reaching for keto air fryer chicken wings on a plate

the BEST air fryer chicken wings recipe {keto + gf}

This air fryer chicken wings recipe is the BEST- and I don’t say that lightly. Chicken wings are one of my all-time favorite foods, and this recipe requires just a handful of ingredients for amazingly crisp, tender, and perfectly seasoned air fryer chicken wings! No breading required, no (pan) frying required, and I’ll go as far as saying that crispy air fryer chicken wings are THE number one reason to get an air fryer if you don’t already have one. 🙂

keto air fryer chicken wings!

The air fryer makes these wings so crispy, without any sort of breading or flour mix. The main wing coating is baking powder-based, mixed with a few other spices to make a dry rub. Because of that, these chicken wings are completely keto-friendly and gluten-free! Serve them with a five-minute keto ranch dressing for the tastiest, restaurant-style starter (or meal!).

One disclaimer to this air fryer chicken wings recipe: the wings go FAST. They’re my family’s all-time favorite and seriously, SO GOOD. Just thought it was worth a mention in case you feel the need to double the batch. 😉

the only air fryer chicken wings recipe you need

Get ready to be blown away! This keto air fryer chicken wings recipe will give you wings that are:

  • extra crispy yet tender on the inside
  • seasoned perfectly with just the right amount of salt, garlic, and a bit of chipotle for the tiniest amount of heat
  • easy to prep
  • kid-friendly (I suggest skipping the chipotle if your kiddos are not used to spicy foods)
  • gluten-free, grain-free, low-carb, and keto-friendly

Here are the ingredients you will need:

  • chicken wings, fresh or frozen (if frozen, defrost first)
  • baking powder, gluten-free (I also opt for aluminum-free)
  • garlic powder
  • salt
  • smoked paprika (or regular paprika)
  • chipotle powder

how to make air fryer chicken wings

The prep time is so quick, and the air fryer even speeds up the cook time a bit. Here’s how to make them:

  1. Make the dry rub. In a small bowl, combine the baking powder, garlic powder, salt, paprika, and chipotle (optional). Stir until it’s mixed well.
  2. Coat the chicken. Pat the chicken wings/drumsticks dry with paper towels and place them on a plate. Depending on the size of your air fryer, you will likely have to air fry in two separate batches (I air fry about eight at a time). Sprinkle the dry rub onto the chicken pieces, flipping them over so the mixture coats both sides.
  3. Air fry the chicken wings. Remove the air fryer rack. Preheat the air fryer to 360°F. Rub a bit of avocado oil or coconut oil onto the rack of the air fryer to prevent the chicken from sticking. Place the first batch of chicken wings onto the rack, then place the rack into the air fryer once it is preheated. Cook for 15 minutes at 360°F, flipping the chicken halfway through. Bump up the temperature to 400°F and cook another 10 minutes, flipping after five minutes.
keto air fryer chicken wings on a plate with celery

air fryer chicken wings recipe tips

  • If you’re using frozen chicken wings, make sure they’re fully thawed first. Since frozen wings will release more water, be sure to pat them dry very well. Don’t spread the baking powder mixture on until right before the wings are going into the air fryer, just in case the wings release more water as they sit.
  • You can thaw frozen wings in the microwave by using the defrost setting for bone-in poultry.
  • If you’re cooking the wings in batches, place the first cooked batch of wings onto a plate and tent with aluminum foil to keep them warm while you cook the second batch.
holding an air fryer chicken wing dipped in ranch

This air fryer chicken wings recipe results in the tastiest, crispiest, better-than-restaurant chicken wings! Pair them with a keto Cobb salad, keto ranch dressing for plenty of dipping action, or cook your entire meal in the air fryer and try out air fryer zucchini tots.

Enjoy these keto air fryer chicken wings- I know you’ll love them as much as I do!

p.s. If you try this recipe, I’d be so grateful if you rated it with a star review below! And show me your wings! Tag me @stemandspoon on Instagram.

you might also love…

  • Air fryer Brussels sprouts with miso glaze are a delicious, low-carb way to enjoy this good-for-you veggie! The Brussels sprouts are savory and slightly sweet, and turn extra crispy in the air fryer.
  • Keto teriyaki chicken meatballs and broccoli is a simple spin on chicken teriyaki, served with a sugar-free teriyaki sauce.
  • If you’re in need of more low-carb snack recipes, try out these cilantro garlic jicama fries and garlic aioli! So much flavor, and they’re so close to the real thing!
keto air fryer chicken wings on a plate with celery

the BEST air fryer chicken wings recipe {keto + gf}

Yield: 16 wings
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 25 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes

This air fryer chicken wings recipe results in amazingly crispy, tender-on-the-inside, and perfectly seasoned wings! Garlic powder, salt, and a hint of chipotle give these keto air fryer chicken wings the yummiest flavor WITHOUT any breading or sauce. Keto, low-carb, gluten-free and grain-free.

Ingredients

  • 2-3 pounds chicken wings, fresh or thawed if using frozen (about 14-16 pieces)
  • 1-1/2 tablespoons baking powder (gluten-free and aluminum-free)
  • 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1 teaspoon sea salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon smoked paprika (or regular paprika)
  • 1/2 teaspoon chipotle powder 
  • 1 teaspoon avocado oil or coconut oil

Instructions

  1. If using frozen wings, first make sure they are completely thawed.* Place the wings on a plate and pat them dry with paper towels. Depending on the size of your air fryer, you may need to cook the wings in batches. If that's the case, only work with half the wings at a time, leaving the remaining wings in the refrigerator.
  2. If your air fryer has a rack that fits inside the basket, remove the rack before preheating the air fryer to 360°F. In a small bowl, combine the baking powder (NOT baking soda), garlic powder, sea salt, paprika, and chipotle powder.* Stir to mix well.
  3. Use a spoon to sprinkle some of the dry mixture onto one side of the raw chicken wings. Gently pat the dry rub onto the chicken skin, making sure it's pretty evenly coated. Flip each piece and sprinkle more of the dry rub (if working in two batches, leave enough seasoning in the bowl for the second batch of wings).
  4. Use your fingers or a pastry brush to coat the air fryer rack with the avocado oil or coconut oil to prevent the wings from sticking. Place the seasoned wings onto the rack and place the rack into the air fryer basket. Cook at 360°F for 15 minutes, flipping the wings halfway through for even frying.
  5. Bump up the temperature to 400°F and air fry for an additional 10 minutes, again flipping the wings halfway through the cook time.*
  6. Remove the wings from the air fryer and place them on a clean plate. If you have to air fry the second batch, tent the cooked wings with aluminum foil to keep them warm.
  7. Repeat steps 3-5 with the second batch of wings. Serve the wings as-is or with a 5-minute keto ranch dressing.

Notes

For quick thawing of frozen wings, place them in the microwave and use the "defrost bone-in poultry" setting.

Since all air fryers cook differently, I recommend checking to see if the wings are done after the first 5 minutes of air frying at 400°F.

The chipotle powder is optional. It only gives the wings a tiny amount of heat so if you want spicier wings, you can use a full teaspoon.

Nutrition Information:
Yield: 3 Serving Size: 1
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 420Total Fat: 33gSaturated Fat: 10gCholesterol: 208mgSodium: 531mgCarbohydrates: 2gNet Carbohydrates: 2gFiber: 0gSugar: 0gProtein: 30g

This nutritional information is approximate and is provided for convenience as a courtesy.

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