This post may contain affiliate links, view our disclosure.

Keto Air Fryer Chicken Nuggets made with canned chicken are well-seasoned and crispy outside with no breading! You won’t believe how easy they are to make in just 20 minutes. And using canned chicken means these nuggets are budget-friendly too!

air fryer chicken nuggets with a bitten nugget showing inside

Get ready to have your mind blown. Fast food chicken nuggets from the drive thru will be a thing of the past after you make this recipe!

Air fryer chicken nuggets is one of those surprising keto recipes that you’d never know is keto unless someone told you. These nuggets have a crispy coating without breadcrumbs (or breading of any kind), and are well-seasoned and flavorful.

You’ll be amazed at how easy these are to make! Our trick is to use canned chicken. You just mix together all ingredients in a bowl, scoop it into nuggets, and air fry until blissfully golden and crispy.

There’s no breading to deal with, and no carbs that go along with the breading!

Air fryer chicken nuggets are not only low carb, keto, and gluten free, but they’re also kid-friendly. Instead of heading through the drive thru, whip up a batch of homemade chicken nugs.

keto air fryer chicken nugget dipped in bbq sauce

Why You’ll Love This Recipe

  • Budget friendly recipe made from pantry staples. I love putting pantry staple ingredients to good use, and this recipe does just that! With the price of groceries skyrocketing, it helps to have a few budget friendly recipes on hand that use canned protein, such as canned chicken.
  • Keto chicken nuggets are quick and easy to make. This homemade air fryer chicken nuggets recipe is really easy to make (and a fun with kids!), and only takes 20 minutes. And don’t worry if you don’t have an air fryer because you can easily make these in the oven.
  • Low in carbs and gluten free. These keto chicken nuggets are naturally low carb and gluten free. They cook up perfectly crispy with no breading needed!
  • High protein snack. Each serving has 18 grams of protein. These make a great after-school snack for kids.
  • Perfect for stocking the freezer. If you like to meal prep, make a double (or triple!) batch of these chicken nuggets to stash in the fridge for easy snacks or quick meals.
chicken nuggets on plate with bbq sauce

Easy Air Fryer Chicken Nuggets Recipe with No Breading

Keto chicken nuggets with canned chicken are crispy and delicious with minimal ingredients. This recipe is a version of three ingredient chicken nuggets; the base ingredients are canned chicken, egg, and cheese. We add a couple spices to really bump up the flavor, but all the seasonings are optional.

Air Fryer Chicken Nuggets Ingredients

ingredients in keto air fryer chicken nuggets with titles
  • Canned chicken – this budget-friendly pantry ingredient is the base of our chicken nuggets
  • Egg – acts as a binder in this recipe
  • Pre-shredded low-moisture mozzarella cheese – also acts as a binder here
  • Grated parmesan – use the finely-grated stuff in the canister, which simulates breadcrumbs and keeps these chicken nuggets keto
  • Onion powder, garlic powder and black pepper – adds savory flavor to season our nuggets
  • Avocado oil – you can also use vegetable oil or olive oil; we only need a little bit of oil to get these nuggets super crispy in the air fryer

Pro Tip: Don’t Add Salt

an edible mosaic stamp logo 1200 square

These nuggets are made with canned chicken and cheese, which both have salt. They are definitely salty enough without adding more salt.

How to Make Keto Chicken Nuggets in the Air Fryer

how to make keto air fryer chicken nuggets
  1. Add all ingredients (except the oil) to a medium-sized bowl.
  2. Stir to combine.
  3. Use a 1-tablespoon scoop to measure out the mixture.
  4. Roll each into a ball, and then flatten each into a chicken nugget.
  5. Preheat the air fryer to 400F. Once hot, brush the air fryer basket with oil. Arrange the nuggets in the air fryer basket so they don’t touch and brush the top of each with oil.
  6. Air fry until golden brown, about 6 to 8 minutes (there’s no need to flip).

Storage

Store leftover air fryer chicken nuggets in the fridge for up to 3 days.

Or you can freeze leftover nuggets layered between pieces of parchment paper in an airtight container for up to 3 months.

