These Air Fryer Chicken Sausages are deliciously browned and crispy on the outside, yet so tender and juicy on the inside. Ready in just 10 minutes, you'll love how quick and easy this air fryer chicken sausage recipe is to make. Pair with some roasted vegetables or a side salad for a healthy and satisfying weeknight dinner.
I don't know about you, but I'm a huge fan of anything that makes my life easier when dinnertime rolls around.
Chicken sausages are a super easy-to-make and versatile protein that is lower in fat and calories than traditional pork sausages. Plus, they only take 10 minutes in the air fryer. Win-win!
Air frying chicken sausages makes them beautifully crispy and browned on the outside without any added fat. At the same time, the inside of the chicken sausage stays delightfully moist and juicy. They taste delicious all on their own, nestled inside of a hotdog bun, or mixed into your favorite rice or pasta dish.
These air fryer chicken sausages can be enjoyed for breakfast, lunch, or dinner. They also come in a wide variety of flavors so you can effortlessly pair them with all of your favorite side dishes.
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Why You'll Love This Recipe
- Crispy & Juicy- Cooked at a high heat, these air fryer chicken sausages are crispy and browned on the outside, but juicy and tender on the inside.
- Ready in 10 Minutes- Chicken sausages are a quick and easy source of protein on a busy weeknight. In just 10 minutes, you can have dinner on the table with this air fried chicken sausage recipe.
- Only 1 Ingredient- Nothing fancy here! Just chicken sausages and an air fryer. Pair these chicken sausages with whole grains and some veggies for a healthy and satisfying meal.
- Make Ahead Friendly- This air fryer chicken sausage recipe is fantastic for meal prep. Double the recipe to have an easy source of protein ready to go all week long. Cooked sausage will keep for up to 4 days in the refrigerator.
Here are some notes on the key ingredients. For the full list of ingredients, check out the recipe card below.
- Chicken Sausage- I've made both uncooked chicken sausage and precooked chicken sausage in the air fryer with great success. Choose whichever type of chicken sausage you prefer in any flavor you like.
Here are some notes on any special equipment I used to make this recipe.
- Air Fryer- This recipe was made using a basket-style air fryer. I have not tested making chicken sausages in a toaster oven-style air fryer. However, I believe it would work about the same. Keep in mind, the chicken sausages may take a few minutes longer to cook in an oven-style air fryer. I love my 5.5-Quart Ninja Max XL Air Fryer.
- Meat Thermometer- Having a digital meat thermometer in your kitchen tool belt is so helpful for making sure your chicken sausage and other meats are safe to eat. If you don’t have one, I highly recommend investing in one. They’re relatively inexpensive and super useful.
Step by Step Instructions
Here is how to make chicken sausages in the air fryer.
For Fresh (Raw) Chicken Sausages
Step 1: Preheat the air fryer. Preheat the air fryer to 400°F for 2 minutes. While the air fryer is preheating, cut a few score marks into the sausages to prevent them from bursting in the air fryer.
Step 2: Cook the sausages. Lightly spray the air fryer basket with cooking spray. Place the sausages into the basket in a single layer. Cook chicken sausages for 8-10 minutes, flipping halfway through. The sausages should reach an internal temperature of 165°F on a meat thermometer.
To Cook From Frozen: Frozen raw chicken sausages take a few extra minutes to cook through. Begin checking for doneness around the 12-minute mark.
For Precooked Chicken Sausages
Step 1: Cook the chicken sausages. Preheat the air fryer to 400°F for 2 minutes. Lightly spray the air fryer basket with cooking spray. Place the sausages into the basket in a single layer. Cook for 6-8 minutes, flipping halfway through, until the internal temperature reaches 165°F on a meat thermometer.
To Cook From Frozen: Frozen precooked chicken sausages take a few extra minutes to cook through. Cook frozen chicken sausages for about 10 minutes before checking for doneness.
Tips for Success
- Use a meat thermometer. Every air fryer cooks a little differently. The cook times in this recipe are what worked in my air fryer. Check the chicken sausages for doneness with a meat thermometer. They should reach an internal temperature of 165 degrees Fahrenheit.
- Score uncooked sausages. Uncooked sausages need to be scored before cooking to prevent them from bursting in the air fryer. I typically use a sharp knife to cut 4 diagonal lines across the top of each sausage.
- Don't overcrowd the air fryer basket. Place chicken sausages inside the air fryer basket in a single layer without any overlap. This allows them to cook quickly and evenly.
Substitutions and Variation
Here are a few ways you can try customizing this air fryer sausage recipe to fit your diet and taste preferences.
- Chicken Sausage- Pork sausage, Italian sausage, and vegetarian sausage can all be cooked in a similar manner. Sausages that do not contain any poultry can be cooked to an internal temperature of 160°F.
- Gluten-Free- Look for chicken sausages labeled as "gluten-free." Most chicken sausages should be naturally gluten-free, but be aware that some brands may contain additives that are not.
- Vegan- Swap chicken sausages for your favorite plant-based sausage. Cooking time may vary.
