Wondering how to make half chicken in the air fryer or perhaps you are asking what exactly it is, this Air fryer half chicken recipe is here to answer your burning questions about it. You really don’t need to make a whole chicken if you don’t want to and that’s exactly what this recipe is for.
It’s Juicy, flavorful and tender with crispy skin. Enough to serve 5 to 6 people as a side dish to many recipes like cubed potatoes, home fries, French fries, fried rice, sweet potato fries and lots more.
What is half chicken? (Split Chicken)
What is half chicken? This simply means a whole chicken that has been split into two mostly parts through the back bone down the middle.
Split chicken means you have one whole wing, one chicken quarter and one half of the chicken breasts. This is usually easier a d faster to cook in the air fryer than whole chicken.
This air fryer half chicken recipe
- Well seasoned
- Family friendly
- Most diets friendly
- Quick and easy
- Italian seasoning
- Garlic powder
- Onion powder
- Black pepper
- Cayenne pepper
How do you split chicken in half?
Splitting chicken half chicken is similar to when you want to spatchcock a whole chicken. The difference is that with half chicken the two parts are completely separated while spatchcock or butterfly chicken only one side is split so the chicken is still whole but opened up and flat.
I usually buy already split chicken from the grocery store near me. However I know it’s not very easy to find in most grocery stores.
So if you ever find yourself in that situation , grab a whole chicken and head over to this video and watch how to halve a chicken.
How to make half chicken in air fryer
This is an overview of the recipe with step by step photos. Scroll down to end of post for a printable recipe card with the amount of ingredients and full recipe instructions.
Pat chicken dry so there’s no moisture this will ensure the seasoning sticks and doesn’t slide off.
Brush chicken on all sides with oil then season with salt and seasoning blend. Wrap in plastic wrap and marinated for at least 30 mins. You can skip this step if in hurry but that chicken will taste way better if it was marinated.
Place chicken in air fryer skin side up and set temp to 360°F / 177°C and cook for 10 mins. Flip chicken over, increase temperature to 400°F / 200°C and cook for another 20 mins.
Flip over again and cook for 5 more mins making a total of 35 mins for this particular size of chicken. Add more time as needed if yours isn’t fully cooked at this point. It is fully cooked when the internal temperature is at least 165°F / 74°C and the meat juices run clear.
How long to roast half a chicken in air fryer
The length of time it takes to cook half a chicken in the air fryer depends of the weight and size of the chicken. The type of air fryer you have will also affect cook time for this recipe.
On the average it takes 35 to 40 mins to cook half chicken in the air fryer but the most important thing to look out for is the internal temperature. It should be 165°F / 74°C for it to be considered fully cooked and safe to eat.
How to store and reheat
Air fried half chicken stores well in the refrigerator or freezer. To store leftovers or make ahead, let meat cool down completely then transfer to an air tight container and store in a functional refrigerator for up to 5 days. If you intend to store for longer, freeze for up to 2 months.
Chicken can be reheated in the microwave or air fryer. Reheat in microwave from thawed at 1 minute intervals until heated through. I would suggest you thaw in the refrigerator overnight if it’s frozen before reheating in the microwave or air fryer.
Reheating chicken in the air fryer is easy. Place chicken in the air fryer basket or rack / trays and reheat at 360°F / 180°C till warmed through. It should take about 8 to 10 mins to reheat a thawed half chicken if it’s not warmed through continue for a couple of minutes more. Remember to flip half way through cooking.
Can you cook frozen half chicken in the air fryer?
It’s truly a great hack for when you forget to pull out meats from the freezer. Because I sometimes forget to do so myself, I like to clean and season meats before freezing.
This way it’s marinated and frozen and ready to cook in the air fryer straight from frozen, no need to thaw. It will only take 10 to 15 minutes longer than the fresh one and will also depend on size. So a meat thermometer is your best friend.
We have a collection of the best frozen foods for air fryer you should check out.
Best sides for fried chicken (Air fried half chicken)
With air fried half chicken, the option are endless. Here are some of our favs
Air frying Tips
- I usually don’t preheat my air fryers when I cook so most recipes here at Air Fryer Yum are made in a non preheated air fryer except when indicated otherwise.
- I like to start at 360°F / 177°C and finish off with 400°F / 200°C in the last few minutes to crisp up the skin which is optional.
- Marinating the chicken for at least 30 mins helps to improve flavor. If you are in a hurry, it’s ok to cook right after seasoning but be sure you massage the seasoning into the chicken throughly including under the wings.
- Let chicken rest for at least 5 mins before cutting into it.
Frequently asked questions
How many pieces of chicken are in half?
You are probably wondering how much meat in half a chicken or how many people it will feed.
Do you need to flip chicken in the air fryer?
Yes you need to flip chicken in most air fryers because the heating element is on one side, the top. This will enable the heat get to all sides of the chicken. Some newer air fryers like the Cosori dual blaze cooks from top and bottom, if that’s what you have, you may not need to flip the chicken.
Can you put raw chicken in an air fryer?
We cook chicken from raw in the air fryer all the time and to be honest that’s the only way we do it these days. It’s so easy and convenient and tastes delicious too.
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Air Fryer Yum’s Pro Tip! Air fryer temperatures may vary depending on size, make and model. When making a recipe for the first time, start with less time, check for doneness then add more time as needed.
Air fryer half chicken recipe
- 2 lbs Half chicken
- 2 Tablespoon olive oil
- 1 Teaspoon Paprika
- 1 Teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 Teaspoon onion powder
- 1 Teaspoon Italian seasoning
- 1 Teaspoon salt
- ¼ Teaspoon black pepper
- ¼ Teaspoon Cayenne pepper
Season the chicken
- Pat chicken dry to remove moisture. Brush oil all over the chicken then mix the seasoning ingredients. Season the chicken generously.
- Wrap with plastic wrap and let it marinate in the refrigerator for at least 30 mins. This is an optional step I recommend for best results.
Air fry the chicken
- When ready to cook, place chicken in air fryer basket, skin side up. Set the temperature to 360°F / 180°C and roast for 10 mins, flip chicken over and increase temperature to 400°F / 200°C and cook for 20 mins. Flip over again and cook for another 5 to 10 mins to help crisp the skin.
- Check the internal temperature with a meat thermometer at the thickest part of the chicken. It should be at least 165°F / 74°C to be considered fully cooked and safe to eat.
- If it isn’t there yet, continue cooking for a few more minutes about 2 minute intervals till it reaches the safe internal temperature and the juices run clear.
- Let chicken rest for about five minutes to lock in the flavor then serve with your favorite side dish.
- Size of chicken matters when it comes to how long it will take to cook half chicken, bear that in mind
- Because of the above, the internal temperature is a better judge for when chicken is fully cooked than the time. It should be at least 165°F / 74°C to be considered fully cooked and safe to eat. Please invest in a meat thermometer.
- Air fryers differ in the way they cook so timing should be used as a guide.
Nutritional information is an estimate and may change based on products used. Please read full nutrition disclaimer here.
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