Cubed Chicken Air Fryer Recipe: Crispy And Delicious

cubed chicken air fryer recipe

Welcome to the world of air frying, where you can achieve crispy and flavorful results without excess oil and calories. In this comprehensive guide, we will delve into the realm of cubed chicken recipes made in an air fryer. From understanding the food science behind air frying to selecting and preparing the perfect cubed chicken, we will cover all the necessary aspects to master this delightful dish. So, preheat your air fryer and get ready to transform plain chicken into a meal that bursts with flavor!

Understanding the Food Science of Air Frying

Before we dive into the culinary details of preparing your cubed chicken, it’s essential to understand how air frying works and why it’s a healthier alternative to deep frying. Air fryers utilize hot air circulation combined with a small amount of oil to produce results similar to deep frying, but with significantly fewer calories and reduced oil absorption.

The air fryer’s rapid hot air circulation heats the food from all angles, creating a crispy exterior while trapping moisture inside for tender and juicy results. By circulating hot air at high speeds, the air fryer replicates the texture and taste of deep-fried dishes with less oil and a shorter cooking time.

Selecting the Perfect Chicken for Cubing

Choosing high-quality chicken is crucial for achieving the best results in your air fryer. Opt for boneless and skinless chicken breasts or chicken tenders as they have a mild flavor and tend to become incredibly tender when air fried.

When purchasing chicken, look for firm and plump breasts with a pinkish hue. Avoid any meat that appears discolored or has a foul smell. Always prioritize freshness and quality to ensure a mouthwatering end result.

Cleaning and Preparing the Air Fryer

cubed chicken

Proper cleaning and preparation of your air fryer are essential for food safety and optimal cooking performance. Most air fryers consist of a cooking basket and a removable tray.

  1. Unplug your air fryer and allow it to cool down before cleaning.
  2. Remove the cooking basket and gently wash it with warm soapy water. Pay attention to crevices and hard-to-reach areas.
  3. Rinse the basket thoroughly and allow it to dry completely before use.
  4. Wipe the interior and exterior of the air fryer with a damp cloth.
  5. For stubborn stains, use a soft brush or sponge with mild dish soap.
  6. Be cautious not to submerge the main unit or electronic components in water.

Preparing the Cubed Chicken for Air Frying

Now that your air fryer is clean and ready, it’s time to prepare your cubed chicken for cooking. Follow these steps for a flavorful and perfectly cooked result:

  1. Start by cubing the chicken breasts into bite-sized pieces. Aim for uniformity to ensure even cooking.
  2. In a mixing bowl, add the cubed chicken and season it with your preferred spices and herbs. Common options include salt, pepper, garlic powder, paprika, or even some herbs like thyme or rosemary.
  3. Toss the chicken cubes gently until they are evenly coated with the seasoning. This step is crucial for achieving a tasty and well-seasoned dish.
  4. Allow the seasoned chicken to marinate for at least 20 minutes, or refrigerate overnight for more intense flavors.
MUST READ  Bacon Wrapped Chicken Air Fryer Recipe: A Culinary Delight

Best Practices and Tips for Air Frying Cubed Chicken

To ensure your cubed chicken turns out crisply and deliciously, keep in mind the following tips:

  1. Preheating: Preheating your air fryer before cooking will ensure the chicken cooks evenly and reduces the overall cooking time.
  2. Spacing: Do not overcrowd the air fryer basket. Leaving some space between the chicken cubes allows hot air to circulate freely, resulting in a crispy exterior.
  3. Shaking or Flipping: Midway through the cooking process, gently shake the air fryer basket or flip the chicken cubes to promote even browning on all sides.
  4. Mist with Oil: If desired, lightly mist the chicken cubes with cooking oil. While the air fryer requires less oil overall, a light misting will help achieve a golden and crispy exterior.
  5. Cooking Time and Temperature: The recommended cooking time and temperature for cubed chicken vary depending on the size of the cubes and the air fryer model. As a general guideline, aim for 375°F (190°C) for about 12-15 minutes, flipping halfway through. However, always refer to your specific air fryer’s manual and adjust accordingly.
  6. Internal Temperature: Ensure that the internal temperature of the chicken reaches a safe minimum of 165°F (74°C) using a meat thermometer. This guarantees the chicken is fully cooked and safe to consume.

Recipe: Teriyaki Glazed Cubed Chicken

close up view of air fried cubed chicken

Now that you are equipped with the necessary knowledge, let’s dive into a delicious recipe using cubed chicken in the air fryer. This Teriyaki Glazed Cubed Chicken is a crowd-pleaser and bursting with Asian-inspired flavors. Here’s what you’ll need:

Ingredients:

  • 1.5 pounds (680 grams) of boneless, skinless chicken breasts, cubed
  • 1/4 cup (60 ml) of teriyaki sauce
  • 2 tablespoons of soy sauce
  • 1 tablespoon of honey
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • 1 teaspoon of grated ginger
  • 2 tablespoons of sesame seeds (optional, for garnish)
  • Chopped scallions (optional, for garnish)

Instructions:

