Overhead closeup of spicy air fried chicken thighs in Frederick, MD, United States
Food - Drink
The Extra Prep Step For Super Crispy Air-Fried Chicken Thighs
Air fryers are handy, increasingly popular kitchen appliances that do a great job cooking all kinds of proteins, including chicken. However, unlike with deep-frying, skin-on cuts of chicken like thighs can wind up with flabby skin in the air fryer, so try adding this preparation step for crispy skin every time.
You can help the chicken “fry” in the air fryer and get a crispy skin by utilizing the bird’s fat, and all you have to do is a few holes into the chicken thighs' skin. The fat must render out completely for crisp skin, and the holes help to do this, basting the thighs while letting the hot fat run out of the skin.
Even if you're not air frying, this technique is also useful for getting a crunchy layer of skin on a whole roasted chicken, or even a turkey. Any method that doesn't expose the skin to hot oil can end up giving you limp skin, so remember to poke the skin and properly render the fat in any poultry you prepare.