Air fryer chicken breast is perfectly cooked, tender and juicy each and every time. This versatile chicken recipe can be used for fresh or frozen chicken and you can have it on your table in under 20 minutes.

Air Fryer Chicken Breast in air fryer

Nothing is worse than dry, tough chicken breast. Cooking your chicken breast in the air fryer takes the guess work out of making the perfect chicken. Less than 20 minutes in the air fryer will gives you consistently tender, moist, chicken every time.

This recipe for chicken breasts in the air fryer with no breading is pretty basic, just a few simple spices to bring out the natural flavor of the chicken. That makes it perfect for pairing for just about any sides. You can keep it keto and serve it with a side of cheesy baked zucchini casserole, or some cauliflower mash, or you can make an easy endive salad, or some foil packet garlic potatoes.

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ingredients to make Air Fryer Chicken Breast

What You’ll Need

  • Chicken breasts – Look for chicken breasts around the same weight and thickness. If one end of the chicken is thicker than the other use a mallet or a heavy ladle to pound the thick side down so they are a consistent thickness all the way through.
  • Olive oil or cooking spray – While oil isn’t required to cook chicken in the air fryer it does help the spice rub to stick to the chicken as it cooks. Just a very light coating is all you need.
  • Seasonings – This recipe uses a blend of Italian seasoning, garlic powder, onion powder, paprika and salt and pepper to bring out the flavor of the chicken.
Air Fryer Chicken Breast made with raw chicken breast

How to Make It

Prepare the chicken. First, make sure the chicken is the same thickness from end to end by pounding the thick side if needed. You can do this by covering the chicken with a piece of plastic wrap and then using a mallet or heavy ladle to pound out the thicker end of the chicken. This consistency in the thickness will help the chicken to cook evenly.

Make sure to pat it dry with a paper towel and then brush just a bit of olive oil on the chicken, or lightly spray it with some cooking spray.

Make the rub. Put the seasonings in a small bowl and stir them together with a fork so they are well combined. Then sprinkle the seasoning over the chicken and rub it in so it coats the chicken on all sides. Make sure to wash your hands thoroughly after you are done!

Arrange it in the air fryer. Put the chicken in the basket of the air fryer. I love this air fryer for consistent results. If you have an air fryer oven you can put them on the racks. Make sure to arrange the meat so it’s not touching in the fryer. You might have to cook it in batches to do this.

Cook it. Cook it at 375 degrees F for 8 minutes for an 8 ounce breast. Then flip it over and cook for another 8 minutes. If they are smaller than 8 ounces, they won’t need as much time. To make sure they are cooked through, take the temperature in the thickest part of the meat with an instant read thermometer. It should read 165 degrees F. If the thermometer reads under 165, cook for an additional 1-2 minutes and recheck.

Let it rest. When they reach 165 degrees F , remove them from the fryer. Let the meat rest for about 5 minutes so the juices have a chance to redistribute throughout. Then serve and enjoy.

how to make Air Fryer Chicken Breast
How Long Do I Cook Chicken in the Air Fryer?

Fresh: Flip halfway through the cook time for all of these
6 ounce chicken breast = 12 minutes at 375 degrees F.
8 ounce chicken breast = 16 minutes at 375 degrees F.
10 ounce chicken breast = 20 minutes at 375 degrees F.

Frozen: Flip halfway through the cook time for all of these
4 ounce chicken breast = 16 minutes at 375 degrees F.
6 ounce chicken breast = 20 minutes at 375 degrees F.
8 ounce chicken breast = 24 minutes at 375 degrees F.

For both fresh and frozen add an additional 4 minutes per 2 ounces of chicken.

Do I Need to Use Oil for Air Fryer Chicken Breasts?

You can skip the oil for this recipe if you want. However oil does help the rub stick to the chicken and adds a little more moisture.Air Fryer Chicken Breast made with frozen chicken breast

Can You Cook Frozen Chicken in the Air Fryer?

Yes, but you will have to adjust the cooking time and temperature. We tested unthawed, store bought frozen chicken breasts which were 4 ounces each. We cooked them at 375 degrees F for 8 minutes, then added the seasoning, flipped them over and continues to cook for another 8 minutes. They turned out perfect.

If you are using fresh chicken breast that you bought and then stored in the freezer I highly recommend pounding out the chicken to make sure it is an even thickness BEFORE freezing. Then you can remove the frozen meat and place it directly in the air fryer without needing to thaw it.

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Servings: 4
Prep Time: 10 mins
Cook Time: 16 mins
Total Time: 26 mins

Air Fryer Chicken Breast

Air fryer chicken breast is perfectly cooked, tender and juicy each and every time. This versatile chicken recipe can be used for fresh or frozen chicken and you can have it on your table in under 20 minutes.

Ingredients

Instructions

  • Pound the thicker end of the chicken to make both sides leveled out so they cook evenly. If it is an extremely thick chicken breast you should cut it in half width-wise to create two thinner breasts. Pat dry if needed to remove any excess moisture.
  • Combine the seasonings in a small bowl.
  • Brush or spray the chicken with the olive oil or cooking spray, then rub the spice mix into both sides.
  • Place the chicken in the air fryer basket.Do not overcrowd the basket. Make sure your chicken is in a single layer. This may require cooking it in two batches.
  • Cook at 375 degrees F for 8 minutes. Then flip the chicken breast over and cook for another 8 minutes. Smaller chicken breasts need less time see note below.
  • Take the temperature in the thickest part with an instant read thermometer. The internal temperature should read about 165 degrees F. If it is below that, close the air fryer and cook for another 1-2 minutes before checking it again.
  • Once the internal temperature is 165 degrees F remove the chicken breast from the basket and allow to rest for 5 minutes before serving.

Notes

Fresh: Flip halfway through the cook time for all of these
6 ounce chicken breast = 12 minutes at 375 degrees F.
8 ounce chicken breast = 16 minutes at 375 degrees F.
10 ounce chicken breast = 20 minutes at 375 degrees F.
Frozen: Flip halfway through the cook time for all of these
4 ounce chicken breast = 16 minutes at 375 degrees F.
6 ounce chicken breast = 20 minutes at 375 degrees F.
8 ounce chicken breast = 24 minutes at 375 degrees F.
For both fresh and frozen add an additional 4 minutes per 2 ounces of chicken.

Nutrition

Serving: 1breast, Calories: 302kcal, Carbohydrates: 3g, Protein: 49g, Fat: 10g, Saturated Fat: 2g, Cholesterol: 145mg, Sodium: 846mg, Potassium: 887mg, Fiber: 1g, Sugar: 1g, Vitamin A: 560IU, Vitamin C: 3mg, Calcium: 23mg, Iron: 1mg
Nutrition Disclaimer: We are not certified nutritionists. Nutrition facts are an estimate and are provided as a courtesy. They are generated by an online API which recognizes ingredient names and amounts and makes calculations based on the serving size. Results may vary.
Author: Kat Jeter & Melinda Caldwell
Course: Main dish
Cuisine: American
Keyword: air fryer chicken breast, chicken in the air fryer