Air Fryer Frozen Whole Chicken

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Love roast chicken and got frozen chicken in the freezer, then you must cook air fryer frozen whole chicken. It is crispy, it is delicious, and it’s cooked in the air fryer fast.

Even better, no worrying that your frozen chicken will be dry once cooked and you can enjoy it like any other roast chicken, just with less calories.

This air fryer frozen whole chicken recipe was originally shared with you back in 2020. We have since updated air fryers and created an even better recipe for you.

air fryer frozen whole chicken recipe
Air Fryer Frozen Whole Chicken Recipe

Air Fryer Frozen Whole Chicken

Today on Recipe This, is all about cooking a frozen whole chicken in an air fryer. Perfect for those times when you have not thawed your chicken in time for dinner or would prefer to cook your chicken from frozen.

Our routine in the Milners household is to get the frozen chicken out of our chest freezer the night before we plan to cook it. Then it will be almost thawed when we cook it and won’t need much extra cooking.

But what if you are cooking a completely frozen whole chicken in the air fryer? One that you have grabbed from the freezer, placed straight in the air fryer and then cooked there and then?

  • Is it possible to cook a frozen whole chicken in the air fryer?
  • How long will it take to cook a frozen chicken in the air fryer?
  • Will an air fryer frozen whole chicken be dry?

I decided to give the job to Dominic, after all as a chef he knows all about chicken safety and will do the best job.

Over the years I have become more and more obsessed with cooking whole chicken using my kitchen gadgets.

From instant pot frozen whole chicken to slow cooker whole chicken, to air fryer whole chicken to ninja foodi whole chicken to rotisserie chicken in the air fryer oven I have done it all.

I have also done a deep dive into the instant pot whole chicken cook times to see if they are really accurate.

The biggest lesson learned (well apart from the slow cooker chicken) is that these gadgets will cook your chicken in half the time of the oven and require zero preheat.

But what fascinated me most is could you cook a frozen chicken in the air fryer, in the same way without it being dry?

Well, I did it and again and again and now have my own thoughts and theories on frozen whole chicken in the air fryer that I want to share with you today and then you can see if they are for you.

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Can You Air Fry Frozen Chicken?

Yes, you can air fry frozen chicken and there are many different types of frozen chicken that you can air fry.

I love air fryer frozen chicken nuggets, air fryer frozen chicken strips, air fryer frozen chicken wings and many more.

Though I have to say the easiest to air fry from frozen is the chicken nuggets.

Can You Cook A Whole Chicken From Frozen?

Yes, you can, and I have cooked a LOT of frozen whole chickens over the years. We tend to buy whole chickens in bulk when they are at a special price and then keep them in the freezer until we plan to cook them.

If we are organised, we will grab a whole chicken from the freezer the night before, but sometimes we forget which is when we cook our whole chicken from frozen.

Can You Put A Whole Frozen Chicken In Air Fryer?

Yes, you can but its much better if you do so with the giblets removed. I love my air fryer whole chicken and found that the first time I did it from frozen was always chickens with giblets.

With a frozen solid whole chicken, there is no way you are going to get those giblets out, so you are forced to defrost the whole chicken with the giblets still inside.

This creates a drier whole chicken, so if you can, cook a whole frozen chicken in the air fryer without its giblets.

Or even better, if you plan to cook from frozen regularly, when you buy them from the supermarket, remove the giblets before freezing.

What Size Air Fryer For A Whole Chicken?

The best air fryer that can cook a whole chicken is the Cosori (its this one). Unlike my Philips Air Fryer XL its slightly taller so will fit a large whole chicken in it without it hitting the top of the air fryer and burning.  

However, if you do have a smaller air fryer and it wont fit a whole chicken, think inside about cooking our air fryer Cornish game hens as these will easily fit.

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Frozen Whole Chicken Air Fryer Ingredients

Frozen Whole Chicken Air Fryer Ingredients

Chicken – You will need a frozen whole chicken. We used a medium one from Morison’s that we had kept in our freezer since we purchased it. It came with no giblets and weighed 1.5kg/3.3lbs.

Spray – You will also need a spray bottle to be able to easily add extra virgin olive oil to your chicken. This gives the chicken the perfect crisp and also keeps the oil quantity low.

Seasoning – I am keeping to just salt and pepper for this frozen chicken, but you can also add in mixed herbs, garlic seasoning etc if you prefer.

Then for the kitchen gadgets that we have used in this frozen chicken air fryer recipe it has just been our Cosori air fryer. We have this one and its wonderful for many types of air fryer recipes.

Plus, we recommend you head over to our air fryer recipes category as we have more than 500 tried and tested air fryer recipes and have been air frying for 10 years.

How To Defrost A Whole Chicken?

What we do first, when cooking a frozen whole chicken in the air fryer is almost thaw it out first.

We cook the frozen chicken for 20 minutes at 80c/180f and this almost defrosts it before doing the main cooking.

Then because you have thawed the whole chicken first it wont dry out as you air fry it.

Also, if you want to thaw a whole chicken FAST then this is a great way to do it!

How To Cook Frozen Chicken In Air Fryer?

air fryer frozen whole chicken step by step
  • Defrost. Place your frozen chicken in the air fryer breast side down. And air fry for 20 minutes at 80c/160f.  
  • Air Fry. Next, add extra virgin olive oil spray to visible skin and season with salt and pepper. Then air fry for 25 minutes at 180c/360f.
  • Turn. Next use a fork to turn the chicken over and then re-apply extra virgin olive oil and salt and pepper. Cook for another 20 minutes at the same temperature.
  • Serve. Then remove from the air fryer and tuck in.  

And I am sure you can see now how easy it is cooking frozen chicken in air fryer and how you can be doing the same.

