This recipe for Air Fryer Bone-In Chicken Thighs is so easy and delicious. The skin on the chicken thighs gets super crispy, like a healthy fried chicken! You only need a few ingredients for this dish that takes less than 30 minutes to make.

air fried chicken served on a plate

One of the easiest recipe to make in the air fryer is this one for Bone-In Chicken Thighs. Try to find the ones that have the skin on for the most flavor and crispiness.

The air fryer creates enough hot air that circulates around the chicken and creates a “fried chicken” effect with no deep frying and hardly any oil! In fact, you could say that this recipe is a healthy, copycat version of KFC fried chicken.

This easy recipe is perfect for making and serving in a variety of ways. Let me show you how to make this simple recipe that is also low carb, paleo, Whole30, gluten-free, and dairy-free.

Key Ingredients

Bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs are the base of this healthy chicken recipe. You can find these in the meat section of most grocery stores. Both the bone and the skin help create a juicy, flavorful chicken that is anything but dry and boring! Chicken is an excellent lean source of protein and is on my clean eating food list.

Olive oil helps the skin get crispy and helps the seasonings stick to the chicken skin. See my list of the safest oils for cooking.

Garlic powder and salt add so much flavor. You can get creative and use your favorite seasonings.

Lemon juice adds an extra kick of flavor.

ingredients for air fryer chicken thighs

Recipe Steps

Step One

Gather your ingredients including your chicken, olive oil, garlic powder, salt, and a fresh lemon (or lemon juice). I like to use a very simple seasoning. Feel free to get creative and use whatever seasonings you like, such as black pepper or paprika.

Place the chicken in a bowl and pour in the olive oil, garlic powder, and sea salt.

collage with how to make air fryer chicken thighs

Step Two

Next, use tongs to place the chicken pieces skin side down in a single layer in the basket of your air fryer. Set the temperature to 380 degrees F for a cooking time of 12 minutes.

As always, please do see the recipe card at the end of this post for the exact ingredients and measurements.

Step Three

After the first 12 minutes, use tongs to turn the chicken over and set the time for an additional 10-12 minutes. This will allow the hot air to flow over the skin.

The chicken will be done cooking when you have crispy skin that is golden brown and an instant-read or meat thermometer reads 165°F. When the internal temperature reaches this temperature, you know it’s cooked through.

cooked chicken thighs in air fryer basket

Step Four

Use clean tongs to remove the chicken thighs from the air fryer basket to a serving plate. You can always pat away any excess grease with a paper towel.

Slice the lemon and squeeze it over your juicy chicken thighs. Serve hot.

platter of air fried chicken

Recipe Tips & Substitutions

  • If you have chicken tenders instead of chicken thighs, be sure to check out my recipe for Air Fryer Chicken Tenders with No Breading. Or, you can also try my recipe for Air Fryer Whole Chicken.
  • If you’re new to air fryer, be sure to check out my list of the Best Air Fryers Under $100.
  • Feel free to get creative with your seasonings when making Air Fryer Chicken Thighs. If you don’t like garlic, try using an Italian seasoning blend instead. Or, use smoked paprika or onion powder for a different type of flavoring.
  • Once the chicken has cooled, you can transfer it to an airtight container and store it in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.

FAQs

Can I use chicken breasts instead of chicken thighs?

Yes, but you may need to adjust the cooking time and temperature. To make air fryer chicken breasts, it’s recommended to cook them at 370 degrees f for about 16 minutes, flipping them once.

Can I make these without oil?

Yes, but the oil helps the seasonings stick to the chicken. Instead of oil, you can use a quick spray of cooking spray to help prevent the chicken from sticking to the bottom of the air fryer.

Can I use boneless skinless chicken thighs?

Yes, but the chicken won’t be as flavorful and you won’t have crispy skin, obviously.

cooked chicken thighs on a platter

Other Easy Air Fryer Recipes You Might Like

Or, check out my full index of gluten-free air fryer recipes.

You might also like our Air Fryer Chicken Thighs web story!

I hope you make this recipe! If you do, please leave a comment and a starred review below.

And, consider following me on social media so we can stay connected. I’m on Facebook, Pinterest, Instagram, and YouTube!

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four cooked chicken thighs in the basket of an air fryer

Air Fryer Bone-In Chicken Thighs


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Description

This recipe for Air Fryer Bone-In Chicken Thighs is so easy and delicious. The skin on the chicken thighs gets super crispy, like a healthy fried chicken! You only need a few ingredients for this dish that takes less than 30 minutes to make.


Ingredients

Units Scale
  • 1.25 pounds bone-in, skin-on chicken thighs (about 4 pieces)
  • 1 teaspoon olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 lemon, juiced

Instructions

  1. Place the chicken in a bowl and pour in the olive oil, garlic powder, and sea salt. Use a spatula so the chicken gets evenly coated with the oil and seasonings.
  2. Next, use tongs to place the chicken pieces skin side down in the basket of your air fryer. Set the temperature to 380°F for 12 minutes.
  3. After the first 12 minutes, use tongs to turn the chicken over and set the time for an additional 10-12 minutes. The chicken will be done cooking when the skin is golden brown and crispy and an instant-read thermometer reads 165°F.
  4. Use clean tongs to remove the chicken thighs from the air fryer to a serving plate. Slice the lemon and squeeze it over the cooked chicken. Serve hot.

Notes

  1. Feel free to get creative with your seasonings when making Air Fryer Chicken Thighs. If you don’t like garlic, try using an Italian seasoning blend instead. Or, use smoked paprika for a different type of flavoring.
  2. Once the chicken has cooled, you can transfer it to a covered container and store it in the refrigerator for up to 4 days.
  • Prep Time: 5 minutes
  • Cook Time: 22 minutes
  • Category: Main dish
  • Method: Air Fryer
  • Cuisine: American

Keywords: how to cook chicken thighs in air fryer, bone-in chicken thighs, air fried lemon chicken

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