Easy Lemon Pepper Chicken Legs In The Air Fryer

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Air fryer lemon pepper chicken legs with a perfect balance of citrus and a bold kick of pepper, all while maintaining the juiciness and tenderness of succulent chicken legs.

Whether it’s a weeknight dinner or a special occasion, these chicken legs are sure to become a family favourite.

Try making different variations of this gorgeous air fried lemon pepper chicken recipe.

Instead of chicken legs use boneless thighs, chicken drumsticks or even coat a whole chicken with the seasoning.

Air Fryer Chicken Legs Lemon Pepper

Air fried lemon pepper chicken legs

Choosing the Perfect Chicken Legs

Before you begin, it’s crucial to select high-quality chicken legs.

Opt for organic, skin-on legs for the best flavour and texture.

The skin will turn irresistibly crispy in the air fryer, while the meat remains moist and tender.

How Long Do You Cook Chicken Legs In The Air Fryer?

Air fry at 190C/ 380F for about 25-30 minutes, turning them halfway through the cooking time.

The internal temperature of the chicken should reach 165°F (74°C) to ensure it’s fully cooked and safe to eat.

Note: Remember that cooking times can vary based on the size of the chicken legs and the specific air fryer model you’re using.

It’s always a good idea to check for doneness using a meat thermometer to ensure the chicken is fully cooked and safe to eat.


Gather the following ingredients:

  • fresh chicken legs (4 pieces)
  • 2 garlic cloves finely chopped
  • 3 tablespoons lemon pepper seasoning blend
  • olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • Optional: Fresh parsley and lemon slices for garnish

How To Make Lemon Pepper Seasoning

lemon pepper sesaoning

Haven’t got any lemon pepper seasoning?

Make your additive-free seasoning with a few tablespoons of freshly squeezed lemon juice, two teaspoons of ground black pepper, and a teaspoon of salt. Omit the salt from the ingredient list.

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How To Marinate Chicken Legs

raw chicken legs

Use a zip lock bag or a large bowl.

Place the olive oil, garlic, zesty lemon pepper seasoning, and salt into the bag or bowl and add the chicken legs.

Shake the bag so the ingredients coat the chicken or use your hands to rub in the mixture.

Allow the flavours to absorb by marinating the chicken in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes before air frying.

Preparing Your Air Fryer

While the chicken marinates, prep your air fryer.

Follow these simple steps:

Preheat your air fryer to 190C/ 380F for 5 minutes.

Lightly coat the basket with non-stick cooking spray or a thin layer of oil. For easier clean up use a liner or aluminium foil to line the basket.

How To Air Fry Chicken Legs With Lemon Pepper Seasoning

Place the marinated chicken legs in a single layer in the basket. Ensure there is some space between each piece for optimal air circulation.

Air fry the chicken legs at 190C/ 380F for 25-30 minutes. Halfway through, turn the legs to ensure even cooking.

Use a meat thermometer to check the internal temperature of the chicken reaches 74C/165F. This guarantees that the chicken is fully cooked and safe to eat.

Once the chicken legs are a gorgeous golden-brown colour, they’re ready to be enjoyed.

Achieving Crispy Perfection: Tips for Even Cooking

For an extra layer of crispiness, consider lightly spraying your chicken legs with cooking spray before cooking.

This will help achieve that deep, golden-brown colour.

crispy cooked chicken legs

Healthier Alternative: Skinless Chicken Legs

Looking for a healthier twist?

Opt for skinless chicken legs. You’ll still enjoy the flavours of lemon and pepper without the added calories from the skin.

Less Oil

Traditional frying methods often lead to greasy and calorie-laden results.

With the air fryer, you can achieve crispiness using significantly less oil.

This means you can enjoy your air fried lemon pepper chicken legs without worrying about excessive calories.

Air Fried Lemon Pepper Chicken Legs Serving Suggestions

Fresh Citrus Salad

citrus salad

Combine orange and grapefruit segments with mixed greens, red onion, and a light vinaigrette for a vibrant and tangy side.

Air Fryer Roast Vegetables

roasted vegetables

Creamy Mashed Potatoes

creamy mash

Create a comforting meal by serving the chicken legs with creamy mashed potatoes.

Greek Yoghurt Dip

Greek Yogurt Dip

Prepare a refreshing Greek yoghurt dip with chopped fresh herbs, lemon zest, and a touch of garlic.

Cucumber And Tomato Salad

cucumber and tomato salad

Mix cucumber slices, cherry tomatoes, red onion, and feta cheese with a light balsamic vinaigrette for a light refreshing salad.

Crusty Bread

crusty bread



A crunchy coleslaw adds a nice contrast to the crispy chicken legs.

Air Fryer Sweet Potato Fries

sweet potato fries

Corn On The Cob

Corn on the Cob

Corn on the cob brushed with a mixture of butter and lemon pepper seasoning is a perfect accompaniment.

The options are endless, customise your meal to your taste.

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Fresh chicken legs are recommended for optimal results but you can use frozen legs. However, fully thaw them and marinate them for maximum flavour.

Marinating the chicken before cooking helps lock in moisture. Additionally, you can lightly brush the chicken skin with oil.

Feel free to adjust the amount of zesty lemon pepper seasoning according to your taste.

Bone-in chicken legs are recommended for their juiciness, you can adapt the recipe using boneless chicken thighs. Adjust the cooking time accordingly.

Marinating overnight intensifies the flavours and results in an even tastier dish.

This versatile marinade works well with various proteins like chicken breasts, pork chops, and even tofu.

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