Chinese Salt and Pepper Chicken Knees (Air Fryer) 椒鹽脆雞膝(氣炸鍋)

CHINESE Salt & Pepper chicken knees AIR FRYER RECIPE NOMSS 椒鹽脆雞膝

5 from 17 reviews

氣炸鍋椒鹽脆雞膝 Chinese Salt and Pepper Chicken Knees (Air Fryer) recipe is an addictive and delicious dim sum dish in Cantonese cuisine. The crispy chicken cartilages are air-fried, light, and non-greasy, with no excess oil. This keto-friendly deep-fried chicken knee is a favourite Chinese restaurant must, but you can make it at home in just 15 minutes!


  • 1 lbs Chicken Knees (soft bone cartilage)
  • 2 Stalks of Spring Green Spring Onions for garnish
  • Fresh Cilantro for garnish
  • Vegetable Oil or Cooking Spray for air frying

Crispy Coating

Salt and Pepper Spices

  • 5 Garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 tsp Ground White Pepper
  • 2 tsp Sea Salt Flakes
  • ½ Red Bell Peppers, diced
  • ½ Jalapeno Peppers, diced
  • 2 Shallots, diced
  • 1 tsp Sichuan Peppercorn (optional, grind to powder)
  • 1 tsp Fresh Chilli Peppers Flakes (optional)



  1. First, wash the chicken knees and pat dry with a kitchen paper towel.
  2. Marinating for at least 20 minutes is recommended.
  3. While the chicken knees are marinating, prepare salt and pepper spice mix and the crispy batter.
  4. Prepare salt and pepper mixture by dicing jalapeno peppers, red bell peppers, shallots or onions and mince garlic cloves.
  5. Grind Sichuan Peppercorns, dried red chillies, and whole white peppercorns in a spice grinder or using a mortar and pestle. Grind to a powder.
  6. Add diced vegetables, aromatics, salt, and ground white pepper to a small bowl. Mix well. Set aside.
  7. Alternatively, if you do not want to hand chop all the simple ingredients, you can also use a good-quality food processor. Here are my picks for the Best Food Processors!
  8. Add and combine rice flour and potato starch in a shallow bowl.
  9. Dredge and coat each piece of poultry cartilage with crispy breading evenly. Shake off any excess flour.


How To Air Fry Chicken Knees

  1. Preheat air fryer to 400°F.
  2. Use air fryer parchment paper and line the bottom of the basket for easy clean-ups.
  3. Place chicken knees in a single layer in the air fryer basket and spray with cooking oil or use an oil mister.
  4. Double fry the chicken for an extra crispy texture.
  5. Set to a lower temperature the first time, frying at 375F for 6 minutes.
  6. Carefully transfer chicken knees from the air fryer with tongs or a slotted spoon.
  7. Add cooked chicken knees and salt and pepper mixture to a large bowl. Toss and mix well. Ensure each piece of chicken is evenly coated.
  8. Return the seasoned chicken bites to the air fryer and fry for the second time at 400F for another 5 minutes for smaller pieces or 6-7 minutes for thicker nuggets.
  9. Insert an instant read thermometer at the thickest part of the chicken and check that the internal temperature of the meat is at least 165F.
  10. Air fry until golden brown.
  11. Work in small batches ex. If making a large double batch, air fry half the chicken and repeat the process with the leftover chicken meat!
  12. Serve these crispy chicken knees on a serving plate lined with a few kitchen paper towels to soak up excess oil.
  13. Let the chicken rest for a few minutes.
  14. Enjoy hot!




Keywords: salt and pepper, chicken, chicken knees, soft bone cartilage, air fryer, easy, chinese, hong kong, dim sum, cantonese, 椒鹽, 脆雞膝 , 氣炸鍋

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