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Air Fryer Turkey Legs

There’s no need to wait for the fair to come to town to enjoy a delicious turkey leg when you can easily make them at home with the help of your air fryer! This recipe for air fryer turkey legs features a flavorful rub, juicy meat, and delightfully crispy skin. That means the next time you’re craving your favorite handheld meat, all you have to do is add some homemade seasoning and fire up the air fryer to prepare a delicious dinner in a matter of minutes! 
Overhead view of air fryer turkey leg.

There’s no need to wait for the fair to come to town to enjoy a delicious turkey leg when you can easily make them at home with the help of your air fryer! This recipe for air fryer turkey legs features a flavorful rub, juicy meat, and delightfully crispy skin. That means the next time you’re craving your favorite handheld meat, all you have to do is add some homemade seasoning and fire up the air fryer to prepare a delicious dinner in a matter of minutes! 

Air Fryer Turkey Legs

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What Do I Need to Make Air Fryer Turkey Legs?

Cooking turkey legs in the air fryer is a quick and easy way to get juicy turkey with a nice, crispy skin. And the best part about this simple recipe is that all you need is the turkey legs and some seasoning to spice it up! To make turkey legs in the air fryer, you’ll need:

  • Turkey legs
  • Salt
  • Pepper
  • Chili Powder
  • Garlic powder
  • Onion powder
  • Cayenne powder
  • Cumin
  • Cooking spray: I recommend extra virgin olive oil, avocado oil, grapeseed oil or peanut oil as they all have a high smoke point. If you do not have them in a spray, you can take about a teaspoon of it and rub it all over the turkey leg. You only need a small amount to lightly coat them.

Overhead view of air fryer turkey leg.

Looking for more delicious air fryer recipes? Give these reader favorites a try!

Air Fryer Chicken Tenders with Honey Mustard Sauce | Jalapeño Popper Burgers in the Air Fryer | Air Fryer Fajitas with Steak | Air Fryer Corned Beef

How Do I Make Air Fryer Turkey Legs?

This recipe is so easy to make because the air fryer does all the hard work for you! In fact, you can prepare turkey legs in the air fryer in under 20 minutes. Just follow these three simple steps:

Step One: Season the Turkey

Before you can start cooking your turkey legs, it’s important to take the time to properly season the meat. Start by combining the salt, pepper, chili powder, garlic powder, onion, powder, cayenne powder, and cumin in a small bowl. Stir the seasonings to thoroughly mix them together. After that, dry the turkey and rub the seasoning mixture over the entire leg.

Step Two: Oil the Turkey Legs

Once your turkey legs are seasoned, place them in the air fryer basket. Depending on the size of the turkey legs and the size of your air fryer, you may need to cook the legs in batches. Spray the turkey with cooking oil, making sure to coat then entire leg on all sides.

Step Three: Air Fry the Turkey

Place the basket in the air fryer and set it to cook at 380 degrees for 15 minutes. You’ll know your turkey legs are done cooking when the internal temperature reaches 165 degrees.

For Reference: These turkey legs were cooked in a Gourmia GAF265 Digital Air Fryer – 4-Quart Capacity

Cooked turkey leg in air fryer.

Air Fryer Turkey Legs Tips & Tricks

You’re going to love this method for cooking turkey legs because it’s quick and mess free! And with the help of these air fryer tips and tricks, you’ll be able to prepare delicious turkey in a fraction of the time it takes to cook it in the oven or smoker.

  • Dry the turkey legs before seasoning: You can’t prepare turkey without properly seasoning it first. But turkey legs straight out of the package are often too wet to keep the seasoning intact. Before adding the dry rub to the skin on your legs, start by drying the outside of the turkey legs with a paper towel. Simply blot the paper towel over the legs to remove the excess moisture from the package, then rub the seasoning onto the skin.
  • Don’t overcrowd the basket: To ensure your turkey legs cook evenly, it’s important to avoid overcrowding the basket of your air fryer. The turkey legs should fit inside the basket without touching each other or the edges of the basket. This will allow the air to flow freely through the basket, helping the meat cook evenly on all sides. If the legs don’t fit in the basket without touching, cook them in batches instead of trying to cook both legs at once.
  • Check the meat halfway through the cook time: Keeping your turkey legs from drying out or overcooking on one side is a must. And the best way to prevent that from happening is to keep an eye on the meat as it cooks. Halfway through the cook time, remove the basket and check to make sure one side of the leg isn’t cooking faster than the other. If you notice one side is more cooked, flip the legs before returning the basket to the air fryer.

