Air Fryer Dino Nuggets Recipe (Dino Buddies Dinosaur Chicken Nuggets)

How to Cook Dino Nuggets in an Air Fryer? Enjoy a batch of delicious air fryer Dino Buddies dinosaur chicken nuggets in just 10 minutes! In this simple air fryer recipe, you’ll discover the secret to making crispy dino nuggets. Get the cook time, temperature, instructions, nutrition facts, and more. This recipe is suitable for fun nuggets like Tyson Dino Nuggets, Perdue Panko Breaded Dino Nuggets, Yummy Dino Buddies, and other dinosaur-shaped nuggets.

⭐ Benefits of Making Dino Nuggets

Let me clarify that air fryer dino nuggets may not be the healthiest option available. If you’re interested in the healthiest chicken nuggets, check out this article on air fryer frozen chicken nuggets. It provides tips for finding healthy chicken nuggets at the store.

For a more nutritious choice, you can make dino nuggets from scratch. This involves cutting small chicken pieces into dinosaur shapes and air frying them similar to this air fryer breaded chicken breasts recipe. However, I understand that parents of young children often don’t have the time for that. Store-bought dino nuggets are a convenient time-saver, and using the air fryer makes them even quicker than using the oven.

Although dino nuggets may not be the “perfect” choice for feeding your kids, they can make a busy weeknight dinner a little more enjoyable. Adding some family fun to mealtime is always a good thing!

🥘 Dino Nuggets Air Fryer Ingredients

To make air fryer dino nuggets, all you need are a box of frozen dino nuggets, an air fryer, and a meat thermometer. Don’t forget your favorite dipping sauce! (I’ll suggest some excellent dipping sauces for dino nuggets later on.)

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I’ll be air frying Dino Buddies nuggets, but keep in mind that the size of your dino-shaped chicken nuggets might affect the cooking time. Cooking times may also vary depending on the brand of your air fryer, such as Ninja Foodi, Kalorik, Philips, Nuwave, Pampered Chef, Actifry, Instant Pot Vortex, Cosori, Breville, and others. Therefore, it’s always a good idea to check on the food frequently when trying a new air fryer recipe to avoid overcooking.

🔪 How to Air Fry Dino Nuggets

Cooking dino nuggets in an air fryer is incredibly easy. Simply place the chicken nugget dinos in a single layer on your air fryer basket or tray. I was able to fit 12 nuggets on the tray. Make sure not to stack or overlap the nuggets, as you want the heat and air to circulate freely for perfect crispiness.

️⏲️ Cooking Time and Temperature

So, how long do you cook dino nuggets in an air fryer? What temperature should you use? Air fry frozen dino nuggets for a total of 10 minutes at 400 degrees Fahrenheit (200C). If you have an air fryer oven, place the tray on the top rack position and cook one tray of dino nuggets at a time.

Simply air fry for 5 minutes, then flip the nuggets and air fry for an additional 5 minutes. While Dino Buddies state that their nuggets are fully cooked, they should reach a minimum safe temperature of 165F (74C). Use a meat thermometer to check and add more cooking time if needed. Let the nuggets rest for 1-2 minutes to crisp up even more before serving. If you’re cooking multiple batches, later batches may require less time since the oven is effectively preheated.

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🌡️ Leftovers

Ideally, it’s best to cook only what you need to enjoy fresh dinosaur nuggets every time. However, if you have leftovers, you can reheat them in the air fryer for 3 minutes at 350F (177C). Use the top rack position if you’re using an air fryer oven.

🥗 What to Serve with Dino Nuggets

Wondering what to serve with dino nuggets? I love pairing them with sweet potato fries and broccoli. Here are some fantastic side dishes that go well with dino nuggets:

  • Air Fryer Waffle Fries
  • Air Fryer Frozen French Fries
  • Frozen Broccoli in the Air Fryer
  • Air Fryer Baby Potatoes
  • Roasted Air Fryer Carrots

Don’t forget to grab your favorite dipping sauce! Here are a few suggestions:

  • Ketchup
  • Sweet and Sour Sauce
  • Ranch Dressing
  • Honey Mustard Sauce
  • BBQ Sauce
  • Garlic Aioli

📋 Calories, Net Carbs, Protein

One serving of air fryer dino nuggets contains approximately 180 calories, 15 grams of net carbs, and 9 grams of protein. These nutrition facts are based on Dino Buddies’ four-nugget serving suggestion. However, many of us might eat more than that.

Please keep in mind that the nutrition information may vary depending on the brand of dino nuggets you use. The information provided here is accurate at the time of writing but is subject to change.

💭 Expert Tips from a Dietitian

I want to clarify that dino nuggets fall into the category of ultra-processed foods, so they may not be the healthiest choice. However, they do have some advantages:

  • Appealing to Picky Eaters: Even the pickiest eaters tend to enjoy a plate of delicious chicken nuggets. The fun dino shapes are especially appealing to kids, and they get some protein too.
  • Healthier Than Deep Frying: Air frying dino nuggets eliminates the need for hot oil, reducing the fat and calorie content. However, keep in mind that the nugget breading already contains oil, so they are not completely oil-free.
  • Fast and Easy: Air fryer dino nuggets only take 10 minutes to cook from frozen, making them a quick and convenient option for busy households.
  • Crispy Texture: My dino nuggets air fryer recipe ensures that the nuggets turn out perfectly crisp every time, unlike the microwave method which often results in soggy nuggets.
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Overall, while dino nuggets can help picky eaters increase their protein intake, it’s important to remember that they are still processed foods. It’s perfectly normal to include some processed foods in your diet, but they should not replace a varied and healthy diet consisting of whole foods.


Here are some frequently asked questions about air fryer dino nuggets:

👩🏻‍🍳 Other Kid-Friendly Air Fryer Recipes

Owning an air fryer is fantastic when you have kids, as older children can even prepare their own meals using it. Here are a few more easy air fryer recipes that kids will love:

  • How to Reheat McDonald’s Chicken Nuggets in the Air Fryer
  • Air Fryer Frozen Chicken Tenders
  • Air Fryer Popcorn Chicken

👨‍🍳 More Frozen Foods to Air Fry

If you enjoyed this frozen dino nuggets air fryer recipe, you’re going to love these other frozen food recipes for the air fryer:

  • Best Frozen Foods for the Air Fryer
  • Frozen Taquitos in the Air Fryer
  • Microwave Meals in the Air Fryer

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The Disclaimer…

Please note that all recipes on this website may or may not be suitable for you based on your medical needs and personal preferences. Consult a registered dietitian or your physician if you need assistance determining the dietary pattern that best suits you.

The nutrition information provided is an estimate and offered as a courtesy. It may vary depending on specific brands and ingredients you use. Calorie information on food labels can often be inaccurate, so don’t worry too much about the numbers.

For more information on how the three recipe levels can assist in achieving weight management goals, refer to my post on overnight oats without sugar. Let’s get cooking!

📖 Recipe