Air Fryer Chicken Thighs

5 from 1 vote

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This Air Fryer Chicken Thigh recipe is the most simple yet flavorful way to prepare chicken thighs, and is done right on your counter in the air fryer! In 20 minutes you will have tender and juicy chicken that is great on its own or paired with a variety of sides. 

air fried crispy skinned chicken thighs on a white plate.
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If you are tired of thinking about dinner on busy weeknights then you’ll want to add this recipe to your list of easy meals! All you need to do is coat and season the chicken thighs, toss them in the air fryer, and get your side dishes ready.

One of the best parts of these chicken thighs is that you can customize them to your taste preferences with any kind of seasoning. We like to bring on the heat with cayenne pepper, but choose what you love! The crispy, seasoned skin on the chicken thighs is the perfect contrast to the tender and juicy chicken on the inside that practically melts in your mouth. 

air fried crispy skinned chicken thighs in a black air fryer basket.

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

  • It uses a small handful of common spices to season your chicken.
  • The air fryer cooks the chicken quickly while still keeping the chicken thighs moist and creating a crispy, delicious skin.
  • Preparing this recipe doesn’t require very many dishes, saving you time on prep and cleanup.

Recipe Ingredients

portion bowls each raw ingredient to season air fryer chicken thighs.
  • Chicken thighs—Bone-in chicken thighs will give you a deep flavor.
  • Olive Oil—To coat the chicken so the skin has a savory, crunchy exterior. 
  • Dried Oregano—Or your favorite dried herbs. 
  • Paprika—To add a bold and slightly smoky flavor to your chicken.
  • Black Pepper—This will help the natural taste of the chicken pop.
  • Garlic Powder—For a rich and savory flavor. 
  • Onion Powder—Can be replaced with dried minced onion. 

See the recipe card for full information on ingredients and quantities.

How to Make Air Fryer Chicken Thighs 

raw chicken thighs seasoned and marinating in a clear bowl.
uncooked chicken thighs in a black air fryer basket.

Step #1. Preheat your air fryer. While that is preheating, toss the chicken thighs in a large mixing bowl with the olive oil and all of the spices. Make sure the chicken is evenly coated in all spices.

Step #2. Transfer your chicken thighs to the air fryer basket and cook until golden brown. Serve and enjoy!

Recipe FAQs

Can I use boneless chicken thighs?

Definitely! We prefer to use bone-in because the bone helps the meat stay moist and tender, and brings additional flavor to the meat. If you can’t find bone-in or just prefer boneless, you can use that instead. Keep in mind that if you use boneless chicken thighs, you might need to reduce the cooking time because they cook faster than bone-in chicken. You’ll still get incredible flavor from the seasonings either way, so do what is easiest for you! 

How do I know when my chicken thighs are done cooking?

One indication that your chicken thighs are close to being done cooking is the skin. If it is golden brown and looks or feels crispy, then you should check the internal temperature. The internal temperature is important to help you know when the chicken is at a safe eating point. The internal temperature of the chicken should be 165°F. Once your chicken has checked those boxes then you are ready to eat! 

Why aren’t my chicken thighs getting crispy?

Your chicken thighs might not be crispy if there is too much moisture when you put them into the air fryer. Ensure that your chicken thighs are patted dry before you season them, so that the olive oil can coat them evenly and provide a nice crispy texture! Another factor is that air fryers can vary on cook times and temperatures. Keep an eye on your chicken thighs, as they might need to be cooked a bit longer to reach the correct internal temperature and get that golden brown, crunchy skin. 

air fried crispy skinned chicken thighs a wooden spatula held over the air fryer.

Serving Ideas

You can serve these chicken thighs on their own for a quick meal or pair them with some sides for a fuller meal. Some of our favorite sides include mashed potatoes and gravy, easy macaroni and cheese, a side salad, asparagus, and homemade dinner rolls. No matter what you serve with your air fryer chicken thighs, they are sure to be a hit!

How to Store Air Fryer Chicken Thighs

You can store your leftover chicken wings in an airtight container for up to 5 days in the fridge. Simply reheat your chicken wings in the microwave for 60-90 seconds, or in the air fryer for 5 minutes at 350°F and enjoy.

Expert Tips

  • When coating the chicken with olive oil and seasonings, try using tongs to toss the chicken thighs and make it easier for each piece to be fully seasoned. 
  • Customizing the flavors of these chicken thighs couldn’t be easier! You can use any of your favorite spices to achieve your desired flavor. Some of our favorite alternatives are lemon pepper seasoning, and Cajun seasoning. 
  • Placing the chicken thighs in a single layer in the air fryer will allow the air to circulate better and help the thighs crisp up quickly. 
  • I would recommend flipping the chicken thighs about halfway through cooking to ensure that each piece cooks evenly and all the way through. 

More Chicken Recipes To Consider

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air fried crispy skinned chicken thighs in a black air fryer basket.
5 from 1 vote

Air Fryer Chicken Thighs

This Air Fryer Chicken Thigh recipe offers a quick and flavorful way to cook chicken thighs right on your countertop in just 20 minutes. Enjoy tender and juicy chicken on its own or with your favorite sides.
Prep: 10 minutes
Cook: 20 minutes
Servings: 4

Ingredients 

  • 4 chicken thighs, bone-in, skin-on chicken
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon dried oregano
  • ½ tablespoon paprika
  • 1 teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder

Instructions 

  • Preheat your air fryer for 5 minutes at 400°F.
  • While the air fryer is preheating, toss your chicken thighs in a large mixing bowl along with the olive oil and all of the spices. Make sure the chicken is evenly coated in all of the spices.
  • Transfer your chicken thighs to the air fryer basket and cook for 20 minutes at 400*F.
  • You'll know the chicken is done when the internal temperature reaches 165 degrees F. Adjust the cook time as needed.
  • Serve and enjoy!

Notes

  • You can ensure that your chicken thighs are fully cooked by taking the internal temp. You’ll want your chicken to reach an internal temperature of 165°F.
  • It is very easy to customize the flavor of these chicken thighs. You can use any spices you’d like to modify the flavor. Some of our favorite alternatives are lemon pepper seasoning and Cajun seasoning.
  • The olive oil helps give the skin of the chicks thighs a savory, crunchy exterior and also helps prevent moisture from escaping the inside of the chicks.
  • You can store your leftover chicken wings in an airtight container for up to 5 days in the fridge.
  • Reheat your chicken thighs in the microwave for 60-90 seconds or in the air fryer for 5 minutes at 350°F.
  • This is for chicken thighs that are about 1/4 of a pound each. If you are using really large chicken thighs you’ll need to add more cooking time. 
  • You can use smoked paprika if you have it for this recipe, it’s so good!

Nutrition

Calories: 359kcal, Carbohydrates: 3g, Protein: 24g, Fat: 28g, Saturated Fat: 7g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 5g, Monounsaturated Fat: 13g, Trans Fat: 0.1g, Cholesterol: 142mg, Sodium: 113mg, Potassium: 352mg, Fiber: 1g, Sugar: 0.2g, Vitamin A: 568IU, Vitamin C: 0.2mg, Calcium: 38mg, Iron: 2mg
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