Air Fryer Chicken Nuggets – The Ultimate Guide

Chicken nuggets are a favorite food all over the world. The crispy crust, along with the rich chicken part, will make you irresistible. What could be better for busy people than knowing how to cook chicken nuggets in an air fryer?

Dive in this post, as we will give you full instructions in this post today!

Instant Vortex Plus 6 Quart

Prepare The Chicken

For homemade chicken nuggets, choosing high-quality chicken is the first step. It would help if you chose the chicken breast with thin, smooth skin, light yellow color. Keep in mind that fresh chicken has a rosy, bright color. Also, you can feel the smoothness and elasticity of the meat when you touch it.

After buying chicken, you must process it right away or keep it in the refrigerator to preserve it until it is ready to cook.

Subsequently, slice the chicken fillet thinly, chop it, or put it in a blender to save time. At this step, you should not grind the chicken too fine. Marinate your fresh chicken with 1 tbsp of salt, pepper, basil leaves, chili powder, and then put in the freezer for about 1.5 – 2 hours.

To prepare frozen chicken nuggets in air fryer, you only need to defrost them before putting them inside the air fryer.

Make The Batter

While waiting for the chicken to absorb the spices, home cooks should proceed to make the outside of the frozen chicken nuggets in Instant Pot air fryer.

  1. You should get a big bowl, put flour, tapioca flour, a little pepper, salt, and chili pepper, in turn, mix well with a spoon. Then add a little beer into this mixture to make the crust crispy and increase the dish’s attractiveness.
  2. Beat eggs with 100 ml of fresh milk in a separate bowl. The breadcrumbs are also poured into another separate plate.
  3. Put the flour mixture into a plastic bag or a plastic bowl with a lid, put the chicken pieces in, shake to make the flour adhere evenly to the chicken pieces. Following this, dip the chicken in egg and milk and then roll it in the breadcrumbs.
Instant Vortex Plus 10 Quart

How to Air fry chicken nuggets

So, how to cook chicken nuggets ? It’s pretty simple because the fryer will basically do all the work for you.

  1. First, preheat the oven to about 165 degrees F for 5 minutes so that the air fryer heats evenly on all sides. Pay attention not to put the chicken in initially because the oven heats up very quickly; when the surrounding air cools, the chicken will only cook outside and raw on the inside.
  2. Put the chicken on a grill, drizzle a little olive oil on the surface for a beautiful, glossy dish. In order for the popcorn chicken to be cooked, delicious, and golden evenly, do not put too many pieces in at once.
  3. How long to cook chicken nuggets in air fryer? – For each batch of chicken, fry at 165 degrees F for 7-8 minutes is enough. Remember not to leave it too long to avoid burning!
Frozen chicken nuggets air fryer
Frozen chicken nuggets air fryer

Related post: Air Fryer Quorn Meatless Nuggets

Make Cheese Sauce

It only takes 10 minutes to have a divine cheese sauce that you can enjoy with chicken nuggets air fryer.

You will need to prepare butter, flour, unsweetened fresh milk, and mozzarella cheese. 

  1. First, melt the butter in a pan over low heat.
  2.  Add flour and sauté thoroughly with butter for 2′ – 3′.
  3. When the mixture is evenly mixed, and there are no lumps, go ahead and add milk, salt, and a little paprika (if desired) and mix well. 
  4. Grate Cheddar cheese into the pan, leave for 2 minutes, and then turn off the heat.
  5. Stir continuously until the cheese melts and forms a smooth, creamy mixture, and you’re done.
  6. Marinara Sauce

Another popular side dish to go with frozen popcorn chicken in air fryer is ketchup.

All you need for this dish is peeled, thinly sliced garlic, tomatoes with some spices.

  1. First of all, heat a pan of olive oil, saute garlic until fragrant, pour one can of ketchup, and cook for 1 minute. 
  2. Add the chopped tomatoes, paprika, pepper, ground oregano, and salt and stir well. 
  3. Add a few basil leaves, let the sauce boil for about 15 minutes, 
  4. Take out the basil, add a little salt and pepper and turn off the heat.

Is Air Fried Chicken Nuggets Healthy?

Although delicious, we must inform you that air fryer frozen chicken nuggets are not good for your health.

To be more specific, the fat in the chicken will be heated and facilitate chemical reactions to occur continuously during the frying process, resulting in many oxidation products from the fat. Among them, it is possible to mention benzopyrene, which can cause cancer and increase the risk of diabetes.

In addition, the risk of aging is very high if you consume fried products too much. Please be mindful of the consumed amount of food to protect your health!

Check out : Instant Pot Omni vs Omni Plus vs Omni Pro Comparison & Reviews


Making air fryer chicken nuggets is easy, right? You can transform our basic recipe in many ways to create amazing dishes.

However, eating fried food is not healthy because the potential of obesity and heart disease are very high. You should only eat this dish once every few weeks.

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