Reheating

To keep chicken nuggets crispy, you can reheat them in the air fryer or the oven.

You can reheat chicken nuggets from the fridge. To do so, heat them in a 350F air fryer for 3 to 5 minutes, or in a 375F for 5 to 7 minutes (flipping them over halfway through).

Also, you can reheat frozen chicken nuggets without thawing them first. To do so, heat them in a 400F air fryer for 6 to 10 minutes (flipping one time halfway through), or in a 400F oven for about 15 minutes (flipping once).

How to Make Spicy Chicken Nuggets

If spicy nugs are more your thing, they’re easy to make! To do so, simply add cayenne pepper to taste along with the other seasonings. I recommend starting with 1/4 teaspoon of cayenne pepper and working up from there.

front view of chicken nuggets on plate with side of bbq sauce for dipping

How to Make Easy 3 Ingredient Chicken Nuggets in the Oven

You can easily make this chicken nuggets recipe in the oven instead of in the air fryer!

  1. Line a baking tray with parchment paper or a silpat baking mat and lightly brush with oil or spray with cooking spray.
  2. Arrange the nuggets on the prepared baking tray.
  3. Bake in a preheated 425F oven until crispy, about 15 to 20 minutes, flipping once halfway through.

How to Serve Homemade Chicken Nuggets

Chicken Nuggets as a Snack

These make a good protein-rich snack or easy appetizer. Add celery sticks, carrot sticks, sliced bell pepper, or broccoli florets to make a healthy snack plate.

You can serve nuggets with the dipping sauce of your choice, such as:

Make it a Meal

Chicken nuggets are a good source of protein and can be part of a full meal. Here are a few side dishes that pair well with chicken nuggets.

  • Baked Sweet Potato Fries – no need to fry, these are perfectly crispy in the oven with 1 easy trick!
  • Crispy Baked Zucchini Slices – a delicious keto side dish
  • Mac and Cheese – decadent and super cheesy with a crunchy topping
  • Ramen Noodle Salad – basically a kicked-up flavor-packed slaw with crunch from toasted ramen
  • Buffalo Chicken Pasta Salad – this is a good option if you want a side dish you can make ahead of time
  • Or turn chicken nuggets into a salad! Serve them on a bed of chopped lettuce with tomatoes, carrot, celery, cucumber, shredded cheddar, and your favorite salad dressing
crispy homemade nuggets

Keto Air Fryer Chicken Nuggets Recipe FAQs

Can I Use Cooking Spray in the Air Fryer?

No, don’t use aerosol cooking sprays (such as PAM) in the air fryer. These types of cooking sprays typically contain ingredients known as propellants (which is what makes the spray come out of the can) that are known to chip the coating on the air fryer basket.

However, you can use a small basting brush in the air fryer, or use an oil mister to spray the oil.

chicken nugget dipping into barbeque sauce

Do You Have to Flip Nuggets in the Air Fryer?

No. When you’re making air fryer chicken nuggets, there’s no need to flip them. They will get perfectly crispy on both sides without flipping if you leave space between each nugget so air can flow through.

How Long Do You Cook Chicken Nuggets in the Air Fryer?

These chicken nuggets are made from canned chicken, which is pre-cooked. They only need to cook for 6 to 8 minutes in the air fryer at 400F.

More Canned Chicken Recipes to Make

plate of air fryer chicken nuggets with bitten nugget showing inside

Let’s Connect

an edible mosaic submark initials

Did you make this recipe? Please rate it and leave a comment below. You can also tag @anediblemosaic on social media.

To stay up-to-date, follow me on Facebook, Instagram, Pinterest, and Twitter!

Air Fryer Chicken Nuggets Recipe

Prep Time12 minutes
Cook Time8 minutes
Yields: 4 servings
Keto Air Fryer Chicken Nuggets made with canned chicken are well-seasoned and crispy outside with no breading! You won’t believe how easy they are to make in just 20 minutes. And using canned chicken means these nuggets are budget-friendly too!

Email This Recipe

Get this recipe link emailed straight to your inbox!

