This air fryer BBQ chicken breast recipe is ideal for a quick weeknight dinner or healthy meal prep option for lunch! It’s Whole30, keto and low carb, and gluten-free! It’s so easy to prepare and cooks in 20 minutes. Using just a few simple ingredients, including boneless chicken breast, garlic powder and BBQ sauce, this recipe comes out juicy and perfect every time!
This post is in partnership with Ello Products, and all opinions are my own. I’m happy to work with a company I love, use and believe in so much. Thanks for your support here on the blog and your support for Ello Products! Use the code BAILEY15 to save 15% off of your online purchase!
Why You’ll Love This Recipe:
- It’s healthy! This recipe for BBQ chicken breast in the air fryer can fit into your meal plan no matter what allergies or intolerances you have, or how your family chooses to eat! It’s Whole30, low carb and keto, gluten free, dairy free, and paleo.
- Air Fryer BBQ chicken breast is ideal for meal prep. These chicken breasts take less than 30 minutes including prepping and cooking time, and they store so well in the refrigerator. They’re great when reheated throughout the week with simple sides, or enjoyed cold over salads or in wraps.
- You can pair them with almost anything! BBQ boneless chicken breast can be a go-to protein for quick dinners or meal prep because they can go with so many different sides, and pretty much any vegetable you may want to use up in the fridge! From green beans, potato salad, mashed potatoes, brussels sprouts, pasta salad, a big chopped salad, the options are really endless!
- Very little hands on time or clean up required! This can be prepped in under 5 minutes, and cooking in the air fryer reduces the dishes you’ll need to use and wash afterwards. Everything is self contained right in the air fryer basket and very easy to rinse out.
Ingredients for BBQ Chicken
For your BBQ chicken breast in the air fryer, you will only need a few simple ingredients you likely already have on hand! You’ll need boneless chicken breasts, two or three, depending on the size of your air fryer basket or rack. A spray oil such as avocado oil spray or olive oil spray, and onion powder, garlic powder, paprika, salt and pepper are also needed.
Of course you will need BBQ sauce, and for that you can use your favorite. To keep this Whole30 or paleo, you can use a sugar free option such as Primal Kitchen, or a homemade version you can whip up easily yourself.
How to Make BBQ Chicken in the Air Fryer
To start your BBQ chicken, you’ll first want to lightly spray a bit of olive oil or cooking spray over the chicken breasts. This will help the seasonings stay on your chicken. Mix the spices together, and then liberally rub them on all sides of the breasts.
That’s the only prep work you need to do! Once the chicken has been coated in the spices, add the chicken breasts into your air fryer basket or tray, and cook for 10 minutes on 365 degrees F. After the 10 minutes, flip the chicken, and cook an additional 10 minutes.
Lastly, use a brush or the back of a spoon to slather the BBQ sauce over the sides and top of the chicken breasts. Then, cook for another 2 to 3 minutes, just enough to caramelize the BBQ sauce. Don’t overcook here, as the BBQ sauce can burn if you leave it in more than a few minutes. Let the chicken breasts rest for about 5 minutes to lock in the juices before cutting into them.
This recipe is really great for meal prep because of how quick it is and how well the chicken breasts reheat. For meal prepping BBQ chicken breasts, I use my Ello Duraglass 5 Cup Lunch Bowl Container. These containers are the perfect size for lunches, BPA free and dishwasher, microwave, freezer & oven safe!
The silicone sleeves protect the glass from any scratches or cracks which make the containers easy to move and store for meal prep purposes. These glass meal prep containers fit super well in a lunch bag and stack amazingly in the fridge. They also come in fun colors, which you can find at Target, or online!
You can store the air fryer BBQ chicken breast in the 5 cup Lunch Bowl with your veggie sides, so everything can be reheated together. Or, you can slice the BBQ chicken and place it on top of a salad in the Lunch Bowl and enjoy it cold when you’re ready for lunch!
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Air Fryer Notes & Tips:
- There are many types of air fryers available. Some require preheating and some do not. Always follow the instructions on your make and model and preheat if necessary before following cooking instructions for a recipe.
- Cook time will depend on the thickness of your chicken breasts. If your boneless chicken breasts are over an inch and a half to two inches thick, it will take a few additional minutes to cook through. Likewise, if they are on the smaller side, I recommend checking them a few minutes early.
- Pound the chicken prior to seasoning and cooking to make each breast even. This will help it cook evenly so one side isn’t much thicker than the other.
- Use a meat thermometer for best results when ensuring your chicken is cooked thoroughly. This is also key to ensure you don’t overcook your chicken which can cause it to be tough instead of juicy. Simply insert the meat thermometer into the thickest part of the breast until it’s in the breast halfway. Chicken is fully cooked at 165 degrees F.
- For best results, pound the chicken to make it as even as possible.If you have chicken that is very thick on one side and thin on the other, it can cause one side to be over cooked while the other is under cooked.
- You do not want to cook the chicken the entire time with the BBQ sauce. Only add it to the air fryer barbecue chicken breasts in the end. You will end up with very black chicken if not!
Other Healthy Air Fryer Recipes You’ll Love:
- Air Fryer Buffalo Chicken Thighs
- Air Fryer Lamb Chops
- Air Fryer Cornish Hen
- Air Fryer Greek Salmon
- Air Fryer Roasted Sweet Potatoes
- Air Fryer Pork Meatballs
- Air Fryer Chicken Tenders
- Air Fryer Sausage and Peppers
- 2 to 3 boneless chicken breasts
- Cooking oil spray (such as olive oil or avocado oil spray)
- 1/2 teaspoon onion powder
- 1/2 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1/2 teaspoon paprika
- 1/2 teaspoon salt
- 1/2 teaspoon pepper
- 1/4–1/3 cup of BBQ sauce (enough to coat chicken breasts generously)
- Combine the spices together in a small bowl. Then spray both sides of the chicken breasts lightly with a bit of olive oil or avocado oil cooking spray
- Rub the spices evenly onto both sides of the chicken breasts. Once coated, place the chicken breasts into your air fryer basket or tray. Cook for 10 minutes on 365 degrees F.
- After 10 minutes, flip the chicken breasts and cook an additional 10 minutes
- After the final 10 minutes, use the back of a spoon or a brush to slather the BBQ sauce over the sides and tops of the chicken breasts. Then cook in the air fryer for a final 2 to 3 minutes, just enough to caramelize the BBQ sauce
- Let the chicken breasts rest for about 5 minutes to lock in the juices before cutting into them.
- Cook time will depend on the thickness of your chicken breasts. If your boneless chicken breasts are over an inch and a half to two inches thick, it will take a few additional minutes to cook through. Likewise, if they are on the smaller side, I recommend checking them a few minutes early. They are fully cooked when the thickest part of the breast reaches 165 degrees F.
Keywords: air fryer bbq chicken breast, bbq chicken breasts in the air fryer, whole30 bbq chicken breast, low carb bbq chicken breast
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