Your air fryer is an excellent tool for cooking healthier meals, but certain things you put in other tools are not safe for usage inside the air fryer. The Air fryer is fantastic because it is quicker for cooking those delicious meals. For instance, the air fryer can give you those crispy, salty French fries in few minutes with half of the fat and calories you probably expected. The taste of the food prepared by the air fryer cannot be compromised until what you get from the conventional cooking methods.
So, Can You Put Plastic inside an Air Fryer?
No, it is unsafe and unhealthy to put plastic containers in the air fryer because they can melt and cause a significant mess and damage to the air fryer.
Benefits Of An Air Fryer
There are so many reasons or benefits you should consider getting an air fryer, and these include the following;
1. The air fryer is Safe and Easy to Use
The air fryer will not take forever to figure how it works, just put your food components in it, add the correct quantity of oil, and set the appropriate time and temperature for the meal. The fryer will cook the food applying the proper heat and also shuts down when food is done. You can also mix the food in the middle of the cooking and still meet the time frame.
It is a safe appliance because you don’t have to worry about oil splattering and other unpleasant experiences associated with different cooking methods when using an air fryer.
2. It is a Lot Easier to Clean
Another reason why you should consider an air fryer for cooking is the ease of cleaning the appliance. Since most of its parts are removable, You can take them out separately, clean them and return them safely and efficiently.
Air fryer parts are dishwasher safe, which means you will spend much less time washing the device than the hand-washing method. Since air fryers use less oil, you don’t have to soak and scrub before cleaning them. You can save lots of time in cleaning the air fryer compared to other cooking appliances.
3. It Creates Low-fat and Low-Calorie Meals
It can be pretty challenging to achieve low-fat and low-calorie meals for most people, but air fryers have changed such narratives. With an air fryer, you will need less oil and fewer of many other ingredients like salt and sugar to prepare your meals.
An air-fryer does not need the deep-frying of foods, which is the reverse of traditional frying methods where foods absorb much fat and oil.
4. Air fryer Preserves Nutrients
This is one of the most important reasons to opt for air fryers. In an air fryer, the food doesn’t lose much moisture; hence nutrients don’t diminish with moisture here. The circulation of hot air within the air fryer creates a coating on the food; therefore, the food will keep most of the nutrients intact.
5. No Oily Smell in Your Food and the Appliance
You don’t want to smell like French fries or any other oily food, especially when you interact with people. You don’t want your home to reek of oily smell either, and this is the reason why you should consider the air fryer. When you use conventional means, oil can splatter in different directions creating a messy kitchen, which is not the case with an air fryer.
6. Inexpensive and Highly Efficient to Operate
Buying good-quality oil can be expensive, especially when you have to use lots of it. With the air fryer, you don’t need much oil, but with conventional deep-frying methods, you will need lots of it. Even if you try to re-use cooking oil over and over again, it will still cost you lots in the long run.
7. It Takes Up Much Less Space
You don’t have to worry about where to place the air fryer in your kitchen because it wouldn’t require much space. It is much smaller than the traditional oven, and it will take about 1-foot cube space to use or store. You may store the appliance on the countertop when not in use.
Are There Any Disadvantages Of Using The Air Fryer?
Perhaps the major disadvantage of the air fryer is that it may not be ideal for cooking for large groups of people. Due to its small size, you may have to cook in batches for a gathering of more than five. This appliance is better for individuals, couples, and small families.
The possibility of drying out or burning food is high if you don’t use the right setting for an air dryer. You need to pay close supervision to cook since the average temperature is between 300 and 400F degrees. It would be best if you learned to use the shortest possible time for cooking to prevent burning and dry-out.
Another disadvantage is that your food may not be as crunchy as expected. Adding more oil to your food in the air dryer will not make it crunchier; this appliance wouldn’t just make your food very crunchy.
What Are The Things You Should Not Put In The Air Fryer?
The following are items you should avoid putting inside the Air fryer;
Plastic is not suitable by any means for use in the air fryer. Putting plastic inside the air fryer will create a huge mess because it will melt under the circulating heat. This may also lead to significant damage to your air fryer appliance.
2. Paper Towels
Paper towels, just like plastic, must also be avoided inside the air fryer. Paper towels may burn and may cause a fire accident that may be difficult to control. Paper towels and any other form of paper or cardboard and wood must be avoided inside the air fryer.
3. Water and Sauces
There is a little need to put water inside your food while in the air fryer. Boiling water inside the air fryer must equally be avoided because the power of the circulating air can cause huge damage to your air fryer.
Similarly, sauces should not be put in the air fryer. Sauces, including gravy and stews, are not suitable for the air fryer, though marinades and meat are okay. Though a thicker sauce may still be okay for the air fryer as it is less likely to be moved during cooking. Running sauce can be moved much quicker inside the air fryer, and it can splatter all around the area and create a huge mess.
What Are The Things You Can Safely Put In The Air Fryer?
There are things you can put in your air fryer safely, and are some you shouldn’t. You should read the appliance’s manufacturer manual for more details on this. The following are things you can safely put in your air fryer.
1. The Parchment Paper
This paper helps prevent food from sticking to any part of your air fryer. Frying sticky foods such as chicken wings and baked foods can become messy. You need parchment papers also for chocolate chip cookies and lava cakes. You must line the bottom of the air fryer with the parchment paper and don’t leave empty parts to prevent the force of circulating airlifting the paper around.
It’s okay to use aluminum foil inside the air dryer. Since foil is a good conductor of heat, you can wrap your food with it to entrap heat.
Dishes and Pyrex
Pyrex is a heat-resistant dish, and it can work well in both microwave and air fryers. Pyrex can also reduce the cleanup you may have to do later after cooking.
3. Iron Skillet
Iron skillets can be used inside the air fryer, provided they are small enough to fit inside. Since it is a good conductor of heat, it can help conduct heat evenly on the cooking surface.
4. Steel Bowls
Steel bowls are also good conductors of heat; hence they can mimic the effect of the oven. You may want to close the top of the steel bowl with aluminum foil for even better heat conductance. Steel bowls will trap heat inside so that your food can cook through inside the air fryer.
5. Tooth Picks
Toothpicks are used for many things, including holding the food down inside the air dryer. Since the force inside the air dryer can dislodge small food particles and cause them to fly around, you can use toothpicks to hold the food down and prevent messy and uneven heating of food.
Though not all foods in the air fryer will require the use of toothpicks, there are several recipes that do so. You can use a toothpick with bacon-wrapped Kani and for shrimps and asparagus. Insert the toothpick into each piece of bacon, for instance, to prevent any unraveling inside the air fryer.
It is important that you read the manufacturer specifications as regards what you can use and what not to use inside the air fryer.