cutting open a bag of chicken fries or making your own, this is a great way to eat fried chicken! They’re easy to grab, share, and dip making them a great appetizer or easy family dinner. You can even mix them up with potato fries and have a fun mini-fried food smorgasbord.
Possibly the best part of chicken fries is their dippability. Chicken fries were made to dip, and there are so many awesome ways to customize your fries with sauce! Serve them in a bowl with cheese curds and gravy like crazy poutine.
Put out small cups of all the dips you have on hand, then have your family vote for the best one!
No matter how you eat them, there is just something fun about chicken fries, and making them in the air fryer just makes it easier!
Let’s face it, we’ve all been starving and saved by a bag of frozen chicken before! It is just so easy to make frozen chicken, and we all need an easy cooking night once in a while! Frozen chicken fries are available in just about every grocer’s freezer section. Some brands even come in fun seasoning mixes like Nashville Hot. The frozen option is an awesome weeknight or quick lunch choice!
How to Cook Frozen Chicken Fries in an Air Fryer
Making fried chicken can seem like a very tall order, but making chicken fries in an air fryer is the perfect introduction to the world of breaded chicken! The prep for fresh chicken fries is very simple. You will be impressed with how quickly you can have scratch-made chicken fries ready with the assistance of an air fryer!
No matter which you choose, frozen or fresh, you cannot go wrong cooking these delightfully fun fries in the air fryer.
First, remove your air fryer’s basket. Set the air fryer to 400 °F or 205 °C, spray the basket with non-stick spray, then cut open the frozen chicken fries. Arrange them in a single layer in the air fryer’s basket, and cook for four minutes.
Take the basket out and shake the fries, then continue cooking the fries for another four minutes, or until beautifully brown and crispy. Allow the chicken fries to cool for a couple of minutes before serving them warm.
How to Cook Fresh Chicken Fries in an Air Fryer
To make fresh chicken fries in the air fryer you will need to start by prepping the chicken. One chicken breast will make enough fries for two people. Cut roughly six-ounce chicken breasts into strips about ¼ inch thick.
Get ready to bread by beating one egg in a bowl, and set it aside; in a separate bowl mix flour, salt, pepper, and any other dry spices you’d like to add, set it aside and prepare the third bowl with panko. Dredge your chicken fries in flour, then egg, then panko, and continue this process until every strip is breaded.
Once the fries are prepped the process is very similar to cooking frozen chicken fries. Set the air fryer to 400 °F or 205 °C, remove your air fryer’s basket and spray it with non-stick spray.
Arrange your fresh chicken fries in a single layer at the bottom of the basket, and cook for four minutes, flip the fries, and continue cooking for another four minutes, or until golden brown.
Serving Air Fried Chicken Fries
Deliciously light and crispy chicken fries are amazing on their own, but there are so many great ideas for how to serve them.
Try making your own dry ranch mix for chicken fries. Combine dill, garlic, parsley, onion, salt, and pepper in a mixing bowl. Toss the hot chicken fries in the spice blend for an extra flavor punch.
Making ketchup is way easier than it may seem, so step up your dipping game with homemade ketchup! In a medium pot, cook down tomato paste, vinegar, mustard seed, onion, garlic, sugar, salt, pepper, and whatever extra spices you want to add for crunchiness.
Let the mixture simmer and combine until the flavor of the cooked ketchup is exactly how you like it. The flavor develops as you cook, so adjust the simmer time to your taste, and get ready for the best chicken fry sauce you’ve ever had!
You can also cook chicken fries and frozen chicken together in your air fryer if you have space.
Although frozen chicken fries will take longer than fresh ones however both always turn out great in the air fryer. The air fryer also comes in handy when you forget to thaw your chicken, and it is absolutely safe compared to thawing on your kitchen counter.
Featured image credits: Simple Air Fryer.
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