Next time you’re craving a crispy chicken sandwich from your favorite fast food joint, look no further than your air fryer! Cooking the chicken in your air fryer gets it super golden and crisp without the mess (or smell) of fry oil.
Why should you brine your chicken for fried chicken sandwiches?
Have you ever wondered what makes Chick-Fil-A fried chicken sandwiches so juicy? The trick is to brine it! Like brining your Thanksgiving turkey, brine ensures chicken breasts are seasoned throughout and it keeps the meat super juicy. If you’ve never brined chicken before, check out this how-to.
Just like our Pickle Fried Chicken Sandwich, brining the chicken for this Air Fryer Fried Chicken Sandwich in pickle juice gives you fool-proof results. Warning, you’ll need to plan ahead since the chicken needs to soak for at least an hour, but it’s worth the wait. We promise.
How do I get my chicken that perfect chicken sandwich thickness?
First, you’re going to cut each chicken breast horizontally. If it isn’t as even or thin as you like, you can use a meat mallet to pound it out to your preferred thickness. Now you’re ready to bread your chicken and pop it into the air fryer.
How do I bread the chicken so the breading sticks?
First, you’ll want to lightly coat the chicken in flour. Then you’ll dip it in a milk and egg mixture. Finally, you’ll roll it in a flour and spice mix to add that flavorful crispy layer a fried chicken sandwich just has to have.
Why do you toast the bun with butter?
Now, you can totally go with oil to toast the hamburger buns but I go super light on condiments on this sandwich because I want the chicken to shine. Butter is one of the secrets to that signature fried chicken sandwich we all know and love.Print
- 2 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
- 1 cup pickle brine
- 1 cup milk
- 2 eggs
- 1 and 1/2 cups flour
- 2 Tbsp. ground black pepper
- 2 tsp. paprika
- 1 tsp. salt
- 1 tsp. baking powder
- 1/4 tsp. cayenne pepper
- 4 hamburger buns
- 2 tsp. butter
- Dill pickle chips
- Split the chicken breasts horizontally into 4 cutlets, about 1/2 inch thick. Place the chicken in a zip top bag and add the pickle bring. Close and refrigerate at least 1 hour.
- Set air fryer to 400°F to preheat.
- In a shallow dish, whisk together the milk and eggs.
- In a second dish, combine the flour, pepper, paprika, salt, baking powder and cayenne pepper.
- Reserve 2 tablespoons of the dry flour mixture, then add 3 tablespoons of the milk mixture to the dish and mix until it resembles wet sand.
- Remove the chicken from the brine and pat dry with a paper towel.
- Lightly coat the chicken with the dry flour.
- Working one piece at a time, dredge the chicken in the milk mixture, covering both sides.
- Add the chicken to the flour mixture, turning to coat. Press as much of the flour mixture as you can onto the chicken breasts. Spritz the chicken with cooking spray or oil using an oil sprayer.
- Add the chicken to the basket of your air fryer, working in batches if needed. Cook at 400F for 8-10 minutes, or until golden brown and cooked though.
- Meanwhile, butter the rolls and cook, buttered-side-down, in a hot, dry pan for 1-2 minutes, or until lightly toasted.
- To assemble the sandwiches, arrange pickle slices on the bottom buns. Top with a cooked chicken breast, then cover with the top buns.