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Air Fryer Whole Chicken. Introducing you to the best ever air fryer whole chicken recipe. Juicy and moist chicken with a crispy skin, perfected by chef Dom.
You will love how easy it is to cook whole chicken in air fryer and you will see why Recipe This serve this to their family at least three times a week.
We originally shared with you how to air fry a whole chicken back in 2017 and wanted to update it today for you with new photos and extra ideas.
Whole Chicken In Air Fryer
Our most asked thing as the owners of Recipe This and the creators of 500+ air fryer recipes, is what we air fry the most? And what air fryer recipe excites us the most?
The answer to both questions is always the same. We love to cook a whole chicken in the air fryer. Its such a life changing recipe, because its so simple to load a whole chicken into the air fryer and cook it for a quick lunch or dinner.
We can be cooking a whole chicken in the air fryer, whilst the instant pot is cooking instant pot frozen vegetables. We then have chicken and vegetables on the dinner table for us and the kids.
But of course, chicken is so, so versatile and you can mix it up and swap the frozen vegetables for air fryer dinner rolls and make chicken sandwiches or you can swap it for potatoes and have air fryer whole chicken and potatoes, or why not add in some stuffing balls and have chicken and stuffing.
Or even better stuff your chicken and make our air fryer whole chicken and stuffing.
Then of course, add to this how cheap a whole chicken is for the frugal family. You can often get whole chickens reduced on yellow sticker, load them into the freezer, defrost as needed and air fry. Or of course cook our air fryer frozen whole chicken.
But that is the point, isn’t it? The possibilities when you are cooking a whole chicken are endless and is the reason why we have this air fryer.
We used to have the smaller one, that wouldn’t fit a whole chicken and we upgraded many years ago just to cook the whole chicken in the air fryer.
But since we did so, we can cook it as many times a week as we want, plan to quick sides and we have an easy Milner family dinner.
Plus, as well as our free newsletter, we also have a free air fryer mini course. It is ideal for air fryer beginners or those that want to get more confident with their air fryer. The free course runs for 5 days with a new lesson delivered each day to your inbox.
Can You Cook A Whole Chicken In Air Fryer?
Yes, you can. Cooking a whole chicken in an air fryer, is one of the reasons many people buy an air fryer. Its also the biggest reason why people upgrade to a larger air fryer, just because they want to air fry a whole chicken.
If you think of the cost of a whole cooked chicken from a supermarket and compare that to a whole chicken that is raw and that is the saving you can make.
Plus, the ingredients for cooking a whole chicken and the prep involved are so ridiculously easy that even my five year old knows the exact method and helps cook it.
Best Air Fryer For Cooking A Whole Chicken?
From my years of cooking air fryer whole chickens, I have found that this Cosori air fryer is the absolute BEST.
That is because it is the easiest air fryer to clean and its also slightly deeper than other air fryers making it ideal for whole chickens and other poultry of similar size.
Air Frying A Whole Chicken
Once you master air frying a whole chicken, there are many variations that you can do.
For example, here are a few ways that we like air frying a whole chicken in the Milner house:
Frozen Whole Chicken In Air Fryer – YES you really can cook your whole chicken from frozen or from when it is not 100% thawed. Often, we get our chicken out of the freezer the night before, and sometimes its not always defrosted by the time it enters the air fryer.
Whole Stuffed Chicken In Air Fryer – We have also done a whole chicken that has been loaded with sage and onion stuffing. Its absolutely delicious but you need to change the temperature and method slightly to make it work.
Air Fryer Piri Piri Chicken – Following the old school classic Portuguese method of cooking chicken and then chopping it up like a Nando’s takeout.
Marinated Whole Chicken In Air Fryer – You can read through our air fryer chicken marinades, and create some delicious marinated whole chicken.
Air Fryer Rotisserie Chicken – Made in the air fryer oven using the rotisserie function, this is the ultimate way to enjoy an air fryer chicken. Plus, just like the supermarket you can watch it cooking.
Air Fryer Roast Chicken Dinner – This is fantastic for roast chicken dinners. The whole chicken dinner is cooked in the air fryer. It includes air fryer whole chicken, stuffing, veggies, roast potatoes and so much more.
