Frozen Chicken Wings in the Air Fryer

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Frozen Chicken Wings in the Air Fryer take just a few extra minutes to cook and they turn out just as crisp and juicy as thawed chicken wings, so why not skip the defrosting and just go for it!

air fryer chicken wings

Why You’ll Love It

  • Chicken wings take just 20 minutes to cook in the air fryer from fresh and 40 minutes from frozen. It’s a very simple dinner or lunch you can make so quickly.
  • Now it’s ok if you forget to take the chicken out of the freezer! Air fryer frozen chicken wings are here to help. You can make pop them into the air fryer frozen. Aside from the extra time it takes to cook, you won’t even notice a difference. Try these easy frozen pork chops and frozen shrimp in the air fryer and see how easy it really is.
  • The forced circulating hot air in the air fryer is what makes the skin super crisp, while keeping all the juices locked inside.

» You might like these Air Fryer Boneless Chicken Thighs or Air Fryer Chicken and Broccoli as well.

Ingredients You’ll Need

You’ll need the following ingredients for to make frozen chicken wings in the air fryer:

  • 1 pound chicken wings – If they aren’t cut into pieces when you buy them, you might have to remove the wing tip and detach the wing joint.
  • Cooking spray – It just helps crisp up the skin. You can spray the chicken halfway through cooking, after they’ve fully defrosted, and once more near the end of cooking to keep the skin from drying out and make it nice and crispy.
  • Seasonings – I usually just use salt and pepper on the chicken wings, and then baste the with a sauce when they’re just about done cooking. You can use any type of seasoning or sauce you like.

Equipment Information

  • Air fryer: I use this 4-quart basket-style air fryer. It’s large enough to fit a meal for 4-6. But some things need more space in the air fryer basket, so they cook evenly.
  • Kitchen tongs: It’s very easy to remove food from your air fryer with kitchen tongs. I use these kitchen tongs that are silicon coated so they don’t scratch the interior.
  • Meat thermometer: The only way to tell if meat is fully cooked to the right temperature is to use a meat thermometer. I use this Instant Read thermometer. It’s so quick to open the basket and check the temp.
  • Basting brush: You’ll use a basting brush to coat the chicken wings in a glaze or sauce while its cooking.
ninja double air fryer

Ninja® Foodi®XL 2-Basket Air Fryer

  • 2 independent XL air fryer baskets
  • Integrated Foodi® Smart Thermometer
  • Cook 2 foods 2 ways that finish at the same time
air fryer chicken wings

Super Useful Air Fryer Accessories

Once you’ve started using your air fryer more regularly, you’ll find there are so many other ways you *could* be using it, if you had a few extra useful accessories. Here are a few favorites that we use almost every day.

Expert Tips to Follow

  • Wait to add seasonings until the chicken has thawed a bit and will actually hold on to the seasoning.
  • Shake the basket multiple times while cooking to separate the chicken wings and help the air circulate around them.
  • Half way through cooking spray the wings with a light mist of cooking oil and season them. They will be thawed enough now to hold onto the seasoning.
  • Check the internal temp of the wings with a meat thermometer to make sure it’s come up to the right temperature of 165°F (74°C).
  • Wait until the last 5 minutes to baste chicken wings with a sauce or glaze. Don’t do it too early on in the cooking process or it might burn.

How to Make Air Fryer Frozen Chicken Wings

Step 1: Add the Chicken to the Air Fryer Frozen

frozen chicken wings in air fryer

Since the chicken wings are starting out frozen, you’ll want to wait to add seasonings until the chicken has thawed a bit and will actually hold on to the seasoning.

So place the frozen chicken wings in the air fryer basket. They can overlap and/or be stacking on top of each other.

Step 2: Cook the Wings

air fryer chicken wings

Air fry the wings at 400° F(204°C) for 40 minutes. After 10 minutes, shake the basket. Halfway through cooking, shake the basket again. Spray the wings with cooking spray and season with salt and pepper.

