Make Keto Air fryer Tandoori chicken in your air fryer with just a yogurt-based marinade. A flavor-packed keto, low carb chicken recipe that is super easy to make and tastes like authentic tandoori chicken. Best way to have restaurant-style tandoori chicken at home.
I have a recipe for tandoori chicken tikka made in a frying pan on your stove, and that is very good. But I wanted to see if it was possible to make a tender, all white meat tandoori chicken in the air fryer.
WHAT IS TANDOORI CHICKEN?
Besides being the easiest way to introduce people to Indian food, Tandoori chicken is made by marinating pieces of chicken in a yogurt-based marinade, spicing it with various things like turmeric, cayenne pepper, garam masala, etc., and then cooking it quickly in a hot, dry tandoor, or clay oven.
Many people use a Green Egg to approximate the high, dry heat akin to a tandoori oven. But I don’t have a green egg, and so I’ve tried to come up with other ways to approximate it.
HOW TO MAKE TENDER TANDOORI CHICKEN
The key to getting the most tender tandoori chicken you’ve ever had is to marinate in yogurt. Yogurt has in it two elements that help to tenderize meat: active microbes and lactic acid.
Of the two, the lactic acid is the real workhorse of this duo, breaking down meat proteins to make even white meat incredibly tender.
In fact, it can do such a good job that if you let the chicken sit in the yogurt marinade for too long, it gets almost too soft and mealy-tasting. Luckily it has a mild reaction, so it takes a while for it to mush. I recommend not going over 8 hours if possible.
But I’ve found that a 30-minute marinade time is ideal, which makes it great for a weeknight meal.
I know many dairy-free folks will ask me what they can substitute for yogurt. The closest you could come would be to use lemon juice instead.
USING A MEAT THERMOMETER
This chicken is marinated in spices. You won’t be able to tell if it’s done by just looking at the color. Without a meat thermometer, you’re likely to overcook the chicken. The best and only way to cook this without making rubber chicken is to use a meat thermometer, and cook until it reaches an internal temperature of 165F.
HOW TO MAKE TANDOORI CHICKEN RED WITHOUT USING ARTIFICIAL COLOR
Most restaurants use artificial red color to get that typically-red tandoori chicken. I don’t like doing that, and most of us don’t do that when we cook at home.
I’ve found that using Sweet Smoked Red Paprika helps in two ways. Not only does it add a lovely and natural red color to the tandoori chicken, but it also lends it a slightly smoked flavor which elevates this Air Fryer Tandoori chicken to a wonderful smoky, tender, well-spiced dish.
SERVING SUGGESTIONS FOR KETO AIR FRYER TANDOORI CHICKEN
- Serve alone as an appetizer
- Serve with green chutney as an appetizer
- Serve with tzatziki or raita as a dip
- Serve with naan as part of a meal. In this case, add some dal and a cold salad to round out the meal
- Make extra and add to your leftover butter chicken sauce
- Eat in lettuce leaves as a low carb wrap
EQUIPMENT YOU MAY NEED TO MAKE THIS KETO AIR FRYER TANDOORI CHICKEN
- Gowise Airfyer or Power Air Fryer Oven
- Meat thermometer
- Silicone basting brush
- Measuring Cups
- Measuring Spoons
- My favorite Cutting Board
- Good set of Kitchen Knives
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KETO AIR FRYER TANDOORI CHICKEN
- 1 pound chicken tenders each cut in half
- .25 cup Greek yogurt
- 1 tablespoon minced ginger
- 1 tablespoon minced garlic
- ¼ cup cilantro or sub parsley
- 1 teaspoon salt
- .5 – 1 teaspoon cayenne pepper
- 1 teaspoon turmeric
- 1 teaspoon garam masala
- 1 teaspoon sweet smoked paprika to add a smoky flavor to the chicken, and color
- 1 tablespoon oil or ghee for basting
- 2 teaspoons lemon juice for finishing
- 2 tablespoons chopped cilantro for garnishing
In a glass bowl, mix all ingredients except the basting oil, lemon juice and 2 tablespoons of cilantro.
- Set your kitchen timer for 25 minutes. When the timer goes off, turn on your Air fryer to 350F for 5 minutes. You’re doing this to pre-heat the air fryer.
- At the end of the 30 minutes, open up the air fryer and carefully lay the tandoori chicken in a single layer on either the rack of the Power Air Fryer Oven or in the basket of your Gowise Air Fryer.
- Using a silicone brush, baste the chicken with either oil or ghee on one side.
- Cook at 350F for 10 minutes.
- Remove and flip over the chicken, and baste on the other side,
- Cook for another 5 minutes.
- Using a meat thermometer check to see if internal temperature has reached 165F. Do not skip this step.
- Remove and place on a serving plate. Add lemon juice and mix, and sprinkle with cilantro.
- See article for serving suggestions.
- See article for dairy-free subs
WATCH THE VIDEO FOR HOW TO MAKE KETO AIR FRYER TANDOORI CHICKEN
Keto Air Fryer Tandoori Chicken
Make Tandoori chicken in your air fryer with just a yogurt-based marinade. A flavor-packed keto, low carb chicken recipe that is super easy to make and tastes like authentic tandoori chicken. Best way…