This easy Air Fryer lemon pepper chicken drumsticks recipe is deliciously crispy outside, tender and juicy inside. Made using lemon pepper seasoning for the perfect citrus flavor and cooked in less than 30 minutes.
These air fryer lemon pepper chicken drumsticks are juicy, tender, and ready in under 30 minutes and guaranteed to impress. You’ll get the same crispy finish as you do on the grill, only without the hassle and mess of grill cooking.
These lemon pepper drumsticks have a gorgeous fresh lemon taste, complemented by smoky paprika and garlic. Combined with the effect of the air fryer, which makes the chicken tender and juicy, you won’t be able to get enough!
When you cook chicken drumsticks on the grill, it creates a wonderfully crispy skin and juicy meat. The only problem is, you have to stand over a boiling hot grill which is no fun in the summer! Air-fried chicken drumsticks are the perfect solution; you get the same crisp skin and tender meat without standing over a grill.
Ingredients you’ll need to make lemon pepper drumsticks.
**Find the full list of ingredients along with the recipe instructions at the end of this post**
- Chicken drumsticks
- Olive oil
- Lemon pepper seasoning - if you don’t have any, you can substitute for freshly squeezed lemon juice, ground black pepper, and a pinch of salt.
- Garlic powder
- Onion powder
- Paprika - if you want your lemon pepper chicken legs to have a bit of kick, you can use hot paprika. Likewise, smoky paprika will give you an extra smoky finish, adding a nice extra layer to the flavor.
How to make lemon pepper chicken drumsticks in the air fryer
Combine the lemon pepper seasoning, garlic powder, onion powder, and paprika in a small bowl. Set aside
Pat dry the chicken drumsticks with a paper towel and place in a large bowl or baking dish, drizzle with olive oil and rub the seasoning mixture all over the chicken legs, including underneath the skin.
Place the drumsticks in the air fryer basket in a single layer and cook to 380ºF for 20-22 minutes, turning halfway through or until an instant meat thermometer inserted in the thickest part reaches 165ºF. Serve with lemon wedges and garnish with fresh parsley if you feel fancy. Enjoy!
How long do you cook lemon pepper chicken legs in air fryer?
It usually takes between 20-22 minutes to cook air fryer lemon pepper chicken drumsticks; however, it will depend on the size of your chicken legs and your air fryer.
Always use a meat thermometer inserted into the thickest part of the meat to check that the chicken has reached an internal temperature of 165°F before serving.
What to serve with lemon pepper chicken drumsticks
This air fryer lemon pepper chicken has such a fresh, light taste that I think it pairs perfectly with an extra special salad. Try it with this healthy massaged kale and apple salad for a dinner that’s packed full of flavors and low carb to boot! And these other options go well with this air fryer recipe too.
How to store leftover chicken drumsticks
When storing leftover air fryer lemon pepper drumsticks, always seal them in an airtight container to ensure they stay fresh for longer.
You can keep cooked chicken in the fridge for 2-3 days and in the freezer for around four months. It’s safe to eat beyond four months, but it will lose taste and quality.
How to reheat chicken legs
When reheating chicken legs, always check that the meat has reached 165°F by using a meat thermometer before serving.
To reheat lemon pepper drumsticks air fryer preheat the air fryer to 400°F and then lay the drumsticks in the basket in a single layer. Reheat for 6-8 minutes. If you are reheating from frozen, increase the cooking time to 10-15 minutes.
In the oven, preheat to 400°F and then lay the drumsticks on a wire rack over a baking sheet. Bake for 15 minutes. You will need to defrost frozen chicken legs before heating them in the oven.
On the stovetop, put your chicken legs in a large pan or skillet with a cup of water. Then cover and cook for around 5 minutes. You need to defrost frozen chicken legs before heating them.
Can you put raw drumsticks in an air fryer?
Absolutely! The air fryer is a great way to cook the raw chicken as it retains the natural moisture from the meat. Always use a meat thermometer to check that chicken has reached a safe internal temperature of 165°F before serving.
Can you put frozen chicken drumsticks in the air fryer?
You can! One of the (many) great things about cooking with an air fryer is that you don’t need to defrost anything; you’ll just need to allow a little longer for it to cook. Always use a meat thermometer to check that chicken has reached a safe internal temperature of 165°F before serving.
More Air Fryer Chicken Recipes you'll love
- 2.5 pounds chicken drumsticks
- 1 Tablespoon olive oil
- 1 Tablespoon lemon pepper seasoning
- 1 teaspoon garlic powder
- 1 teaspoon onion powder
- 1 teaspoon paprika
- In a small bowl combine the lemon pepper seasoning, garlic powder, onion powder and paprika. Set aside
- Pat dry the chicken drumsticks with a paper towel and place in a large bowl or baking dish, drizzle with olive oil and rub the seasoning mixture all over the chicken legs including underneath the skin.
- Place the drumsticks in the air fryer basket in a single layer and cook to 380ºF for 20-22 minutes turning halfway through or until an instant meat thermometer inserted in the thickest part reaches 165ºF. Serve with lemon wedges and garnish with fresh parsley if you’re feeling fancy. Enjoy!
Store leftovers in an airtight container for up to 3 days or in the freezer for up to 3 months. Reheat in the air fryer for 5-8 minutes or until internal temperature reaches 165ºF.
Nutrition Information:Yield: 4 Serving Size: 2
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 561Total Fat: 29gSaturated Fat: 7gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 18gCholesterol: 360mgSodium: 753mgCarbohydrates: 2gFiber: 1gSugar: 0gProtein: 69g
Please keep in mind that the nutritional information is calculated using a nutrition facts calculator. It is a rough estimate and can vary significantly based on products used. When the recipe list salt to taste the amount of salt is not calculated, only the sodium in the other ingredients is calculated.