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Air Fryer Tandoori Chicken Kebabs

Looking for healthy air fryer recipes? Make these Tandoori Chicken Kebabs in the air fryer! They're very flavorful and so easy to make. You will love how the outside gets all crispy and caramelized and the inside of the kebabs is nice and tender thanks to the Greek yogurt marinade. 

These air fryer chicken kebabs are naturally low-carb and gluten-free (though I do love serving them over a plate of rice with some naan on the side). They can also be made dairy-free with one easy swap.

The recipe requires only a few minutes of hands-on prep, but it does call for 1-2 hours of marinating time, so make sure to plan ahead!

Tandoori chicken kebabs on a plate.

I've shared this air fryer chicken quesadilla recipe before (which is absolutely delicious!), and I am super excited to share a healthier air fryer recipe with you: Air Fryer Tandoori Chicken Kebabs! We just love the flavors of these Indian-inspired kebabs, and I hope you will too.

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Seasonings for tandoori chicken kebabs

I am not claiming that these are the most authentic tandoori chicken kebabs... but I am saying they are absolutely delicious and made with spices and ingredients that most people have in their pantry and buy regularly.

The spice mixture consists of ginger puree, paprika, garlic powder, turmeric powder, ground cumin, chili powder, salt, and pepper.

Ginger puree gives these chicken a little bit of spice and heat without being too spicy. I love using squeezable minced ginger as shortcut instead of mincing ginger when I am in a rush. Ground cumin gives the kebabs a smoky flavor, and turmeric gives them a gorgeous golden color.

Related recipe: Air Fryer Paneer Satay

Close up of caramelized crispy tandoori chicken kabobs.

Related recipe: Pork and Veggie Kebabs

How to make tender chicken kebabs

The trick to tender chicken kebabs is marinating them in Greek yogurt. Greek yogurt is one of the best marinades for chicken because it is acidic, which makes chicken tender and juicy. It is also thick and don't drip off the chicken, which means all the delicious spices actually stay on your chicken, giving it loads of flavor. You only need ½ cup of Greek yogurt for these tandoori kebabs.

Want to keep these tandoori kebabs dairy-free? Use plain coconut yogurt instead!

I recommend using chicken thighs for these kebabs because they are juicier and always come out more tender than chicken breast, but you can use chicken breast if you prefer.

Related recipe: Best Chicken Marinade for Grilled Chicken

Tips for preparing chicken thighs for kebabs

Chicken thighs are not going to be perfect cubes when sliced, there are just too many folds and parts to them. Just try to make sure that each marinated piece on the kebab has about the same thickness (aim for 1-1.5 inch pieces) so that they cook evenly. You'll likely need to fold some pieces of the cut chicken thigh in two to place on the skewer.

Those layers are what makes these kebabs extra delicious, though!

Ingredients to make air fryer tandoori chicken kebabs.

More air fryer recipes: Air Fryer Trout

Ingredients

  • 2 lbs chicken thighs (or use chicken breasts) bones removed and cut into small pieces
  • ½ cup plain Greek yogurt (or use plain coconut milk yogurt)
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 2 teaspoons ginger purée, such as squeezable minced ginger
  • 2 teaspoons paprika
  • 2 teaspoons chili powder
  • 2 teaspoons garlic powder
  • 3 teaspoons (1 tablespoon) ground turmeric
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • Fresh cilantro leaves and limes for serving

You'll also need:

  • An air fryer (I LOVE my Instant Pot Vortex - it is a toaster, rotisserie, air fryer, + more all in one! And the best part is that it has a window so I can see how my food is looking without having to open the air fryer.)
  • Small skewers (or cut wooden skewers from the blunt end to fit into your air fryer)

Related recipe: Chicken Kofta Kebabs with Ground Chicken

Instructions

Step 1: In a bowl, stir together the Greek yogurt and all the spices. Add the cut chicken and stir until the chicken is completely coated. Cover and place in refrigerator for 1-2 hours to marinate.

Chopped chicken thighs marinating in Greek yogurt and Indian-inspired spices.

Step 2: Place the marinated chicken onto the skewers, without rinsing off extra marinade.

Tandoori-marinated chicken skewers in an air fryer.

