Air fryers are very new to the market but the technology, versatility, and ease of use advantages take the market by a storm. Every American wants to buy an air fryer for their kitchen countertop. Air fryers are small, lightweight, and fast cooking compared to bulky conventional ovens. We can enjoy crispy fried food taste without any grease and oil.
Cooking in the air fryer is very easy. It uses rapid air technology instead of oil to cook food. The high rush air cooks the food evenly from each side and makes a crispy layer upper side. But sometimes we get soggy and chew textured food instead of crispy. That may be a reason for not preheating the air fryer. Let’s learn how to preheat the air fryer in this article.
Should I preheat the air fryer before every use?
Preheat air fryer isn’t necessary for all kinds of foods. If you have a powerful air fryer with a high voltage feature then you no need to preheat it. The air fryer will automatically achieve the required time and temperature. If you cook high fatty meat, chicken breast, vegetables, or you dint want crispy texture food at that time you shouldn’t preheat your air fryer.
Preheating air fryer is best for frozen foods, reheating, cheese sticks, fish sticks, chicken tenders, and other foods. This preheating process will crisp the outside quickly compare to traditional fryers. It also saves a lot of time in the kitchen while creating leftover foods. So preheating the air fryer depends on the recipe and your choice.
Best time to preheat the air fryer
Preheat your air fryer before every cook depending on your recipe required. If you are cooking frozen foods, leftover foods for reheating, small amounts of foods like french fries, steaks, pizza crusts, etc. Then preheating your practice offers a great crispy texture outside and locks the moisture and tender juice inside.
Bad time to preheat the air fryer?
But when it is about cooking chicken breast, frozen meats, and all the other thick raw foods you shouldn’t preheat your air fryer. Because these kinds of foods need to cook properly from the outside through to the center. If you preheat your air ryer at high temperature and cook chicken breast, Then the outside of the chicken breast will be crispy too quickly but the inner portion will remain raw. And consumption of raw meat will tend to many health problems. You will not get perfectly even cooked food anyway.
How long does an air fryer take to preheat?
Air fryers take 2-5 minutes to achieve the required temperature. But you should leave the air fryer for 5 minutes at 350°F temperature for the best crispy result. In the meantime, the air fryer basket cooking surface will be very hot and ready for cooking.
How to preheat the air fryer? A step by step guide
Preheating an air fryer is the easiest way to get the desired temperature for your recipe. Now, most the air fryer comes with preheating preset function. Where you can directly set the time and temperature by just pressing one button. If your air fryer model doesn’t have to preheat function you can also manually preheat your air fryer.
First of all, you should check your recipe guide. If your recipe needs to preheat before cooking to get the desired result. Then you should preheat your air fryer.
If your air fryer has preheated preset function then it will be very easy to adjust time and temperature. Your air fryer will automatically set the temperature at 350°F for 5 minutes and achieve the required temperature very easily. In some models, you can also manually time & temperature to get the best result.
You should wait for 5-7 minutes before you add food ingredients inside your air fryer. For a small air fryer unit, 5 minutes is enough for preheating, and for a large unit, 7 minutes is mostly recommended.
Note- Never preheat your air fryer using perforated parchment paper in an empty basket. There is a high risk, High air force will blow the paper to the heating elements and cause fire accidents.
Which mistakes you should always avoid while using an air fryer?
#1. Clean your air fryer after every cook
After every cook, you should always clean your air fryer. It’s a good practice to increase the durability of your air fryer and also ensure a clean environment to cook food inside your air fryer. Always there is some extra grease/oil and food grime leftover after cooking. When you use the air fryer for the next cook the left mess produces smoke and mixes up with the prepared food and creates an unpleasant taste.
You can reduce the cleaning process on daily basis by using parchment paper or silicone molds. These air fryer accessories protect the basket from oil, food grime, and heavy sauce. So there is no need to clean the basket daily and also silicone molds prevent high heat reach to the basket surface so the life span of your air fryer basket will increase.
#2. Don’t overcrowd the air fryer basket
When cooking a large quantity of food by using an air fryer most of the time air fryer users overcrowd the basket. They block the air passing holes where air fryer hot air passes in a circular direction. These food obstacles tend to block the air and your food may not get evenly crispy as you want. I will recommend you should cook in batches if you have a large quantity of food to cook.
#3. Do not preheat while cooking raw items
If you cook raw items like meat, chicken, cake, and other thick foods you should not preheat your air fryer. If you preheat your air fryer and place food ingredients in the basket the high temperature turns the outer layer crisp but the inner portion remains raw in taste.
#4. Never use parchment paper
Never use parchment paper during the preheating time. The parchment paper is so light and thin. If you put parchment paper without any food weight the paper will be blown by the air. And get contact with heating elements which may be a reason for fire hazed. So always remember never to use parchment paper while preheating.