City Chicken in Air Fryer: A Crispy Delight Recipe

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City Chicken in Air Fryer

City Chicken in the air fryer is a delightful twist on a classic dish that has its roots in the American Midwest and Northeast. Traditionally made with cubes of pork or veal skewered to resemble chicken drumsticks, this recipe became a staple during times when chicken was a luxury.

Using an air fryer to prepare City Chicken not only ensures a crispy exterior but also offers a healthier cooking method by reducing the amount of oil needed. The air fryer’s rapid air circulation technology crisps the meat beautifully while keeping it juicy inside.

This method not only preserves the dish’s unique taste and texture but also aligns with a healthier lifestyle by cutting down on fat.

Why You’ll Choose City Chicken in Air Fryer

Air Fryer City Chicken transforms a traditional favorite into a dish that’s easy and quick to prepare with a perfectly crispy exterior and tender inside. It’s an excellent way to enjoy a classic in a modern, health-conscious manner.

  • Cooking Time: Significantly reduced compared to traditional methods, offering convenience.
  • Nutritional Benefits: Lower fat content without compromising on flavor.
  • Ideal for Air Frying: The recipe’s nature allows for even cooking and perfect crisping.
  • Standard of Taste: Maintains the beloved traditional flavors with a healthier twist.
  • Compatibility with Air Frying: Ingredients and preparation perfectly suited for air frying, ensuring a delicious outcome.
Air Fryer City Chicken Recipe
Air Fryer City Chicken Recipe
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City Chicken in Air Fryer

City Chicken in Air Fryer

  • Author: Suborna Tanchangya
  • Total Time: 35 minutes
  • Yield: 4 servings 1x
  • Diet: Gluten Free


City Chicken in the air fryer brings a crispy, savory twist to a classic dish, offering an irresistibly tender inside. This easy-to-make favorite will quickly become your new staple for a delicious, fuss-free meal.


  • 1 lb pork tenderloin, cut into 1-inch cubes
  • 2 eggs, beaten
  • 1 cup bread crumbs
  • 1 tsp garlic powder
  • 1 tsp paprika
  • Salt and pepper to taste
  • Wooden skewers


  • Pork can be substituted with chicken or veal for a different flavor profile.
  • Gluten-free bread crumbs can be used for a gluten-free version.


1. Preparation of Meat:

  • Start by cutting the pork tenderloin into 1-inch cubes.
  • This size ensures even cooking and a perfect bite.

2. Skewering:

  • Thread the pork cubes onto the soaked skewers, mimicking the look of a chicken leg.
  • Leave a little space between each piece to ensure thorough cooking.

3. Seasoning the Meat:

  • In a shallow bowl, beat the eggs.
  • In another bowl, mix the bread crumbs with garlic powder, paprika, salt, and pepper.

4. Coating:

  • Dip each skewer into the beaten eggs, ensuring all sides are covered.
  • Then, roll them in the breadcrumb mixture until well coated.

5. Preheating the Air Fryer:

  • Preheat your air fryer to 400°F for about 3-5 minutes.
  • This step is crucial for achieving a crispy exterior.

6. Arranging in the Basket:

  • Place the skewered meat in the air fryer basket.
  • Make sure they are not touching to allow air to circulate freely.

7. Cooking Time and Temperature:

  • Cook for 10 minutes, then flip the skewers and cook for an additional 10 minutes.
  • The high temperature ensures a crispy coating while keeping the inside tender.

8. Checking for Doneness:

  • The meat should reach an internal temperature of 145°F.
  • Use a meat thermometer to ensure it’s cooked through.

9. Serving:

  • Once cooked, let the city chicken rest for a few minutes before serving.
  • This allows the juices to redistribute.

10. Serving Ideas:

  • Serve your city chicken with sides of mashed potatoes, steamed vegetables, or a fresh salad.
  • These accompaniments make for a balanced meal.


  • Selecting the Right Meat: Opt for tenderloin or a similarly tender cut for the best results. This ensures that your city chicken is juicy and delicious.
  • Seasoning Options: Feel free to experiment with different seasoning blends. Whether you prefer simple salt and pepper or a more elaborate marinade, the right seasonings can significantly enhance the flavor.
  • Importance of Preheating: Preheating the air fryer is key to achieving a crispy texture. It mimics the immediate high heat of traditional frying.
  • Arranging for Optimal Air Circulation: Proper placement in the air fryer basket is essential. It ensures that each piece cooks evenly and gets that desirable crispiness.
  • Adjusting Cooking Times: Depending on the size of your air fryer and the type of meat used, cooking times may vary. Always use a meat thermometer to ensure food safety.
  • Prep Time: 15 minutes
  • Cook Time: 20 minutes
  • Category: Main Course
  • Method: Air Frying
  • Cuisine: American