Step 3: If your air fryer instructions require you to preheat it, go ahead and preheat it to 370 degrees Fahrenheit.

Air fry the tandoori chicken at 370F for 15 minutes. Flip the skewers and air fry for 5 more minutes, or until the chicken is fully cooked to 165 degrees in the center, but not burnt.

Keep an eye on the chicken for the last 10 minutes of cooking to make sure it does not burn, since every air fryer is different. Cooking time may also vary depending on whether you need to preheat your air fryer... with a preheated air fryer, the cooking time might need to be shorter.

Cooked tandoori chicken kebabs in an air fryer.

Step 4: Garnish with cilantro and a squeeze of lime juice, and serve with any of the serving ideas below.

Want more chicken recipes for the air fryer? Try this Air Fryer Panda Express Orange Chicken!

What to serve with air fried tandoori chicken kebabs

If you want to keep this a healthy, low-carb meal, serve these tandoori chicken kebabs over salad for a fun alternative to regular grilled chicken. Another option is serving these over cauliflower rice.

However, my favorite way to enjoy these is over white Jasmine rice and some naan, with a little bit of fresh salad, such as chopped tomato salad or cucumber salad on the side.

Related recipe: Tikka Masala Naan Pizza

More chicken thigh recipes:

If you enjoyed this recipe, let me know with a comment and a star rating below. And don't forget to share it on Facebook and save it on Pinterest for later!

Plate of rice with tandoori chicken kebabs.
Print Recipe
5 from 2 votes

Air Fryer Chicken Tandoori Kebabs

Low-carb and loaded with flavor, these kebabs are super easy to make. Just remember to set aside some time to marinate!
Prep Time5 mins
Cook Time20 mins
Marinating time:1 hr
Total Time1 hr 25 mins
Course: Dinner, Lunch, Main Course
Cuisine: American, Indian
Servings: 6 (about 2 kebabs per serving)
Author: Kate
Cost: $9

Ingredients

  • 2 lbs chicken thighs (or use chicken breasts) bones removed and cut into small pieces
  • ½ cup plain Greek yogurt (or plain coconut milk yogurt)
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon ground black pepper
  • 2 teaspoons ginger purée (squeezable minced ginger)
  • 2 teaspoons paprika
  • 2 teaspoons chili powder
  • 2 teaspoons garlic powder
  • 3 teaspoons ground turmeric (1 tablespoon)
  • 1 teaspoon ground cumin
  • fresh cilantro leaves and lime juice for serving

Special equipment

  • Small skewers (or cut wooden skewers from the blunt end to fit into your air fryer)

Instructions

  • In a bowl, stir together the Greek yogurt, spices, and cut chicken. Cover and place in refrigerator for 1-2 hours to marinate.
  • Place the marinated chicken onto the skewers.
  • If your air fryer instructions require it, preheat to 370 degrees Fahrenheit.
    Air fry the tandoori chicken at 370F for 15 minutes. Flip the skewers and air fry for 5 more minutes, or until the chicken is fully cooked to 165 degrees in the center, but not burnt.
  • Garnish with cilantro and a squeeze of lime juice and serve warm.

Notes

  • Cooking time may vary depending on your air fryer model and type, and whether you need to preheat it. Keep an eye on the chicken (or check on it) for the last 10 minutes of cooking to make sure it does not burn. This is why I prefer oven-style air fryers with a window (such as the Instant Pot Vortex), so you can check on your food without stopping the cooking. 
  • Serve over rice with naan, or for a low-carb Indian-inspired meal, serve over salad or cauliflower rice.
  • Nutrition facts are an estimate and assume 6 servings, 2 kebabs per person.

Nutrition

Calories: 351kcal (18%) | Carbohydrates: 3g (1%) | Protein: 26g (52%) | Fat: 26g (40%) | Saturated Fat: 7g (35%) | Trans Fat: 1g | Cholesterol: 149mg (50%) | Sodium: 522mg (22%) | Potassium: 400mg (11%) | Fiber: 1g (4%) | Sugar: 1g (1%) | Vitamin A: 649IU (13%) | Vitamin C: 1mg (1%) | Calcium: 36mg (4%) | Iron: 2mg (11%)

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