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Learn how long to air fry chicken drumsticks as part of our air fryer back to basics series.

Let us share with you the ideal air fryer chicken drumsticks cooking time and temperature, as well as a master recipe that you can keep as is or make your own.

How Long To Air Fry Chicken Drumsticks
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Air Fryer Chicken Drumsticks

In the Milner house, we have been air frying chicken drumsticks for more than 10 years. In fact, it has been so long, we can’t remember the exact date!

But air fryer chicken drumsticks are like chicken thighs or chicken wings in the air fryer, there are so many different ways to cook them and how easy it is to mix it up with different seasonings and marinades.

You can use a dry rub, cook them from frozen, marinade them and then serve them with a sticky sauce, or even meal prep them and freeze them for later.

Today, we will be running through our top FAQ for chicken drumsticks, how long to air fry chicken drumsticks depending on the type you are doing and so much more. Plus, you have the chance to grab our free air fryer time and temperature printable which features plenty of chicken ideas!

Can You Air Fry Chicken Drumsticks?

Yes, you can air fry chicken drumsticks and there are a few different ways you can do it. For example, we love just chicken drumsticks with some salt and pepper and some extra virgin olive oil. Its like delicious chicken drumsticks without the batter.

Can You Air Fry Frozen Chicken Drumsticks?

Yes, you can also air fry frozen chicken drumsticks as they don’t have to be thawed first.

You have a few options when it comes to air fryer frozen drumsticks. You can freeze your leftover KFC takeaway and reheat your cooked drumsticks. Or you can buy a bag of chicken drumsticks and freeze them for another day or buy frozen already prepared chicken drumsticks such as some barbecue flavoured ones.

Can You Air Fry Raw Chicken Drumsticks?

Yes, you can air fry raw chicken drumsticks and our favourites are the ones from M&S. But no matter where you live in the world, any thawed chicken cooks well in the air fryer.

Though to save on clean up you may prefer to use a silicone container (like these ones) or paper liners (like these). Though check out our air fryer accessories page for some more ideas.

Do You Have To Flip Drumsticks In An Air Fryer?

You can flip drumsticks in an air fryer, but its not essential with every type of chicken drumsticks. For example, if I am cooking my air fryer KFC style fried chicken (also updated in our first air fryer cookbook) I will flip for an even cook on each side.

But if I am just cooking some chicken drumsticks with a basic seasoning, then it never feels as important.

What Is The Best Way To Cook Drumsticks In An Air Fryer?

I find that the best way to cook chicken drumsticks is spread out in the air fryer either in a marinade or with some salt, pepper, and olive oil. When you are doing sticky chicken drummers such as with some barbecue sauce or teriyaki, you should cook them on a paper liner so that you don’t mess up your air fryer.

How Do You Cook Drumsticks In A Ninja Dual Air Fryer?

When you cook chicken drumsticks in a Ninja Dual air fryer, you can cook them for the same time and temperature as an air fryer basket, but we recommend placing them sideways and you can usually fit at least 5 in each drawer.

Then you can double up and do a second batch in the second drawer, or use the second drawer for some yummy air fryer chips and do chicken and chips.

Air Fryer Easy Everyday + Meal Prep

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In our first air fryer cookbook, The Complete Air Fryer Cookbook (get it here) we taught you how to cook chicken drumsticks with our delicious fried chicken recipe.

But in our 2nd air fryer cookbook Air Fryer Easy Everyday (get it here) we were asked to show you how to flavour your chicken and we did just that in our meal prep section.

So, if you want to give your chicken drumsticks the wow factor, we recommend that you plan an hour, maybe once a month, where you marinate the chicken for the freezer. Then you will have plenty of ways to enjoy your air fryer chicken without feeling like mealtimes are getting boring.

Can You Recommend An Air Fryer?

I often get asked which air fryers I recommend and which one I use. In 95% of our air fryer recipes, we use either the Philips Air Fryer XL or the Cosori XL because they are the best ones, we have found out of many air fryers we have tried over the years. You can click on the links above and read up on them. But if you would rather have a dual air fryer we recommend this Ninja Dual (make sure you order the right one as not all are good) or the Philips Dual.

How To Cook Chicken Drumsticks In Air Fryer?

  • Season. Give the chicken drumsticks a good seasoning of salt and pepper.
  • Mix. Place the chicken drumsticks into a bowl with your dried seasoning and olive oil and mix well with your hands.
  • Cook. Place the chicken drumsticks into the air fryer basket, spreading them out and they are now ready to air fry.

That is how simple it is to cook air fried chicken drumsticks but now let’s talk all about how long to air fry a chicken drumstick.

How Long Do You Air Fry Chicken Drumsticks?

The air fryer chicken drumsticks standard time is 17 minutes at 180c/360f. This is for medium chicken drumsticks that you have bought from the grocery store and are not over big, or over small.

