80+ Beginner Friendly Air Fryer Favorites: Easy Recipes You Can’t Mess Up

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While an air fryer can seem intimidating at first, it is very similar to cooking in an oven. An air fryer uses a heating element and a fan to circulate hot air at high speeds, creating a crispy and evenly cooked food.

Below I include links to 80+ simple recipes that are perfect for beginners, from chicken to beef to veggies to frozen food. And I include an easy recipe for chicken drumsticks.

Try some of these easy recipes first and you will gain the confidence you need to tackle more involved recipes like a bloomin’ onion or fried chicken.

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🥘Cooking With Your New Air Fryer

Air fryers can be used to cook a wide variety of foods, including french fries, chicken, fish, vegetables, and even desserts. They can provide a healthier alternative to a deep fryer, since they require little oil to create crispy food.

Air fryers are also great for reheating leftovers. Some models come with additional features such as a built-in timer, multiple cooking baskets, and temperature control.

🥣Most Common Air Fryer Mistakes

While air fryers aren’t difficult to use there are few common mistakes new owners make:

  • Not Reading the Manual – I know, I know, users manuals are boring. But skim through it anyway before using your air fryer for the first time.
  • Not Following a Recipe – Don’t try to wing it the first few times you use your air fryer. Find a recipe, like one of the ones linked below, and follow the directions.
  • Overcrowding the Air Fryer – It can be tempting to cram a few extra pieces of food in the air fryer. But it works by circulating air, so there has to be space for the air to circulate and cook the food. For the crispiest food, keep things in a single layer.
air frying chicken breast

🍴Air Fryer Cooking Tips

  • Don’t be afraid to use a little oil in your cooking. An air fryer uses less oil, but a small amount of oil can improve the quality of the food.
  • Check the food at the end of the cooking time and decide if more time is needed. Different air fryers will yield different results, so don’t rely just on cooking time.

With a little bit of practice you’ll soon discover the many delicious dishes you can make with your new air fryer.

📝FAQ About Air Frying

What is the best oil for air frying?

When it comes to air frying, the best oil to use is one with a high smoke point. These oils can withstand the high heat of air frying without breaking down. Two of the best options are avocado oil and canola oil.

Can I cook frozen food in an air fryer?

Yes, you can cook frozen food in an air fryer. In fact, many people find that air fryers are a convenient way to cook frozen foods quickly and easily.

Can I use parchment paper in the air fryer?

Yes, parchment paper can be used to line the basket or tray of the air fryer, which can help to prevent food from sticking to the surface and make cleanup easier.

Can I put raw meat in an air fryer?

Yes, you can put raw meat in an air fryer. Air fryers are great for cooking a wide variety of meats, including chicken, beef, pork, and fish. When you cook raw meat in an air fryer it is important to use a meat thermometer to verify it is cooked completely before serving.

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Air Fryer Recipes for Beginners

Easy Main Dishes

Making dinner in the air fryer is quick and easy.

Veggies and Side Dishes

Make easy sides the entire family will enjoy.


Start the day off with some easy air fryer recipes.

Frozen Foods

An air fryer is great at making frozen foods.

closeup of air fryer chicken legs
4.67 from 6 votes

Easy Beginner Recipe – Air Fryer Chicken Drumsticks

Published By Anne
70+ easy beginner recipes for air frying! Get started air frying even if you aren't an experienced cook.
Prep Time5 minutes
Cook Time20 minutes
Total Time25 minutes
Servings: 3
Print Save Rate Pin


  • 3 tablespoons all-purpose flour
  • 1 ½ teaspoon paprika
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • ½ teaspoon black pepper
  • 1 teaspoon baking powder
  • 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • 6 chicken drumsticks
  • 1 tablespoon olive oil


  • You can remove the chicken skin or leave it on, whichever you prefer. Pat the chicken dry with a paper towel or kitchen cloth.
    6 chicken drumsticks
  • In a small bowl, stir together all-purpose flour, paprika, salt, ground pepper, baking powder, and onion powder.
    3 tablespoons all-purpose flour, 1 ½ teaspoon paprika, ½ teaspoon salt, ½ teaspoon black pepper, 1 teaspoon baking powder, 1 teaspoon onion powder
  • Drizzle the chicken drumsticks with the oil. Then add the flour mixture and stir until the drumsticks are well coated with the spice mixture.
    1 tablespoon olive oil
  • Place the drumsticks in the air fryer basket without overlapping. Use parchment paper or foil in the basket to make cleanup easier.
  • Air fry at 360 degrees F for 10 minutes. Flip and cook for another 10 minutes or until lightly brown and charred.
  • Use a kitchen thermometer to check the chicken for doneness. It is done when it reaches 165 degrees F.


  • Use your favorite spice blend, like Montreal steak seasoning, Italian seasoning, or seasoning salt, instead of my spice suggestions.
  • Feel free to change the seasoning, but don’t skip using baking powder, as it helps the chicken crisp up.
  • Don’t crowd the drumsticks in the basket.
  • Always use a thermometer to check the chicken’s internal temperature and ensure it reaches 165 degrees F.

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Nutrition Information

Calories: 317kcal | Carbohydrates: 8g | Protein: 28g | Fat: 19g | Saturated Fat: 4g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 4g | Monounsaturated Fat: 9g | Trans Fat: 0.1g | Cholesterol: 139mg | Sodium: 548mg | Potassium: 514mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 0.2g | Vitamin A: 564IU | Vitamin C: 0.2mg | Calcium: 81mg | Iron: 2mg

Nutrition facts are estimates.

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Hi, I’m Anne!

I love to cook and I want to share my recipes with you. I believe cooking should be approachable and fun, not a chore. I want to make simple recipes using everyday ingredients that you can make again and again, whether it is for a busy weeknight, a summer cookout or a special dessert. Read more...

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