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Air Fryer Pork Schnitzel

Lightened up and delicious Air Fryer Pork Schnitzel is a great twist on this classic German dish. Schnitzel cooks up perfectly in the air fryer with a juicy inside and crispy outside, the best part? Ditching all the extra oil from pan frying! So whether you are looking for a new dinner idea or are ready to celebrate Oktoberfest this is a great recipe to make!

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Air Fryer Pork Schnitzel lined up on a white plate garnished with fresh parsley and surrounded by lemon wedges.

Air Fryer Schnitzel

It is no wonder that the air fryer has become the rising star of the kitchen appliance world, when you can take a dish that otherwise would have been soaked in oil and lighten it up with only a light spray and it tastes just as good it is basically magic!

I have always been a fan of Pork Schnitzel, and really when you look at what it is it’s no wonder why…

Schnitzel specifically is from Austrian/German background but the idea of a pounded cutlet of meat that is breaded and fried can be seen all over the world. From the Wiener Schnitzel made of veal in Austria and Germany, the Japanese version called tonkatsu, cotoletta in Italy, or even in the southern United States as chicken fried steak. A version of this dish seems to be everywhere!

So I decided to take this delicious dish and give a go in the air fryer, the results wonderful! Not only is lightened up and still delicious but I prefer the air fryer method because it is way less messy than pan frying (maybe it’s just me but the oil always seems to go everywhere)?!

This method will use the traditional method of breading but then instead of pan frying it goes into the air fryer, let’s take a look…

Overhead view of a tabletop with a white plate full of air fryer pork schnitzel garnished with fresh parsley and surrounded by lemon wedges.

Ingredients for Air Fryer Schnitzel

  • Boneless Pork Chops – I usually grab a pack of 2 boneless pork chops that are each about 1 inch thick, the weight usually is about 1 pound. You will take these 2 pork chops trim the fat off and cut them in half to make 4 cutlets.
  • All-Purpose Flour – This is for coating the pork, it is the first step to breading the pork cutlet. If need be you can use a gluten free substitute as long as it will stick and coat the pork, gluten content isn’t important in the recipe.
  • Salt – For seasoning the pork, it will be mixed in with the flour. I prefer using kosher salt when cooking.
  • Garlic Powder – We are going to slightly flavor the chicken by adding a little of this to the flour.
  • Paprika – Same as above just a little added to the flour coating to help give a little extra flavor to the schnitzel.
  • Eggs – The second step the coating the pork. You will whisk these eggs together and after the pork goes through the flour it will be dredged in the egg. Biggest tip is to make sure you let any excess egg drip off before the next step.
  • Breadcrumbs – For schnitzel I recommend using plain breadcrumbs for a more traditional approach. If you want to though you can use a flavored breadcrumb or Panko breadcrumbs. And like above with the flour if you wish you can use gluten free breadcrumbs here.
  • Spray Oil – If you are familiar with using an air fryer you probably already have your favorite spray oil, if you do use that one! Otherwise look for a spray oil that will lightly coat the schnitzel, I like to recommend avocado or olive oil.
  • Lemon Wedges for Serving – And the traditional way to serve pork schnitzel is with parsley and lemon wedges, obviously this is optional but adding a splash of lemon juice right before eating is super tasty!

For a complete detailed list of the ingredients continue towards the bottom of the page.

Ingredients for sir fryer schnitzel laid out on a tabletop including pork chops, breadcrumbs, flour, and eggs.

Instructions for How to Make Schnitzel in the Air Fryer

Preheat your air fryer to 390º F, at a minimum you should preheat it for at least 3 minutes but I find preheating for closer to 10 minutes helps just a more even cook!

Start by cutting off any of the white fat on the edges of the pork chop, for best results you will want all that extra fat off.

Now carefully cut the pieces of pork in half to make a cutlet about 1/2 inch or so in thickness.

To keep the area clean line plastic wrap underneath a cutlet and on top. Using a meat tenderizer, heavy pan, or rolling pin pound the pork cutlet down to about 1/4 inch in thickness, repeat with all the cutlets. 

4 pork cutlets with fat removed and pounded down to about 1/4 inch thickness.
Small white bowl with flour, salt, garlic powder, and paprika.

In 3 shallow bowls or plates with a side add the items for breading the schnitzel. In the first add the flour, salt, garlic powder, and paprika. In the second add the eggs and whisk to combine. In the third add the breadcrumbs. Have another plate handy for putting the Schnitzel cutlets on once breaded.

One at a time dredge the pork cutlet in the flour until covered, tapping off any excess flour. Then dredge in the egg until covered, letting any extra egg drip off. Lastly dredge in the breadcumbs until fully covered. Transfer to a plate while you repeat the process with the rest of the pork. 