How long to air fry big chicken drumsticks? If you are air frying over large chicken drumsticks I would recommend instead adding another 20 percent to the cooking time, taking it from 17 minutes to 20 minutes.

How long to air fry chicken drumsticks in Ninja Foodi? The Ninja Foodi has a very similar cooking time as a basket or a drawer air fryer, therefore it remains at 17 minutes.

How long to air fry frozen chicken drumsticks? For frozen chicken drumsticks we would recommend 15 minutes at 180c/360f because they are usually already partly cooked if not fully cooked.

How long to cook fried chicken drumsticks in air fryer? For fried chicken in the air fryer, they have a big coating on them, plus you want the breading to be nice and crispy. Therefore, we recommend increasing to 26 minutes at 180c/360f.

How long to air fry chicken drumsticks at 400? We don’t recommend cooking chicken drumsticks at 400f instead, reduce the temperature down to 360f (180c) and cook for 17 minutes.

Get Air Fryer Confident

It can be daunting when you first get an air fryer, you land on a recipe site and then think now what?

Well, we love helping new people to the air fryer as we remember the struggle ourselves when got our first air fryer back in 2012. That is why we have put together these useful resources just for you.

Sign up for our 100% free air fryer kickstart course. It’s a 5 day free mini series delivered by email and teaches you the basics of air frying. Get it here – its free!

We also have the air fryer bucket list which is what we recommend people follow after our kickstart course. Its 100% free too and walks you through the 30 most popular air fryer, bucket list worthy recipes. Sign up for it here!

Prefer the visual then check out our You Tube Channel – with more than 750 step by step kitchen gadget recipes. Don’t forget to hit the subscribe button to get access to new videos as they happen!

We also have two amazing air fryer cookbooks that are perfect for learning the air fryer. With step by step photos for key techniques and more than 140 recipes in each book. The Complete Air Fryer Cookbook was our first and has sold over 150,000 copies worldwide, and our new baby is Air Fryer Easy Everyday.

More Air Fryer Resources

Make The Chicken Drumsticks A Meal

Plus, don’t forget more chicken you can cook in the air fryer. Our favourites include air fryer chicken breast, air fryer frozen chicken breast, air fryer whole chicken, ninja foodi whole chicken, and air fryer frozen chicken wings.

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Learn all about air fryer chicken drumstick cooking times below, note you can print it out with or without photos, adjust servings, or click between metric and imperial depending on where you are in the world.

Though before you do, don’t forget to subscribe, and grab your FREE VIP Pass to Recipe This. You will get access to our latest recipes first, you will be able to request recipes, you will have access to free mini courses, free ebooks and useful cooking time charts and so much more.


How Long To Air Fry Chicken Drumsticks?

Learn how long to air fry chicken drumsticks as part of our air fryer back to basics series.
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 17 minutes
Total Time: 14 minutes
Servings: 2 Drumsticks
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  • 600 g Pack Chicken Drumsticks
  • ½ Tbsp Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • 2 Tsp Dried Mixed Herbs
  • Salt & Pepper


  • Spray a dinner plate with olive oil and then season the plate with mixed herbs and salt and pepper.
    How To Cook Chicken Drumsticks In Air Fryer?
  • Add the chicken drumsticks to the plate and toss in the seasoning and the oil until well coated.
    How To Cook Chicken Drumsticks In Air Fryer?
  • Transfer the chicken drumsticks to the air fryer and air fry at 180c/360f for 17 minutes.
    How To Cook Chicken Drumsticks In Air Fryer?
  • Then serve.
    How To Cook Chicken Drumsticks In Air Fryer?


Dual. If you have an air fryer dual (such as this one we have) we recommend instead making one of your sides in one drawer and then the drumsticks in the other. Then you can have a full meal ready together.
Please note This chicken drumsticks time and temp guide was tested in our Cosori Air Fryer (its this one). Air fryers vary so adjust if necessary, depending on the quality of your air fryer. Or consult the temperature test on page 18 of The Complete Air Fryer Cookbook.


Calories: 351kcal | Carbohydrates: 0.2g | Protein: 35g | Fat: 22g | Saturated Fat: 5g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 4g | Monounsaturated Fat: 10g | Trans Fat: 0.1g | Cholesterol: 185mg | Sodium: 209mg | Potassium: 449mg | Fiber: 0.01g | Vitamin A: 101IU | Vitamin C: 0.1mg | Calcium: 20mg | Iron: 1mg
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About Sam & Dom

Hi! I am Sam and along with my chef hubby Dom we love sharing with you easy everyday recipes using kitchen gadgets. We are also the authors of The Complete Air Fryer Cookbook, an amazing air fryer cookbook filled with 140+ everyday air fryer recipes.

Beyond the air fryer we also love the instant pot, slow cooker, soup maker, ninja foodi, pie maker and several other kitchen gadgets.

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