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How to clean an air fryer in 4 quick and easy steps

These cleaning tips will leave your air fryer spotless in no time

air fryer in kitchen
Chloe Best
Lifestyle Features Editor
Updated: 19 July 2023
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Air fryers have become a must-have kitchen appliance over the past couple of years, with everyone from Mrs Hinch to royal chefs sharing their love of the handy gadget.

Loved as a way to cook anything from roast dinners to fried eggs much quicker and cheaper than a conventional oven, they've been flying off the shelves and regularly sell out.

air fryer© Photo: iStock

Air fryers have become a must-have kitchen appliance

If you've been able to get your hands on the coveted kitchen gadget, no doubt you'll have already discovered the many benefits of air fryers, from saving money on cooking amidst the cost of living crisis, to enabling you to cook healthier versions of fried foods such as chips and bacon without the need for oil.

SHOP: 19 best air fryers with top reviews: From Ninja to Salter

Another benefit is that air fryers are easy to clean, and no matter what you've cooked, they can be spotless and ready to use again in just four simple steps.

How to clean an air fryer basket

Cleaning your air fryer basket couldn't be simpler, and is a quick and easy task you can do after every use.

air fryer basket© Photo: iStock

Air fryers are easy to clean

  1. Let your air fryer cool down after use before cleaning.
  2. Remove the baskets from the air fryer, and use a soft sponge or cloth to clean with warm soapy water.
  3. For greasy residues or to remove food baked on to the grates in your air fryer basket or tray, you may need to soak the cooled basket in warm water before using a soft-bristled brush to clean it away. You could also try using applying a paste of baking soda and water onto baked on grime and leaving it for 20 minutes before gently brushing it away.
  4. Rinse under warm water and leave to dry.

RELATED: How to clean a microwave with minimal effort

How to deep clean an air fryer

You will need to do a deep clean of your air fryer by hand, as this can help to remove any grease and dirt from the heating coil on the underside of your appliance, and help it to work better for longer. If you notice your air fryer starts to smoke or smells bad when cooking, this may be a sign that you need to carry out a deep clean.

bicarbonate of soda cleaning stuff© Photo: iStock

Bicarbonate of soda can be useful to deep clean an air fryer

  1. Leave the air fryer to cool down after use before cleaning.
  2. Take a look at the heating coil on the underside of your air fryer for any baked on dirt or grease. To clean it, apply a paste made of a small amount of baking soda and water, leave it to dry, then use a dry soft-bristled brush to gently scrub it all away.
  3. Use a sponge or cloth and washing up liquid solution to clean the inside of your air fryer and wipe down the sides.
  4. Rinse well to ensure no soap residue is left inside your air fryer.
  5. Dry with a cloth and replace the clean baskets inside the air fryer.

SHOP: 7 best kitchen appliances from £20 that will save you money on meals

RELATED: Mrs Hinch tells shoppers how to get £50 off a Ninja air fryer - get the discount code now

Can you clean an air fryer in the dishwasher?

Although many dishwashers do contain parts that can be cleaned in the dishwasher, you should consider whether it needs to be cleaned in the dishwasher each time, as often it is sufficient to wash by hand.

Regularly using a dishwasher can strip the non-stick coating on your appliance as they typically use higher temperatures than hand-washing. However, if you do choose to use the dishwasher, it is advised to put the parts on the top rack, where the water is typically gentler and not as hot.

air fryer roast dinner© Photo: iStock

Air fryers can be used to cook an assortment of meals, including roast dinners

How often should you clean an air fryer?

It is recommended to clean the basket of your air fryer after every use, to avoid any dirt becoming baked on. Meanwhile, you should consider giving the appliance a deeper clean every few uses, to keep inside the unit and coil free from grease and grime.

MORE: Quick energy-saving kitchen hacks to combat the cost of living crisis

How can you remove tough odours?

If you've used your air fryer to cook foods such as fish or bacon, you may notice lingering smells inside the appliance even after cleaning – not ideal if you're planning to use it for something else. An easy way to eliminate tough odours is by incorporating a squeeze of fresh lemon juice into your cleaning solution and leaving the baskets to soak for ten to 15 minutes, before rinsing and reassembling as detailed above.

best air fryers hom com
Air fryers can get grease and grime baked on

How do you clean the inside of an air fryer?

You can wipe down the interior of your air fryer with a damp microfiber cloth or a sponge with a bit of washing up liquid on it. Gently buff away any grease or grime, then wipe away any soap with a damp, clean cloth.

How do you get baked grease out of an air fryer?

If you find that your air fryer has become encrusted with baked on grease and grime, one of the simplest steps you can take to remove it is by applying a paste made with a small amount of baking soda and water, and leave it to dry, before using a sponge or cloth to gently wash it away.

Can you put water in the air fryer to clean it?

It is safe to put water in the air fryer to clean it – but of course, ensure that it is turned off and unplugged while cleaning. Although TikTok hacks have suggested cleaning a dirty air fryer basket by filling it with water and washing up liquid before turning the machine on for three minutes, this could actually cause more damage than good to your machine and even break it.

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