Clean Air Fryer After Every Use: Is It A Must? 


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I have seen all sorts of questions about air fryers, from delicious recipes to recommended products. However, in today’s post, there’s one question I would like to address – is it necessary to clean air fryer after every use? If you’re wondering, read on and I’ll let you know the answer in this post. 

Clean Air Fryer After Every Use_air fryer drying on counter
Usually I clean it by hand because its easy and won’t take all the space in my dishwasher

Should You Clean Air Fryer After Every Use? 

The answer is a big YES! 

I know, it can be quite tasking. Imagine, you cooked your food and are ready to enjoy it, only to be bothered by the need to wash it once you’re done enjoying your meal! 

The good thing is that many air fryers are easy to clean. They have removable parts, most of which are dishwasher-safe. I have even seen a couple of models with a self-cleaning function. 

By cleaning them after every use, you’re not only making your life easier. You’re also making the kitchen a safer place, speeding up the cooking process, and improving the overall performance of your air fryer. Not to mention, you’re prolonging its lifespan. 

Nonetheless, note that I’m referring only to the removable parts. That includes the air-frying basket, rack, and other parts that are in direct contact with your food. 

Other parts of the air fryer, however, will need occasional cleaning. The frequency will depend on many things, such as the extent of use or what you often cook. For instance, if you cook foods with a lot of batter or those that create a lot of grease, then you will need to clean them more often. 

In general, I suggest deep cleaning your air fryer once a month. This will include cleaning the heating elements and the exterior. 

When To Deep Clean an Air Fryer 

Watch out for signs that your air fryer needs a deep cleaning. As mentioned earlier, it isn’t necessary to do this after every use. Rather, I recommend doing it occasionally, or at least once a month. Below are some things to watch out for: 

  • When It Starts to Smell: A clean air fryer will not have an obnoxious smell. It will not have a lingering odor from the foods you previously prepared. Do a quick sniff test and it will be easy to tell if it already warrants deep cleaning. 
  • When It Does Not Look Good: Your eyes will help you determine if the air fryer already requires deep cleaning. Look outside the unit. Is dust starting to form? Now open the interior. Check the heating elements. Can you see signs of discoloration? Is the interior greasy and grimy? 
  • When Its Performance Declines: It’s also vital that you are observant of the air fryer’s performance. Does it take longer to cook than usual? Do you end up having food that’s unevenly cooked? Is it noisy or vibrating? 

What Happens If You Don’t Clean Your Air Fryer After Every Use? 

If you’re tempted to skip cleaning your air fryer, you might want to give it a second thought. It might seem harmless, but in the long run, it has negative effects on the air fryer, including the following: 

  • Slow Down Cooking Time: Air fryers are known for their cooking speed. Over time, however, they can slow down, especially once they become dirty. You might find yourself waiting longer for food to cook. 
  • Increase Energy Consumption: You might also find your air fryer using more energy than necessary if you do not clean it regularly. This is because it needs to exert more effort in heating the interior. 
  • Uneven Cooking: Like those mentioned above, this problem is related to how dirt in the air fryer makes it more difficult to heat up. The heat distribution may end up being uneven, and so is the cooking. 
  • Dirt Will Harden: Some people might assume that it’s easier if they only clean their air fryer once a week instead of after every use. However, it can only make food particles and grease harder. Hence, they will be more difficult to remove. 
  • Become a Health Risk: The failure to clean the air fryer regularly means food particles will remain. They can overcook and mix with the new food you’re cooking. Meanwhile, it can be a source of a toxic compound known as acrylamide. Air frying itself can reduce the latter compared to deep frying, but such won’t be the case if you don’t keep it clean. 
  • Increase the Risk of Fire: No one wants a blaze in the kitchen! If you don’t clean your air fryer regularly, this is a possibility! They’re equipped with great safety features, but improper maintenance can make them a fire hazard. 


So, should you clean air fryer after every use? As I mentioned above, yes, you need to. However, it applies only to removable parts, like baskets and racks. Plus, this will also include those where the food residues can drip. Meanwhile, other parts like the exterior and heating element can be cleaned less often, such as once a month. 

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Thomas S.

Hey there! I've been cooking for myself and loved ones since the age of 18. In our busy world I've always looked for ways to be more time efficient when it comes to preparing food but also creating tasty and healthy dishes. That's when I came accross air fryers a few years ago and eversince I am trying to spread the word of the benefits of these wonderful machines.