The Ultimate Guide: How to Clean an Air Fryer Like a Pro

Cleaning an air fryer

Cleaning your air fryer regularly is crucial to ensure its optimal performance and longevity. Not only does it help maintain the quality of your food, but it also prevents the build-up of grease and other residue that can affect the taste and texture of your meals. In this ultimate guide, I will walk you through step-by-step instructions on how to clean your air fryer like a pro.

Why is it important to clean your air fryer regularly?

Keeping your air fryer clean is essential for several reasons. Firstly, it ensures that there is no leftover food debris or grease residue from previous cooking sessions. This not only helps maintain the flavor of your food but also prevents the risk of cross-contamination. Secondly, regular cleaning prevents the build-up of grease, which can lead to smoking and unpleasant odors during cooking. Lastly, a clean air fryer will operate more efficiently, ensuring that your meals are cooked evenly and to perfection.

Step-by-step guide to cleaning your air fryer

Cleaning your air fryer is a straightforward process that can be broken down into a few simple steps:

  1. Unplug and cool down: Before you start cleaning your air fryer, make sure it is unplugged and has cooled down completely. This is important for your safety and to avoid any potential accidents.
  2. Remove the basket and tray: Take out the air fryer basket and tray from the main unit. These parts are usually dishwasher-safe, but check the manufacturer’s instructions to be sure.
  3. Soak in warm soapy water: Fill your kitchen sink or a large basin with warm soapy water. Submerge the basket and tray in the water and let them soak for about 15-30 minutes. This will help loosen any stuck-on food particles.
  4. Scrub and rinse: After soaking, use a soft sponge or brush to scrub away any remaining residue. Pay close attention to the corners and crevices. Rinse thoroughly with clean water to remove all soap and debris.
  5. Dry thoroughly: Once cleaned, pat dry the basket and tray with a clean towel or let them air dry completely before reassembling.

Cleaning the air fryer basket – tips and tricks

The air fryer basket is one of the main components that require regular cleaning. Here are some tips and tricks to help you clean it effectively:

  1. Prevent sticking: To prevent food from sticking to the basket, lightly coat it with cooking spray or a small amount of oil before each use. This will make cleaning easier later on.
  2. Use a non-abrasive sponge: When scrubbing the basket, avoid using abrasive sponges or brushes as they can damage the non-stick coating. Opt for a soft sponge or cloth instead.
  3. Soak in vinegar solution: If there are stubborn stains or burnt-on food, soak the basket in a solution of equal parts white vinegar and water for about 30 minutes. This will help loosen the residue, making it easier to clean.
  4. Avoid harsh chemicals: While it may be tempting to use strong chemicals or abrasive cleaners, it’s best to avoid them. These can damage the non-stick coating and affect the taste of your food.
  5. Dry thoroughly: After cleaning, make sure the basket is completely dry before placing it back into the air fryer. Moisture can lead to mold or rust formation.

Can you put the air fryer basket in the dishwasher?

Yes, most air fryer baskets are dishwasher-safe, but it’s always best to check the manufacturer’s instructions to be certain. If your basket is dishwasher-safe, simply place it in the dishwasher along with your other dishes and run a regular cycle. However, keep in mind that frequent dishwasher use may eventually degrade the non-stick coating, so hand washing is recommended for longevity.

How to clean your air fryer with vinegar and baking soda

Vinegar and baking soda are two common household ingredients that can be used to clean your air fryer effectively. Here’s how you can use them:

  1. Create a cleaning solution: Mix equal parts white vinegar and water in a spray bottle or bowl. For tough stains, add a tablespoon of baking soda to the solution and mix until it forms a paste.
  2. Spray or apply the solution: Spray the cleaning solution onto the interior walls and heating element of the air fryer. For the basket and tray, apply the solution using a sponge or cloth. Let it sit for a few minutes to allow the solution to penetrate and loosen any grime.
  3. Scrub and rinse: Use a soft sponge or brush to scrub away the residue. Pay attention to any stubborn stains or grease. Rinse thoroughly with clean water to remove any remaining solution.
  4. Dry thoroughly: After cleaning, make sure all parts are completely dry before reassembling and using the air fryer again.

Cleaning your air fryer with water – is it safe?

Cleaning your air fryer with water is safe, as long as you follow the proper guidelines. Here’s how you can clean your air fryer using water:

  1. Unplug and cool down: Before cleaning, ensure that the air fryer is unplugged and has cooled down completely to avoid any accidents.
  2. Damp cloth or sponge: For the exterior of the air fryer, use a damp cloth or sponge to wipe away any grease or dirt. Avoid using excessive water to prevent damage to the electrical components.
  3. Avoid submerging: Never submerge the main unit of the air fryer in water or any other liquid. This can damage the electrical components and pose a safety risk.
  4. Dry thoroughly: After cleaning, make sure all parts are completely dry before reassembling and using the air fryer again.

Removing tough grease from your air fryer

Over time, tough grease can accumulate in your air fryer, making it challenging to clean. Here are some effective methods to remove tough grease:

  1. Boiling water method: Fill the air fryer basket with boiling water and let it sit for about 15-30 minutes. The heat and steam will help loosen the grease, making it easier to clean. Afterward, wash the basket and tray as usual.
  2. Citrus-based cleaner: Citrus-based cleaners, such as lemon juice or orange oil, can be effective in cutting through tough grease. Apply the citrus cleaner to a sponge or cloth and scrub the greasy areas. Rinse thoroughly afterward.
  3. Baking soda paste: Make a paste by mixing baking soda with a small amount of water. Apply the paste to the greasy areas and let it sit for about 15 minutes. Scrub with a sponge or brush, then rinse thoroughly.
  4. Commercial degreaser: If all else fails, you can use a commercial degreaser specifically designed for kitchen appliances. Follow the instructions on the product label and ensure proper ventilation.

Maintenance tips for keeping your air fryer clean

Regular cleaning is essential, but there are also some maintenance tips you can follow to keep your air fryer clean for longer:

  1. Preventive measures: To minimize mess and grease buildup, line the bottom of the air fryer with aluminum foil or parchment paper. This will catch any drips or spills, making cleaning easier.
  2. Wipe down after use: After each use, wipe down the interior and exterior of the air fryer with a damp cloth or sponge. This will prevent any residue from hardening and becoming difficult to remove.
  3. Empty and clean the drip tray: The drip tray collects any excess grease or oil during cooking. Empty and clean it regularly to prevent the accumulation of grease that can cause smoking or unpleasant odors.
  4. Inspect and clean the heating element: Over time, the heating element can accumulate grease and residue. Check the manufacturer’s instructions on how to safely clean and maintain the heating element of your specific air fryer model.


Cleaning your air fryer is a necessary task to maintain its performance and ensure the quality of your meals. By following the step-by-step guide and utilizing the tips and tricks mentioned in this ultimate guide, you can clean your air fryer like a pro. Regular maintenance and thorough cleaning will not only extend the lifespan of your appliance but also contribute to healthier and more delicious meals. So, don’t forget to include air fryer cleaning as part of your kitchen routine for a hassle-free cooking experience.

Now that you have learned how to clean your air fryer like a pro, it’s time to put your knowledge into practice. Grab your cleaning supplies and give your air fryer the care it deserves. Your taste buds will thank you!

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