About 5 minutes to the end of cooking, shake the basket again and give another spray of oil. If your chicken wings were quite large, you might want to check the internal temp with a meat thermometer to make sure it’s come up to the right temperature of 165°F (74°C).

Step 3: Add Glaze or Sauce

air fryer chicken wings

If you want to add a glaze or sauce to the wings, do it when there’s about 5 minutes left on the timer. Use a basting brush to brush on BBQ sauce, Frank’s Buffalo sauce, or any other glaze of your choice, if you want to. You can also toss them in sauce after cooking to add more flavor.

If you’re looking for a sauce to serve them with, check out these dips for chicken wings. I personally love to serve them alongside BBQ sauce, a sweet soy sauce glaze, or Frank’s Red Hot Sauce.

How Many Chicken Wings to Serve Per Person

The number of chicken wings to serve per person can depend on various factors, including the nature of the event, other food available, and guests’ eating habits. Here is a general guideline to follow:

  • If chicken wings are the main course, plan for about 6 to 10 wings per person.
  • If the wings are an appetizer or part of a buffet, estimate about 3 to 5 wings per person.

Remember, it’s better to have too many wings than too few – leftovers can be reheated, after all! It’s also good to note that wings can vary in size, so you might want to adjust your count if your wings are particularly large or small.

PRO TIP – The air fryer is the perfect way to reheat your leftover chicken wings without sacrificing their crispy, juicy texture. 

Store and Reheating

Storing Options

Fridge: Store any leftover chicken in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 3-4 days.

Reheating Options

Oven: Preheat your oven to 350°F(176°C). Place the chicken on a baking sheet in a single layer. Reheat for about 10-15 minutes, or until the wings are heated through and the skin becomes crispy again.

Air Fryer: If you have an air fryer, it’s a fantastic tool for reheating wings. Preheat the air fryer to 350°F(176°C). Place the wings in the air fryer basket and reheat for about 5-7 minutes, or until they’re heated and crispy.

Microwave: While microwaving won’t restore the crispy texture of the wings, it’s the quickest option. Place the wings on a microwave-safe plate, cover them with a microwave-safe lid or paper towel, and heat in 30-second intervals until they’re heated to your liking.

Chicken wings with a salad

Our Favorite Chicken Wing Recipes

bbq chicken wings
BBQ Basted Chicken Wings

Questions About Frozen Chicken Wings in the Air Fryer

Can these chicken wings be baked instead?

Yes. If you don’t have an air fryer, you can bake the chicken wings in the oven instead. Preheat the oven to 400° F(204°C) and cook the wings on a baking sheet with a silicon mat or parchment paper for 45 minutes, flipping them halfway through cooking.

Can I baste the chicken wings in the air fryer?

You can baste chicken wings with a sauce or glaze if you wish. Don’t do it too early on in the cooking process or it might burn.

How long do you cook frozen wings in the air fryer?

It takes about 40 minutes to cook air fryer frozen chicken wings. This will depend on the wattage of your air fryer.

Can I double the chicken in this recipe?

Yes, you can double this wings recipe and make up to 2 pounds of frozen chicken wings at a time, if you have a larger air fryer. I have a 5.5-quart air fryer basket and I find that 1.5 pounds of wings is the max that will fit without them being too crowded to get crispy.
When doubling, air fry for 45 minutes, or until the skin is crisp. Make sure you shake the basket at least twice during cooking. With so many wings, you might have to stir them with a spatula instead. Bake time will vary based on the size of your air fryer basket and the size of the wings, so be sure to check the temperature of the wings.

What Side Dishes to Serve?

You can serve some really easy side dishes with your main dish cooked in the Air Fryer. Sometimes, you can cook them together in the air fryer to make it even faster.

Some of our favorite side dishes to serve alongside frozen chicken wings:

Here are 28 more air fryer side dishes to try

Why Use an Air Fryer

An air fryer is an incredibly easy way to cook just about anything. You place the food in a fryer-style basket and hot air rapidly circulates all around the food, making the food crisp – much like deep-frying, but without the oil. You can cook anything you’d make in the oven.

