They may look and taste exactly like fried pickles, but make no mistake — they’re not. This addictively crunchy, over-the-top savory appetizer is coming at you hot, straight out of the air fryer, and your tastebuds will never know the difference. Less fat, less clean up, same amazing taste. It’s Air Fryer Pickles for the win.
Sour, juicy pickles come wrapped in a panko breadcrumb coating seasoned with a savory spice for an insanely delicious, handheld treat perfect for dipping in your favorite sauce!
You’ll find this Air Fryer Fried Pickles Recipe is perfect for any time you’re feeling extra snacky and also makes for the ultimate game day appetizer!
THE BEST AIR FRYER FRIED PICKLES
Air fryers are essentially countertop convection ovens (i.e., ovens that use fans to circulate heat and cook food evenly). These handy little ovens come equipped with a basket of perforated holes which allow for even more airflow. So what does this mean for your Air Fryer Pickles? They’re going to get extra, extra crunchy…if done right, that is.
Keep in mind airflow is very important when it comes to air fryer recipes. And, specifically for these pickle chips, you want air to circulate around the entire breaded pickle chip. So, long story short, for the best Air Fryer Pickles, don’t stack the pickles in the basket. They just won’t live up to their crunchy potential this way. Patience is key. Luckily, these only take about five minutes to fry per batch, and here’s a little bonus tidbit to keep in mind: You can snack while you wait on the others to finish cooking.
HOW TO MAKE FRIED PICKLES IN THE AIR FRYER
- Preheat the Air Fryer
- Set Up the Dredging Station
- Coat Pickles With Batter
- Spritz With Cooking Spray
- Air Fry In Batches
1. PREHEAT THE AIR FRYER
Preheating the air fryer is an important step when it comes to getting that first batch of Air Fryer Pickles right!
To preheat your air fryer simply set the temperature to 400°F and the time somewhere between ten and fifteen minutes, or however long you think it will take you to get all your pickles battered.
2. SET UP THE DREDGING STATION
To set up a dredging station for these Air Fryer Fried Pickles, you’ll need three shallow trays or bowls (such as a pie plate). In tray one, you’ll have all-purpose flour and spices, tray two will consist of eggs and water, and tray three will be a simple mixture of panko and salt.
3. BATTER THE PICKLES
Drain the pickles and begin dredging them. You’ll begin with a nice even coating of the seasoned flour. Be sure to shake off any excess flour before sending the pickles to the egg mix or the egg mix will not stay put!
Next, submerge each sliced pickle in the egg/water tray, again, allowing any excess to drip off before moving on to the next tray.
The last tray is the panko breadcrumbs and you’ll want to make sure you get a nice, generous coating of panko. To do this, turn the pickle as needed and press gently to make sure the panko coating adheres to the pickle.
4. SPRITZ WITH COOKING SPRAY
It’s best if you can have a large rimmed baking sheet off to the side of your dredging station when assembling your Air Fryer Pickles. A large baking sheet provides you with ample room to space out the pickles without stacking them, and the rim just helps to keep the oil contained.
Spacing out the pickles is important and allows you to get an even, full-coverage mist of oil across both the surface and along the sides of each and every pickle. We’ll cover more in regard to the importance of this below.
Lightly coat the pickle batter with the cooking spray, turn each pickle, and spritz again.
5. AIR FRY (IN BATCHES)
As mentioned above, you’ll want to air fry your pickles in batches. For one (24-ounce) pickle jar, this will take about twenty minutes total.
Add the pickles to the air fryer in a single layer and fry at 400°F for five to six minutes. Remove the Air Fryer Pickles from the basket (I like to use a set of kitchen tongs for this task), and repeat as needed. Then, allow the pickles to cool slightly, and serve alongside your favorite dipping sauce!
WHICH TYPE OF PICKLES SHOULD I USE?
This recipe calls for sliced hamburger pickles, but if you prefer pickle spears you can easily sub them in for hamburger pickles. My personal favorite brand for making Air Fryer Pickle Spears is Claussen’s Kosher Dill Pickle Spears.
As far as sliced hamburger pickles go, if you like lots of crunchy batter on your pickle chips, opt for standard-sized sliced hamburger pickles like Del Dixi Hamburger Slices. If you like a juicier, more pronounced pickle interior, go for a thicker sliced pickle, like Nathan’s Famous Kosher Dill Pickle Chips.
