If you’re a fan of roast duck but find it intimidating to cook, then you’re in for a treat! Air Fryer Duck is a total game-changer. It’s easy to prepare, incredibly moist, and boasts a crispy skin that’s bursting with flavor. Whether you’re planning a special occasion or simply want to enjoy a delicious meal, this golden whole roast duck is sure to impress.
What Makes Duck So Special?
Unlike chicken and turkey, duck only has dark meat, which brings it closer in taste to red meat than poultry. With its high fat content, duck meat is juicy, tender, and full of flavor. You can even serve it medium rare, slightly pink, similar to beef or venison. However, the USDA recommends cooking duck to a minimum internal temperature of 165°F (74°C) for safety.
The Air Fryer Revolution
Believe it or not, you can cook a whole duck in an air fryer and achieve perfectly crisp skin and tender meat. In fact, cooking duck in the air fryer has several advantages. It’s less messy and quicker than roasting in the oven, and it’s more economical too. The only challenge is fitting a whole duck into the air fryer, but as long as you have a large capacity model, you can easily cook a 2kg (4.4 pounds) bird. Keep in mind that despite its size, a duck doesn’t yield a huge amount of meat.
What You’ll Need
To prepare this mouthwatering roast duck in the air fryer, you’ll only need a few essential tools: a whole duck (2kg/4.4 pounds), salt, pepper, honey, and soy sauce. No additional oil is necessary, as duck is naturally high in fat. The fat will render as you cook it, keeping the meat juicy and flavorful. If you’re using a frozen whole duck, make sure to defrost it completely by placing it in the fridge for a day or up to 48 hours, depending on its size.
How to Roast Duck in the Air Fryer
For detailed measurements and instructions, refer to the printable recipe card at the bottom of the page. Before attempting this recipe, take a look at the steps and video to ensure success.
Prepare the Duck
Start by placing the duck, uncovered and away from any other food, in the fridge overnight. This step is optional but recommended if you desire irresistibly crispy skin. Once you’re ready to cook, remove the packaging, including any giblets stored in a bag inside the cavity, and let the duck come to room temperature for 30 minutes. Score the duck breast with a sharp knife diagonally, piercing the skin without cutting through to the breast meat. Prick the skin all over with a fork to allow the fat to render while cooking. Finally, generously season the duck with salt and pepper.
Roast Duck in the Air Fryer
Place the duck breast side down in the air fryer basket, tucking the wing tips under if they stick out. Cook for 30 minutes at 300°F (150°C). During this time, you can drain any rendered fat. Carefully flip the duck over, so it sits breast side up in the air fryer, and continue cooking for another 30 minutes. Again, drain any fat as needed. In a bowl, combine honey and soy sauce, and brush the mixture all over the duck. Cook for an additional 10 minutes at 400°F (200°C) to achieve crispy skin and a beautiful shiny glaze.
Check the Temperature
To ensure the duck is cooked to perfection, check its temperature by inserting an instant-read thermometer probe into the breast, avoiding the bone. The recommended safe cooking temperature for duck is a minimum of 165°F (75°C). If the duck needs a little more time, brush it with the glaze once more and continue cooking for an additional 5-10 minutes.
Rest and Serve
Remove the duck from the air fryer and let it rest on a cutting board. Leaving the duck uncovered allows the skin to stay crispier, as steam can soften it. Let it rest for a minimum of 30 minutes to ensure maximum juiciness. When ready, use a sharp knife to remove the legs and cut the breast meat. Present the succulent duck on a platter alongside your favorite sides, such as goose fat roast potatoes, whipped sweet potatoes, braised red cabbage, or a crunchy rainbow Thai salad.
Have You Made My Air Fryer Duck Recipe?
If you’ve tried my Air Fryer Duck recipe, I’d love to hear about your experience. Don’t forget to leave a rating, post a photo on my Facebook page, or share it on Instagram with @supergolden88 and the tag #supergoldenbakes. Your feedback and creations make my day!
For more delicious recipes and culinary inspiration, visit Ekilove. Happy cooking!