An air fryer is one of the most versatile appliances to have in the kitchen. To ensure its optimal performance, emphasis should be on its proper position. As such, many people are asking – can I put air fryer on countertop?
With exposure to high temperatures and grease potentially dripping, an air fryer can damage the countertop in more ways than one. If you are not careful, you can quickly ruin a beautiful and expensive countertop.
Protect your countertop from damage by learning the right way to position your air fryer in the kitchen. Find out as I share some of the best things to do.
Can I Put Air Fryer on Countertop?
Yes, you can put an air fryer on a countertop. However, it depends on the material of the countertop. The most important is that it is heat-resistant. Even when using an air fryer with the highest temperature, the countertop must be able to withstand extreme heat without causing significant damage.
Two things can happen when you put an air fryer on a countertop, especially one made using fragile or inferior material:
One of the most common impacts of heat from the air fryer is crack. Some materials are more prone to damage than others. Especially in the absence of a good sealant, the material can be impervious to heat absorption, which can eventually lead to the material cracking.
More so, a crack in the countertop is not only from heat but also from the weight of whatever is on the top of it. Nonetheless, most air fryers are lightweight, so the weight should not be an issue.
For example take a look at this guy and what happened to his expensive countertop:
Although such a crack depends on a lot of factors. Depends on the quality of your air fryer and how well it is ventilated. If it has a good ventilation unit then it shouldn’t pass on the heat to the lower part of your air fryer (or at least mine doesn’t). Also depends on the temperature you use and for how long. If you run your air fryer on 450 degrees for an hour than it is going to get hot no matter what. In these cases always use something under the air fryer.
It is also common for countertops to discolor when you use an air fryer. One of the reasons for such is grease dripping from the air fryer. Especially if you are using a low-quality model, oils will flow outside the unit, and if you do not clean it immediately, the surface will discolor.
Additionally, it can also be a result of heat exposure. The more frequent you use an air fryer and the hotter it gets, the higher the chance that the countertop will discolor.
Best Practices for Putting Air Fryer on a Countertop
To prevent damage to the countertop, remember a couple of things when using an air fryer. Among others, one of the most important is to have a heat-resistant material. I will talk about this in the next section.
There should also be space of at least five inches between the air fryer and the wall. This means that the back of the appliance should not directly touch the backsplash. With such an allowance, the exhaust vent operates efficiently. It prevents generating too much heat, minimizing the potential damage to the countertop.
If you have a kitchen Island that is the safest place to put the air fryer in my opinion. I am lucky to have one and I always put it there. Here, I took picture to show which part on my countertop I put my air fryer on:
Use the air fryer on a well-ventilated surface. Place it next to vent hoods, open windows, and other spacious areas. If there is minimal ventilation, the air fryer easily gets too hot, which can cause significant countertop damage.
How an Air Fryer Affects Different Countertop Materials
Whether it is an air fryer grill combo, an air fryer with rotisserie, or any type of air fryer, a crucial consideration is the type of countertop you have in the kitchen. Let’s look at the different materials and the potential effects of using an air fryer.
In the past, granite was a material almost exclusive to high-end homes, but in recent years, it became more affordable. It naturally forms through high heat and pressure, which also gives it extreme heat tolerance. As such, it is a good countertop material if you have an air fryer in the kitchen.
Nonetheless, like other materials, granite isn’t perfect. It can experience thermal shock, which happens after exposure to heat the surface turns cold. The main problem is its sealant. It is a porous material, which can easily stain and crack after exposure to extremely high temperatures.
Made of engineered stone, most quartz countertops are not made of pure quartz. Instead, it has other crushed materials, such as marble, granite, and other natural stones. More than being beautiful, it is also eco-friendly.
You can use an air fryer on a quartz countertop, but only if you occasionally use the appliance. It is not as heat-resistant as granite. On average, it can withstand temperatures of 150 to 300 degrees Fahrenheit. Exposure to higher temperatures damages the resin binders. It can change its chemical state and cause discoloration. Worse, the material can also crack.
