Air Fryer Chicken Livers with a Crunchy Coating Recipe

Air Fryer Chicken Livers with a Crunchy Coating Recipe

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Air Fryer Chicken Livers with a Crunchy Coating Recipe
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I can’t actually recall the first time I had battered and fried chicken livers. I just remember that they were really good and crunchy. I am pretty sure I had them during a trip through the southeastern USA. I am thinking it was Louisiana. And, it might even have been a fast-food restaurant or a diner. I know I was on a budget and these were inexpensive. Fried chicken livers and fried pickles were on the menu.

The south is pretty great about making use of the whole animal. They call this nose to tail cooking. There is some deep American history behind this tradition. While some of our history is flawed, the rich culinary part is to be celebrated.

The privileged were able to eat the premium cuts of an animal, such as steaks, roasts, tenderloins, and bellies. What wasn’t eaten was passed along to those who served, including the enslaved. What resulted was an entire culture of recipes made mainly with proteins like organ meats, trotters, jowls, tails, intestinal casings for sausage, ribs, and slow braised tougher cuts – shoulder comes to mind. Delicious recipes have been passed down since the 1600s, most notably southern cuisine.

As well, early Native Americans honored the animals they hunted by making use of every single part of the beast. Hides were used for clothing, bedding, and housing. All of the edible parts of the animal were eaten or preserved. Sinew was used as a twine or suture. Horns and bones were fashioned into tools, utensils, and even splints. Nothing was wasted. This is a beautiful and respectful tradition.

I like few things better than a tough roast that has been braised in my pressure cooker until the meat falls apart and melts in my mouth. The thing I do like better are certain organ meats. Sweetbreads are creamy and delicious. I know I may have lost you here with that admission. The idea is that it is good practice to not waste the things that we can eat or use. Liver is by far my favorite organ meat.

Beef liver can have a strong mineral or iron taste. Chicken liver is much milder in flavor. I am fond of chicken livers cooked in a variety of ways: grilled, fried, smoked, in pate, and in terrines. I recommend buying organic, pastured livers for the highest nutritional quality. The liver works very hard to filter toxins from the body. The liver can become stressed by an excess of pesticides and processed grains.

Air Frying Chicken Livers

I recently started using my air fryer to cook chicken livers. I am trying very hard to reduce the amount of excess fat and oil in my diet. Air frying chicken livers is a great way to cut out unnecessary calories. Chicken livers are fairly lean, so if you air fry them without a coating, you may want to brush or spray them with some fat or oil.

Since these are cooked at fairly high heat, it is a good idea to add some moisture back into your chicken livers. The way I do this is to first rinse the livers and then clean them of the white sinew and dark spots. Then, I place them in a bowl of buttermilk to soak for at least 30 minutes and up to 4 hours in the refrigerator. The milk will pull some impurities from the liver and help to add a bit more moisture. It also helps to reduce that mineral flavor that some people don’t care for.

My first batch of air fryer chicken livers were prepared with a gluten-free coating so they would be paleo compliant. I think all-purpose flour works really well if you aren’t sensitive to grains or gluten. I have included 2 ingredient lists that you can choose from.

I preheated my air fryer to 390°F and cooked the livers for a total of eight minutes – 4 minutes per side. If the livers are large, this could take 10 minutes. I also found that I needed to spray the coated livers with some olive oil to prevent the coating from sticking to the crisper plate or basket.

crispy chicken livers in an air fryer

Crunchy Coated Air Fryer Chicken Livers with a Paleo Option

You can double the ingredients and cook these in batches to feed 4 people.

