Air Fried Chicken Legs
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4.84 from 12 votes

Cilantro Pesto Chicken Legs

Air fried Chicken Legs with Cilantro Pesto--made with minimal fuss in your air fryer! It's pesto like you've never had, and you're going to love it.
Prep Time10 mins
Cook Time20 mins
Marinate30 mins
Total Time1 hr
Course: Main Courses
Cuisine: Indian
Keyword: cilantro pesto, Cilantro Pesto Chicken, Cilantro Pesto Chicken Legs
Servings: 2
Calories: 389kcal
Author: Urvashi Pitre



  • Place drumsticks in a flat tray. Using the tip of a sharp knife, score small slashes into the chicken at regular intervals so that the marinade can penetrate the chicken.
  • Finely chop the cilantro, pepper, garlic and ginger and place in a small bowl.
  • Add salt, oil and lemon juice to the chopped vegetables and mix well. 
  • Spread this mixture over the chicken. Overcome any inhibitions you may have about touching raw chicken and lovingly massage the marinade into the chicken.
  • Let the chicken marinate for 30 minutes or up to 24 hours in the refrigerator.
  • When you are ready to cook, place the chicken legs into the air fryer basket, skin side up.
  • Set your airfryer to 390F for 20 minutes for meaty chicken legs. Halfway through, flip the chicken legs over. 
  • Use a meat thermometer to ensure that the chicken has reached an internal temperature of 1650F. Remove and serve with plenty of napkins.


Variations to the marinade:
  • Add 1 teaspoon ground cumin and 1 teaspoon ground coriander
  • Add 1 teaspoon garam masala
  • Add 1 teaspoon sumac or zataar
  • Add parsley and oregano or substitute parsley for some or all of the cilantro
  • Substitute red wine vinegar for the lemon juice


Calories: 389kcal | Carbohydrates: 6g | Protein: 28g | Fat: 28g | Saturated Fat: 5g | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g