PANKO BREADCRUMBS FOR AIR FRYER PICKLES
For an extra crunchy coating that mimics real-deal fried pickles, it could only be Panko breadcrumbs — a breadcrumb that possesses the ability to crisp up like no other.
The only true downside to a Panko breadcrumb coating in the air fryer is that you cannot “stack and shake” during the cooking process or you will lose the vast majority of your coating.
Alas, you will soon see (or shall we say taste) the time “sacrifice” is well worth the end result. Perfectly golden, addictively crunchy Air Fryer Pickle Chips.
WHY USE NONSTICK COOKING SPRAY?
Another noteworthy ingredient is nonstick cooking spray. You absolutely, under no circumstances cannot develop a gorgeous, golden crust without some form of fat. Wamp, wamp, wamp.
The good news? You won’t need much of it.
Regardless, this ingredient is important and you’ll want to make sure you are using a nonstick cooking spray that is either made up of vegetable, canola, or avocado oil. This is because you’ll be frying at a temperature of 400°F and you want an oil with a fairly high smoke point. My personal preference is avocado oil cooking spray.
Another thing to keep in mind when snagging cooking spray for your Air Fryer Pickles is the spray that comes in aerosol cans works best for air fryer recipes.
The aerosol mechanism allows for an even misting of oil, which means your pickle batter will have a lovely golden hue all the way around.
HOW TO STORE AND REHEAT LEFTOVER AIR FRYER PICKLES
If you end up with leftover Air Fryer Pickles, you can either keep them in the refrigerator or the freezer. If you like your pickle chips extra crunchy, the latter will be the best option.
Refrigerated Air Fryer Pickles will become soggy. Frozen Air Fryer Pickles, on the other hand, will maintain a crispy, crunchy coating when reheated.
HOW TO FREEZE THEM
To freeze Air Fryer Fried Pickles, lay the pickles on a flat surface lined with wax paper and place them in the freezer. Once the pickles are frozen, transfer them to an airtight, freezer-safe, ziptop bag and freeze for up to two months.
HOW TO REHEAT THEM
Your frozen pickle chips will reheat in the air fryer beautifully! Just preheat your air fryer for 10 minutes at 400°F. Then, add a batch of frozen pickle chips to the air fryer, and cook for three to four minutes.
5 MORE APPETIZER RECIPES YOU’LL LOVE
- Velveeta Cheese Dip
- Lemon Pepper Wings
- Meat and Cheese Tray
- Crockpot BBQ Meatballs
- Bacon-Wrapped Smokies
These Homemade Air Fryer Chicken Nuggets are crispy and crunchy, with a gorgeous golden panko breadcrumb coating, and a center of irresistibly tender, juicy white meat chicken!
- 2 pounds boneless, skinless chicken breasts
- 1 cup all-purpose flour
- 2 1/2 teaspoons Kosher salt, separated
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon ground pepper
- 1/2 teaspoon paprika
- 2 large eggs
- 2 1/2 cups panko breadcrumbs
- nonstick cooking spray (Avocado, canola, or vegetable oil preferably in an aerosol can), about 2 tablespoons
Have ready three shallow bowls or trays for a dredging station. Preheat your air fryer to 375°F for 10-15 minutes.
Place a chicken breast in the ziplock bag and remove as much air from the bag as possible. Seal it and beginning at the thick portion of the chicken breast, firmly begin pounding it out using the flat-end of the mallet or a rolling pin until it is about a 1/4″ in thickness.
Cut each breast into strips about 2″ wide, cutting against the grain. Then, cut the strips into pieces 1 1/2 – 2″ in diameter. Set the chicken aside.
In the first tray, whisk together the flour, 1 teaspoon salt, garlic powder, pepper, and paprika. In the second tray, whisk together the eggs with 2 tablespoons of water. In the third tray, mix together the panko breadcrumbs with a generous pinch of salt.
Fully coat each nugget in the seasoned flour and shake off the excess. Submerge in the egg mixture, allow excess to drip off, and then transfer to the tray of panko. Coat thoroughly with the panko, applying gentle pressure as needed to ensure the coating adheres. Transfer to a rimmed baking sheet.
Once you have all of the nuggets coated, transfer them to a large, rimmed baking sheet and mist the tops and sides with the nonstick cooking spray. Flip the chicken, and mist the other side.
Add a single layer of nuggets to the basket of the air fryer and cook at 375°F for 8-11 minutes. Remove the nuggets, and repeat with the remaining chicken.