Can You Put Metal in an Air Fryer?

Yes, you can put metal in an air fryer, but with certain precautions. Air fryers work similarly to convection ovens, circulating hot air around the food. This means that many oven-safe materials, including certain metals, can safely be used in an air fryer. However, understanding which types of metal objects are safe and how to use them properly is crucial to ensure safety and prevent damage to your air fryer.

Safe Metal Objects for Air Fryers

1. Aluminum Foil

  • Aluminum foil is commonly used in air fryers to make cleanup easier or to wrap and cook certain foods. Ensure it’s placed securely around food or at the bottom of the basket to prevent it from being lifted by the circulating air.

2. Metal Baking Pans and Tins

  • Small metal baking pans or tins that fit within the air fryer basket are typically safe to use. They can be great for baking or containing smaller items that might otherwise fall through the basket.

3. Stainless Steel Bowls or Containers

  • Small stainless steel bowls or containers can be used for cooking certain dishes within the air fryer, as long as there is enough space for air to circulate around them.

Precautions When Using Metal in Air Fryers

Avoid Blocking Air Flow

  • The effectiveness of an air fryer depends on the circulation of hot air. Any metal object placed inside should not block this airflow. There should be sufficient space around the metal object to allow air to circulate freely.

Be Mindful of Non-Stick Coatings

  • If your air fryer basket has a non-stick coating, be cautious when placing metal objects inside. Sharp edges can scratch and damage the coating.

Watch for Overheating

  • Metal conducts heat very efficiently, which means it can get extremely hot in the air fryer. This can lead to overcooked or burnt food if you’re not careful. It might be necessary to adjust cooking times and temperatures when using metal containers.

Avoid Using Metallic Objects with Non-Metal Parts

  • Some metal kitchen utensils or containers have parts made of plastic, wood, or other materials that might not be heat-resistant. Only use fully metal objects that are confirmed to be oven-safe.

Items to Avoid

No Reactive Metals

  • Avoid using containers made from reactive metals like copper or aluminum (not foil) with acidic foods, as they can react and potentially leach into your food.

No Aerosol Cans

  • Even if it might seem obvious, never put aerosol cans (such as those for cooking spray) in the air fryer, as they can explode under high heat.

Conclusion

Metal can safely be used in an air fryer, provided you follow safety guidelines and use oven-safe metal objects that fit well within the appliance without obstructing airflow. Always consider the specific needs of the dish you’re preparing and adjust cooking times accordingly to avoid overheating and ensure delicious results.

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Bubbly Chef author