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You’ll love this air fryer chicken thighs recipe that is ready to eat in as little as 20 minutes, with minimal prep. Making chicken thighs in the air fryer is very similar to air fryer chicken legs or chicken breast, and you can make them using bone-in thighs or boneless. Try them for an easy dinner or meal prep them for a healthy lunch.
Why You’ll Love This Air Fryer Chicken Thigh Recipe
- Flavorful, juicy chicken
- Perfectly crispy skin
- Just 5 minutes prep time
- Cooks in less than 20 minutes
- Healthy chicken dinner
Ingredients You’ll Need
This section explains how to choose the best ingredients for chicken thighs in an air fryer, what each one does in the recipe, and substitution options. For measurements, see the recipe card below.
- Chicken Thighs – For the best flavor, use bone-in chicken thighs with the skin on. Boneless chicken thighs would also work for this recipe, but the cook time would be much faster (see time recommendations below). If possible, choose chicken thighs that are similar in size, so that they cook at the same rate.
- Avocado Oil – Or olive oil.
- Spices – Sea salt, dried thyme leaves, smoked paprika, garlic powder, onion powder, and black pepper.
VARIATIONS: Try different seasoning blends!
Italian seasoning, lemon pepper seasoning, or Cajun seasoning are all delicious on air fryer bone-in chicken thighs. You could also use pork chop seasoning, which is equally great on chicken. If you use a seasoning blend that doesn’t contain salt, add about 1/2 teaspoon of salt per pound of bone-in thighs.
How To Cook Chicken Thighs In The Air Fryer
This section shows how to make air fryer chicken thighs with step-by-step photos and details about the technique, to help you visualize it. For full instructions, including amounts and temperatures, see the recipe card below.
- Season chicken. Place chicken thighs into a large bowl and drizzle with avocado oil. Sprinkle with salt, dried thyme, smoked paprika, garlic powder, onion powder, and black pepper. Mix to coat.
- Arrange. Place the chicken thighs in the air fryer basket in a single layer, cooking in batches if necessary to avoid crowding. (You want some space between the pieces.)
- Air fry. Cook the chicken in the air fryer, flipping halfway through cooking.
- Rest. Remove the basket and let the chicken rest for 5 minutes before serving, which lets the juices settle so that your chicken is more juicy.
Frequently Asked Questions
For perfect results every time, here are answers to the most common questions about cooking bone-in chicken thighs in the air fryer…
How Long To Cook Chicken Thighs In The Air Fryer?
Bone-in chicken thighs in the air fryer take about 15-20 minutes. Boneless thighs will take about 12-14 minutes.
What Temp To Cook Bone-In Chicken Thighs In The Air Fryer?
Cook chicken in an air fryer preheated to 400 degrees F.
Can You Cook Frozen Chicken Thighs In The Air Fryer?
Yes, you can air fry frozen chicken thighs. Cook time will take about 20-30 minutes, depending on the size of the thigh.
Can You Use This Method For Other Cuts Of Chicken?
Yes, this method will work for other cuts of chicken. You can also make air fryer chicken legs (or bone-in thighs) with garlic herb butter underneath the skin for even more flavor.
Tips For The Best Air Fryer Chicken Thighs
Follow these tips for the best air fried chicken thighs:
- Pat the chicken skin dry. Drying the chicken with a paper towel before seasoning ensures the chicken will get crispy.
- Don’t crowd the air fryer. Leave some room in between the chicken pieces to allow the skin to get crispy.
- Flip halfway through. Flipping the chicken helps it cook more evenly. It doesn’t really matter, though, if you place it skin side down first or skin side up.
- Use a meat thermometer. It ensures your meat is cooked perfectly. Cook to an internal temperature of at least 170 degrees F. (They are safe to eat at 165 degrees F, but cooking them to this higher temperature helps break down connective tissue, which will result in a juicier, more tender chicken thigh.)
- For leftovers: Store leftovers in refrigerator for 3-4 days.
- To reheat: Reheat chicken in the air fryer again (I find 350 works best for reheating), or in a 350 degree F oven.
- To freeze: Wrap chicken thighs tightly in plastic wrap to prevent freezer burn, place in an airtight container or freezer bag, and freeze for 2-3 months. Thaw overnight in the refrigerator.
What To Serve With Air Fryer Chicken Thighs
More Air Fryer Chicken Recipes
If you like this recipe, you might also like some of these other chicken recipes made in the air fryer:
Air Fryer Chicken Thighs Recipe
Air Fryer Chicken Thighs (Juicy & Crispy!)
For the juiciest chicken, make bone-in chicken thighs in the air fryer! This air fryer chicken thighs recipe makes an easy dinner in about 20 minutes.
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Tap on the times in the instructions below to start a kitchen timer while you cook.
Preheat the air fryer to 400 degrees F (204 degrees C).
Place the chicken thighs into a large bowl. Drizzle with avocado oil and mix to coat.
Season the chicken with salt, dried thyme, smoked paprika, garlic powder, onion powder, and black pepper. Mix again to coat.
Place the chicken thighs in the air fryer in a single layer, so that they are only minimally touching each other, if at all. (Do this in batches if needed; do not crowd the air fryer basket.)
Air fry chicken thighs for 15-20 minutes, turning after 10 minutes, until the internal temperature reaches at least 170 degrees F.
Remove the chicken from the air fryer and rest for 5 minutes before serving.
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Serving size: 1 chicken thigh
Nutrition facts are provided as a courtesy. Have questions about calculations or why you got a different result? Please see our nutrition policy.
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