Air Fryer Korean Fried Chicken. Chicken drumsticks coated in a delicious crispy crunchy coating and made healthier thanks to the air fryer. This recipe is simple, and you’ll have crispy fried chicken in less than 30 minutes!
When I developed this air fryer Korean fried chicken recipe, I thought long and hard about it because I wanted to share a very crunchy crispy chicken without using lots of oil. But if you’re an avid air fryer like myself, you’ll know that wet battered foods in the air fryer don’t mix. The batter ends up slipping off and making a mess that is not fun to clean.
After much research and testing, I finally figured out how to create this airfryer Korean fried chicken without cups of oil with a crispy and crunchy coating. The chicken was flavourful inside and out with the secret ingredient to all Korean fried chicken recipes: curry powder!
Easy to make!
This air fried Korean fried chicken is easy to make at home. All the ingredients are accessible and easy to find at your grocer. If you don’t have tapioca starch it can easily be substituted with potato starch or cornstarch.
For this Korean fried chicken recipe using air fryer, you’re simply marinating your chicken in a wet rub. While that’s marinating, you’ll create your dry batter taking a cup from that to create your wet batter. Then dredge the drumsticks into the dry batter, then wet batter and dry again.
Place the drumsticks into the air fryer, spray enough oil over top and air fry on both sides until golden crispy brown.
So get ready, I’m going to teach you how to cook Korean fried chicken in air fryer with step-by-step instructions below.
For this air fryer Korean chicken recipe, you’ll need the following ingredients:
- chicken drumsticks
- vegetable oil
- white wine
- black pepper
- regular soy sauce
- garlic, minced
- tapioca starch, or sub with cornstarch or potato starch
- all purpose flour
- onion powder
- garlic powder
- curry powder
- black pepper
- baking powder
Optional but highly recommend: fresh lemon juice (to enjoy with)
How to make Korean fried chicken in air fryer
Below are steps on how to make Korean fried chicken with air fryer:
Season chicken drumsticks with seasoning ingredients and massage seasoning into drumsticks with hands. Set aside to marinate.
In a bowl, add dry batter ingredients and whisk well.
Take 1 measuring cup of dry batter and transfer to a separate bowl. Set that aside for later
Then to your REMAINING dry ingredients (the bowl with less dry batter), whisk in ½ cup water to create a wet batter. You should now have a dry and wet batter in two separate bowls.
Evenly dredge drumsticks into dry batter first ensuring no empty spots. Then dredge into wet batter and then back into dry batter.
Transfer coated drumsticks to air fryer basket. Give each one enough room so air can reach it. Depending on the size of your air fryer, you may need to air fry in multiple batches. Important: Try to angle the drumsticks so that the least amount of surface area touches the weaved basket as this can cause for batter to tear away from chicken if you’re not gentle flipping over it in next steps.
Spray or gently brush vegetable oil on one side of the drumsticks.
Air fry on one side at 375 F for 11-12 minutes until crispy and golden.
GENTLY turn drumsticks over, spray or brush on the other side with remaining vegetable oil.
Air fry for 11-12 minutes at 375 F or until golden brown and crispy. Serve & enjoy with fresh lemon juice!
Below are tips on making air fryer Korean chicken drumsticks:
Ensure dry batter is mixed well
Using a whisk really helps to distributes the spices within the starch flour mixture.
Dredge the chicken well and generously
Ensure there are no empty spots as you dredge your chicken. This will ensure crispiness all around.
Do not overload your air fryer basket
Your chicken will need enough air space to crisp up. If you’re piling the chicken on top of one another, guess what: you’re going to have soggy chicken!
Therefore, if you’re doubling the quantity of this recipe or more, you’ll have to air fry in batches.
Place drumsticks into air fryer strategically
This part requires thinking! When you place your drumsticks into the air fryer, first give them enough air space as mentioned above. Secondly, do not pile them on top of each other. Lastly, I would even recommend placing the drums on an angle so that the basket floor doesn’t touch the chicken as much.
Why? Because the basket may tear away your precious coating if you’re not careful while flipping.
Gently turn the chicken over
Do not be rough when you turn your battered chicken over. Because this is a thick crispy batter, it can easily come off so be gentle when turning it over and avoiding using kitchen tweezers (silicone tongs are fine, just don’t squeeze too hard).
