Air fryers are all the rage these days, but they can be a little intimidating for those just getting started.
That’s why we’ve rounded up 17 air fryer hacks to help you get more comfortable with air frying and maximize your air frying experience in the kitchen.
These air fryer tips will let you know what foods to air fry, how long it should take, and even some of our favorite air-fried recipes!
17 Air Fryer Hacks For Healthier Recipes
#1. Preheat Your Air Fryer Before Cooking
The air fryer bears a resemblance to a small oven, so it needs 2-3 minutes of preheating before putting your food in it.
If your air fryer doesn’t come with a preheating feature, just measure up to 3 minutes of preheating time, and you are good to go.
#2. Prevent Sticky Mess By Spraying The Basket With Cooking Oil
Adding a little bit of cooking spray to the air fryer basket before adding your food will help prevent it from becoming sticky and clumping together.
This is particularly helpful when air frying things like chicken wings – simply add a few sprays on the bottom, place your food and continue air frying!
#3. Shake Your Food Halfway Through For An Even And Crispy Result
This simple air fryer hack will help you get air-fried food with a crispy, evenly cooked exterior.
Shake the basket halfway through air frying to rotate your food and ensure even cooking. This is especially important for french fries and chicken wings.
Just remember not to shake too much, or else it might cause spillage!
#4. Don’t Overcrowd Your Air Fryer Basket To Maximum
Air frying works by air-circulating around food to cook it, so so if your air fryer basket is full, there won’t be room for proper airflow inside.
So make sure to avoid overcrowding the air fryer basket past its recommended capacity. Cook your food in smaller batches to ensure all food items are cooked evenly.
#5. Add A Little Water To The Drip Pan To Prevent Fatty Food From Smoking
If you air-fry a lot of fatty foods, such as bacon and duck breast, add about two tablespoons of water to the drip pan so they won’t smoke in your machine. The water will also catch the grease, so you will avoid a burnt smell.
Not only will this keep your air fryer from smoking up your house – it also keeps food moist!
#6. Invest In Air Fryer Accessories
Air fryer accessories like air fryer racks or air fryer baskets can make or break your cooking experience.
So if you want to take full advantage of your air fryer – we definitely recommend getting some essential air fryer accessories.
#7. Reheat Your Leftovers In The Air Fryer Instead Of The Microwave
An air fryer is a great tool for reheating leftovers!
It’s super handy because it doesn’t make the food soggy like microwaving, and air frying ensures your food will be crispy again.
We usually air-fry our leftover pizza slices or taquitos – just add some cooking spray to the air fryer basket, add your leftovers, and air-fry for a couple of minutes to ensure it’s crispy again!
#8. Make Delicious Desserts Using Silicone Cups Or Baking Pans
Silicone cups and baking pans are usually air fryer safe, so you can make delicious cupcakes, muffins, and other pastries – much easier than ever before.
So now you can satisfy your sweet tooth without the need for a convection oven.
#9. Don’t Stack Larger Food Items Into Multiple Layers
If you are air frying something large, like steaks, fish fillets, or pork chops, make sure to avoid stacking multiple layers into your air fryer basket. So cook them only in one layer.
This will cause the bottom layer to cook slower than the top one – so it might end up undercooked or soggy in some spots!
#10. Make Hard-boiled Eggs In Your Air Fryer
One of the air fryer hacks that surprised us most – air frying eggs!
And the best part is that you can hard boil your eggs without using any water. Just put your eggs in the basket and let them boil for about 15 minutes at 270 degrees Fahrenheit.
The result? A perfectly cooked hard-boiled eggs that you can peel of easily and eat for breakfast with your favorite seasoning.
#11. Toast Up Your Favorite Nuts In The Air Fryer
Another air fryer hack that’s great for snacking on – air frying your favorite nuts.
You can easily roast a handful of nuts (like walnuts or almonds). Just throw them in, and once you hear a popping sound, they are ready.
#12. Use Aluminum Foil For Easy Cleaning And To Keep Your Food In Place
You can use air fryer aluminum foil to make air frying a lot easier and convenient. As an alternative, you can also use parchment paper.
All you need to do is line the bottom of your air fryer basket with some foil and throw in your food items. You can now easily clean up afterward.
It also keeps your food in place and prevents it from moving around and spilling.
#13. Clean Your Air Fryer After Every Time You Use It
Always clean your air fryer after every use. This will keep it from getting too dirty and sticky inside – so you can air fry new foods without having to worry about the buildup of residue and unpleasant smell.
Make sure to clean up all air pockets before cooking with your air fryer or baking pan again!
#14. Avoid Using Aerosol Cooking Sprays That Can Harm The Coating
If you plan to air fry something that needs to be covered with oil, make sure you use a regular spray bottle with regular olive oil instead of aerosol sprays.
The reason is that aerosol cooking sprays can contain additives that can damage the air fryer’s coating and cause it not to function properly.
#15. Avoid Putting Powdery Seasonings Before Air Frying
Make sure to mix your powdery seasonings with oil outside the air fryer and create a wet rub for your food.
If you use lightweight seasonings inside the air fryer, they will be blown off from your food due to the strong air circulation.
#16. Leave Some Space Around The Air Fryer For Proper Ventilation
Make sure your air fryer is placed at least 5 inches away from walls or cabinets.
This is because air fryers need some space for proper ventilation, otherwise they can cause damage to your kitchen appliances and create a fire hazard.
Also, you should ensure that your surface is heat-proof.
#17. If Your Air Fryer Basket Starts To Peel Off Or It Breaks – Consider Replacement
If your air fryer basket starts to peel off or it breaks, consider air fryer replacement baskets – they save the day.
Depending on the air fryer model you have, you can easily find a replacement, or even better – contact the manufacturer to help you out.
We hope these 17 air fryer hacks will give you the confidence to get started with your own cooking adventures in this new method of frying.
Bookmark our website and keep an eye out for more air fryer tips and hacks.
So what’s your favorite air fryer hack? Do you have another hack we should know? Share it with us in the comments below.