Air-Fryer Chicken Legs

Total Time

Prep: 25 min. Cook: 15 min.


8 servings

Updated: Nov. 20, 2023
For years, I tried to find the perfect bottled barbecue sauce for chicken legs. After a few years, I threw in the towel and created my own using ketchup, honey and spicy brown mustard. It works perfectly with this air-fryer chicken legs recipe. —Kathleen Criddle, Lake Worth, Florida
Air-Fryer Chicken Legs Recipe photo by Taste of Home


  • 2 cups ketchup
  • 2/3 cup honey
  • 1/3 cup packed brown sugar
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped sweet onion
  • 2 tablespoons spicy brown mustard
  • 4 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
  • 1 tablespoon cider vinegar
  • 16 chicken drumsticks


  1. In a large saucepan, mix the first 8 ingredients; bring to a boil. Reduce heat; simmer, uncovered, 15-20 minutes to allow flavors to blend, stirring occasionally. Reserve 2 cups sauce for serving.
  2. Preheat air fryer to 375°. In batches, place chicken in a single layer on greased tray in air-fryer basket. Cook 15-20 minutes or until a thermometer reads 170°-175°, turning once and brushing generously with remaining sauce during the last 5 minutes. Serve with reserved sauce.

Air-Fryer Chicken Legs Tips

How can make sure your air-fryer chicken legs are crispy?

To keep these chicken legs crispy, make sure to place them in a single row in your air fryer basket. Overcrowding will cause uneven cooking. Preheating your air fryer before adding your first batch can also help achieve crispier results. Read more of our favorite air fryer cooking tips to become a pro with your appliance.

What can you serve with air-fryer chicken legs?

Take advantage of the free oven or stovetop space with these tasty vegetable side dishes. Coleslaw, cornbread, or even a simple side of macaroni and cheese go great with barbecue chicken legs.

How do you store air-fryer chicken legs?

These air-fryer chicken legs taste best fresh, but you can store leftovers in a well-sealed container in the refrigerator for 3 to 4 days. Simply pop them back into the air fryer to reheat. You can also freeze cooked chicken without the sauce in freezer-safe bags for up to 4 months. Whip up a new batch of sauce when you’re ready to serve.

Maggie Knoebel, Taste of Home Associate Recipe Editor/Tester
Air Fryer Cook Times
In our testing, we find cook times vary dramatically between brands of air fryers. As a result, we give wider than normal ranges on suggested cook times. Begin checking at the first time listed and adjust as needed.

Nutrition Facts

2 chicken drumsticks with 1/4 cup sauce: 422 calories, 12g fat (3g saturated fat), 95mg cholesterol, 909mg sodium, 49g carbohydrate (48g sugars, 0 fiber), 29g protein.