Who likes to clean their air fryer? Nobody I tell you. So the question is legit: Can you put a bowl in an air fryer? It depends on the type of bowl you are using and whether such a bowl is compatible with use in an air fryer.
To determine this, we must primarily look at the effects of high temperatures on different materials. Below, we discuss some of the common materials of bowls and whether they are safe to use in an air fryer.
Can you put a glass bowl in an air fryer?
Most baking enthusiasts have their fair share of glass or Pyrex bowls around the kitchen. While Pyrex bowls are generally oven-safe, most glass bowls are not. Regular glass bowls are usually thinner and prone to being shattered at high temperatures, so we would not recommend that you put these in your air fryer. If your glass or Pyrex bowl is oven-safe, it will usually have a stamp or engraving at the bottom stating so.
That being said, not all oven-safe bowls are appropriate for cooking in an air fryer. This is because the temperature change in an oven is very different from that in an air fryer. Air fryers rise to temperature much faster than ovens, meaning that your glass bowl may crack due to the sudden heat.
To avoid any nasty food disasters, it is always a good idea to research whether your particular glass or Pyrex bowl can be used in an air fryer and to first test it out at the maximum temperature without any food in it.
Can you put a steel bowl in an air fryer?
It is generally safe to use metallic utensils, such as a steel bowl or aluminum foil, inside an air fryer. However, there are certain precautions you should keep in mind when using aluminum foil for cooking in an air fryer.
Not following these can be hazardous to your health. While steel bowls are suitable for air fryers, you should still check them for an ‘oven-safe’ engraving or other markings. If there is no such marking, it is best not to use it as this could damage your air fryer.
You should also avoid using steel bowls that are painted, or have plastic handles, as these materials usually cannot withstand the high temperatures an air fryer reaches.
Another important consideration while using a steel bowl is the cooking time and heat distribution. Unlike most metals, stainless steel is not a good heat conductor. This could lead to uneven heat distribution, leaving parts of your food under or overcooked. For this reason, getting a bowl with some other metal as its core, such as copper maybe best.
Can you put a ceramic bowl in an air fryer?
Plain ceramic bowls are another safe option to use in your air fryer. Once again, you should ensure it is oven-safe before using it. It is a good idea to be cautious with ceramic bowls because many of them are glazed to give off a glossy finish. These glazes may not be appropriate for the air fryer and can melt off or get burnt.
If there is no glaze, paint, or other materials that are unsafe in high-temperature situations, you can use the ceramic bowl safely. In fact, ceramic tends to be a popular material used in the manufacture of baking equipment, including ramekins for souffles. This is because it heats up quickly and evenly, giving more precision and consistency during cooking.
Just be careful when taking a hot ceramic bowl or dish out of the air fryer as this material tends to hold on to heat for a considerable amount of time, which can lead to burns if you don’t use your oven mitts!
Can you put a plastic bowl in an air fryer?
Plastic bowls are not considered safe for use in an air fryer. Even if a bowl is marked microwave-safe, err on the side of caution and refrain from putting it in your air fryer or oven. This is because plastic cannot handle the high temperatures that an air fryer reaches.
The melting point of plastic is around 260 degrees F, whereas an air fryer goes up to 400 degrees F. At this temperature, it will likely melt and create a mess in your air fryer. This could also cause a malfunction and permanently damage your air fryer or pose a safety hazard.
Another harmful side effect of using plastic utensils at high heat is that it starts leaching out toxic chemicals, like phthalates and BPA, into your food. The higher the temperature, the faster these chemicals will contaminate your food. The substances inside plastic are hazardous to one’s health and have been known to include carcinogens, which cause cancer. They may also lead to fertility issues, digestive and metabolic issues, type 2 diabetes, and increased blood pressure.
They have also been linked to behavioral issues in children due to their negative side effects on infant brains and fetuses. Hence, plastic bowls are best left out of the air fryer, oven, and microwave. There are much better alternatives that can be used instead of plastic.
What materials to use instead of a plastic bowl?
Instead of a plastic bowl, you can use metal, ceramic, or Pyrex bowls, as explained above. These materials are considered to be hardy and can withstand high temperatures without shattering or melting. You can also use paper liners or perforated parchment paper.
The advantage of perforated parchment paper is that it is precut and has holes that allow for even airflow. So, if you are using a bowl to prevent mess and keep your air fryer in good shape for longer, parchment paper may be a good alternative. There are many advantages of using parchment paper in an air fryer, including its affordability and high heat resistance. It is also available in a variety of different materials, from food-grade pulp to silicone.
Silicone is one of the most popular materials to use while cooking at high temperatures. Below, we explain the benefits of using silicone liners or bowls and why we recommend this type of bowl over all others.
The benefits of using silicone bowls in the air fryer
Silicon bowls and liners are widely used during baking and cooking and can easily be used in an air fryer. They are soft and malleable, meaning they can fit in small spaces like inside an air fryer basket, are easy to put in and take out, and also won’t take up much space in your kitchen cabinets.
They are also very heat resistant and can withstand temperatures up to 450 degrees F, making them very safe to use in an air fryer. They are also very durable and do not break or melt, which adds to the safety factor of this material. Their durable nature and low prices make them one of the most cost-effective options in the market.
A unique advantage of using silicone bowls and utensils is that they are non-stick and, unlike metal, glass, or ceramic bowls, do not need to be greased with butter or oil in preparation. They also do not hold on to odors and can be used to cook a variety of dishes, from sweet to savory, without leaving behind a smell.
Due to their non-stick and odor-resistant nature, they are also very easy to clean. This means that you don’t have to use much water or dish soap, making silicone utensils more environmentally friendly as well.
Although these silicon pots are mainly designed for basket type air fryers but they are a good choice regardless what type of air fryer you choose.
So Can you put a bowl in an air fryer? You can put an oven-safe bowl in an air fryer, but it is essential to keep a few things in mind when doing so. First, if you are using a metal bowl, ensure that your air fryer isn’t a microwave air fryer combo, as metallic utensils are highly dangerous if placed inside a microwave. They can damage your appliance, and they have been known to cause fires inside microwaves.
If you own a microwave air fryer combo or are planning on purchasing one, you can still use a ceramic, glass, or silicone bowl inside it. It is also vital that you leave the air fryer basket in when using a bowl because the air needs to circulate throughout the chamber of the air fryer, and it will not be able to do so if you block it off. The basket has holes that fulfill this purpose, and you will also avoid scratching or damaging your air fryer.
If you are still on the fence about which bowl to use, our recommendation would be to go for a silicone one, as it will not scratch your air fryer and is safe, cheap, and the most convenient in terms of cleaning and storing.