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Air Fryer Frozen Chicken Breast

This easy method for Air Fryer Frozen Chicken Breast turns a frozen chicken breast into a tender and juicy part of lunch or dinner in just 30 minutes or less. Great for any air fryer or Ninja Foodi

Most people think you can’t put frozen meat in the air fryer, but thankfully that’s not true! One of the easiest ways to prep food for a healthy lifestyle is to use your air fryer.

Not only can you put frozen chicken breast in the air fryer, but it both thaws AND cooks there with the right time and temperature.

Tender and juicy chicken breast cooked straight from frozen in the air fryer can be used in salads, wraps, pasta dishes, or eaten on its own with your favorite side dishes.

🤔Why make frozen chicken breast in the air fryer?

Less clean up. No need to break out the pots, pans, skillets. This chicken breast cooks right in your air fryer basket.

Better texture. Because the air fryer cooks by using circulating dry heat, it creates a crust that makes the meat stay tender and juicy on the inside.

They cook faster. You’re getting heat evenly around the entire chicken breast which makes them cook quicker than most methods.

No babysitting. All you’ll need to do is set the air fryer and walk away. You don’t even have to flip it!

No thawing needed. Theres no need to defrost chicken breast when cooking it in the air fryer.

🥣What You’ll Need

Frozen Chicken Breast – There 2 different types of frozen chicken you can use. One is the bagged chicken that comes already frozen. These are in the frozen section with popular brands such as Great Value, Perdue, and Tyson. You can also use fresh chicken breast that you’ve frozen yourself.

Oil & Seasonings – This is an optional step, but seasoning the chicken while it’s frozen helps create a tender inside and great flavor. I used avocado oil along with salt, pepper, garlic powder, and paprika to season the frozen chicken breast.

Air Fryer – While you can use any air fryer you have, I highly recommend the Ninja Foodi or Ninja Foodi Grill because I think it’s the absolute best. I enjoy using my all-in-one air fryer and pressure cooker because it saves time and there saves valuable counter space. 

📖How To Air Fry Frozen Chicken Breast

1️⃣ Preheat the air fryer. Turn the air fryer to a temperature of 375F and preheat for 3-5 minutes. You do not need to grease the basket.

2️⃣ Season the chicken breast. Spray the chicken with a light coating of your favorite cooking oil, then season lightly with salt, pepper, garlic powder, and paprika or your favorite seasoning.

3️⃣ Air fry frozen chicken. Add seasoned frozen chicken to the air fryer and set a timer for 30 minutes. You may not need to use all of this cooking time. Depending on the size, check at the 12-15 minute mark and decide if it needs a bit longer. Chicken is cooked fully when it reaches an internal temperature of 165F.

4️⃣ Serve. Once chicken is cooked through, remove from the air fryer with tongs and let rest for 5 minutes before slicing and serving.

Best Time & Temperature For Air Fryer Frozen Chicken Breast 

How long do you cook frozen chicken breasts in the air fryer? Generally you can expect 12-15 minutes per inch of thickness at a temperature of 350F. You do not need to flip the chicken breast halfway through cooking time unless you’d like to.

  • Frozen Precooked Chicken – 12-15 minutes at 375F
  • Frozen Breaded Chicken Breast – 12-18 minutes at 375F
  • Frozen Chicken Tenderloins – 9-10 minutes at 400F
  • 1 inch thick Raw Chicken Breast – 15-20 minutes at 375F
  • 2 inch thick Raw Chicken Breast – 25-30 minutes at 375

🛍Frozen bagged raw chicken: Pre-frozen chicken breast from the store usually takes less time than a fresh chicken breast that has been frozen. This is because they are usually a bit thinner and smaller than fresh. Either way, use the size guide for recommended time and temperature.

