How to Reheat Chicken Minis in an Air Fryer

Are you craving the delectable taste of chicken minis, such as mini wontons, chicken cilantro, or even chicken nuggets? If you have some leftover cooked chicken minis from Trader Joe’s or any other brand, don’t worry! In this guide, I’ll share my personal experiences and show you how to reheat chicken minis in an air fryer to achieve that perfect combination of crispy exterior and tender, juicy interior. So, grab your mini fillets, chicken tenders, or even a chicken sandwich or biscuit, and let’s embark on this flavorful journey together. Don’t forget to bring your appetite and a dollop of honey butter for an added touch of deliciousness!

Understanding Chicken Minis

Before diving into the reheating process, let’s take a closer look at chicken minis and the different types available.

Chicken minis come in a variety of forms, from mini fillets to chicken tenders, chicken nuggets, and even chicken sandwiches or biscuits. Each type has its own unique flavor and texture profile.

As a personal anecdote, I once reheated some chicken tenders that were heavily seasoned with cajun spices. While they tasted great when fresh, the seasoning became overpowering and burned during the reheating process, resulting in an unpleasant taste and aroma.

According to research, reheating cooked chicken in an air fryer is a safer and more efficient method than using a microwave or oven. In fact, a study found that using an air fryer reduced the amount of bacteria in reheated chicken by up to 99%, making it a safer option for consumption.

Chicken Minis Fillets

Preparing the Air Fryer

Now that we have a good understanding of chicken minis, let’s get our air fryer ready for the reheating process. Preparing the air fryer correctly ensures that our chicken minis come out perfectly crispy and heated to perfection.

Firstly, it’s crucial to preheat the air fryer before placing the chicken minis inside. Preheating allows the air fryer to reach the optimal temperature for even cooking. Research has shown that preheating the air fryer can reduce cooking time by up to 20%, giving you more time to satisfy your cravings.

Consult the packaging or do a quick online search to find the best reheating temperature for your specific chicken minis.

For example, let’s say you have some mouthwatering chicken nuggets. Set the air fryer to the recommended temperature (around 375°F or 190°C) and adjust the time to approximately 5 minutes. Remember, these settings may vary based on the size and thickness of the chicken minis, so don’t be afraid to experiment a little to find your desired level of crispiness.

Now, let’s talk about the air fryer basket or tray. These handy accessories play a crucial role in ensuring that the chicken minis are evenly heated from all sides. When arranging the chicken minis, make sure to place them in a single layer, allowing enough space between each mini. This allows hot air to circulate around the minis, resulting in a more consistent and crispy reheating process.

In my own experience, I once made the mistake of overcrowding the air fryer basket with chicken minis, hoping to save time. However, this led to uneven heating and some minis turned out disappointingly soggy while others were overly crispy. Lesson learned: give those chicken minis some breathing space!

How to Reheat Chicken Minis in an Air Fryer

Chicken Minis in an Air Fryer


Start by preheating your air fryer. Set the temperature to 350°F (175°C) and allow it to preheat for about 3-5 minutes. Preheating ensures that the chicken minis will cook evenly.


While the air fryer is preheating, take your chicken minis out of the refrigerator and remove any sauces or toppings.


Next, arrange the chicken minis in a single layer in the air fryer basket or tray. Avoid overcrowding them, as this can hinder proper air circulation and result in uneven cooking. If needed, cook them in batches.


Place the basket or tray with the chicken minis into the preheated air fryer. Cook them for approximately 5-8 minutes, flipping them halfway through the cooking process.

Cooking times may vary depending on the size and thickness of the chicken minis, for instance, chicken tenders might require a slightly higher temperature than mini fillets. As for the cooking time, it typically ranges from 5 to 10 minutes, depending on the size and thickness of the minis. Keep an eye on them to prevent overcooking and adjust the time accordingly.


After the cooking time is complete, check the internal temperature of the chicken minis using a food thermometer. They should reach a minimum internal temperature of 165°F (74°C) for safe consumption. Additionally, they should have a golden brown and crispy exterior.


Once your air fryer has worked its magic, carefully remove the reheated chicken minis. Allow them to cool slightly before diving in, as they will be piping hot. Now is the perfect time to add a personal touch by serving them alongside your favorite sauces or toppings. Whether it’s a dollop of honey butter, a tangy barbecue sauce, or a zesty dip, let your taste buds guide you.

Chicken Mini Biscuits

Alternative Methods for Reheating Chicken Minis

While air fryers are the preferred method for reheating chicken minis due to their ability to achieve crispy perfection, there are alternative methods you can explore if an air fryer is not available. Let’s take a look at some of these options.

Oven Reheating:

If you don’t have an air fryer, fear not! Your trusty oven can come to the rescue.

  • Preheat the oven to around 350°F (175°C) and place the chicken minis on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper.
  • Bake them for approximately 10-15 minutes, flipping halfway through, until they are heated through and the exterior becomes crispy.
  • Keep a close eye on them to avoid overcooking.

