What You Need:
- Your dirty air fryer
- A cotton or microfiber cloth
- All-purpose cleaning spray, like my favorite from Method
- Hot water
- ¼ cup baking soda
- ¼ cup dishwashing liquid
- A towel for drying
25 minutes, plus a dishwasher cycle
If you’re an air fryer fan, you probably can’t remember how you lived without one. The gadget saves you time in the kitchen, helps you whip up tasty snacks and sides, and gives you some peace of mind about the amount of fat you’re consuming on a regular basis.
But if we’re being real, air fryers are also massive—and can be a massive pain to clean. How are you supposed to get a thin layer of oil and caked-on food off the fry basket, base, and inner pieces of an air fryer?
It’s not as hard as it seems. While you’ll need to disassemble some of your air fryer to get it truly spotless, many of the pieces can actually go straight into your dishwasher. The rest can easily be wiped down with a microfiber towel and some all-purpose cleaning spray—and, if it comes to it, baking soda. Read on to see how to get your kitchen sidekick looking good as new.
What to do
1. Unplug your air fryer
Before you begin to clean, make sure your air fryer is unplugged, cooled, and ready to be safely handled. There are a lot of parts that get hot enough to potentially burn your skin, so use caution. It is best to clean your air fryer after every use, rather than wait until it’s too dirty to use safely.
2. Discard any main food debris from the basket
If there are entire pieces of food or loose crumbs in the pan or basket, lightly shake these parts over a trash can to remove debris. Use a paper towel or dry sponge to get at stuck-on crumbs.
3. Clean the outside of the air fryer
Using a damp cotton or microfiber cloth, lightly wipe the surface of your air fryer. If streaking or oil smudges still appear, break out a gentle all-purpose spray to remove them.
4. To remove stuck-on food, use a baking soda paste
Combine ¼ cup baking soda with enough water to make a paste, and then apply to dirty spots with a gentle sponge or pad.
5. Run the fryer basket, grate, and pan through the dishwasher
Most air fryers have dishwasher-safe interior parts, meaning you can literally just run them in your next cycle instead of having to hand-wash all the oil off. Check the manufacturer information, just to be safe. If you don’t have a dishwasher or your air fryer isn’t made for them, you can soak the parts in water and dish soap and scrub them like you would you other dishes.
6. Clean the heating element
With the basket and pan removed, carefully turn your air fryer upside down to access the heating element. Use a nonabrasive sponge to wipe it down.
7. Dry all the parts, and then return them to the air fryer base
Use a towel to dry the basket, grate, pan, and heating element before plugging your air fryer back in.
8. Enjoy frying!
Your air fryer is now ready for many more meals. To be safe and keep your air fryer in best working condition, clean all interior parts after every use. In the market for a new gadget? Check out our roundup of the best air fryers on the market.