Air Fryer Copycat KFC Chicken: Crispy, Juicy, and Finger-Licking Good
Kentucky Fried Chicken, or KFC, is famous for its secret blend of 11 herbs and spices that create the signature flavor of its fried chicken. If you’re a fan of KFC’s crispy and juicy chicken, you’re in for a treat! In this article, we’ll guide you through making Air Fryer Copycat KFC Chicken that rivals the original in taste and texture. Get ready for a finger-licking experience in the comfort of your own home.
The Magic of KFC’s Secret Recipe
While KFC’s original recipe is closely guarded, we can recreate its mouthwatering flavor with a blend of common spices and a clever cooking technique in the air fryer.
Before we get into the recipe, let’s gather the essential ingredients you’ll need to make this copycat KFC chicken:
For the Chicken:
- 4-6 bone-in chicken pieces (thighs, drumsticks, or a mix)
- 2 cups buttermilk
- 2 cups all-purpose flour
- 1 tablespoon paprika
- 1 tablespoon dried rosemary
- 1 tablespoon dried thyme
- 1 tablespoon garlic powder
- 1 tablespoon onion powder
- 1 tablespoon dried basil
- 1 tablespoon dried oregano
- 1 tablespoon dried parsley
- 2 teaspoons salt
- 1 teaspoon black pepper
- Cooking spray
For the Breading:
- 2 cups cornflakes cereal, crushed
- 2 teaspoons paprika
- 1 teaspoon dried thyme
- 1 teaspoon dried basil
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1. Marinate the Chicken
- Place the chicken pieces in a bowl and cover them with buttermilk. Let them soak for at least 30 minutes or, for the best results, refrigerate them overnight. The buttermilk tenderizes the chicken and adds flavor.
2. Prepare the Flour Mixture
- In a large bowl, combine the all-purpose flour, paprika, dried rosemary, dried thyme, garlic powder, onion powder, dried basil, dried oregano, dried parsley, salt, and black pepper. Mix well to create the seasoned flour mixture.
3. Bread the Chicken
- In a separate bowl, prepare the breading mixture by combining the crushed cornflakes, paprika, dried thyme, dried basil, salt, and black pepper.
- Remove a piece of chicken from the buttermilk, allowing any excess to drip off, and coat it in the seasoned flour mixture. Ensure the chicken is evenly coated, pressing the flour mixture onto the chicken for better adherence.
- Dip the floured chicken back into the buttermilk and then coat it with the cornflake breading mixture. Press the cornflakes onto the chicken to create a crispy outer layer.
- Place the breaded chicken on a wire rack set over a baking sheet to allow excess moisture to drip off while you prepare the remaining pieces.
4. Preheat the Air Fryer
- Preheat your air fryer to 375°F (190°C) for about 5 minutes. Preheating helps create a crispy exterior.
5. Air Fry the Chicken
- Lightly coat the air fryer basket with cooking spray to prevent sticking.
- Place the breaded chicken pieces in the air fryer basket, ensuring they are not overcrowded. You may need to cook in batches.
- Air fry the chicken for 25-30 minutes, turning the pieces halfway through the cooking time for even browning. The chicken should reach an internal temperature of 165°F (74°C) to ensure it’s fully cooked and safe to eat.
6. Serve and Enjoy
- Once the chicken is golden brown and crispy, remove it from the air fryer and place it on a clean wire rack to cool slightly. This helps maintain the crispiness of the chicken.
- Serve your Air Fryer Copycat KFC Chicken hot, accompanied by your favorite dipping sauces and sides.
With this Air Fryer Copycat KFC Chicken recipe, you can enjoy the iconic taste and texture of KFC’s fried chicken in the convenience of your own kitchen. Crispy on the outside, juicy on the inside, and bursting with flavor, this chicken will satisfy your cravings and impress your family and friends.
So, preheat your air fryer, gather your ingredients, and get ready to enjoy a delicious homemade version of KFC’s famous fried chicken. Happy cooking and savor every crispy bite!