  1. Preheat your air fryer to 375°F (190°C) for 5 minutes.
  2. In a mixing bowl, combine the teriyaki sauce, soy sauce, honey, minced garlic, and grated ginger. Stir well to create the marinade.
  3. Add the cubed chicken to the marinade, ensuring each piece is coated thoroughly. Allow the chicken to marinate for at least 20 minutes, or overnight if preferred.
  4. Place the marinated chicken cubes in a single layer in the air fryer basket, leaving some space between each piece.
  5. Cook the chicken in the preheated air fryer for 12-15 minutes, shaking the basket or flipping the chicken cubes halfway through.
  6. Check the internal temperature of the chicken with a meat thermometer. Once it reaches 165°F (74°C), remove the chicken from the air fryer.
  7. Sprinkle sesame seeds and chopped scallions on top of the cooked chicken for added flavor and presentation.
  8. Serve the Teriyaki Glazed Cubed Chicken with steamed rice, stir-fried vegetables, or your preferred side dishes.
MUST READ  The Perfect Tater Tots Air Fryer Recipe

Variations and Customizations

The beauty of cooking cubed chicken in an air fryer lies in its versatility. You can adapt the recipe to fit your preferences or experiment with different flavors. Here are a few variations to consider:

  1. Spicy Buffalo Cubed Chicken: Replace the teriyaki sauce with buffalo sauce and add a pinch of cayenne pepper for an irresistible spicy twist.
  2. Lemon Herb Cubed Chicken: Swap the Asian flavors for a Mediterranean twist by marinating the chicken in a mixture of lemon juice, olive oil, minced garlic, fresh herbs like thyme and oregano, and a sprinkle of lemon zest.
  3. Sesame Ginger Cubed Chicken: Enhance the Asian flavors by adding additional grated ginger, soy sauce, sesame oil, and sprinkle toasted sesame seeds on top after cooking.

Feel free to get creative and adjust ingredients according to your taste preferences. Cubed chicken in the air fryer provides a blank canvas for your culinary adventures!

Cleaning and Maintenance Tips for Air Fryers

After enjoying your delicious cubed chicken, it’s important to properly clean and maintain your air fryer for longevity. Follow these tips:

  1. Cooling Down: Allow your air fryer to cool down completely before cleaning.
  2. Removable Parts: Remove the cooking basket and tray, then wash them with warm soapy water. You can also place them in the dishwasher if they are labeled dishwasher safe.
  3. Nonstick Coating: If your air fryer features a nonstick coating, avoid using harsh scrubbing pads or abrasive cleaning products that could damage the surface. Opt for a soft sponge or cloth.
  4. Exterior Cleaning: Wipe the exterior of the air fryer with a damp cloth to remove any grease or food residue.
  5. Storage: Once cleaned and dried, store your air fryer in a dry and ventilated area, ensuring it is protected from dust or extreme temperature conditions.

By following these cleaning and maintenance tips, you will ensure that your air fryer remains in excellent condition, ready to prepare many more delicious dishes!

Conclusion

Mastering the art of cooking cubed chicken in an air fryer opens up a world of possibilities for creating mouthwatering and healthy meals. With its unique combination of rapid hot air circulation and a small amount of oil, the air fryer proves to be a versatile kitchen appliance that delivers crispy and delicious results.

From selecting high-quality chicken to understanding the food science behind air frying, we have covered all the essential aspects to empower you with the knowledge and skills needed to create the perfect cubed chicken dish. By following the provided recipe and tips, you’ll be savoring a plate of crispy and flavorful cubed chicken in no time.

MUST READ  The Perfect Roast Chicken: A Culinary Delight Enhanced By The Air Fryer

So, let your creativity soar, experiment with different flavors, and enjoy the process of discovering new and delightful cubed chicken recipes in your air fryer!

Sources
  • The Best Way To Reheat Chicken In The Air Fryer And Keep It Juicy – Yahoo
  • Air Fryer Chicken Bites – My Organized Chaos
  • Air Fryer Chicken Fried Steak – An Affair from the Heart
  • FAQS On Cubed Chicken Air Fryer Recipe

    What Type Of Chicken Should I Use For This Cubed Chicken Air Fryer Recipe?

    The best type of chicken to use for this recipe is boneless, skinless chicken breasts. You can also use chicken thighs if you prefer a richer and more tender texture.

    How Long Should I Marinate The Chicken Before Air Frying It?

    It is recommended to marinate the chicken for at least 30 minutes or up to 4 hours to allow the flavors to penetrate the meat.

    What Should I Use For The Cubed Chicken Air Fryer Seasoning?

    You can use a combination of herbs and spices such as paprika, garlic powder, onion powder, salt, and pepper. You can also add some lemon juice or Worcestershire sauce for extra tanginess.

    What Temperature And Cooking Time Should I Use For This Recipe?

    Preheat your air fryer to 375°F and cook the cubed chicken for 8 to 10 minutes, flipping the pieces halfway through the cooking process. Make sure the internal temperature of the chicken reaches 165°F for safe consumption.

    Can I Add Vegetables To This Cubed Chicken Air Fryer Recipe?

    Absolutely! You can add cubed bell peppers, onions, zucchini, or any other veggies of your choice to the air fryer basket alongside the chicken. Just make sure to adjust the cooking time accordingly.

    How Do I Achieve A Crispy Outer Layer On The Cubed Chicken?

    Make sure to pat the cubed chicken dry with paper towels before seasoning it. Also, spray a light coat of cooking oil on the chicken before air frying it for a crispy texture.

    Can I Use Frozen Cubed Chicken For This Recipe?

    While it is recommended to use fresh chicken for better results, you can also use frozen cubed chicken. Just make sure to thaw it properly in the refrigerator overnight before marinating and cooking it in the air fryer.