Homemade chicken nuggets in the air fryer come out tender and juicy with the perfect crispy coating!

Ground chicken is seasoned, shaped into bite-sized nuggets, then breaded and air fried until golden brown.

Cook up a batch or two for quick snacks and lunches or for dinnertime dipping on movie night!

dish of homemade chicken nuggets with dipping sauce

Easy Air Fryer Chicken Nuggets

  • Kids and grown-ups alike love wholesome and healthy chicken nuggets! Double up the batch and serve them all week long!
  • Get deep-fried crunch and flavor with less oil, less prep, and cleanup is a cinch! No need to heat up the oven, either!
  • Super easy to prep and freeze unbaked or cooked and cooled! No need to thaw, just cook from frozen in the Air Fryer!
ingredients assembled to make homemade chicken nuggets including ground chicken, bread crumbs, egg, and spices

Ingredients and Variations

CHICKEN Ground chicken allows for uniformly shaped nuggets that can be shaped to fit perfectly in little hands! Use any combination of ground chicken and turkey or chicken and ground pork for a juicier nugget.

BREADINGThe best nuggets have a light and crispy coating! Add a dash or two of taco or ranch seasoning for a new flavor twist!

VARIATIONS Make keto chicken nuggets by using crushed pork rinds as a breading. Sneak in some shredded zucchini or carrots, or finely chopped broccoli for an extra boost of nutrition no one will notice!

ground chicken formed into small patties

How to Make Air Fryer Chicken Nuggets

This recipe is better than drive-through nuggets any day!

For large servings, cook them up in batches and keep them warm in the oven until ready to serve at the same time.

  1. Combine chicken and seasonings in a bowl (per recipe below).
  2. Prep one bowl of whisked egg and one bowl of the breading mixture.
  3. Form nuggets into discs, then dip them into the egg mixture and then the breading.
  4. Air fry in a single layer until crispy, flipping them over halfway.

Serve hot with a side of buffalo sauce or your favorite dip!

Make Fun Shapes!

Use 2” wide cookie cutters to create fun shapes like circles, squares, or even dinosaurs. Perfect for any party theme or to make dinner fun for little ones!

Leftover Chicken Nuggets?

  • Keep leftover chicken nuggets in a zippered bag in the refrigerator for up to 3 days.
  • Reheat chicken nuggets in the air fryer until they are just warmed through. Enjoy as is or top a salad or make them into a wrap for a portable lunch!
  • Check the user manual for your Ninja or Vortex air fryer for exact times and temperature power for the best results.
dish full of homemade chicken nuggets

Best Air Fryer Chicken Appetizers

homemade chicken nuggets on a plate with ketchup
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Homemade Air Fryer Chicken Nuggets

These homemade air fryer chicken nuggets are crispy, juicy and so much better than take out!
Prep Time 15 minutes
Cook Time 12 minutes
Total Time 27 minutes
Servings 4 servings



  • 1 pound ground chicken
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • ½ teaspoon onion powder
  • ¼ teaspoon salt
  • ¼ teaspoon pepper
  • 1 egg


  • ¾ cup seasoned bread crumbs
  • 3 tablespoons panko bread crumbs
  • 1 teaspoon oil


  • Preheat the air fryer to 375°F.
  • Combine chicken and seasonings in a small bowl.
  • Whisk the egg in a small bowl. Mix the seasoned bread crumbs, panko bread crumbs, and oil in a separate bowl.
  • Create small flat 1-inch discs of the chicken mixture. Dip in the egg and then into the breading.
  • Spray with cooking oil and place in a single layer in the air fryer basket.
  • Cook for 12-14 minutes flipping the nuggets halfway through cooking.


Nutrition information accounts for use of half of the breadcrumb mixture.
Leftover chicken nuggets will keep in the freezer in an airtight container for up to 4 weeks. 
5 from 15 votes↑ Click stars to rate now!
Or to leave a comment, click here!

Nutrition Information

Calories: 249kcal | Carbohydrates: 11g | Protein: 23g | Fat: 12g | Saturated Fat: 3g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 3g | Monounsaturated Fat: 5g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 139mg | Sodium: 409mg | Potassium: 654mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 82IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 43mg | Iron: 2mg

Nutrition information provided is an estimate and will vary based on cooking methods and brands of ingredients used.

Course Main Course
Cuisine American

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About the author

Holly is a mom of 4 with a love for all things air fryer! Her greatest passion is creating in the kitchen and making recipes for the everyday home cook!
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