Ninja Max XL

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frozen chicken wings in the air fryer

Frozen Chicken Wings in the Air Fryer

Frozen Chicken Wings in the Air Fryer take just a few extra minute to cook and they turn out just as crisp and juicy.
4.9 from 90 votes
Prep Time 5 minutes
Cook Time 40 minutes
Total Time 45 minutes
Course Main Course
Cuisine American
Servings 4 servings
Calories 204 kcal

Equipment

Ingredients
 

  • 1 1/2 pounds (680 g) frozen chicken wing pieces
  • Spray cooking oil
  • 1/4 teaspoon (1.5 g) salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon (0.5 g) ground black pepper
  • Sauce or seasoning of choice

Instructions
 

  • Place frozen chicken wings in the basket and cook at 400° F (200°C) for 40 minutes.
  • After the first 20 minutes, shake the basket. Spray the wings with cooking oil and season with salt and pepper.
  • Continue cooking for 10 minutes, then shake the basket again. With 5 minutes left, shake basket again and baste wings with sauce, if desired.

Notes

  • Internal temperature needs to be 165° F(74°C) when done. Always check the temperature and continue cooking if necessary to reach 165° F(74°C)
  • As a full meal, serve 1/2 pound of wings per person.
  • Wait to add seasonings until they chicken wings have thawed a bit and will actually hold on to the seasoning.
  • Shake the basket multiple times while cooking to separate the chicken wings and help the air circulate around them.
  • Half way through cooking spray the wings with a light mist of cooking oil and season them. They will be thawed enough now to hold onto the seasoning.

All air fryers have different wattage and may cook at different rates. You may need to adjust the time or temp for the best results.

Nutrition

Calories: 204kcalCarbohydrates: 1gProtein: 17gFat: 15gSaturated Fat: 4gPolyunsaturated Fat: 3gMonounsaturated Fat: 6gTrans Fat: 1gCholesterol: 71mgSodium: 212mgPotassium: 145mgFiber: 1gVitamin A: 136IUVitamin C: 1mgCalcium: 12mgIron: 1mg
Keyword Chicken
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What Oil & Oil Sprayer is Best for the Air Fryer?

The biggest issue most air fryer lovers face is finding the right oil and oil sprayer to use on food cooked in the air fryer. A fine mist of oil will help the entire piece of food crisp evenly, so it’s very important.

My personal preference is to use canola oil, extra virgin olive oil, or avocado oil. I use both a refillable spray bottle like the Evo one pictured below and non-propellant extra virgin olive oil, which has no harmful aerosols or chemicals.

Evo Oil Sprayer Evo Glass Trigger Sprayer Bottle, Non-Aerosol for Olive Cooking Oils, 6-Ounce Capacity, 6 oz, Yellow/Black/Red
Pompeian USDA Certified Organic Extra Virgin Olive Oil Non-Stick Cooking Spray, Full-Bodied Flavor, Perfect for Salads and Pasta Drizzling, Naturally Gluten Free, Non-Allergenic, Non-GMO, No Propellants, 5 FL. OZ., Single Bottle
Tenlary Oil Sprayer for Cooking - 210ml Glass Olive Oil Dispenser Bottle Spray Mister-Reusable Food Grade Oil Vinegar Spritzer Sprayer Bottles,kitchen Gadgets Accessories for Air Fryer,BBQ (Orange)

8 thoughts on “Frozen Chicken Wings in the Air Fryer

  1. Jerika says:

    5 stars
    This Frozen Chicken Wings in the Air Fryer saves time! can’t wait to try it, the chicken looks so yummy and crispy, yum! Thanks.:)

    • Angela Morris says:

      Most often we just use salt and pepper. That is a great start when you are going to be adding a sauce. Our other favorite seasonings are lemon pepper, Cajun seasoning, and dry rub.

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