Use enough oil to coat chicken
Make sure enough oil is sprayed or gently brushed over the chicken. This ensures no floury spots and a golden look to your drums. If you don’t evenly coat with oil, the coating will taste like a dry cracker.
Below are frequently asked questions about my air fryer crispy chicken recipe:
How to reheat Korean fried chicken in air fryer?
Reheat in the air fryer at 350 degrees for 5-6 minutes or warm through.
What’s makes Korean fried chicken so tasty?
Curry powder! That’s the secret ingredient to making it delicious, flavourful and addictive.
Can I use any curry powder?
I would highly recommend any Japanese curry powder which is less spicy than Indian curry powder as it uses less spices.
Which air fryer do you use?
I use the Phillips Air Fryer. I link to the exact model below in my recipe card.
Can I use other cuts of chicken?
Yes! Feel free to use bone in skin on thighs for this recipe.
May I substitute with potato starch or cornstarch?
Other recipes you may like!
If you enjoyed my air fryer Korean chicken drums, you may enjoy these other recipes:
AIR FRYER JAPANESE KATSUDON
SWEET CRISPY ASIAN LEMON WINGS (Air Fryer)
KARAAGE (JAPANESE FRIED CHICKEN)
AIR FRYER SWEET AND SOUR TOFU
AIR FRYER CHICKEN KATSU
SWEET STICKY KOREAN CHICKEN
KOREAN BULGOGI CHICKEN WINGS
SKILLET VIETNAMESE LEMONGRASS CHICKEN
AIR FRYER TONKATSU SAUCE CHICKEN
Well, I hope you give my Air Fryer Korean Fried Chicken a try! It always excites me when you make my recipes and I hope this is one you try.
Thanks for visiting my blog! If you enjoyed my crispy Korean fried chicken air fryer recipe, please share it with your family and friends or on social media!
Take a picture if you've made my recipe and tag me on social media @ChristieAtHome in your feed or stories so I can share your creation in my stories with credits to you!
Made this recipe and loved it?
If you could leave a star rating for my Korean fried chicken air fryer drumsticks, I would appreciate it 🙂 Thanks so much!
*This post for my Korean fried chicken using air fryer contains affiliate links. As an Amazon Associate, I earn from qualifying purchases. I also earn from qualifying purchases through additional affiliate programs
Crispy Air Fryer Korean Fried Chicken
- 5 chicken drumsticks
- 1 tablespoon white wine
- ¼ teaspoon black pepper
- 2 teaspoon regular soy sauce not light or dark!
- 1 tablespoon garlic minced
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¾ cup tapioca starch (or sub with cornstarch or potato starch)
- ¾ cup all purpose flour
- ½ teaspoon onion powder
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 2 teaspoon curry powder Japanese kind recommended
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ¼ teaspoon black pepper
- 1 teaspoon baking powder
- ½ cup water
- 2-4 tablespoon vegetable oil or as needed
- fresh lemon juice optional but highly recommend
- Season chicken drumsticks with ingredients under "Chicken Marinade" and massage seasoning into drumsticks with hands. Set aside to marinate.
- In a bowl, add dry batter ingredients and whisk well.
- Take 1 measuring cup of the dry batter and transfer to a separate bowl. Set that aside for later.
- To the REMAINING dry ingredients (the bowl with less dry batter), whisk in ½ cup water to create a wet batter. You should now have a dry and wet batter in two separate bowls.
- Evenly dredge drumsticks into dry batter first ensuring no empty spots. Then dredge into wet batter and then back into dry batter.
- Transfer coated drumsticks to air fryer basket. Give each one enough room so air can reach it. Depending on the size of your air fryer, you may need to air fry in multiple batches. Important: Try to angle the drumsticks so that the least amount of surface area touches the weaved basket as this can cause for batter to tear away from chicken if you’re not gentle flipping over it in next steps.
- Spray or gently brush vegetable oil on one side of the drumsticks.
- Air fry on one side at 375 F for 11-12 minutes until crispy and golden.
- GENTLY turn drumsticks over, spray or brush on the other side with remaining vegetable oil.