Air Fryer Whole Chicken UK
Because we live in the UK, we have sourced whole chickens from UK supermarkets in this air fryer recipe.
We have tried Morrison’s, Asda and Aldi whole chickens and have found that they are all AMAZING.
The only big consideration to make is that your whole chicken will fit in the air fryer.
In the UK you will notice that chickens are sold as small, medium, large and xlarge. And whilst a large or XL will fit in the instant pot, they won’t fit in an air fryer.
We recommend you go with either a small or medium. For example, the one we are using is a small and weighs 1.4kg.
Though what makes me smile is that the recommended cook time is for the oven and the air fryer does it much better and with less fat in half the time.
Whole Chicken Air Fryer Ingredients
Chicken – The main ingredient you need is your whole chicken. Focus on a small or medium so that it will fit in your air fryer.
Stuffing – You can also cook your whole chicken for its last 10 minutes with air fryer stuffing balls. But of course, this is optional.
Oil – I recommend some extra virgin olive oil for the skin of your chicken. It will then produce amazing crispy skin that you will think has been roasted in the oven with loads of butter. You oil one side, then cook it and then turn and oil the other.
Seasoning – After the oil is added, its time to add the seasoning to the skin. You can keep it basic with salt and pepper or get more creative. For example, I love to add some Italian seasoning or some cajun rub.
Then for the kitchen gadgets that we have used in this whole chicken air fryer recipe, it has just been our Air Fryer. We have this one and its wonderful for many types of air fryer recipes and perfect for whole chicken.
How To Cook A Whole Chicken In An Air Fryer?
- Prepare. I recommend you start with tying up your chicken legs as this helps keep your chicken in place. Then oil and season your chicken on the side that you are cooking up first. We recommend (unless your chicken is stuffed) that you do breast side down first.
- Cook. Load into the air fryer breast side down and cook for 25 minutes at 180c/360f.
- Optional. If you are adding stuffing balls then prep them now.
- Beeps. When the air fryer beeps use a fork to turn your chicken over, putting the fork into the cavity of the chicken for an easy turn.
- Season. Then once breast side up, you can oil and season again on the other side before air frying for an extra 20 minutes.
- Rest. Then allow your chicken to rest before slicing and serving.
How Long To Cook Whole Chicken In Air Fryer?
The cooking time for whole chicken in air fryer is about the same regardless of a 1kg chicken or a 1.5kg chicken. In other words, a small and medium chicken are the same. Though if doing air fryer Cornish hens consult our other post for cook times.
The cook time is 45 minutes and I recommend 25 minutes breast side down and then 20 minutes breast side up.
What Temperature Do You Cook Whole Chicken In An Air Fryer?
The ideal temperature for an air fryer whole chicken is 180c which is 360f. This gives a fantastic cook of the chicken without drying it out, yet making sure you have a crispy chicken skin.
More Whole Chicken Recipes
- Ninja Foodi Whole Chicken
- Instant Pot Whole Chicken
- Instant Pot Frozen Whole Chicken
- Slow Cooker Whole Chicken
And also if you want to make KFC chicken or similar recipes, do check out our how to cut up a whole chicken guide as its fantastic for the air fryer.
Air Fryer Whole Chicken
- Air Fryer
- Remove your whole chicken from its packaging and tie up the chicken legs.
- Place the chicken breast side down and add half the oil and using your hands smoother it over the visible skin. Season it with salt, pepper, and Italian seasoning.
- Place in the air fryer basket, with the breast side down and air fry for 25 minutes at 180c/360f. Do not preheat the air fryer as it will cook the outside of the chicken too quick.
- If making stuffing balls make them whilst the chicken is cooking.
- When the air fryer beeps, use a fork, and place the fork into the cavity of the chicken and use this to turn the chicken over to breast side up.
- Now add the remaining oil onto any visible skin and season again.
- Air fry for a further 20 minutes. If adding stuffing balls air fry them, with the whole chicken in the gaps for the last 10 minutes.
- Allow to rest before serving your chicken.