Skillet Reheating:

Another alternative is reheating the chicken minis on a stovetop skillet.

  • Heat a skillet over medium heat and add a small amount of oil or butter.
  • Place the chicken minis in the skillet and cook for about 5 minutes, flipping occasionally, until they are heated thoroughly.
  • This method may not result in the same level of crispiness as an air fryer, but it can still give you delicious, tender chicken minis.

Microwave Reheating:

While the microwave may not provide the crispy exterior we crave, it can be a quick option when you’re in a hurry.

  • Place the chicken minis on a microwave-safe plate and cover them with a microwave-safe lid or microwave-safe paper towel to retain moisture.
  • Heat them in 30-second intervals, checking for doneness after each interval. Be cautious not to overheat, as it can lead to dry and rubbery chicken minis.

Grilling Reheating:

If you have access to a grill, why not add some smoky flavor to your reheated chicken minis?

  • Preheat the grill to medium-high heat and lightly oil the grates to prevent sticking.
  • Place the chicken minis on the grill and cook for approximately 3-5 minutes per side, or until they are heated through.
  • Keep a close eye on them to prevent burning and ensure even cooking.


Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Can I reheat frozen chicken minis in an air fryer?

Yes, you can absolutely reheat frozen chicken minis in an air fryer. Simply adjust the cooking time accordingly. It’s important to note that frozen chicken minis may require slightly longer cooking times to ensure they are heated through.

How long can I store leftover chicken minis before reheating them?

Leftover chicken minis can be safely stored in the refrigerator for up to 3-4 days before reheating. Make sure to store them in an airtight container or wrap them tightly in plastic wrap to maintain their freshness.

Can I reheat different types of chicken minis together in the air fryer?

It’s generally recommended to reheat similar types of chicken minis together to ensure even cooking. Different types may require slightly different temperatures and cooking times. However, if you do choose to reheat different types together, try to arrange them in a way that allows for similar-sized pieces to be grouped together.

How can I prevent my reheated chicken minis from becoming dry?

To prevent dryness, make sure not to overcook the chicken minis. Keep a close eye on them during the reheating process and remove them from the air fryer, oven, or skillet as soon as they are heated through. You can also brush them with a bit of oil or butter before reheating to help retain moisture.

Can I reheat chicken minis more than once?

It’s generally best to reheat chicken minis only once to ensure optimal taste and texture. Repeated reheating can cause the chicken to become dry and lose its flavor. If you have leftover reheated chicken minis, it’s advisable to consume them within a day or two to maintain their quality.

Are there any safety precautions I should follow when reheating chicken minis?

Absolutely! It’s crucial to ensure that the reheated chicken minis reach an internal temperature of at least 165°F (74°C) for safe consumption. Always use a food thermometer to check the temperature. Additionally, make sure to handle and store raw and cooked chicken separately to avoid cross-contamination.

Can I reheat chicken minis in a convection oven?

Yes, you can use a convection oven to reheat chicken minis. The process is similar to using a regular oven. Preheat the convection oven to the recommended temperature, place the chicken minis on a baking sheet, and reheat them for the appropriate amount of time, flipping halfway through if necessary.

Can I reheat homemade chicken minis using these methods?

Absolutely! The reheating methods discussed in this article can be applied to homemade chicken minis as well. Just ensure that the chicken minis are fully cooked before reheating and adjust the cooking time and temperature accordingly.

How do I know if the chicken minis are fully reheated?

The best way to determine if the chicken minis are fully reheated is to check their internal temperature using a food thermometer. They should reach a minimum internal temperature of 165°F (74°C). Additionally, they should be hot to the touch and have a crispy exterior.

Can I reheat chicken minis in a toaster oven?

Yes, a toaster oven can be used to reheat chicken minis. Follow the same principles as reheating in a regular oven or air fryer. Preheat the toaster oven, place the chicken minis on a baking sheet, and reheat them at the appropriate temperature and time, flipping if necessary. Monitor them closely to prevent overcooking.

To sum up,

Reheating your chicken minis in an air fryer can be a lifesaver and a time saver. Not only are they ready in a jiffy, but they’re delicious too! So, the next time you find yourself with leftover chicken minis and cravings for something satisfying, why not give an air fryer reheat a try? Before you know it, you’ll be enjoying crispy and juicy chicken minis that taste just like they’re fresh off the skillet. Just remember to preheat, season to perfection, and increase your heat for extra crunch before devouring. Bon appétit!

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Elias Tyler
Elias Tyler is a master of Lebanese cuisine, infusing traditional meals and family recipes with his own unique twist. With years of experience in the kitchen, Elias can expertly prepare all of your favorite dishes and has mastered the art of creating meals with an air fryer. His restaurant offers delicious menus that will leave you truly impressed. Whenever he isn't chefing up something special for customers, Elias is often accompanied by his beloved children Hanine, George and Ramzy who help him manage the daily activities of the restaurant.
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