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10 Air Fryer Tips Every Air Fryer Owner Should Know

The Air Fryer device can be an amazing tool if you use it right and see it’s true potential. Here are 10 Air Fryer Tips that will help you get amazing results with your Air Fryer.  

image of different foods in air fryer


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Air Fryers are becoming more and more popular these days. There are plenty of brands you can choose from that vary in price range. Some can be found as low as $70 and some can be as high as $600. Whichever brand you choose to buy, there are great air fryer tips that every air fryer owner should know and become familiar with. I’ve made a list of the top 10 Air Fryer Tips every air fryer owner should know.

10 Air Fryer Tips

#1. Preheat your Air Fryer…well, most of the time

It’s common practice that any cooking element should be preheated. Most brands of air fryers specify that the air fryer should be preheated to ensure even cooking. I do it sometimes, other times I don’t and my food still turns out delicious. If your air fryer does not have a preheat setting, simply turn it to the desired temperature and allow it to run for around 3 minutes before placing your food in.

#2. Use oil on your foods for the air fryer…well, most of the time

I like to use oil on certain foods to help them crisp but certain foods don’t necessarily need it. If your food already has some fat on it (dark meat chicken, ground beef, fatty cuts of meat, etc.) then you probably don’t need the oil. I use oil on vegetables (like my Breakfast Air Fried Potatoes) and any battered seafood, !like my Crispy Air Fryer Fish).

#3. Grease your Air Fryer Basket

Even if your food does not require oil, always take a moment to at least grease your air fryer basket. I grease mine by rubbing, or spraying, a little bit of oil on the bottom grates. This will ensure that your food won’t stick.

#4. Never use aerosol spray cans in your air fryer

Aerosol spray cans (like Pam and similar brands) are known to cause chipping in many Air Fryer baskets. The aerosol cans have harsh agents that just don’t mesh with the coating on most baskets. It’s best to invest in a good quality oil mister or bottle.  I use the Evo Spray Bottle.

#5. Don’t overcrowd the basket

If you want your fried foods to turn out crispy, you’ll want to make sure you don’t overcrowd the basket. Placing too much food in the basket will prevent your food from crisping and browning. To ensure this doesn’t happen, cook your food in batches or invest in a bigger air fryer. My first air fryer was the Farberware brand which was big enough for four servings of wings and fries.

#6. Shake the basket during cooking for fries, wings, etc.

When air frying smaller items, like chicken wings, french fries, and similar items, you’ll want to shake the basket every few minutes to ensure even cooking. Sometimes I use a pair of silicone kitchen tongs to flip larger items over rather than shaking. Once you open the basket to shake, the air fryer will temporarily pause but will resume cooking your food at the same temperature once you return the basket.

#7. Spray halfway through cooking

I found that spraying with oil halfway through cooking gets the best crisp on most foods. I tend to wait and spray halfway through cooking unless it’s an item that doesn’t need spraying, like fatty meats. Coated food items should be sprayed. Also, spray any dry flour spots that still appear halfway through air frying.

#8. Water/Bread in the bottom stops white smoke

If you’re cooking greasy food in your air fryer, don’t be surprised if you see some white smoke shooting out the unit. To solve it, just pour a little (around 2Tbsp) of water in the bottom of the basket. It will stop the smoke and your food will continue to cook.

Some people place a slice of bread in the bottom of the unit to soak up any grease when preparing items that may sputter a lot of grease, like bacon. 

#9. Be careful of small light items in the air fryer

Each Air fryer unit comes with a powerful fan on top of the unit. This causes some lighter weighed items to get swept up in the fan which can be dangerous. I once tried to make fried egg roll wrappers and it almost became a disaster. I am hopeful to try it again once I figure out how to stop the flying around.

#10. Adjust the Temperature for Certain Foods

It can sometimes be tempting to crank the heat for the Air Fryer to the highest temp to let it run but be careful as some foods can dry out quickly. A good rule of thumb is to modify the temperature and time from how long you would typically make it in the oven. I like to go 30 degrees below and cut the time by about 20%. For example, if you cooked brownies at 350 degrees Fahrenheit for 20 minutes in the oven, cut the degrees on the Air Fryer to 320 degrees and cook for about 16 minutes.

#11 Invest in a Good Quick Read Thermometer

Having a good quality quick read thermometer is of upmost importance when it comes to cooking certain meats in your Air Fryer, like steak, chicken, and pork. I recently invested in a Thermapen 4k and I must say it’s worth every penny.

Those are my Top 11 Air fryer tips for successful cooking. If you haven’t made the jump on purchasing an Air Fryer yet, check out Air Fryer Reviewed for reviews of different Air Fryer brands.

Do you have any Air Fryer tips? Leave them in the comments below. Happy Cooking 🙂

Looking for more Air Fryer recipes? Try our popular Perfect Air Fryer Steak with Garlic Herb Butter, Crispy Korean Air Fried Chicken Wings, Breakfast Air Fried Potatoes, or Air Fried Jamaican Jerk Pork Recipe. You can also find more Air Fryer recipes on out Air Fryer category here or this list of 14 Great Recipes for Air Fryers.

Looking for Air Fryer Accessories? Check out my list of Air Fryer Accessories that are worth your money

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Sunday 10th of February 2019

We love our air fryer, cooks essentials from QVC. So easy to use! It is one appliance I keep out on counter like my coffee maker and toaster. I don’t know how I did without this thing!!

Janet Wilson

Wednesday 6th of February 2019

I have a Crusinart. Love it. Put 4 thighs, 4 legs, put olive oil on them 15 minutes, they were perfect. Crispy outside, very juicy inside. My favorite is pies, crush in less than 10 minutes. Meringue comes out perfect in less than 5 minutes. Watch meringue, it browns very quickly. Need help on fresh fries. Don't get crispy or they are hollow on the inside! Cauliflower is great. Put olive oil on it, then season with your favorite.


Tuesday 5th of February 2019

Hello, I seen that you made brownies in your air fryer. How on earth did you do that. I also didn't know you could cook hard boiled eggs. I always use my instant pot. Thank you


Wednesday 6th of February 2019

Hi Deborah, For my brownies I lower temp and use one of the square pans that came in an Air Fryer Kit I purchased. I've recently moved and can't find my pan yet. I haven't written down my recipe. I find that pan is the key to the perfect brownies in the air fryer. Hopefully we finish unpacking soon so I can make these brownies and share the recipe.


Friday 1st of February 2019

That's the only way I will make my "hard boiled" eggs. I put 6 eggs straight out of the fridge into my air fryer at 260 deg for 16 min. No need to preheat. They come out perfect everytime and easy to peel. After they're done cooking I throw them in a big bowl of ice water for about 1/2 hr.


Thursday 24th of January 2019

I purchased a Paula deen air fryer and I’m having trouble with it not working (food doesn’t crisp) I preheated it like it says to and I put it through several cycles, flipping the food. Never got crisp! Ugh.. any suggestions?

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