Ingredients:

  • 8 ounces chicken livers
  • 1 cup buttermilk, divided
  • 1 whole egg, lightly beaten
  • 1/3 all-purpose cup flour
  • 1 TBS corn or tapioca starch
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • 1/2 tsp dried oregano
  • 1/4 tsp onion powder
  • 1/4 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/4 tsp freshly ground pepper
  • Olive oil spray

Ingredients for Paleo Version:

  • 8 ounces chicken livers
  • 1 cup buttermilk, divided
  • 1 whole egg, lightly beaten
  • 1/3 cup coconut flour
  • 1/3 cup almond meal
  • 1/2 tsp sea salt
  • 1/2 tsp dried oregano
  • 1/4 tsp onion powder
  • 1/4 tsp garlic powder
  • 1/4 tsp freshly ground pepper
  • Olive oil spray

Total time:20 minPrep time:10 min – Cook time:10 min per batch – Serves:2 people
Author:

Directions for First Ingredients:

1. Place the chicken livers in a colander and rinse them under cold running water. Pat them dry with paper towels. Cut the livers in half between the two lobes. Trim any white tissue, veins, and dark spots from the livers. Discard what you remove. Place the livers in a bowl and pour 1/2 cup of the buttermilk over the livers. Set aside to soak for 30 minutes, or cover and refrigerate for up to 4 hours.

2. Place the soaked livers in a colander and rinse off the butter milk. Set aside to drain.

3. Place 2 shallow bowls on your counter. Lightly beat the egg in one bowl. Add 1/2 cup of buttermilk to the egg and whisk together. In the other bowl, whisk together the flour, starch, herbs, and seasonings.

4. Preheat the air fryer to 390°F for 5 minutes.

5. Pat the livers dry with paper towels. Dip the chicken livers in the egg and milk bath. Then, coat them with the flour mixture.

6. Spray the crisper plate or basket of the air fryer with a small amount of oil. Place the chicken livers in the air fryer and spray the top of the livers lightly with more oil.

7. Close the air fryer and cook for 4 minutes. Flip the livers over and cook for another 4 minutes or until the internal temperature reaches 165°F when checked with a digital meat thermometer. You can give the livers another spritz of the oil when you flip them over if they look pale and dry.

8. Serve the livers while hot out of the air fryer.

Directions for second, Paleo Ingredients:

1. Place the chicken livers in a colander and rinse them under cold running water. Pat them dry with paper towels. Cut the livers in half between the two lobes. Trim any white tissue, veins, and dark spots from the livers. Discard what you remove. Place the livers in a bowl and pour 1/2 cup of the buttermilk over the livers. Set aside to soak for 30 minutes, or cover and refrigerate for up to 4 hours.

2. Place the soaked livers in a colander and rinse off the buttermilk. Set aside to drain.

3. Place 3 shallow bowls on your counter. In the first bowl, place the coconut flour. In the second bowl, lightly beat the egg and whisk in the remaining buttermilk. In the third bowl, whisk together the almond meal, herbs, and seasonings.

4. Preheat the air fryer to 390°F for 5 minutes.

5. Pat the livers dry with paper towels. Coat the chicken livers with the coconut flour, shaking off any excess. Dip the chicken livers in the egg and milk bath. Then, coat them with the almond meal mixture.

6. Spray the crisper plate or basket of the air fryer with a small amount of oil. Place the chicken livers in the air fryer and spray the top of the livers lightly with more oil.

7. Close the air fryer and cook for 4 minutes. Flip the livers over and cook for another 4 minutes or until the internal temperature reaches 165°F when checked with a digital meat thermometer. You can give the livers another spritz of the oil when you flip them over if they look pale and dry.

8. Serve the livers while hot out of the air fryer.

What to Serve with Air-Fried Chicken Livers?

I really like just plain crispy chicken livers. I don’t generally serve them with a dipping sauce. If you do decide to serve with a dip, ranch dressing is a great option. Or, you could make a honey mustard sauce.

I do like to serve chicken livers with salty and briny sides, such as air-fried dill pickles, jalapeno sauerkraut, or a spicy kimchee. These combinations can make for nice appetizer or tapas style plates. I also like to serve chicken livers over a hearty pile of rice and beans with some herbs and spices.

One of my siblings always has chicken livers in her fridge in case anyone stops by. She will season the livers and fry them up in minutes. She serves them with toothpicks, accompanied by a platter of cheese, olives, and crackers. Her wine is always a Merlot with chicken livers. I enjoy our impromptu visits for these tasty snacks and libation.



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