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Trader Joe’s Orange Chicken in the Air Fryer

Craving takeout without the hassle of pick-up or waiting for delivery? You can whip up Trader Joe’s orange chicken in the air fryer in just fifteen minutes!

Crispy and flavorful air fryer mandarin orange chicken

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I love the flavors we get from our local Chinese restaurant, but waiting for delivery or picking it up myself always takes so long. That’s why I was really excited to discover I could make Trader Joe’s orange chicken in the air fryer!

This recipe completely satisfies my cravings for takeout. And since I usually have a bag of orange chicken waiting in my freezer, I can have this dinner ready in about fifteen minutes. Way better than pick-up or delivery.

Here’s what I’m going to teach you in this post:

  • How to make frozen orange chicken in the air fryer
  • Tips for cooking the best Mandarin orange chicken
  • What to serve with Trader Joe’s air fryer orange chicken
  • How to reheat mandarin orange chicken in the air fryer

These chicken nuggets turn out so crispy and flavorful, everyone will think they came straight from a restaurant. My whole family loves it! So whether it’s a busy weeknight or you just forgot to defrost something for dinner, this is the kind of recipe that always saves the day.

For even more foods you can cook straight from frozen in the air fryer, don’t miss my 20+ air fryer frozen food recipes!

I made this recipe using the 5.8 QT Cosori Air Fryer. Its square basket makes it the perfect size for our family of 4.

frozen mandarin orange chicken from trader joe's

How to Make Air Fryer Frozen Orange Chicken from Trader Joe’s

A full printable version of this recipe with ingredient measurements is available at the bottom of this post.

STEP ONE: Preheat your air fryer at 400 for 5 minutes.

STEP TWO: Place your chicken bites in a single layer in the air fryer basket, leaving a little space between each one. 

place frozen chicken in air fryer

STEP THREE: Cook the nuggets for 8 minutes. Shake the basket at the 5-minute mark to flip them over.

STEP FOUR: While the chicken is cooking, heat a bowl of water in the microwave for 1-2 minutes, then place the frozen sauce packet in the hot water.

STEP FIVE: Once the nuggets are done, transfer to a bowl and drizzle with the sauce. Use a spoon to toss, making sure the pieces are evenly coated.

drizzle warm sauce over air fryer mandarin orange chicken

STEP SIX: Serve over jasmine rice and garnish as desired. 

Is Trader Joe’s Orange Chicken Pre-Cooked?

Yes! Because it’s pre-cooked, we only need to cook the chicken long enough to heat it through and ensure the outside gets nice and crispy. That’s why this recipe is so quick to make!

If you want to make orange chicken from scratch, check out my Air Fryer Orange Chicken recipe. It’s full of citrus flavor and is absolutely delicious!

crispy mandarin orange chicken in air fryer from trader joe's

How Long Do You Cook Frozen Orange Chicken in the Air Fryer?

You want to make sure your chicken reaches an internal temperature of 165 degrees F.

I found that 8 minutes in the air fryer is the perfect amount of time to get the nuggets hot and crispy without overcooking them.

Tips for Cooking the Best Air Fryer Mandarin Orange Chicken

  • Place the chicken pieces in a single layer with little space in between them. This will ensure even cooking and crispy breading on the outside.
  • Give the sauce a few minutes to thaw in hot water before drizzling over the chicken. You don’t want to add cold sauce to hot nuggets!
  • Make sure you flip the chicken at the 5-minute mark so all sides can get nice and crispy.
air fryer mandarin orange chicken with sauce

Can I Cook Other Vegetables in the Air Fryer with the Frozen Chicken Chunks?

This will depend on the size of your air fryer. You want the chicken to be in a single layer with a little space between each piece. If you can do that and still fit some veggies in the basket, go for it!

You could also cook your chicken and vegetables in multiple batches. Because the cook time is so short, this will still be a very quick process.

What to Serve with Air Fryer Frozen Orange Chicken

trader joe's mandarin orange chicken in air fryer

How to Store Leftover Air Fryer Mandarin Orange Chicken

If you have any extra orange chicken, you can store it in the refrigerator in a shallow airtight container or plastic gallon zipper bag.

Leftovers should be eaten within four days.

How to Reheat Trader Joe’s Orange Chicken in the Air Fryer

  1. Preheat your air fryer to 350 degrees.
  2. Place your leftover mandarin orange chicken in the air fryer basket. I recommend using an air fryer pan or silicone basket to make cleaning up a lot easier.
  3. Cook the nuggets for 2 to 3 minutes until thoroughly warmed then enjoy!
reheating air fryer mandarin orange chicken

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Yield: 5 servings

Trader Joe’s Orange Chicken in the Air Fryer

Crispy and flavorful air fryer mandarin orange chicken

Satisfy your takeout cravings right from home by making Trader Joe’s orange chicken in the air fryer! Crispy, flavorful, and ready in about fifteen minutes.

Prep Time 2 minutes
Cook Time 8 minutes
Total Time 10 minutes

Ingredients

  • 1 22-oz package of Trader Joe’s Mandarin Orange Chicken

Optional (for serving)

Instructions

  1. Preheat your air fryer at 400 degrees.
  2. Place the Trader Joe's orange chicken pieces in the basket, in a single layer, leaving little space between the nuggets. 
  3. Cook your nuggets for 8 minutes, shaking the basket at the 5-minute mark to flip them over. 
  4. While the nuggets are cooking, heat a bowl of water in the microwave for 1-2 minutes and then place the frozen sauce packet in the hot water. 
  5. Once the nuggets are cooked to 165 degrees internally, transfer them to a bowl and drizzle the sauce over them. Use a spoon to toss them, making sure they are all covered. 
  6. Serve over jasmine rice (optional) and garnish as desired.

Notes

How to Reheat Trader Joe's Orange Chicken in the Air Fryer:

1. Preheat your air fryer to 350 degrees.

2. Place your leftover sauced orange chicken in the air fryer and cook for 2 to 3 minutes until warmed thoroughly. I recommend using a silicone parchment round or air fryer pan for easy clean-up.

Nutrition Information:

Yield:

5

Serving Size:

1

Amount Per Serving: Calories: 288Total Fat: 13gSaturated Fat: 3gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 9gCholesterol: 45mgSodium: 236mgCarbohydrates: 25gNet Carbohydrates: 0gFiber: 2gSugar: 8gSugar Alcohols: 0gProtein: 17g

This nutrition information is based on the exact products I used in this recipe. Brands and sizes of products could alter exact nutrition and should always be calculated independently.

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samantha

About Samantha

I’ve always had a love of cooking and creating new recipes, so it only made sense to create a food blog so I could share those recipes with you. This site is designed to provide easy and flavorful recipes with as little ingredients as possible. That means you still get great flavor combinations without all that extra time and effort. Read more...

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