Made with bone in chicken thighs, this juicy and smoky air fryer bbq chicken recipe is finger licking good! You’ll love the crispy chicken skin slathered in an easy homemade bbq sauce.
And if you’re looking for more air fryer chicken recipes, check out these 20 extra easy air fryer chicken recipes!
How to make air fryer bbq chicken
Making this bbq chicken is easy peasy – the air fryer does all the work!
- Season the chicken lightly with salt and pepper
- Drop it in your air fryer to cook and get a nice crispy skin
- While it cooks, mix up the easy BBQ sauce
- Slather the sauce all over the chicken once it’s done
If you love the sauce on this chicken, just whip up a batch of this healthy homemade BBQ sauce so you can have some in your fridge!
If you want more, check out all of our healthy air fryer recipes!
How long to cook chicken thighs in the air fryer
We prefer bone-in skin on chicken thighs for this recipe. The crispy skin under the tangy, smoky BBQ sauce is just perfection.
This cut of chicken does take a little longer to cook in the air fryer, but it’s worth the wait!
You’ll need to cook the bone-in skin on chicken thighs for around 30-35 minutes at 400°, flipping halfway. Be sure to adjust this time to add more or less if needed depending on the size of your chicken thighs.
Can I use another cut of chicken for this recipe?
Yes, this recipe will work with just about any cut of chicken in the air fryer – breasts, boneless thighs, drumsticks and wings.
Just adjust the cooking time as needed as boneless breasts and thighs will cook quicker.
You can refer to some of our other air fryer chicken recipes for cooking times for different cuts of chicken.
What to serve with air fryer bbq chicken
These juicy and smoky chicken thighs go great with a simple salad or any roasted veggie.
Some other healthy side dish options are:
- PERFECT AIR FRYER BAKED POTATOES
- GARLICKY SAUTÉED MUSHROOMS AND ASPARAGUS
- ASIAN CUCUMBER SALAD
- RICH AND CREAMY COLESLAW
- CRISPY OVEN ROASTED SPANISH POTATOES
Your turn to make this easy chicken thigh recipe
Crank up your air fryer, grab your napkins and enjoy this delicious BBQ chicken! You’ll be amazed by the easy homemade BBQ sauce and how perfectly juicy the chicken thighs turn out in the air fryer.
If you try it, be sure to leave a rating and comment below and let us know how it goes. Also, take a pic to share on Instagram. Tag us @realsimplegood, we love to see what you’re cooking!
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Air Fryer BBQ Chicken Thighs (Juicy & Smoky!)
- 2.5 lbs bone in skin on chicken thighs, (about 4-5 pieces) (See recipe notes)
- Sea salt + pepper, (about 1/4 tsp each)
For the BBQ sauce:
- 1/4 cup coconut aminos
- 1 tbsp tomato paste
- 1 tbsp apple cider vinegar
- 1 tsp dijon mustard
- 1/4 tsp garlic powder
- 1/4 tsp chili powder
- 1/4 tsp smoked paprika
- Preheat the air fryer to 400° Fahrenheit. If your air fryer doesn't have a preheat function, preheat it for 5 minutes before adding the chicken.
- Place the chicken in the air fryer basket and season the pieces lightly on both sides with salt and pepper.
- Air fry the chicken for 30-35 minutes, flipping halfway to allow for even cooking. Cook longer if needed, depending on the size of the chicken. Remove when the chicken has reached an internal temperature of 165°.
- While the chicken is cooking, prepare the BBQ sauce by combining all of the sauce ingredients in a small bowl or jar and mixing well.
- After the chicken is cooked, brush the thighs on both sides with the bbq sauce to coat. Serve immediately.
- You can use boneless chicken thighs or even chicken breasts. Just adjust the cooking time for the chicken if needed. Thin boneless thighs will need less than the stated cooking time and thick boneless breasts might need a little more.
- Nutrition amounts are per serving and are an estimate provided for those following a Ketogenic or low-carb diet. See our full nutrition information disclosure here.