Air Frying A Whole Chicken after brining, is the juiciest chicken roast recipe you can find. It is easy, healthy, and wholesome enough for a weeknight dinner that keeps the whole family happy. The insides stay juicy and succulent, and the outside skin turns crispy. The secret? Brining chicken to pump it up with moisture, and just enough salt. No more dry, tough chicken meat!
This is my ‘low-spoon’ recipe, for the times when I feel overwhelmed, and cannot be bothered with elaborate cooking, but still need a nourishing protein meal. All I do is serve this with a bag of salad vegetables, drizzle some olive oil, and a perfect keto meal is ready.
For my carb-loving family, I just add some Air Fryer Potatoes on the side or make a Chicken Salad Wrap. The leftover chicken makes easy lunch for the next day in wraps, pizzas, noodle soups, and so much more!
WHY YOU SHOULD MAKE THIS WHOLE CHICKEN RECIPE IN AN AIR FRYER :
- Simple and easy
- No fussy ingredients required
- Gluten-free, Paleo, Keto, Whole 30 compliant
- Juicy on the inside, and crispy skin on the outside – Perfect Rotisserie chicken without the bread stuffing.
- Healthier than deep-fried chicken
- Leftovers stay succulent enough for multiple delicious lunches and meals.
WHAT DOES BRINED CHICKEN TASTE LIKE?
Due to a process called osmosis, the salt in the water penetrated all the way into the flesh, making it taste ‘well seasoned’ and just right. The rest of the flavors from herbs and spices are not dominant, but make the chicken subtly fragrant.
WHAT EXACTLY IS BRINING?
Brining meat is soaking it in a salt solution (the brine) before cooking. Brining makes cooked meat moister by allowing the cells to hold on to water while they are cooked. This prevents tough, dried-out meat.
Brine is just a mixture of water and salt. This is the basic step required to make the chicken juicy. Brining ratio of salt is around 5-10% of water in weight.
Since 1 gram of water is 1 mL, just remember to use “1 tablespoon of salt per cup of water”. You need enough water to completely submerge the chicken.
This recipe uses a small chicken and uses 4 cups of water with 4 tablespoons of salt. For a larger chicken or a wider pot, you may need more water. Just count how many cups of water you add, and add those many tablespoons of salt. Eg 3 cups of extra water = 3 tablespoons of extra salt.
SALT AND WATER RATIO FOR BRINING:
1 tablespoon of salt to 1 cup of water.
INGREDIENTS YOU NEED FOR MAKING THIS BRINED ROAST CHICKEN:
Ingredients for Brine
- Whole Chicken
- Optional: Any herbs and spices that you have – Eg Bay Leaves, Star Anise, Cinamon, Cloves, Rosemary, Thyme, etc
Ingredients for Air Frying Chicken
- Olive oil to brush over chicken (You can also use a cooking spray or melted butter)
- Optional: Dry Rub Ingredients like Garlic Powder, Onion Powder, Sweet Paprika, Salt, Pepper, etc
Note: Use very little salt, as the chicken is well salted during brining.
STEP-BY-STEP PROCESS TO AIR FRYING A WHOLE CHICKEN
Part 1: Brine The Chicken In Salt Water
- Pour 4 cups of water into a bowl or a deep pan. It should be deep enough to hold a whole chicken and water to submerge it in. Add 4 tablespoons of salt to the water.
- Stir water till salt is completely dissolved.
- Add chicken to salt water and make sure it is completely immersed. If you need more water, add more salt. Just remember 1 tablespoon of salt per cup of water for brining.
- Optional: Add your favorite spices and herbs to the solution. Cover and refrigerate for 12 hours – up to 24 hours.
Part 2: Air Fry Brined Chicken
- Remove the whole chicken from the brine solution, and discard the brine. Place on a chopping board, and pat dry with a kitchen towel. This step is important to ensure crispy chicken skin.
- Once fairly dry, brush the whole chicken with olive oil You can use your hands too.
- Optional: Sprinkle any spice mixture and rub it on the skin well.
HOW LONG TO AIR FRY A WHOLE CHICKEN FOR?