👩🏻‍🍳Chef’s Tips

  • For even cooking, make sure your chicken breasts are all roughly the same size.
  • Chicken breast should be in a single layer in the air fryer basket to make sure all areas are evenly cooked.
  • It’s important to make sure the chicken rests at least 5 minutes before slicing and serving. This will make sure the juices redistribute inside to keep it tender.
ninja foodi frozen chicken

Storing & Reheating

Storing: Air fried chicken breast will stay fresh in an airtight container for 3-4 for days in the fridge.

Reheating: You can reheat air fried chicken breast by placing them back in the air fryer for 5-7 minutes at 350 until heated through and crispy.

FAQ

Should I add oil to frozen chicken breast when or air fryer basket?

In this case, yes. It’s much easier to season while the chicken is frozen rather than when it’s halfway cooked.

What temperature do you air fry frozen chicken breast?

A temperature of 375F is usually the sweet spot for most air fryers to thaw and cook chicken breast.

Can I add aluminum foil to my air fryer?

You can, but you want to make sure it is UNDER the air fryer basket to collect any oil or juices. If it is on top, the air will not circulate around the chicken properly.

Do you have to thaw chicken before air frying?

Nope! This method will produce tender chicken breast straight from frozen.

Can I make frozen chicken thighs in the air fryer?

To air fry frozen chicken thighs, follow the same instructions, but bring down the cooking time to 12-18 minutes depending on their size. This is for boneless skinless chicken thighs.

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air fryer frozen chicken breast

Air Fryer Frozen Chicken Breast

This easy method for Air Fryer Frozen Chicken Breast turns a frozen chicken breast into a tender and juicy part of lunch or dinner in just 30 minutes or less. Great for any air fryer or Ninja Foodi! 
4.10 from 22 votes
Print Pin Rate
Prep Time: 2 minutes
Cook Time: 30 minutes
Servings: 4 servings
Calories: 148kcal

Equipment

  • Air Fryer or Ninja Foodi

Ingredients

  • 1 lb Chicken Breast frozen

Seasoning

  • 2 tsp Olive Oil
  • ¼ tsp Salt
  • ¼ tsp Garlic Powder
  • 1 pinch Paprika

Instructions

  • Preheat the air fryer. Turn the air fryer to a temperature of 375F and preheat for 3-5 minutes. You do not need to grease the basket.
  • Season the chicken breast. Spray the chicken with a light coating of your favorite cooking oil, then season lightly with salt, pepper, garlic powder, and paprika or your favorite seasoning.
  • Air fry frozen chicken. Add seasoned frozen chicken to the air fryer and set a timer for 30 minutes. You may not need to use all of this cooking time. Depending on the size, check at the 12-15 minute mark and decide if it needs a bit longer. Chicken is cooked fully when it reaches an internal temperature of 165F.
  • Serve. Once chicken is cooked through, remove from the air fryer with tongs and let rest for 5 minutes before slicing and serving.

Notes

Best Time & Temperature For Air Fryer Frozen Chicken Breast 

How long do you cook frozen chicken breasts in the air fryer? Generally you can expect 12-15 minutes per inch of thickness at a temperature of 350F. You do not need to flip the chicken breast halfway through cooking time unless you’d like to.
  • Frozen Precooked Chicken – 15-20 minutes at 375F
  • Frozen Breaded Chicken Breast – 12-15 minutes at 375F
  • 1 inch thick Raw Chicken Breast – 15-20 minutes at 375F
  • 2 inch thick Raw Chicken Breast – 25-30 minutes at 375
🛍Frozen bagged raw chicken: Pre-frozen chicken breast from the store usually takes less time than a fresh chicken breast that has been frozen. This is because they are usually a bit thinner and smaller than fresh. Either way, use the size guide for recommended time and temperature.

Nutrition

Serving: 4oz | Calories: 148kcal | Carbohydrates: 1g | Protein: 24g | Fat: 5g | Saturated Fat: 1g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 2g | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 73mg | Sodium: 277mg | Potassium: 422mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 42IU | Vitamin C: 2mg | Calcium: 6mg | Iron: 1mg

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