Air Fryer Oven Tips

An air fryer oven is pretty straight forward to use, but with a few tips you can really make it shine for you.

Pick up some Tips!
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An air fryer oven sitting on a butcher block countertop.

Preparing to air-fry:

  1. Find the right place for your air fryer oven in your kitchen. Make sure you have some clearance around the oven so that the hot air can escape from the vent at the back.
  2. Pre-heat your air fryer before adding your food. Because an air fryer heats up so quickly, it isn’t critical to wait for the oven to pre-heat before putting food inside, but it’s a good habit to get into. Sometimes a recipe requires a hot start and putting food into a less than hot oven will give you less than perfect results. For instance, pastry bakes better if cold pastry is placed into a hot oven. Pizza dough works better with a burst of heat at the beginning of baking. It only takes a few minutes to pre-heat the oven, so unless you’re in a real rush, just wait to put your food inside. 
  3. Invest in a kitchen spray bottle. Spraying oil on the food is easier than drizzling or brushing, and allows you to use less oil overall. It will be worth it!
  4. Think about lining your drip tray with aluminum foil for easy clean up. 
  5. Use the proper breading technique. Breading is an important step in many air fryer recipes. Don’t skip a step! It is important to coat foods with flour first, then egg and then the breadcrumbs. Be diligent about the breadcrumbs and press them onto the food with your hands. Because the air fryer has a powerful fan as part of its mechanism, breading can sometimes blow off the food. Pressing those crumbs on firmly will help the breading adhere. You can learn all about the proper dredging and breading technique here


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While you are air-frying

  1. If you’re cooking very fatty foods, add a little water to the drip pan below the basket tray to help prevent grease from getting too hot and smoking. 
  2. Don’t overcrowd the mesh tray, but cook foods on one layer instead. I can’t stress this enough. It’s tempting to try to cook more at one time, but over-crowding will prevent foods from crisping and browning evenly and take more time over all.
  3. Spray with oil part way through. If you are trying to get the food to brown and crisp more, try spritzing it with oil part way through the cooking process. This will also help the food to brown more evenly.
  4. Place delicate items lower in the oven so they don’t over brown or brown too quickly. Foods with ingredients like cheese or pastry on top can get too hot being too close to the upper element, so take advantage of the versatility of your air fryer oven and move the tray lower in the oven.
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After you air-fry

  1. Always make sure the drip tray is underneath the mesh or perforated tray when you pull the tray out of the oven. Otherwise, grease and crumbs will drip or fall down on the oven door or countertop.
  2. Don’t pour away the juices from the drip tray too soon. The tray below the mesh basket tray collects a lot of juices from the cooked foods above and catches any marinades that you pour over the food. If the drippings are not too greasy, you can use this flavorful liquid as a sauce to pour over the food. You can also de-grease this liquid and reduce it in a small saucepan on the stovetop for a few minutes to concentrate the flavor.
  3. Wipe down the heating element and oven door after each use to prevent grease from building up inside your air fryer oven. 
  4. Use a bristle brush to clean the mesh racks or baskets in your air fryer after each use. Soaking the mesh basket in the drip tray while you enjoy dinner is enough to loosen any food stuck on the mesh.
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Comments (14)Post a Reply

  1. Have your earlier air fryer books. Does the information, i.e., temperature, cook time, etc., hold the same for foods air fried in an air fryer oven since they were originally written for the egg-shaped air fryers? Please write a cookbook to go with your new air fryer OVEN. That would be greatly appreciated. You are so much help. I’m 75 and still learning how to cook, thanks to you!!!

    1. Hi Sandy. The recipe in my air fryer cookbooks will work in any type of air fryer, the oven or circular models. The temperatures would stay the same, but the timing might fluctuate a few minutes in either direction. I always set on the lower time and just keep an eye on it the first time I am trying a new recipe or item in the air fryer.

  2. Can I AIR FRY a whole bone-in turkey breast in your 24 quart air fryer oven? Do I need to remove the ribs 1st? Is it ok to air fry on the bottom level?

    1. Hi Debbie. It really depends on the size of the turkey breast. You can fit a 6.5 pound chicken into the oven, so you could probably fit a 6 pound turkey breast inside with the pan and basket in the lower level. You may need to trim the rib bones, just so that it doesn’t come too close to the top burners. When air-frying the turkey breast, you can definitely have it in the bottom level, but you will need to rotate the turkey breast as it cooks so that you get the sides browned and cooked as well as the top of the breast. You can see proper directions for air-frying a turkey breast here:

    1. Hi Cathy. You put the meat right into the air fryer basket, which sits in a pan. That way, the air can surround the food completely, but the drippings are caught in the pan and don’t drip down to the bottom of the oven.

  3. So nice to see these tips for the oven air fryer. Thank you. I would also like to know if the temperature is the same as using the egg shaped air fryer.

    1. The temperatures would stay the same, but the timing might fluctuate a few minutes in either direction. It is best to always set on the lower time and just keep an eye on it the first time you are trying a new recipe or item in your air fryer.

  4. Why does my air frier smell like ointment when cooking chips they also taste like it

    1. Well, sorry but that is a hard one to answer. If you air fryer is new, sometimes there is an oder that needs to “burn off” with the first few times of using the unit. It could be the type of oil you are using or there could be a buildup on the heating element and the coils need to be wiped down. Maybe there is also a build up of grease or food on the basket. You can try cleaning it with a baking soda and vinegar mixture. Let it soak on the basket and then rinse with hot water.

  5. Hi i have a n airfryer oven.
    I want to know when doing rotisserie (lamb or chicken) does the dripping tray sits above the heating elements or bellow?
    Also if on the bottom of the heating elements is it same to have dripping grease over it?

    1. The drip tray should be positioned in the lowest slot above the heating element.

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