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Man cooking using an air fryer
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Air fryers are quickly becoming a must-have kitchen appliance — and for a good reason. They offer a healthier way to fry, bake and roast your favorite foods, all with a fraction of the oil and fat of traditional cooking methods. But once you’re done, you need to make sure you clean it correctly; after all, those delicious fried foods can leave behind some grimy residue.

In this post, we’ll discuss how to clean an air fryer so that you can keep it in perfect shape for your next snack or meal. We’ll review the most effective cleaning products and tools for removing grease and food residue, as well as what to do if your air fryer needs a more thorough cleaning. We’ll also discuss how to tell when it’s time to replace your air fryer to help you ensure you’re getting the highest-quality cooking performance possible.

Challenges of cleaning air fryers

The biggest challenge when cleaning air fryers is the food buildup that can accumulate over time. Grease and food particles contain oils and fats, making them difficult to remove in general and especially from hard-to-reach places. The tight spaces within an air fryer often present a unique challenge when it comes to effectively cleaning its components. Larger air fryer models, such as an air fryer for a family of four, may require you to put extra time and elbow grease into cleaning the larger surface area and its crannies.

Tools needed for cleaning your air fryer

To thoroughly clean an air fryer, there are several items you’ll need. Sponges, towels, and brushes can all be used to clean the interior and exterior of the air fryer fully. Additionally, dish detergent can break down any remaining oils or fats stuck onto sections of the air fryer that sponges or towels cannot reach or remove. Finally, depending on how thorough of a clean you want, a steam cleaner can remove all remaining particles inside the air fryer.

Step-by-step air fryer cleaning process

Once you’ve gathered all the necessary materials, it’s time to begin the step-by-step cleaning process. The first step is to unplug the air fryer, so you don't injure yourself when handling it during cleaning. Once unplugged, you may remove the basket and tray from the inside of your air fryer if applicable to your particular machine.

After these two steps have been completed, you may then use either a sponge or towel with detergent to clean up residue that has built up on the interior of your air fryer. The same technique may be used on your basket, tray, and heating element. Finally, you must assemble everything back together according to manufacturer instructions before you can use your newly cleaned air fryer again!

Tips to keep your air fryer clean

Once you have followed the steps above to clean your air fryer effectively, there are certain tips you may find helpful to keep your air fryer clean for longer periods without having to undergo a regular, thorough cleaning. Preheating your air fryer before cooking can limit mess, so nothing needs scrubbing afterward. Additionally, applying a non-stick spray before cooking adds another layer of protection against grease build-up and makes it, so everything cooked comes out easily and neatly once finished cooking.

In addition, it's important to clean your air fryer after every use, regardless of how intense the cooking process was, as this not only maintains a hygienic and sanitary environment in your kitchen but also ensures that there are no leftover food particles that may attract unwanted pests or insects. Finally, picking the correct temperature when cooking can help prevent foods from burning, as this could lead to more scrubbing work for you.


Air fryers are the ideal way to enjoy delicious fried and roasted foods without all the added fat and calories from traditional cooking methods like deep frying. Taking the time to clean your air fryer correctly ensures it will remain in good condition for years to come. Keeping your air fryer sanitized is easy with the right tools and knowledge. If you follow these tips and regularly perform deep cleanings with the steps outlined above, you’ll have no trouble maintaining a well-functioning air fryer. So, get ready to enjoy all the amazing fried, baked, and roasted foods with a newly cleaned air fryer.