Make a delicious dinner for your family with air fryer turkey legs and your favorite sides. This easy recipe lets you enjoy tasty turkey legs in under an hour
All about Air Fryer Turkey Legs
Many people associate turkey legs with fairs and amusement parks, where these oversized, meaty snacks are a popular food choice. But you can savor turkey legs at home any time you like with this air fryer recipe.
This recipe begins with a marinade of honey, Dijon mustard, Italian herbs, salt, and pepper that infuses the turkey legs with a tangy flavor. When cooked in the air fryer, the turkey legs become crispy on the outside but remain juicy and tender on the inside. This method of cooking is also a healthier alternative to deep frying. And turkey legs are rich in protein, vitamins, and minerals.
Ingredients You’ll Need for this Recipe
- Turkey legs
- Dijon mustard
- Italian herbs
- Mixed pepper, ground
- Olive oil spray
How to Cook Turkey Legs in the Air Fryer
Marinate the turkey legs:
- Combine the honey, Dijon mustard, Italian herbs, mixed pepper, and salt in a bowl.
- If the turkey legs have skin on, remove the skin and discard.
- Rub the honey mustard sauce onto the turkey legs. Make sure you coat each one all over.
- Marinate the turkey legs in the honey mustard sauce for at least 1 hour.
Air fry the turkey legs:
- Spray the air fryer basket with olive oil or cooking spray and place the turkey legs in the basket.
- Coat the legs with the honey mustard sauce that has fallen off while marinating.
- Air fry the turkey legs at 355 degrees F (180 degrees C) for 45 minutes. Flip them over halfway through the cooking time.
How to Serve Air Fryer Turkey Legs
You can serve air fryer turkey legs in a multitude of ways. For a casual, fun meal, serve them on the bone straight out of the air fryer. Pair them with a side of roasted vegetables or a fresh green salad for a balanced meal. For a more traditional, sit-down dinner, you could slice the meat off the bone and serve it alongside mashed potatoes and a veggie. Turkey legs pair well with a wide variety of sides, so get creative.
Tips and Variations for this Recipe
To get the best results when air frying your turkey legs, remember these tips:
- Marinate them for at least an hour so the honey-mustard flavor penetrates all the way through the meat before it’s cooked in the air fryer.
- Place the turkey legs in the air fryer basket without allowing them to touch. They need enough space for the hot air to circulate around them to make them crispy.
- Cook the turkey legs at the lower temperature for 45 minutes to an hour to tenderize the turkey meat. Turkey legs can be a bit tough otherwise. But don’t overcook the turkey either.
- Check your tenderloin with a meat thermometer to make sure it reaches an internal temperature of 165 degrees F.
- If you don’t have Dijon mustard on hand, substitute yellow mustard or spicy brown mustard instead.
- If desired, add a bit of olive oil to the honey-mustard marinade to make it runnier. But don’t add too much or the marinade won’t be thick enough to cling to the turkey legs.
- For a spicier version, add a teaspoon of red pepper flakes to the marinade.
- You can also adjust the flavor of the honey-mustard marinade to your liking by adding more herbs or garlic powder.
How to Store Leftovers
Once the turkey legs have cooled to room temperature, wrap each one in aluminum foil or place them in an airtight container. Store them in the refrigerator for up to 3 to 4 days. For longer storage, you can freeze the turkey legs. Place the wrapped turkey legs in a freezer bag or container and store them in the freezer for up to 3 months. Thaw the frozen turkey legs in the refrigerator overnight then reheat in the oven or air fryer until heated through.
Other Turkey Recipes
- Turkey and Pesto Lasagna Rolls
- Sweet Italian Turkey Sausage Subs
- Turkey Pot Pie
- Air Fryer Frozen Turkey Burgers
- 2 turkey legs
- 1 cup Dijon mustard (I like to combine half grainy half paste for texture, but the paste will give more flavor, so have it in mind)
- ½ cup honey
- 2 tablespoons Italian herbs
- 1 tablespoon mixed pepper
- 1 tablespoon salt.
- 1 teaspoon olive oil
- Start by prepping the honey and mustard marinade, for this combination in a bowl of the honey, the Dijon mustard, the Italian herbs, and the salt.
- If your turkey legs have skin, remove it.
- In a big bowl massage/paint them well with the honey and mustard sauce, making sure they are all evenly coated. Let marinate for at least 1 hour.
- Coat the basket of your air fryer with olive oil spray and place the turkey legs inside. Coat them again with the honey mustard mix in case it has fallen off a bit during the marinating time.
- Cook them for 45 minutes on 356F/180C making sure to flip them halfway.
If you want, you can add a bit of olive oil to the honey and mustard marinade to make it runnier, however, I like to not add anything else since it needs to be a bit thick to cling to the turkey legs.
It is very important to cook them for at least 45 minutes or 1 hour (with a lower temperature) since turkey legs can be a bit tough.
Serve them alongside some salad or potatoes.