Please enable JavaScript in your browser to complete this form.

Equipment

Ingredients
 

Optional Dipping Sauce Ideas:

Instructions
 

  • Add all ingredients (except the oil) to a medium-sized bowl and stir to combine.
  • Use a 1-tablespoon scoop to measure out the mixture. Roll each into a ball, and then flatten each into a chicken nugget.
  • Preheat the air fryer to 400F. Once hot, brush the air fryer basket with oil. Arrange the nuggets in the air fryer basket so they don’t touch and brush the top of each with oil. (You may need to cook these in batches depending on how big your air fryer is.)
  • Air fry until golden brown, about 6 to 8 minutes (there’s no need to flip).
  • Serve warm with any dipping sauce you like.

Notes

  • Net Carbs: 1g per serving (4 nuggets = 1 serving)
  • Recipe Yield and Serving Size: This recipe makes 16 to 18 chicken nuggets; each serving is 4 nuggets for about 4 servings.
  • Nutritional Information: The nutrition information for this recipe was calculated without the optional dipping sauces.
  • Don’t Add Salt: These nuggets are made with canned chicken and cheese, which both have salt. They are definitely salty enough without adding more salt!
  • For Spicy Chicken Nuggets: Add cayenne pepper to taste along with the other seasonings. I recommend starting with 1/4 teaspoon of cayenne pepper and working up from there.
  • Storage: Store leftover air fryer chicken nuggets in the fridge for up to 3 days. Or you can freeze leftover nuggets layered between pieces of parchment paper in an airtight container for up to 3 months.
  • Reheating: To keep chicken nuggets crispy, you can reheat them in the air fryer or the oven. You can reheat chicken nuggets from the fridge. To do so, heat them in a 350F air fryer for 3 to 5 minutes, or in a 375F for 5 to 7 minutes (flipping them over halfway through). Also, you can reheat frozen chicken nuggets without thawing them first. To do so, heat them in a 400F air fryer for 6 to 10 minutes (flipping one time halfway through), or in a 400F oven for about 15 minutes (flipping once).
 

How to Make Chicken Nuggets in the Oven

 
You can easily make this chicken nuggets recipe in the oven instead of in the air fryer!
 
  1. Line a baking tray with parchment paper or a silpat baking mat and lightly brush with oil or spray with cooking spray.
  2. Arrange the nuggets on the prepared baking tray.
  3. Bake in a preheated 425F oven until crispy, about 15 to 20 minutes, flipping once halfway through.

Nutrition

Serving: 4chicken nuggets | Calories: 141kcal | Carbohydrates: 1g | Protein: 18g | Fat: 7g | Saturated Fat: 2g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 1g | Monounsaturated Fat: 2g | Trans Fat: 0.01g | Cholesterol: 90mg | Sodium: 489mg | Potassium: 40mg | Fiber: 0.1g | Sugar: 0.2g | Vitamin A: 148IU | Vitamin C: 0.1mg | Calcium: 125mg | Iron: 0.3mg

Nutritional information is automatically calculated and should be used as an approximate.

Course: Appetizer, Snack
Cuisine: American
Keyword: Air Fryer Chicken Nuggets, Air Fryer Chicken Nuggets Recipe, Chicken Nuggets No Breading, Keto Chicken Nuggets, Keto Chicken Nuggets with Canned Chicken

Share it with me on Instagram and leave a comment to let me know your thoughts!

air fryer chicken nuggets recipe pin
Faith, author of An Edible Mosaic.
About Faith

I’m the writer, recipe developer, photographer, and food stylist behind this blog. I love finding the human connection through something we all do every day: eat! Food is a common ground that we can all relate to, and our tables tell a story. It’s my goal to inspire you to get in the kitchen, try something new, and find a favorite you didn’t know you had.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Recipe Rating




2 Comments

  1. Denise Charron says:

    Can you make this recipe with already-cooked chicken rather than canned?

    1. Denise, Absolutely! You’ll need about 1 1/2 to 2 cups of cooked, chopped chicken to make this recipe.

Similar Posts