Classy but pricey, marble countertops are sure to elevate the aesthetic of the kitchen. Like granite, it also has excellent heat resistance, making it another great option if you often use an air fryer.
While it is heat-resistant, a problem with marble is that it is porous. Leaving oil or grease on the surface will cause discoloration. It will be prone to stains, which will make the countertop unsightly over time.
4. Stainless Steel
Known for its industrial look, stainless steel is a common material you will find in commercial kitchens. It is safe to use an air fryer on a stainless steel countertop.
Nonetheless, some people might not appreciate how it requires a lot of maintenance. The failure to clean it regularly will cause visual problems, although they are not necessarily only from the air fryer.
With its hard surface, concrete is another great option if you are looking for hard-wearing countertop material. It is also easy to clean, even with just soap and water. With the latter, it is a snap to get rid of stains from oil fryer grease or oil.
Take note, however, that the quality of concrete highly depends on the sealer used. It is porous if it is not properly sealed, which makes it easy for liquids to penetrate. This will increase the likelihood of discoloration.
For a more traditional look, wood is a good countertop material of choice. The durability is influenced by the specific wood material. It is naturally flammable and will burn, so be cautious when using an air fryer.
If there is one material from this list that you should avoid, it is wood. Especially if it is light-colored, stains from the heat and grease of the air fryer can easily become visible. Aside from heat marks, it can also warp.
What to Put Under Air Fryer to Protect Counter
For your peace of mind, I suggest that you do not put an air fryer directly on the countertop. Instead, it is good to put some kind of buffer under your air fryer, which will serve in the form of a protective layer. Below are some of the top options to consider.
1. Silicone Mat
Lightweight and cheap, a silicone mat is one of the best choices for preventing countertop damage from an air fryer. Different products are available, most of which are designed to withstand temperatures of up to 450 degrees Fahrenheit. It is often made of food-safe materials, so it is a versatile item in the kitchen.
2. Glass Chopping Board
At first thought, you might assume that glass is fragile. Such may be the case, but if you know how to find one, it is a strong material that can act as a protector between the air fryer and countertop. It isn’t heat-proof, but it is built in such a way that it can withstand the high temperature of many air fryers.
3. Bamboo Chopping Board
An eco-friendly material, bamboo is a great choice for a cutting board. It is not only beautiful, but it can also protect the countertop from cracks and discoloration that an air fryer might cause. It is washable and does not leave unsightly stains.
Actually it doesn’t have to be bamboo. A simple wooden chopping board will do it too. That is actually how I use my air fryer. Here you can see:
Frequently Asked Questions about what to put under an air fryer
Will an air fryer damage the quartz countertop?
Yes, an air fryer can damage a quartz countertop. This is the case if the temperature is too high and the construction is inferior. Among others, a potential problem is resin, which can slightly melt and crack because of heat. Nonetheless, if you use the air fryer only occasionally and if the temperature is not too high, quartz is a safe material.
Where should I put my air fryer in the kitchen?
Place the air fryer in a well-ventilated and flat area in the kitchen. Keep a distance of up to five inches between the wall and the back of the air fryer. The best place would be on a heat-resistant countertop, such as granite. If you are worried, it is best to use a protector, such as a silicone mat.
What countertop is safe for an air fryer?
Granite, marble, and concrete are some of the safest materials for air fryers. Quartz is also great, although it has resins that can melt or break as a result of exposure to high heat over time.
Can I put my air fryer under the cabinet?
Yes, you can put an air fryer under the cabinet. However, make sure that there is at least five inches of space underneath. It is better if the space is larger, which will provide better ventilation to prevent damage from high temperatures.
If you are asking can I put air fryer on countertop, the answer is a resounding YES! Nonetheless, not all countertops are the same. Natural materials like granite and marble have high heat-resistance, making them great choices. Quartz is also recommended, although it is best only for those who use their air fryer occasionally.