Is the airfryer good for Indian cooking? What Indian items can be made in an air fryer? Learn 20 of the Best Air Fryer Indian Recipes in this ultimate guide. The air fryer is wonderful for a variety of healthy Indian foods, and can help you cut back on deep frying. Get Indian vegetarian air fryer recipes, the best Indian snack recipes for the air fryer, and more!
With airfryer Indian recipes, you can enjoy all of your favorite Indian recipes minus the oil. Whatever type of Indian food you’re looking for- vegetarian or non-vegetarian, keto, low carb, vegan, gluten free, or plant-based, you can make it in an air fryer.
When we think of Indian cuisine, many Americans think of the food they get at Indian restaurants. Pakora, naan, onion bhaji, a variety of curries such as chicken tikka masala, and spicy Bombay potatoes may mean “Indian food” to us.
However, it’s important to remember that the cuisine of India has regional variation. It’s similar to how we have varied regional cuisines in the U.S. (e.g., Tex-Mex, Cajun, New England, etc.) So, when we’re talking about “Indian food,” we’re referring to this collection of different regional specialties.
Below you’ll find a variety of Indian air fryer recipes. Some are for authentic Indian cuisine, while others are Indian-inspired recipes. You’ll find air fryer Indian recipes for beginners, but all have easy to follow step-by-step instructions. No matter your air fryer skill level, I hope you’ll feel confident enough to try any recipe here.
🍪 Air Fryer Snacks Recipes
You're in for a treat with one of these air fryer Indian snack recipes! (Or serve them as an air fryer starter, whatever works for you.)
Consider bringing one of these fun dishes to your next party or potluck. Depending on where you live, you can impress your friends with the international flair of your tasty creation.
Several of these recipes are healthier air fried versions of classic Indian recipes or Indian street food. Others fall into the fun food category, because sometimes you just need to treat yourself! Whatever you’re looking for, you should be able to find a tasty snack, dessert, or appetizer in this list:
You know those donut-like treats served in a warm, sugary syrup in Indian restaurants in the U.S.? Those lovely treats are called gulab jamun. Here is my air fryer version of them, enveloped in lush cheesecake:
These air fryer chickpeas have a vegan nacho seasoning. Why not use a little curry seasoning instead to give them the flavors of Indian cuisine?
If you think the only air fryer plantains around are tostones and maduros, the next snack will come as a surprise...
🍽️ Air Fryer Breakfast Recipes
What are some air fryer breakfast recipes that are Indian? First up, I want to mention that a typical breakfast in India varies by region. You could also eat many of these foods for lunch or dinner.
Some common Indian breakfast foods include flatbreads (roti), steamed rice pancakes (idlis), potato flatbreads (aloo paratha), and lentil crepes (dosas). Like other Indian meals, these are often served with chutneys and dips. One of my favorite Indian breakfast recipes is poha, a flattened rice dish cooked with onions and spices.
Here are some air fryer Indian breakfast recipes. You can also serve these as snacks:
🌱 Air Fryer Indian Vegetarian Recipes
These Indian vegetarian air fryer recipes highlight the wonderful plant-based offerings of India. Indian cuisine is truly a bounty of colors and flavors. The Indian veg recipes below should delight vegetarians and omnivores alike.
Why is Indian cuisine so great for vegetarians and vegans? Many Indian recipes feature a wide range of vegetables and mouthwatering spices. Legumes, cheese, and yogurt are prominent protein sources, with meat less commonly seen at the center of the plate.
If you’re following a plant-based diet, I think exploring international cuisine is a wonderful way to keep things interesting. Indian cuisine is just one of many cuisines that often feature plant-forward meals.
One downside of some Indian dishes is that they are fried in lots of oil. The frying can add a lot of calories (energy density) to food, and is generally not the healthiest option. These air fryer recipes for Indian vegetarian food are wonderful because there's no frying!
You're probably wondering why this next recipe is on the list. Falafel is part of Levantine cuisine, and quinoa is from South America. But what you may not know is similar Indian dishes (such as vada) may have influenced the invention of falafel. So interesting!
🍗 Air Fryer Indian Recipes for Chicken and Lamb
I thought I’d start with some Indian veggie recipes. However, I’ve rounded up some delish air fryer recipes for Indian chicken and lamb dishes too.
Veggies are super for phytonutrients and fiber, but chicken and lamb have some benefits as well. Both chicken and lamb are rich sources of (often lean) high-quality protein. Poultry and meats are a rich source of vitamin B12, as well as other B vitamins.
If you’re a vegetarian who eats a lot of Indian food, you can get many B vitamins from whole grains. Enriched or fortified white rice should provide some B vitamins too.
Vitamin B12 doesn’t naturally occur in plant foods. Some reliable sources include chicken and meats, some dairy products, fortified foods, or a vitamin supplement. These Indian chicken and lamb air fryer recipes are a delicious way to get a whole food source of this nutrient.
Kofta is another dish that is often associated with Middle Eastern and Mediterranean cuisine. However, you can enjoy kofta in India and Indian restaurants as well, sometimes as part of a lamb kofta curry. Mouthwatering!
And finally, here's one for the folks who want Indian food but don't like cooking!
Air Fryer Indian Recipes
- 10 ounces chicken tikka masala and rice (283 grams; frozen meal)
- cilantro (garnish, optional)
- Preheat the air fryer to 375°F (190°C) for 5 minutes. Cover the tray of curry with foil. Make sure the tray is oven safe!
- Air fry the chicken tikka masala meal for 30 minutes in the middle of the air fryer oven. Stir it, replace the foil cover, and air fry for 20 more minutes.
- Make sure the chicken reached a safe minimum internal temp of 165°F (74°C). Add more cooking time if needed, as air frying times may vary between brands.
- Garnish with cilantro, if desired. Serve.
👩🍳 Other Indian Recipes
Still craving Indian cuisine? No worries, I’ve got you! Check these delicious Indian-inspired recipes out next:
The best air fryer for Indian recipes is the one you own! I love my Kalorik air fryer. That said, you can cook Indian food in a Ninja Foodi, Philips, Cosori, Power Air Fryer, Cuisinart, Actifry, Nuwave, Instant Vortex, Pampered Chef Air Fryer, and so on. Air fryer times may need adjusting depending on the air fryer brand you use.
The answer to this depends on the recipe and the type of food you're cooking. You can make air fried Indian food that is crispy like deep fried. In some cases, it will taste like you used a deep fryer. For other recipes, air fryer Indian food tastes more like oven baked food.
There are several air fryer keto Indian recipes in the list above. They include bharwa bhindi, air fryer Indian cauliflower bites, begun bhaja, chicken tikka kebab, chicken tangi kebab, and air fryer lamb kofta.
Poori (AKA puri) is an unleavened Indian fry bread made of whole wheat flour. My Dainty Soul Curry has a recipe for Air Fryer Puri (Chaat Puri) that looks absolutely awesome. Yay, whole grains!
Some say South Indian food is different from the cuisine of northern India because less meat is used (though this varies by household). The air fryer chana dal vada above is a popular snack or breakfast in some South Indian cuisines. Another South Indian air fryer recipe from the list is the Kerala banana chips.
Thank you to my fellow bloggers who contributed to this delicious roundup of the best air fryer Indian recipes!