Air fryer turkey legs on a white plate with dried red chili peppers.

How Long Does It Take to Cook Two Turkey Legs in an Air Fryer?

The cook time of your turkey legs will depend on the size of the legs and the number of legs you’re cooking at once. If you cook one average sized leg in the air fryer at a time, it will take around 15 minutes for the meat to get fully cooked. Cooking larger legs or air frying two legs at once will increase the cooking time. As a guide, it typically takes one leg 15 minutes to cook. So, if you’re able to fit two legs in the air fryer basket at once, it’s a good idea to cook both legs for around 30 minutes to ensure the meat is cooked through.

Closeup of air fryer turkey legs.

What Temperature Should a Turkey Leg Be Cooked To?

It’s important to thoroughly cook poultry before eating it to prevent yourself from ingesting harmful bacterial, like salmonella. To ensure your turkey is cooked through, the internal temperature should reach at least 165 degrees.

Check the internal temperature of the turkey legs using a meat thermometer. Insert the thermometer into the meat of the turkey leg, making sure it doesn’t touch bone. If the thermometer reads a temperature less than 165 degrees, return the turkey to the air fryer and cook in 2-minute intervals. Check the temperature after each interval until the turkey is fully cooked.

Cooked seasoned turkey leg.

Overhead view of air fryer turkey leg.

Air Fryer Turkey Legs

There’s no need to wait for the fair to come to town to enjoy a delicious turkey leg when you can easily make them at home with the help of your air fryer! This recipe for air fryer turkey legs features a flavorful rub, juicy meat, and delightfully crispy skin. That means the next time you’re craving your favorite handheld meat, all you have to do is add some homemade seasoning and fire up the air fryer to prepare a delicious dinner in a matter of minutes! 
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Course: Main Course, Snack
Cuisine: Air Fryer, American
Keyword: Air Fryer Turkey Legs
Prep Time: 5 minutes
Cook Time: 15 minutes
Servings: 2
Calories: 508kcal

Equipment

Ingredients

  • 2 turkey legs
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon pepper
  • 1 tablespoon chili powder
  • 1 tablespoon garlic powder
  • 1 tablespoon onion powder
  • 1/4 teaspoon cayenne powder
  • 1 teaspoon cumin
  • cooking spray I recommend extra virgin olive oil, avocado oil, grapeseed oil or peanut oil as they all have a high smoke point. If you do not have them in spray, you can take about a teaspoon of it and rub it all over the turkey leg. You only need a small amount to lightly coat them.

Instructions

  • Combine the salt, pepper, chili powder, garlic powder, onion, powder, cayenne powder, and cumin in a small bowl. Stir the seasonings to thoroughly mix them together.
  • Rinse the turkey legs under cold water. Then, dry each turkey leg and rub the seasoning mixture over the entire leg.
  • Lightly spray the turkey legs with cooking oil, making sure to coat the entire leg on all sides. Place the legs in the air fryer basket. Depending on the size of your air fryer, they may need to be cooked in batches.
  • Place the basket in the air fryer and set it to cook at 380 degrees Fahrenheit for 15 minutes. Turn the legs over halfway though cooking time. *Note: Cooking times can vary from size and style of air fryer. The turkey legs are done when the internal temperature reaches 165 degrees Fahrenheit when checked with a meat thermometer.  
  • Remove from air fryer basket, serve and enjoy!

Notes

 
For Reference: These turkey legs were cooked in a Gourmia GAF265 Digital Air Fryer - 4-Quart Capacity

Nutrition

Calories: 508kcal | Carbohydrates: 4g | Protein: 67g | Fat: 23g | Saturated Fat: 7g | Polyunsaturated Fat: 6g | Monounsaturated Fat: 7g | Cholesterol: 240mg | Sodium: 577mg | Potassium: 1015mg | Fiber: 1g | Sugar: 1g | Vitamin A: 610IU | Vitamin C: 1mg | Calcium: 78mg | Iron: 7mg
Recipe Rating