Place in Air Fryer basket and turn temperature to 360 F or 180 C.
Air Fry for about 40 minutes.
After 40 minutes, insert a meat thermometer into the fleshiest part of the chicken, and check the internal temperature
If it has reached 165 F / 75 C, the chicken is done. If not, air fry for 5-10 minutes longer till done. At this temperature, the meat is white ad juices run clear.
Just keep aside the cooked chicken on a tray, cover it with an aluminum foil and let it rest for 10 minutes.
Resting allows the juices to be absorbed back into the fiber of the meat, keeping it juicier when you slice into it.
CAN YOU AIR-FRY A WHOLE CHICKEN?
Absolutely! The best part about this recipe is you do not need to portion the chicken before cooking. Just follow the instructions for cooking.
CAN YOU REDUCE THE BRINING TIME?
To reduce brining time, portion the chicken into pieces and proceed with the brining. This should reduce the brining time to 4-6 hours.
CAN YOU AIR-FRY A WHOLE FROZEN CHICKEN?
No. While the chicken will cook on the surface, the insides will stay frozen and raw and can be hazardous to consume. To roast chicken in Air Fryer, always make sure the chicken is completely thawed in the refrigerator before you start brining it.
MORE AIR FRYER RECIPES TO TRY:
WHICH AIR FRYER IS SUITABLE FOR ROASTING A WHOLE CHICKEN
From my experience, I have noticed that XL or XXL size is the best for a family of four or for cooking for friends.
This size of air fryer can not only accommodate a whole chicken, but also larger batches of fries, and other snacks. It’s nice not to have to fry in multiple small batches. I have a Phillips Premium Air Fryer XXL, which I am very happy with.
FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTION ABOUT AIR FRYER WHOLE CHICKEN
WHAT DO I SERVE WITH ROAST CHICKEN
FOR A KETO/LOW CARB MEAL – Serve with a side of salad leaves, or vegetable dish, like this Ratatouille.
Finish with a flourless dessert with these amazing Protein Brownies from Fit As Mama Bear.
FOR CARB LOVERS – Try these Air Fryer Potato Wedges
Feeling more festive? Try this Instant Pot Turkey Tenderloin
Want more air fryer recipes? Try this Air Fryer Pork Belly from All Ways Delicious.
Looking for more hands-off delicious Chicken recipes? Try this Crock Pot Crack Chicken by CallMePMC.
More Content You Might Enjoy:
- Air Fryer Drumsticks
- Indian Chickpea Salad
- Kung Pau Chicken
- Keto Cauliflower Fried Rice With Egg
- Easy Homemade Nicoise Salad
- Chickpea Cucumber Feta Salad
- Vegetarian and Vegan Recipes
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Air Frying A Whole Chicken (Juiciest Roast Chicken)
- 1 Deep Bowl Enough to fit a whole chicken and water to cover te chicken
- 1 Air Fryer Or Oven
- 2 lbs Chicken
- 4 cups Water
- 4 tbsp Cooking Salt
- 1/4 cups Mixed dried herbs (optional)
- 1 tbsp Olive Oil
- 1 tbsp Dry Rub Mix (Optional) Garlic powder, Paprika, Salt, Pepper, Onion Powder
BRINING: 8 to 10 hours
- Add water and salt to a deep bowl or saucepan. Roughly 1 tbsp of cooking salt per cup of water.
- Stir the water till salt is dissolved.
- Add whole chicken to this saltwater, with legs and breasts facing down.
- Optional: Add whatever herbs and spices you have like bay leaves, peppercorn, cloves, rosemary, star anise, cloves, etc.
- Remove chicken from the saltwater.
- Pat dry
- Brush olive oil over chicken on all sides.
- Optional: Rub any dry mix like Garlic powder, Paprika, Salt, Pepper, Onion Powder
- Place whole chicken in your air fryer.
- Air fry for 40 minutes at 350 F/ 180C.
- With a meat thermometer check that the internal temperature has reached 165 F / 75 C. If not, cook for another 5-10 minutes.
- Remove chicken from fryer, and place on a tray.
- Cover with an aluminum foil and let it rest for 10 minutes.
- Slice and serve.