How To Clean An Air Fryer

You’ll always utilize your machine after you’ve mastered air frying.

However, regardless of how frequently you prepare supper with it, you should clean it after each usage.

Why?

There are so many reasons!

If you don’t clean it regularly, oil and small particles of food may accumulate in your appliance, which is bad because:

  • It’s unsanitary and dangerous – stray breadcrumbs from a croquette will decay over time, and the thin layer of oil coating the device’s walls will eventually become rancid. A filthy air fryer is a breeding ground for germs that can make you sick. And didn’t you buy an air fryer because of the health benefits?

In addition, if it is left for too long, it will affect the taste of your food.

  • It will smoke – If you spend any time on internet forums, you’ll notice that one of the most common complaints about air fryers is that they produce a lot of smoke. They shouldn’t if they’re maintained neat and tidy. If smoke is driving you out of your kitchen, your equipment must be cleaned more completely.
  • It will not operate efficiently; a clean air fryer will outperform a filthy (or even marginally neglected) one. If all of the elements, from the heating element to the walls of the cooking chamber, are as new as the day they were manufactured, your appliance will most likely perform according to the requirements on the label. It’s actually that easy.

Top Cleaning Hack

Air fryer liners, often known as parchment sheets, are a fantastic idea.

No. You are not required to purchase them. They have no effect on how your air fryer works. And you may believe that they are an unnecessary investment or that their environmental impact is insignificant when soap and water would suffice. However, they save hours of cleaning time in the long run!

Air fryer parchment liners are just a piece of parchment paper cut to the size of your fry basket (there are several sizes available, so you should have no issue finding the right measurements for your device). Check out this website to determine the appropriate size for your air fryer.

So, if that’s all they are, why can’t I just use a roll of standard baking parchment to make my own liner? Because the liners are perforated with a large number of little holes. Why? So that the air that allows air frying to take place may flow all around the meal. Isn’t that clever?

The liners will not change the flavor of whatever you cook in your gadget, but they will make cleaning up afterward much easier and faster. And if you’re going to cook anything that you know will leave a lot of unpleasant pieces of batter or crumb stuck in the mesh of your fry basket, parchment liners could be your new best buddy.

If you want to learn more about air fryer accessories that will help you save time cleaning, click here.

A Clean Air Fryer in 5 Steps

  1. Unplug your air fryer.

It might seem obvious, but it is crucial. Allow your machine to cool down for 20-30 minutes after unplugging it.

  1. Clean the heating element.

Please ensure the heating element doesn’t have any food stuck. A damp cloth or soft brush can be used to wipe them off. Even if the element looks clean, I recommend wiping it as grease is hard to see, but it doesn’t take much to cause a fryer to smoke.

  1. Wash the basket, pan, and tray.

The removable parts of an air fryer are dishwasher safe. However, a dishwasher damages the non-stick coating on these parts more than hand washing. Yep, it’s a drag, but hand washing the basket, etc., will mean they last longer. Clean them with soap, warm water, and a soft cloth like any other dish or baking tray.

  1. Clean the inside of the air fryer.

This step is simple if you have air fryer liners. Remove the old liner and discard it. Then, using a moist towel, wipe off the walls of the cooking chamber.

If you do not use air fryer liners, remove any stray bits of food residue first. After that, you may need to re-use your soft-bristled brush to remove any remaining baked-on food. Then it’s back to the moist cloth to clean up.

  1. Clean the outside of your machine.

This entails a quick wipe-down with your beloved moist cloth. Don’t forget to do this because your air fryer will likely be sitting on your countertop all day, accumulating dust, fingerprints, and microscopic food pieces from other foods you cook. A frequent wipe-down is critical food hygiene practice.

Some Quick Extra Tips:

  • Air fryer parts should not be scraped with a knife or fork. 

You risk scratching off the non-stick coating on parts of your appliance if you aren’t gentle.

  • Warm soapy water can soak away any food that sticks to baskets, pans, or trays.
  • After each batch of cooking, your air fryer doesn’t need to be cleaned. 

However, if you are making something very messy – like crumbed chicken drumsticks covered in breadcrumbs – you may want to wipe the tray and basket between loads.

  • You likely have tiny bits of food stuck inside your air fryer if you notice an unpleasant smell coming from it.

Using a soft-bristle brush, gently scrub the inside of your air fryer with baking soda (also known as bicarbonate of soda) and water. You should be able to clean it deep while removing lingering foul odors at the same time.

You can read more about the many uses of bicarbonate of soda around the home here if you’re interested in learning more.

  • Cleaning frying baskets and the insides of cooking chambers with a soft toothbrush is a great, cheap cleaning tool.

You should be able to get years of healthy and convenient cooking from your air fryer if you take good care of it from day one

I am Chef Harunur Rashid Azim. I inherited my family's love of cooking at a young age. I graduated from the Institute of Culinary Education in London, UK, with determination and passion to become a chef. Follow me on Twitter: @RashidIsChef, FB: Azim

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