Buttermilk Fried Chicken in the Air Fryer – Once You Try, You Won’t Want it Any Other Way!

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Perfect Air Fryer Fried Chicken is crispy, yet tender and juicy. This air fryer recipe combines buttermilk with the best blend of spices for the best, delicious fried chicken recipe every time you make it!

The air fryer has become an indispensable appliance, and it really is the best way to make crispy homemade fried chicken recipe with less fat.

Why You’ll Love This Recipe For Fried Chicken In Air Fryer

Buttermilk Fried Chicken in the Air Fryer

  • Easy to follow delicious recipe that beginner cooks can follow
  • Air frying has less fat and calories for guilt free fried chicken anytime
  • The air fryer always cooks your fried chicken to crispy perfection
  • Versatile recipe to make air fryer chicken breast
  • Easy cleanup

Step By Step Instructions For How To Make Fried Chicken In The Air Fryer


For the Chicken:

  • 4 bone-in, skin-on chicken pieces (drumsticks and thighs work well) 1 cup buttermilk
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon paprika
  • 1 teaspoon Italian seasoning
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper

For the Coating:

  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • 2 teaspoons paprika
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder 1 teaspoon onion powder ½ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon black pepper

For the Air Fryer:

  • Cooking spray or oil for greasing


  1. Place the chicken pieces in a large bowl or Ziplock bag. Cover them with the buttermilk and add the spices. Let the chicken marinate in the buttermilk mixture for 30 minutes to an hour in the fridge.
  2. In a shallow bowl, combine the flour, paprika, garlic powder, onion powder, salt, and pepper. Mix the ingredients well.
  3. Preheat the air fryer to 375°F (190°C) for 5 minutes.
  4. Lightly grease the air fryer basket with cooking spray or brush it with cooking oil.
  5. Remove pieces of chicken from the buttermilk, letting excess drip off. Dredge each piece of chicken in the seasoned flour, then back into the buttermilk, and again in the flour mixture for a double coating. If you have time, put the chicken on a sheet pan and let them rest for 30 minutes to about an hour in the fridge. This will help the breading to stick to the drumsticks.
  6. Place the coated chicken in the preheated air fryer basket in a single layer without overcrowding.
  7. Cook at 355°F for 15-20 minutes, flipping halfway through. Chicken is done when the internal temperature reaches 165 degrees F (74°C). I like to check the temperature using a meat thermometer.
  8. Remove your golden brown chicken from the air fryer and let rest for 5 minutes before serving your tender chicken.


  • How do I store air fryer leftover fried chicken? Store chicken in an airtight container or a zippered plastic bag for 3 to 4 days in the fridge. Do not leave out fried chicken for more than 2 hours at room temperature for food safety.
  • Can you freeze leftover air fryer fried chicken? Yes you can, use a freezer-safe container or freezer zippered plastic bags for 2 to 3 months. Using parchment paper to separate any chicken layers in the container is a good idea.
  • Thaw overnight in the fridge before following the reheat instructions.
  • Beware that freezing fried food can make them become soggy and lose its crispiness.
  • Do not freeze your fried chicken again after thawing it for food safety. Do not leave the thawed chicken for more than one day in the fridge before reheating.
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About the Author: Jenny Kristy

Spice Seeker, Recipe Weaver, Nomad Chef |With a passport bursting with stamps and a pantry overflowing with global spices, Jenny Kristy isn't just a cook, she's a culinary nomad. Her travels fuel her passion, transforming exotic flavors into recipes that tantalize and transport. She weaves magic in her kitchen, sharing her adventures through meals that whisper of Marrakesh markets and Tuscan trattorias. From teaching sushi to whipping up Moroccan masterpieces, Jenny ignites wanderlust and connects cultures, one delicious bite at a time.

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