Chicken Thighs in the Air Fryer

Looking for an easy and flavorful air fryer boneless skinless chicken thighs recipe? These simple, delicious boneless chicken thighs in air fryer are glazed with a brown sugar balsamic sauce that adds amazing flavor and juiciness.

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Do you love using your air fryer to cook up a quick and delicious weeknight dinner? This simple, delicious chicken thighs recipe is one that you’ll want to add to your easy dinner list.

These chicken thighs are glazed with a simple brown sugar balsamic glaze that keeps the chicken moist and flavorful. Versatile enough to be served with pasta, potatoes, veggies or any of your other favorite sides.

chicken thighs in air fryer on plate

Ingredients for Chicken Thighs in the Air Fryer

Here’s a quick-reference check list of the ingredients you’ll need for this recipe:

  • Boneless, skinless chicken thighs – it is helpful to trim off any excess fat, as it tends to burn when cooked in an air fryer.
  • Balsamic vinegar – great for making a simple brown sugar balsamic glaze that adds great flavor.
  • Olive oil – an essential ingredient for the glaze, and helpful in preventing the chicken from sticking to the air fryer basket while cooking.
  • Brown sugar – you can use either dark or light brown sugar. If you’re looking to reduce calories and refined sugar, Swerve brown sugar alternative is a great substitute.
  • Minced garlic – great complimentary flavor in the glaze.
  • Garlic salt – ideal for seasoning chicken thighs.
  • Ground pepper – also ideal for seasoning chicken.
chicken thighs in the air fryer

How to Make Chicken Thighs in the Air Fryer

If you’re tired of making the same old boring chicken dinners, you’ll be surprised at how easy this recipe is.

  1. Start by mixing the brown sugar balsamic glaze. In a small bowl add the olive oil, balsamic vinegar, brown sugar, garlic, garlic salt and pepper. Whisk together to help the brown sugar dissolve into the rest of the ingredients.
  2. Pat the chicken thighs dry with paper towels. Trim off any excess fat from the thighs. Place the chicken thighs into a shallow baking dish or pan.
  3. Reserve about 3 tablespoons of the glaze, placing it into a small separate container. This reserved glaze will be brushed on to the chicken while cooking. Then, pour the rest of the remaining glaze over the trimmed chicken thighs.
  4. Let the chicken set in the balsamic sauce for about 10 minutes. While the chicken marinates, preheat your air fryer. 
  5. Place the marinated chicken thighs into the preheated air fryer basket in one even layer. Four to five chicken thighs will fit into a medium to large size air fryer basket. If you have more chicken thighs, it is best to cook in separate batches to ensure the chicken cooks evenly.
  6. Cook the chicken thighs. Halfway through cooking, turn the chicken thighs over, then brush with the remaining balsamic glaze. Cook for the remaining time. Let cool for 3-5 minutes before serving.

What to Serve with Chicken Thighs

This air fryer chicken recipe is wonderfully versatile and goes with numerous salads and side dishes. Here are some of our favorite side dish recipes that go with chicken:

Storage and Freezing

Storage: When stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator, cooked chicken thighs will last for up to five days.

Freezing: You can store these chicken thighs in the air fryer in the freezer for up to six months. Just make sure they are in an airtight container.

collage of chicken thighs in the air fryer for pinterest

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plate of chicken thighs with text overlay for pinterest
chicken thighs in air fryer on plate

Chicken Thighs in the Air Fryer

5 from 6 votes
These simple, delicious Chicken Thighs in the Air Fryer are glazed with a brown sugar balsamic sauce that adds amazing flavor and juiciness!
Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes
Total Time: 30 minutes
Servings: 4



  • In a medium bowl, whisk together the vinegar, olive oil, brown sugar, garlic, pepper and garlic salt. Reserve about 3 tablespoons of the glaze in a small bowl and set aside.
  • Place the chicken thighs in a shallow baking dish or pan. Remove any excess fat and pat dry with paper towels. Pour the balsamic glaze over the chicken, turning over to ensure all sides are coated with the glaze.
  • Preheat your air fryer to 390 degrees. (Check your owners manual to see exact preheat times for your model of air fryer. Preheat times are typically 3-5 minutes.)
  • To the preheated air fryer basket, place the glazed chicken, skin side down. Discard the glaze that was in the baking dish. Evenly space the chicken thighs, making sure to place in one layer. Cook the chicken for 10 minutes at 390 degrees.
  • After 10 minutes, turn the chicken thighs over, and brush with the reserved balsamic glaze that was previously set aside. Cook the chicken for an additional 10 minutes.
  • Once done cooking, let the chicken rest for 3-5 minutes before serving.


Want to double the recipe? I recommend cooking the chicken thighs in two separate batches. Depending on the size of your air fryer, you’ll have the best results by cooking 4-5 thighs at once. I don’t recommend overcrowding or stacking more than 5 thighs into the air fryer basket at one time. The chicken will not cook evenly.


Calories: 378 kcal, Carbohydrates: 13 g, Protein: 33 g, Fat: 21 g, Saturated Fat: 4 g, Polyunsaturated Fat: 3 g, Monounsaturated Fat: 12 g, Trans Fat: 0.03 g, Cholesterol: 162 mg, Sodium: 450 mg, Potassium: 462 mg, Fiber: 0.1 g, Sugar: 12 g, Vitamin A: 42 IU, Vitamin C: 0.5 mg, Calcium: 33 mg, Iron: 2 mg
Author: Jessica Formicola
Calories: 378
Course: Main Course
Cuisine: American
Keyword: chicken thighs in the air fryer
Did you make this recipe?I’d love to see your recipes – snap a picture and mention @savoryexperiments or tag #savoryexperiments!
Jessica Formicola in her ktichen

About the Author

Jessica Formicola

Jessica the mom, wife and chef behind Savory Experiments. You might see her on the Emmy- nominated TV show Plate It! or on bookshelves as a cookbook author. Jessica is a Le Cordon Bleu certified recipe developer and regularly contributed to Parade, Better Homes & Gardens, The Daily Meal and more!

Read More About Jessica

5 from 6 votes (1 rating without comment)

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Questions and Reviews

  1. 5 stars
    Your blog is proof that cooking can be both delicious and approachable. Thank you for sharing!

  2. 5 stars
    I don’t have an air fryer but this chicken looks delicious so I’m adding to my bucket list to get one! And bookmarking this recipe!