Cooking frozen chicken wings in the air fryer gets them crispy on the outside and tender and juicy on the inside, and there’s no need to thaw them. You can make crispy chicken wings in less time than it takes to bake them in the oven or deep-fry them.
Can You Cook Frozen Chicken Wings in an Air Fryer?
One of the air fryer’s biggest strengths is its ability to cook frozen foods. You don’t need a deep fryer or oven to make crispy foods because the air fryer does such a great job!
I actually prefer to cook frozen wings in the air fryer rather than the oven because they turn out crispier and cook faster. You can air fry frozen precooked wings for a delicious snack in less than 15 minutes, without thawing and you can make raw frozen wings in an air fryer in about 20 minutes!
These wings turn out tender and moist on the inside with crispy skin on the outside and that makes them very addicting!
Use frozen raw chicken wings or frozen precooked chicken wings with this recipe. If you’re making frozen raw chicken wings, you’ll need to add a few extra minutes.
Tips For Perfectly Cooked Crispy Air Fryer Chicken Wings
- For best results, preheat the air fryer before air frying the wings. This allows you to cook the wings at high heat right away, ensuring a crispy exterior.
- There’s no need to defrost the wings before air frying them.
- Sauce the wings at the end, after they’ve been air fried.
- If the wings are frozen precooked, they don’t need to be seasoned because they are usually pre-seasoned.
- If they are frozen raw, air fry chicken wings for a few minutes to thaw them and then apply a dry rub or just salt and pepper (details in the recipe card below). You may find liquid at the bottom of the air fryer basket. If there’s too much, go ahead and drain it. I generally don’t find a lot of liquid accumulated, and just let it evaporate as the chicken cooks.
- Wings can vary in size, so adjust the recipe as needed.
- Avoid stacking the wings. Place the frozen wings in a single layer and don’t crowd them. This allows the hot air to circulate and make crispy wings.
- Flip the wings halfway through the cooking time.
- Every air fryer will vary. The first time you make frozen chicken wings, monitor the chicken 2 minutes before the cooking time is up. Adjust the recipe as needed.
- Shake the basket or turn the chicken halfway through the cooking time.
🍴 SERVING SUGGESTIONS
- These wings can be coated with your favorite sauce after air frying. You can use buffalo sauce, bbq sauce, or teriyaki sauce. I like to mix a little hot sauce with my barbecue or teriyaki sauce for an extra zing.
- If making buffalo chicken wings, serve with your favorite dipping sauce such as blue cheese dressing or ranch dressing, with carrot sticks and celery sticks on the side. This makes an easy appetizer for a party.
- My recipe for air fryer fresh wings gives you a shortcut for making your own homemade buffalo wing sauce which uses hot sauce, melted butter, and worcestershire sauce.
You can thaw them on the counter for a bit to get them to separate or you can air fry frozen wings for 6 to 10 minutes, and separate them.
You shouldn’t need to use oil in this recipe. I haven’t had any issues with sticking. However, if you wish to coat the basket with a little avocado oil, olive oil, or vegetable oil, feel free to do so. Don’t use a canned cooking spray; instead, use an oil spray bottle filled with oil.
The cook time is 11-15 minutes at 400 degrees F for precooked store bought chicken wings and 20-25 minutes at 400 degrees F for raw wings.
When the time is up, insert your meat thermometer into the thickest area of the wing being careful to avoid the bone. Make sure the wings have reached a minimum safe internal temperature of 165 degrees F. If not, add them back into the air fryer for an additional few minutes.
For the precooked wings, I used Foster Farms brand wings with buffalo sauce. But you can use Tyson frozen chicken wings, Perdue, or a store brand. You might need to adjust the cooking time. Just keep an eye on the chicken wings while they’re cooking.
This recipe was tested using a Cosori air fryer.
Air fry them for another 2 to 3 minutes.
Store leftover chicken wings in an airtight container in the fridge and reheat the wings by air frying them for 3 to 5 minutes at 360 degrees Fahrenheit to get them crispy.
How to Cook Frozen Chicken Wings In Air Fryer
Frozen Precooked Chicken Wings
If you’re using precooked seasoned wings (breaded or unbreaded):
- Keep chicken wings frozen until ready to use
- Preheat air fryer
- Place frozen wings in the air fryer basket
- Air fry wings, increasing temperature the last few minutes
- Drain the wings on a paper towel before transferring them to a serving platter
- Season (optional)
Frozen Raw Chicken Wings
If you’re using raw unseasoned chicken wings:
- Preheat air fryer
- Place frozen wings in the air fryer
- Air fry the wings to partially defrost them
- Optional: drain liquid from the basket
- Remove the chicken wings to a bowl and season them with spices.
- Add the wings back to the air fryer and continue air frying until done
- Drain the cooked chicken wings on a paper towel before transferring them to a serving platter
- Coat with your favorite sauce
Details below in printable recipe card ⬇️
Air Fryer Frozen Chicken Wings
- 8 pieces chicken wings frozen (precooked or raw), but separated *
Spices for Frozen Raw Chicken Wings
- Preheat the air fryer to 400 degrees for 4 minutes.
- Add the frozen wings to the air fryer basket without overlapping or overcrowding. Cook in multiple batches if needed.
Frozen Precooked Chicken Wings
- Program the air fryer to 400 degrees F for 11 to 15 minutes, turning the wings at 6 minutes into cooking. If any wings are stuck together when you begin, separate them after about 3 minutes of air frying.
- When the cooking time is up, open the air fryer and check to make sure the wings are cooked to your liking. Air fry for another 1-2 minutes if needed.
- Add your favorite sauce to a medium bowl and coat the wings in the sauce before serving.
Frozen Raw Chicken Wings
- Program the air fryer to 400 degrees F for 20-25 minutes.
- If any wings are stuck together when you begin, separate them after about 3 minutes of air frying.
- After 10 minutes of total cooking, transfer the wings to a medium bowl, using a pair of tongs. Stir together oil, salt, black pepper, paprika, garlic powder, and onion powder (or your favorite seasonings) and toss with the chicken wings. If there is a lot of liquid in the basket, you can drain it at this time. **
- Return the chicken to the air fryer and continue air frying, turning the chicken after 6 minutes. Spray the wings with a bit of oil, if desired.
- When the time's up, check to make sure the wings are crispy and cooked through. Air fry for another 2 to 3 minutes, if necessary.
- Add your favorite wing sauce to a medium bowl and coat the wings in the sauce before serving.
- * Precooked wings can be breaded or unbreaded. They’re pre-cooked with spices, so you don’t have to add any spices when reheating them from frozen. Raw wings will need spices added once they’ve thawed.
- Cook time may be more or less depending on the size of the wings, so keep an eye on them for the last 4 minutes to make sure they aren’t overcooking.
- Chicken wings are cooked through when a digital meat thermometer registers 165 degrees in the thickest piece.
- ** I don’t usually drain any liquid that’s accumulated in the basket because it evaporates by the end of the cooking process.
- Nutritional information for chicken wings without any sauce
- Feel free to use any sauce of your choice including barbecue, teriyaki, or honey garlic sauce.
- See the blog post for more detailed recipe tips.
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I am not a certified nutritionist. I provide my best estimate of nutritional information merely as a courtesy to my readers. If you depend on nutritional information for dietary or health reasons, I suggest using your favorite online nutrition calculator to confirm the nutritional value of this recipe based on the actual ingredients that you use.
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