How Long To Cook A Whole Frozen Chicken In Air Fryer?

Cooking whole chicken from frozen in the air fryer is FAST. And faster than cooking a thawed chicken in the oven.

In fact, it takes JUST 20 minutes to thaw your chicken + 45 minutes to cook your chicken in the air fryer = total cook time of 65 minutes.

Listen To Air Fryer Frozen Whole Chicken

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Air Fryer Frozen Whole Chicken

Your frozen whole chicken in air fryer recipe is 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.

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Air Fryer Frozen Whole Chicken
Print Recipe
5 from 1 vote

Air Fryer Frozen Whole Chicken

Love roast chicken and got frozen chicken in the freezer, then you must cook air fryer frozen whole chicken. It is crispy, it is delicious, and it’s cooked in the air fryer fast.
Prep Time2 minutes
Cook Time1 hour 5 minutes
Total Time1 hour 7 minutes
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: Air Fryer
Servings: 4
Calories: 387kcal


Kitchen Gadgets


  • Place your frozen whole chicken in the air fryer basket, breast side down. Air fry for 20 minutes at 80c/160f or until almost thawed.
    Can You Cook A Whole Chicken From Frozen?
  • Then add extra virgin olive oil spray and spray all visible skin, then season with salt and pepper. Air fry for a further 25 minutes at 180c/360f.
    Can You Cook A Whole Chicken From Frozen?
  • Turn the chicken over using a fork.
    Can You Cook A Whole Chicken From Frozen?
  • Spray again and season again with salt and pepper.
    Can You Cook A Whole Chicken From Frozen?
  • Then air fry for a further 20 minutes at 180c/360f or until fully cooked.
    Can You Cook A Whole Chicken From Frozen?



Giblets. For best results cook your frozen whole chicken without giblets. But if you have to do it with giblets after the 20 minute defrost remove them.
Spray. The extra virgin olive oil spray is optional but if you use it, it gives an amazing crisp on your air fryer chicken.
Thanks for reading our air fryer frozen whole chicken recipe on Recipe This. We have many more air fryer recipes for you to check out next. Though if you would like to try more delicious frozen foods in the air fryer, then do check out our air fryer frozen burgers recipe next.


Calories: 387kcal | Protein: 33g | Fat: 27g | Saturated Fat: 8g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 6g | Monounsaturated Fat: 11g | Trans Fat: 0.2g | Cholesterol: 135mg | Sodium: 126mg | Potassium: 340mg | Vitamin A: 252IU | Vitamin C: 3mg | Calcium: 20mg | Iron: 2mg
Nutrition InfoPlease Note: Nutrition values are our best estimate based on the software we use at Recipe This and are meant as a guide. If you rely on them for your diet, use your preferred nutrition calculator.
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Recipe This

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 marker and several other kitchen gadgets. CLICKING HERE →

10 thoughts on “Air Fryer Frozen Whole Chicken”

  1. 5 stars
    I cannot say how pleased i am that you have covered this, i am sick of coming across a thawed out chicken instead of a whole frozen one. This worked great and was cooked after i had finished thank you 🙂

  2. Don’t know what I did wrong, but it seemed like it took an hour to defrost the chicken at 180.

    I was using the air fryer mode on a Nuwave oven, so that could have been the issue, I suppose.

    • Hi John,

      The Nuwave oven will take alot longer to cook a whole frozen chicken as it is alot larger than the air fryer we used 🙂

    • Ok,I followed the recipe, frozen chicken, breast side down to defrost, I did 20 mins @ 180c, then sprayed with olive oil, seasoned with salt and pepper. I Then did 20 mins at the same 180c. After the 20 mins, I turned it over spraying the breast with extra virgin olive oil, seasoning with salt and pepper also a chicken seasoning and cooking for an additional 25 mins. The internal temperature reached 140F , I can’t believe anyone can cook a chicken using this recipe and achieve a 165F internal temperature with these timings . I cooked mine in a Tower Vortex air fryer, and I had to increase the temperature to 200c for a further 25 mins before it achieved the correct temperature. I would like to suggest that anyone trying these timings, they should buy a digital thermometer, personally, I won’t be cooking a frozen chicken again..with this recipe, but I can’t believe anyone can do this, cook and eat one using their timings. Buy the way the weight was only 1.6kgs..regards James.

      • Hi James,

        So you ask why people would want to cook a frozen chicken in the air fryer but we had hundreds of requests for the recipe. So we did it and the chicken was cooked perfectly. What makes you think we do not use a Thermometer in all of our high risk recipes??????

        Our readers trust us to cook things properly and with the air fryer we were using the time and temps in the recipe were correct. Why would we lie?????

        Your comment is assuming everyone is using your type of air fryer when they are not. They are over 30 different types at this moment that people use and it is impossible to try out them all.

        We stand by timings and we have just bought your air fryer and we will be trying some of our recipes and see how they differ and we are looking forward to publishing the results 🙂

  3. James, you did it! You did manage to cook the chicken! Yes, you do have to take the basic process of the recipe and make changes to the timings to suit your machine. That’s how you get to know your machine. That’s the thing about cooking, you are given the basics and you change the parameters to suit. Makes it interesting!

  4. Didn’t work for me at all. I did the defrost step in a small air fryer oven (Ninja) and then moved it to a smaller Ninja air fryer thinking maybe the small oven was still large enough to impact the cooking time. I had to cook it for over an hour longer than this recipe called for. I also turned the temp up to 400. On the bright side, when it finally did cook all the way through, it wasn’t dried out.

    • Hi Melissa,

      Sorry the recipe did not work for you. You have got to make sure the chicken has plenty of air circulation around it especially if it is frozen as this means the air fryer is working correctly, if the air circulation is been blocked then this can hamper the cooking times 🙂


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