I love these air fryer chicken drumsticks. They are crispy outside and so very moist inside.
A great KFC copycat recipe where no oil is used in the recipe, a perfect appetizer. The use of yogurt or buttermilk in the marinade makes the chicken very tender.
KFC chicken leg piece in air fryer is a revelation to make at home -- unbelievably juicy and crunchy.
You would not be able to tell that it is not deep fried.
And now I make this regularly at home. If you are a fan of fried chicken then you have to try this recipe.
Do follow my tips and instructions to the T for the perfect crunch.
This Copycat Taco Bell Enchirito is a tasty homemade taco recipe. Perfect meal.
For a tasty variation, try these baked pork chops with apple. It is so good.
1. Chicken drumsticks: I have used chicken drumsticks without skin here. The ones with skin are fine too.
2. Greek yogurt: I use 2 tbsp. for marinating the chicken drumsticks.
3. Ginger garlic paste: Minced ginger and garlic or ginger garlic paste provides a lovely flavor to the chicken.
You can reduce the quantity if you don't like it much.
4. Salt: Salt is added while marinating chicken.
5. Breading: I have used ½ cup crushed cornflakes for added crunch along with ¾ cup breadcrumbs for breading.
You can use Panko too. Skip cornflakes, if you don't like them and add more breadcrumbs.
I have also used ½ cup wholewheat flour seasoned with salt and pepper. You can use regular flour too.
2 beaten eggs are also used.
6. Spices: I have used mixed herbs like dried oregano and basil along with some cayenne to season the breadcrumbs.
It is important to season the breadcrumbs to build layers of flavor.
1. Appetizer: My favorite as I can tuck in crispy fried chicken with a tasty dip or chutney.
2. Meal: Serve with mashed potatoes, corn on the cob and a salad if you so like.
3. Fun meal: Pair with a nice potato salad, coleslaw and a chilled lemonade.
4. Wrap or taco: Shred the fried chicken and use in a taco or wrap along with veggies and your favorite sauces.
5. Side: Have it as a side with some fried rice and sauteed veggies.
Mix all marinade ingredients that includes yogurt, minced ginger and garlic and salt and marinate chicken drumsticks for 2-4 hours.
Assemble 3 shallow plates -- ½ cup powdered cornflakes, ¾ cup breadcrumbs, mixed herbs, cayenne and salt in one plates.
2 beaten eggs in second bowl and ½ cup wholewheat flour with salt and pepper in 3rd bowl.
For Air Frying
Preheat Air fryer at 160 C or 320 F for 6 minutes. Dunk marinated chicken drumsticks first in flour mix.
Dust off excess flour. Then dip in egg and then in the breadcrumb mixture. Repeat for all the drumsticks and keep aside.
Chicken drumsticks are now prepared and ready to go into the Air fryer. Brush air fryer basket with oil.
You can also use parchment paper to prevent the chicken from sticking to the basket.
Arrange the drumsticks and air fry at 160 C or 320 F for 15 minutes. Flip them midway for even cooking.
When flipping, do it carefully to avoid the breading from getting chipped off.
Now increase the temperature to 200 C or 390 F and cook further for 6 minutes for a golden crunch.
Check with a meat thermometer inserted in the thickest part of chicken. The temperature must be above 165F for the chicken to be cooked through.
Take out these KFC copycat air fried chicken drumsticks and serve hot with dip or chutney.
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Do try this recipe and share with me if you make it.
1. Serve hot with dip, ketchup or chutney.
2. This is a recipe I have perfected by multiple trial and errors so use it as it is.
3. You can change the herbs/seasonings as per your taste.
4. If you don't have an air fryer, you could bake them in a conventional oven too.
5. The lower termperature - higher temperature combination while cooking helps in cooking the chicken perfectly, keeping it moist inside and crunchy outside.
6. You could use only breadcrumbs too but using cornflakes makes it crunchier.
7. You can replicate the same recipe for chicken wings, other chicken parts or chicken strips. Just modify the cooking time to adjust to the size of meat you are cooking.
8. When handling the chicken in air fryer basket, carefully move it so that the breading does not shed off.
9. I have used skinless drumsticks as I prefer these. But, you can use the ones with skin on as well.
You can store the leftovers in an air tight container in the fridge for 2-3 days.
Reheat them in the air fryer before consuming.
You can also freeze these chicken drumsticks and keep them in the freezer for upto a month.
I regularly cook chicken in the air fryer. A combination of cooking at low heat and then cooking at high heat at the end yields excellent results. The chicken gets well cooked, stays moist inside and crisps up nicely outside. You really get wonderful fried results without actual frying.
Air frying chicken helps in crisping up the chicken with a significant reduction in calories from oil. It is also healthier as it has none of the other adverse effects of deep frying.
Yes absolutely. You can try out my chicken tikka or tandoori chicken recipes where I have just used a yogurt marinade. It crisps up nicely even when air fried naked.
Here is the recipe card:
📖 Recipe Card
KFC Copycat Chicken Drumsticks in Air fryer
- 1 lb. chicken drumsticks without skin or 500 gm.
For chicken marination
- 1 tbsp. ginger garlic paste or minced ginger and garlic
- 2 tbsp. Greek yogurt
- salt to taste
- 1 tsp. cayenne or tabasco sauce as per the heat you like
For flour mixture
- ½ cup wholewheat flour with salt and 1 tsp. pepper
- 2 eggs beaten
For outer coating
- ½ cup cornflakes
- ¾ cup breadcrumbs or powdered oats for gluten free
- 1 tsp. mixed herbs dried oregano and basil
- 1 tsp. cayenne as per taste
- To make the marinade, mix all the ingredients mentioned well. The marinade must be quite thick. Taste it to check for balance.
- Make some gashes in the deep parts of the drumsticks and massage them well all over with the marinade.
- Marinate them for 2-4 hours.
- Now take 3 shallow plates. Take seasoned flour in one shallow plate, beaten eggs in second plate.
- Take cornflakes in a ziplock bag and lightly crush with a rolling pin. I used Kellogg's plain cornflakes. Mix this with breadcrumbs. I make my own breadcrumbs by toasting 2 whole wheat bread slices and then making crumbs in a blender. Mix these two with mixed herbs (dried oregano and basil), cayenne and salt in third bowl
- Keep these ready.
For Air frying
- Preheat your Airfryer at 320 F or 160 C for 5 minutes. Brush the sides of the basket with oil.
- To coat drumsticks -- Use one hand as it tends to get dirty when dipping the chicken.
- Take the marinated chicken drumsticks and dunk them well in seasoned flour so that they are coated well. Now dust them lightly to remove excess flour.
- Next dip them in beaten egg mix. Your hands will get sticky now.
- Take them and rub them in cornflakes and breadcrumbs mix to get a nice thick coating. Keep them aside.
- You can use only breadcrumbs if you don't want to use cornflakes.
- Repeat this method till all drumsticks are coated.
- Put them in your airfryer basket and put it in the airfryer. My entire batch fitted at one go. Otherwise you can airfry in two batches.
- Air fry at 320 F or 160 C for 15 minutes. Open Airfryer half way at 8 minutes and flip the drumsticks once. Be careful while flipping so as to not break the coating.
- After 15 minutes increase the temperature to 390 F or 200 C and airfry for 6 minutes more to get a nice golden brown colour.
- Check with a meat thermometer inserted in the thickest part of chicken. The temperature must be above 165F for the chicken to be cooked through.
- Your crispy Air fryer fried chicken drumsticks are ready to serve. Serve with onion rings, mint chutney, dip or good old ketchup. Enjoy it hot.
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Here is my review of Airfryer (not sponsored)
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