Collage showing steps of breading pork schnitzel showing the three dredging stations and dipping pork into the flour seasoning mixture.
Collage showing the steps of breading schnitzel showing dredging the pork into eggs and then bread crumbs.

Two at a time spray the schnitzel lightly on both sides with oil and add to the basket of the air fryer making sure that the schnitzels are not touching. 

Cook for 3 minutes, flip. Cook another 3 to 4 minutes until the pork schnitzel is golden brown. Remove and set on a plate while you repeat for the second batch. Once done serve with lemon wedges.

Before and after of two pork schnitzels in an air fryer basket.
Overhead view of close up of air fryer pork schnitzel showing off golden brown breading and garnished with fresh parsley.

Tips, Tricks, and Questions

  • To help keep things clean and speed up the process when dredging the pork keep one ‘wet’ hand and one ‘dry’ hand to keep everything from sticking to you. For example I use my right hand to touch the flour and breadcrumbs and my left hand to tough the egg. This will prevent your fingers from getting coated.
  • All air fryers will be slightly different sizes so fit in the schnitzel how it works best for your appliance just keep in mind that they schnitzel should not be touching or overcroweded or they won’t cook properly. Working in two batches should work best.

What are some easy side dishes to serve with Schnitzel?

Great question! For a more traditional German meal I recommend making my Warm German Potato Salad. You can also serve it with spatzle or French fries for a traditional approach (Or try it with my Baked Sweet Potato Fries)! I also enjoy adding some sauerkraut to the side. This Schnitzel also goes really well with almost any type of salad, you could try my Antipasto Salad or my Simple Spinach Salad.

Close up of a row of air fryer pork schnitzels on a white plate with parsley and lemon wedges.

If you like this Air Fryer Pork Schnitzel Recipe you might also like:

A white plate with four pork schnitzels garnished with fresh parsley and lemon wedges.

Air Fryer Pork Schnitzel

Yield: 4 servings
Prep Time: 15 minutes
Cook Time: 12 minutes
Total Time: 27 minutes

Juicy on the inside, crispy on the outside this Pork Schnitzel isn't pan fried, it's air fried! With simple ingredients this schnitzel is easy enough for a weeknight and fun enough for your own Oktoberfest at home!

Ingredients

  • 1 pound boneless pork chops*
  • 1/3 cup flour
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 1/2 teaspoons paprika
  • 2 eggs
  • 1 cup breadcrumbs
  • spray oil
  • lemon wedges for serving

Instructions

  1. Preheat the air fryer to 390º F.
  2. With a sharp knife cut any white fat off the edges of the pork chop and discard. Now carefully cut the pieces of pork in half to make a cutlet about 1/2 inch or so in thickness. To keep the area clean line plastic wrap underneath a cutlet and on top. Using a meat tenderizer, heavy pan, or rolling pin to pound the pork cutlet down to about 1/4 inch in thickness, repeat with all the cutlets.
  3. In 3 shallow bowls or plates with a side add the items for breading the schnitzel. In the first add the flour, salt, garlic powder, and paprika. In the second add the eggs and whisk to combine. In the third add the breadcrumbs.
  4. One at a time dredge the pork cutlet in the flour until covered, tapping off any excess flour. Then dredge in the egg until covered, letting any extra egg drip off. Lastly dredge in the breadcumbs until fully covered. Transfer to a plate while you repeat the process with the rest of the pork.
  5. Two at a time** spray lightly on both sides with oil and add to the basket of the air fryer making sure that the schnitzels are not touching.
  6. Cook 3 minutes, flip. Cook another 3 to 4 minutes until the pork schnitzel is golden brown. Remove and set on a plate while you repeat for the second batch. Once done serve with lemon wedges.

Notes

*For the pork I usually grab a pack of two boneless pork chops that are about 1 inch thick each, the weight is usually about 1 pound. You will cut these in half making 4 schnitzel.

**All air fryers will be slightly different sizes so fit in the schnitzel how it works best for your appliance just keep in mind that they schnitzel should not be touching or overcroweded or they won't cook properly. Working in two batches should work best.

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Nutrition Information:
Yield: 4 Serving Size: 1 schnitzel
Amount Per Serving: Calories: 443Total Fat: 19gSaturated Fat: 7gTrans Fat: 0gUnsaturated Fat: 12gCholesterol: 178mgSodium: 860mgCarbohydrates: 28gFiber: 2gSugar: 2gProtein: 38g

Nutritional data is automated, final nutritional information will depend on ingredients used and any changes made.

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Peace & Love

Lauren, The Schmidty Wife

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