- Air fry for 11-12 minutes at 375 F or until golden brown and crispy. Serve & enjoy with fresh lemon juice!
This was so crunchy and very flavourful down to the bone! Thanks for sharing!
So glad you enjoyed my recipe! Thanks for making it!
Hi Christie, I finally took my air fryer that has been sitting in the closet for Many months now. Lol!
I have a question on the type oil to be used. Does it have to be vegetable oil? All I have around the house right now are bottles and a can of avocado oil. Would this work? Or does it affect the fried chicken overall?
Thanks for sharing an awesome recipe!! ☺️
Hi Josephine, thanks for the kind words! Great question - you can use avocado oil or any neutral tasting oil that you enjoy! I actually love using avocado oil for my fried recipes especially air fryer ones. Hope you enjoy my recipe 🙂
This was *delicious*. I wanted to try it ASAP and I couldn't find Japanese curry so I used Chinese 5 Spice. The star anise comes through a little heavy, and I only had garlic salt so I used San-J Tamari reduced sodium. I used chicken thighs, too. The recipe as written made enough to cover 4 chicken thighs.
I paid attention to your comment about how it might stick and used a lot of olive oil spray on the basket, and more on the top of the chicken. By the time I flipped, the top was crispy, crunchy, and a beautiful brown. It didn't stick but I did have some undercooked batter. Next time I'll let it drain a little longer before the second dredge.
The second batch (my tiny air fryer only holds 2 thighs at a time), I wasn't as careful about coating everything with oil and did lose some of the batter, but I just ate those bits as crunchy separates.
Excellent recipe, great technique with the triple coating. Gonna try this same method with my standby Southern fried chicken seasonings! Thanks a lot! (I'm so full, I couldn't stop eating chicken.)
Thank you so much for making my recipe and for sharing your cooking experience with us! Chicken thighs are a fantastic substitute as they are so juicy! I'm so glad you enjoyed it with the Chinese five spice. Have a lovely evening!
I didn't want to post this as a review until I clarified some things. Are you sure you only added 1/2 cup of water to the flour/starch mix to make the batter? Because when I added 1/2 cup it wasn't even wet enough to call a paste, let alone a batter. I had to add about another 1/4 - 1/2 cup for it be work. Also, I used a lot of oil - certainly more than 1 tbs per side. I sprayed at the beginning, the flipping point and halfway through each side and it the coating was still as dry as you said it would be if there was too little. Any ideas about what might have gone wrong? I used avocado oil on the first batch and and canola oil on the second batch and it didn't seem to matter.
Hi Theresa, that's correct it should be 1/2 cup water until the batter is viscous and thin like in the video. As for the oil, feel free to add more oil as needed if you feel it requires more. I reviewed my instructions and I noticed one part that could have been misleading with regards to which bowl of dry batter to add the water to - it should be the one with less so I apologize for that! I've revised my instructions accordingly and once again my sincere apologies!
Thank you, that makes so much more sense. I did double check when it happened that you said the bowl with more in it, so I guess I was on the right track. The flavor of the chicken was so so good and it all worked out in the end.
Yes you were right on track! My apologies once again. I'm so glad to hear it worked out in the end and you found it delicious regardless 🙂 I appreciate your kind review. Have a lovely day Theresa!
Wow wow wow. This was really good and so crispy! The instructions were detailed and clear. Definitely making this again. The whole family loved it!
I love your recipes and this one was by far my favourite! So flavourful. I marinated mine overnight and it was just perfect. Thank you so much!
Will this work without the white wine
But it would be better for us if you make it without wine
Hi! I loved this recipe!! So crispy and delicious!! How do you keep the batter from sticking to the air fryer basket? I tried spraying it will oil but still didn't work? Thank you!
Thanks so much for making my recipe, Erinn! I am so happy to hear that you enjoyed it. The first way that I recommend is to really spray the base of the basket with quite a bit of oil until it's very shiny. Another way to get around this is by placing a square piece of parchment paper on the bottom of the basket (careful not to have it touch the hot element) and place the rangoons on top giving them a spray of oil. This will prevent them from sticking to the basket but you may need to air fry for a little longer to get them crispier as the parchment paper can prevent it food from getting crispy.