  • Serving Size: 2 skewers per person
  • Calories: Approximately 250 per serving
  • Sugar: Less than 1g
  • Sodium: Approximately 300mg
  • Fat: Approximately 8g
  • Saturated Fat: 2g
  • Unsaturated Fat: 5g
  • Trans Fat: 0g
  • Carbohydrates: Approximately 10g
  • Fiber: 1g
  • Protein: 35g
  • Cholesterol: 120mg

Keywords: air fryer city chicken recipe

Equipment Needed

  • Air Fryer
  • Mixing bowls
  • Measuring spoons and cups
  • Skewers (if using wooden skewers, soak them in water for at least 30 minutes before use to prevent burning)

How to Reheat City Chicken in the Air Fryer

Reheating City Chicken in the air fryer restores its crispy exterior while keeping the inside juicy. This method is quick, efficient, and ensures your leftovers taste just as good as when they were first made.

  • Preheat the air fryer to 350°F for about 3 minutes. This ensures the cooking environment is ready.
  • Arrange the city chicken skewers in a single layer in the air fryer basket. Avoid overlapping to ensure even reheating.
  • Heat for 3-4 minutes, then check the warmth. If necessary, heat for an additional 1-2 minutes. The exact time will depend on the thickness of the skewers.
  • Serve immediately after reheating for the best texture and flavor.

Serving and Pairing Ideas

City Chicken pairs beautifully with a variety of dishes. Here are some suggestions to turn your city chicken into a memorable meal:

  • Main/Side Dishes: Serve alongside mashed potatoes, roasted vegetables, or a crisp green salad for a balanced plate.
  • Creative Serving Ideas: For a fun twist, slice the reheated city chicken off the skewers and serve atop a fresh Caesar or Greek salad. Alternatively, tuck pieces into warm pita bread with tzatziki for a delightful sandwich.
Air Fryer City Chicken

Tips for Perfect Air Fryer City Chicken

City Chicken in the air fryer presents a crispier, healthier alternative to the deep-fried version. The air fryer circulates hot air around the food, achieving that desired crunch with minimal oil.

For consistently perfect results, here are some additional tips and tricks:

  • Ensure Even Coating: Dip each piece thoroughly in egg, then roll in breadcrumbs. A uniform coating guarantees an even crisp.
  • Avoid Overcrowding: Space out the skewers in the air fryer basket. Good air flow is crucial for that all-around crispiness.
  • Maximizing Flavor: Don’t shy away from seasonings. The right mix of spices can elevate the taste. Experiment with different herbs and spices to find your perfect blend.
  • Preheat Your Air Fryer: Starting with a hot air fryer is key. It cuts down cooking time and starts the crisping process immediately.
  • Flipping Is Key: Halfway through cooking, flip your city chicken skewers. This ensures they cook evenly and get crispy on all sides.

Troubleshooting Common Issues:

  • Soggy Coating: If the coating is soggy, increase cooking time slightly or ensure your air fryer is not overcrowded.
  • Uneven Cooking: Rotate the position of the skewers in the basket halfway through cooking for even exposure to the heating element.

Best Practices for Air Frying:

  • Clean your air fryer after each use to prevent smoke and flavor transfer.
  • Use a spray bottle to lightly oil your food. It’s healthier and ensures a more even crisp than pouring oil directly.
  • Time and Temperature Settings: The ideal temperature for city chicken is 400°F. Start with 20 minutes of cooking time, 10 minutes on each side, and adjust based on your air fryer model and the size of your skewers.

See more: Air Fryer Lemon Pepper Wings Wingstop

FAQs About Making City Chicken in an Air Fryer

How long does it take to cook City Chicken in an air fryer?

It typically takes about 20 minutes to cook City Chicken in an air fryer, flipping the skewers halfway through for even cooking.

Can I make City Chicken in an air fryer without skewers?

Yes, you can cook City Chicken in an air fryer without skewers by placing the meat cubes directly in the basket, ensuring they’re spaced apart for proper air circulation.

What are the best seasonings for city chicken in an air fryer?

The best seasonings for City Chicken include a mix of garlic powder, paprika, salt, and pepper, but feel free to experiment with herbs like thyme, rosemary, or even a hint of cayenne for a spicy kick.

How can I make a vegetarian version of city chicken in an air fryer?

To make a vegetarian version of City Chicken, use firm tofu or seitan cut into cubes, and follow the same breading and cooking process as you would with meat.

Final Words

City Chicken in the air fryer offers a delightful, crispy alternative to traditional frying, bringing a classic into the modern age with less oil and fat. This method not only enhances the dish’s flavor but also aligns with healthier eating practices.

Remember, the air fryer is your friend for achieving that perfect crunch. Don’t hesitate to play with spices and seasonings to tailor the dish to your taste. The process is as rewarding as the outcome.

Embrace the simplicity and efficiency of air frying. Let each meal be an opportunity to explore new flavors and enjoy the journey of cooking. Here’s to many delicious meals ahead!

See all in at KitGiz for Air Fryer recipes.

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