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It appears the air fryer trend is here to stay. In fact, it’s fair to say it has gone beyond the “fad” stage and become a bonafide kitchen staple. Who doesn’t love crisp veggies, fun mini pizzas or French fries without the fat?
However, if you’re not making a mess, you’re not really cooking. Baked-on chicken skin, sticky barbecue sauces and the inescapable grease are to be expected and will sometimes make cleanup challenging. Here’s how to clean your air fryer so it’s ready to go the next time you want to tackle an interesting new recipe.
1. Let Your Air Fryer Cool
Ensure your air fryer has cooled down for about 30 minutes before you clean it. The last thing you want is to get a nasty burn. You can let the basket sit on your stovetop outside of the fryer, which should speed the process. This is the easy part, as you will likely be enjoying your meal during this time anyway.
2. Dump Those Crumbs
Perhaps you made some breaded chicken parmesan and ended up with a crummy mess on the bottom of your basket. You can dump everything down your kitchen sink disposal. Some air fryer models will feature a crumb-catching tray at the bottom of the basket — be sure to carefully remove this and toss whatever fell through underneath. You should also brush away anything sticking to the door or hinges.
3. Clean the Basket
How it’s time to roll up your sleeves and get into the nitty-gritty. You should always read your owners’ manual, but in general, it is safe to put your air fryer basket in the dishwasher. However, if it has a nonstick coating, you may opt to wash it by hand with warm water, dish soap and a soft sponge. Do not scour with a steel-wool pad, which will scratch and damage the surface. Place the basket upside down to dry.
Sometimes the basket will need a heavy-dry clean, especially if there’s baked-on grease. You can go old-school and make a paste of baking soda and water, leaving it for about 30 minutes or longer if needed.
4. Wash the Air Fryer Interior
There’s one more step to tackle before calling it a day. When learning how to clean your air fryer, don’t forget to wash the machine’s interior and exterior. Use a damp sponge with dish soap. You could also try a microwave cleaning hack and use a soft melamine foam sponge, which will easily erase anything caked on. This is also a good way to get rid of the inevitable fingerprints on the outside and on the control panel.
How to Clean Your Air Fryer so It’s Ready to Go
Now that you know how to clean your air fryer like a pro, it’s time to put it away for next time. Ensure it’s dry before you reassemble and store it. It will always be ready for those intriguing recipes you’ve been meaning to try, like calamari or hasselback potatoes or even hot dogs for the kids. With a clean, mean machine, anything is possible.
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