Air fryer Chicken Tikka

Air Fryer Chicken Tikka is a delightful dish that brings the vibrant flavors of Indian cuisine right to your kitchen, with the added benefit of being healthier and quicker to make than its traditional counterpart. This recipe is designed to guide you through creating succulent, spicy, and slightly charred chicken pieces that promise to be a hit among family and friends. Let’s embark on this culinary adventure and bring a taste of India to your table with the convenience of your air fryer.

1.5 pounds (about 680 grams) boneless chicken breast or thigh, cut into bite-sized pieces
1/2 cup plain yogurt (Greek yogurt works well for a thicker marinade)
2 tablespoons lemon juice
1 tablespoon ginger-garlic paste (or 1/2 tablespoon each of minced ginger and garlic)
2 teaspoons garam masala
1 teaspoon turmeric powder
1 teaspoon ground cumin
1 teaspoon Kashmiri red chili powder (for color and mild heat) or to taste
1/2 teaspoon ground coriander
Salt to taste
2 tablespoons vegetable oil or melted ghee
Fresh cilantro, chopped (for garnish)
Lemon wedges
Sliced onions
Yogurt or mint chutney
Air fryer
Mixing bowl
Tongs or a fork
Optional: skewers (if your air fryer can accommodate them)



In a large mixing bowl, combine the yogurt, lemon juice, ginger-garlic paste, garam masala, turmeric, cumin, Kashmiri red chili powder, coriander, salt, and oil or ghee. Mix well to form a smooth marinade.
Add the chicken pieces to the bowl and ensure they are thoroughly coated with the marinade. Cover and let the chicken marinate in the refrigerator for at least 1 hour, or for best results, overnight. The longer it marinates, the more flavorful and tender the chicken will be.
Preheat your air fryer to 375°F (190°C) for about 3-5 minutes. This step ensures that the chicken starts cooking immediately, sealing in the flavors.
If using skewers, thread the marinated chicken pieces onto them. Otherwise, place the chicken pieces in the air fryer basket in a single layer, ensuring they are not overcrowded. You may need to cook them in batches depending on the size of your air fryer.
4. COOK:
Air fry the chicken at 375°F (190°C) for about 15-20 minutes, turning halfway through the cooking time, until the chicken is fully cooked and has a nice char on the edges. The exact cooking time may vary based on the air fryer model and the size of the chicken pieces.
Once cooked, let the chicken tikka rest for a few minutes before serving. Garnish with fresh chopped cilantro and serve with lemon wedges, sliced onions, and a side of yogurt or mint chutney for dipping.

Tips for Success:
Marination Time: For the best flavor, marinate the chicken for as long as possible. Overnight marination will infuse the chicken with more depth and richness.
Even Cooking: Ensure the chicken pieces are cut into uniform sizes for even cooking.
Preheating: Don’t skip preheating your air fryer, as it helps to start the cooking process quickly and efficiently.
No Overcrowding: Cook in batches if necessary to avoid overcrowding the basket, which can lead to steaming instead of air frying.

This Air Fryer Chicken Tikka recipe is a testament to how traditional flavors can be adapted to fit modern, health-conscious lifestyles without compromising on taste. It’s perfect for a quick weeknight dinner, a healthy snack, or as a flavorful addition to your party menu. Enjoy the delicious journey!

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