What to Serve With Air Fryer Chicken Sausage
Chicken sausage is a quick, easy, and versatile protein. And it's perfect for any meal - breakfast, lunch, or dinner.
I love pairing these air fryer chicken sausages with this Oven-Roasted Parmesan Potatoes and Broccoli or this Air Fryer Fingerling Potato recipe for a simple weeknight dinner. Alternatively, stir sliced chicken sausage into some One-Pot Macaroni and Cheese for a hearty, comfort food meal.
Storage and Reheating
How to Store
- Refrigerator- Store leftover air fryer chicken sausage in an airtight container in the refrigerator for 3-4 days.
- Freezer- For longer storage, you can freeze cooked chicken sausages. To freeze properly, allow the chicken sausages to cool completely. Then, wrap them tightly in plastic wrap before placing them inside a freezer-safe bag. The chicken sausages will retain optimum quality for up to 2 months in the freezer.
How to Reheat
- Air Fryer- Spray the air fryer basket with cooking spray and place the leftover chicken sausages in a single layer inside the basket. Set the air fryer to 350°F and heat the sausages for 3-4 minutes, flipping halfway through.
- Oven- Preheat the oven to 350°F and place your leftover sausages in a single layer on a rimmed baking sheet. Cover the chicken sausages with aluminum foil and heat for approximately 10 minutes. If you want some additional browning on the chicken sausages, remove the aluminum foil for the last few minutes of heating.
- Stovetop- Cover the bottom of a skillet with a thin layer of water and set it over medium-low heat. Place the chicken sausages into the skillet in a single layer and cover with a lid. Steam the sausages for approximately 5 minutes, turning occasionally to heat them evenly. Optionally, the sausages can be browned in a bit of oil or butter once they're warmed through.
- Microwave- Place leftover chicken sausages on a microwave-safe plate and cover them with a damp paper towel. Microwave on half power (50%) for 1 to 1 ½ minutes or until fully heated through.
Air fryer chicken sausage is an excellent meal prep recipe. Cooked chicken sausages will stay good in the refrigerator for up to 4 days. So, make a big batch of air fryer chicken sausages ahead of time to enjoy for breakfast, lunch, or dinner all week long.
Frequently Asked Questions
Chicken sausage takes anywhere from 6-12 minutes to cook in the air fryer. Refrigerated, precooked chicken sausage cooks the quickest at about 6-8 minutes. On the other hand, frozen chicken sausage takes about 12 minutes to fully cook through.
For chicken sausage that is crispy and browned on the outside, but tender and juicy on the inside, I find 400°F to be the perfect temperature for cooking chicken sausage. The high heat cooks the sausage quickly so it doesn't dry out, but still gets the outside deliciously browned.
The most reliable way to know if chicken sausage is fully cooked is to use a meat thermometer. Alternatively, you can check to see if your chicken sausages are done by cutting one in half. However, this will release some of the juices, making that sausage a little drier than the rest.
Fully cooked chicken sausages should not be pink in the middle unless they contain red-colored spices, such as paprika or cayenne pepper. If your chicken sausage is slightly pink in the middle and you don't have a meat thermometer to check the internal temperature, I recommend cooking it for a few additional minutes to be safe.
Yes, it is relatively easy to overcook chicken sausage in the air fryer. Air fryers blast food with intense heat, which means the food cooks quite quickly. Overcooked chicken sausage will be tough, dry, burnt, and difficult to eat. To prevent this, use a timer and keep a close eye on your chicken sausages as they cook.
More Air Fryer Recipes
- Air Fryer Buffalo Chicken Tenders
- Turkey Burgers in the Air Fryer
- Parmesan-Crusted Air Fryer Halibut
Air Fryer Chicken Sausage
- 4 whole fresh or precooked chicken sausages any flavor
- Cooking spray for air fryer basket
For Fresh (Raw) Chicken Sausages
- Preheat the air fryer to 400°F for 2 minutes. While the air fryer is preheating, cut a few score marks into the sausages to prevent them from bursting in the air fryer.
- Lightly spray the air fryer basket with cooking spray. Place the sausages into the basket in a single layer. Cook for 8-10 minutes, flipping halfway through. The sausages should reach an internal temperature of 165°F on a meat thermometer.
- To Cook From Frozen: If your raw sausages are frozen, they will take a few extra minutes to cook. Begin checking them for doneness around the 12-minute mark.
For Precooked Chicken Sausages
- Preheat the air fryer to 400°F for 2 minutes. Lightly spray the air fryer basket with cooking spray. Place the sausages into the basket in a single layer. Cook for 6-8 minutes, flipping halfway through. The sausages should reach an internal temperature of 165°F on a meat thermometer.
- To Cook From Frozen: If your precooked chicken sausages are frozen, they will take a few extra minutes to cook. Begin checking for doneness around the 10-minute mark.
- Note: Every air fryer cooks a little differently. The cook times in this recipe are what worked in my air fryer. The best way to know if your chicken sausages are done is to use a meat thermometer to check the internal temperature. They should reach 165°F.
- Storage: Store leftover chicken sausages in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 4 days or in the freezer for up to 2 months.