Air Fryer Popcorn Chicken

Emma

Food Blogger | Recipe Enthusiast🍲
Air Fryer Popcorn Chicken

Get ready for a delightful and healthier twist on a classic favorite with our Air Fryer Popcorn Chicken! This kid-friendly recipe offers the same delicious crunch and juicy goodness as the traditional version but with a lighter and guilt-free touch.

Discover the secret to achieving perfectly crispy bites without excessive oil, and enjoy a fun and flavorful way to prepare chicken breast using your air fryer.

Air Fryer Popcorn Chicken Ingredients:

For Toasted Panko:

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1 ½ cups panko breadcrumbs
  • 1 teaspoon kosher salt, divided

For Popcorn Chicken:

  • 1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into bite-sized cubes
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 teaspoons garlic powder
  • 2 teaspoons onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper (optional)
  • Freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • Olive oil spray
  • Ketchup, Low Fat Ranch Dressing, BBQ Sauce, Honey Mustard, Marinara (optional, for dipping)
Healthy Air Fryer Popcorn Chicken

Instructions:

  • In a medium skillet over medium-low heat, add olive oil and panko breadcrumbs. Toast the breadcrumbs for about 4 minutes, stirring every 30 seconds until they turn golden. Transfer the toasted panko to a plate.
  • Season the bite-sized chicken cubes with ¼ teaspoon salt and black pepper to taste.
  • Set up the dredging station by placing all-purpose flour and ¼ teaspoon salt on a large plate. In a bowl, beat the egg with 1 teaspoon of water until uniform. Add garlic powder, onion powder, oregano, and cayenne (if using) to the toasted panko on another plate.
  • Working with about 15 pieces at a time, dredge the chicken cubes in flour, then dip them in the beaten egg, allowing excess to drip off. Next, coat the pieces evenly with the seasoned panko, pressing the crumbs to adhere evenly. Repeat with the remaining pieces.
  • Preheat your air fryer to 400°F.
  • Spray the air fryer basket with olive oil. Add about 30 pieces of coated chicken to the basket, leaving space between each piece to ensure crispy results. Spray the top of the chicken pieces with oil.
  • Cook the popcorn chicken in the air fryer for 5 minutes, shaking the basket halfway through to ensure even cooking.

Nutrition Information:

(Serving Size: 15 pieces of popcorn chicken)

  • Calories: 283 kcal
  • Carbohydrates: 21g
  • Protein: 30g
  • Fat: 8g
  • Saturated Fat: 1.5g
  • Cholesterol: 129mg
  • Sodium: 385mg
  • Fiber: 1.5g
  • Sugar: 2g

Notes or Tips:

  • To achieve a crispy texture, toast the panko breadcrumbs before coating the chicken.
  • For a spicier version, include cayenne pepper in the panko mixture.
  • Serve the popcorn chicken with your favorite dipping sauces for added flavor.

Serving Suggestions:

Pair our Healthy Air Fryer Popcorn Chicken with a side salad or sweet potato fries for a satisfying and well-balanced meal.

Storage and Reheating:

To freeze the popcorn chicken, place the uncooked chicken pieces in an even layer in a freezer-safe container lined with parchment. When ready to cook, heat the air fryer to 400°F and cook the frozen popcorn chicken for 8 minutes, shaking the basket halfway through.

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Air Fryer Popcorn Chicken

Air Fryer Popcorn Chicken

Enjoy the crunch of our Air Fryer Popcorn Chicken—wholesome, bite-sized delights for quick snacks or fun meals. Crispy outside, juicy inside, with less oil thanks to air frying. 🍗

  • Total Time: 20 minutes
  • Yield: Serves 4

Ingredients

Scale
  • 1 pound boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cut into bite-sized cubes
  • 1 ½ cups panko breadcrumbs
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1 large egg
  • 2 teaspoons garlic powder
  • 2 teaspoons onion powder
  • 1 teaspoon dried oregano
  • 1/8 teaspoon cayenne pepper (optional)
  • Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste
  • Olive oil spray
  • Dipping sauces (ketchup, low-fat ranch, BBQ sauce, honey mustard, marinara) – optional

Instructions

  1. Toast the panko: In a skillet, heat olive oil and toast panko breadcrumbs with ¼ teaspoon salt until golden.
  2. Season chicken cubes with salt and pepper.
  3. Set up a dredging station: flour and salt on a plate, beaten egg in a bowl, and seasoned panko on another plate.
  4. Dredge chicken in flour, dip in egg, then coat with panko.
  5. Preheat air fryer to 400°F.
  6. Spray basket with olive oil. Place chicken in the basket, spray the top, and cook for 5 minutes, shaking halfway.

Notes

  • Toasting panko ensures extra crispiness.
  • Add cayenne for a spicy kick.
  • Serve with various dipping sauces for added flavor.
  • Author: Emma
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 5 minutes
  • Category: Appetizer/Snack
  • Method: Air Frying
  • Cuisine: American

Nutrition

  • Serving Size: 15 Pieces
  • Calories: 283 kcal
  • Sugar: 2g
  • Sodium: 385mg
  • Fat: 8g
  • Saturated Fat: 1.5g
  • Carbohydrates: 21g
  • Fiber: 1.5g
  • Protein: 30g
  • Cholesterol: 129mg

Keywords: Air Fryer Chicken, Popcorn Chicken, Healthy Snack, Easy Appetizer

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