How to Clean an Air Fryer Quickly & Effectively

Need to clean your air fryer but not sure how to start? This straightforward guide provides the essential steps for quick and thorough cleaning, teaching you how to clean an air fryer. Discover how to maintain your appliance for optimal performance and clean eating, while avoiding common pitfalls. Let’s jump straight into the process for a spotless air fryer.

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Anders Lindsborg

Feb 5, 2024   •  11 min reading time


Table of contents

Need to clean your air fryer but not sure how to start? This straightforward guide provides the essential steps for quick and thorough cleaning, teaching you how to clean an air fryer. Discover how to maintain your appliance for optimal performance and clean eating, while avoiding common pitfalls. Let’s jump straight into the process for a spotless air fryer.

Key Takeaways

  • Regular air fryer cleaning is crucial for food hygiene, preventing bacteria build-up, and ensuring the appliance runs efficiently.
  • Always unplug and cool down your air fryer before cleaning, use non-abrasive tools, and avoid submerging it in water to prevent damage and hazards.
  • Utilize simple cleaning tools like non-abrasive sponges and soft-bristled brushes, and natural cleaning agents such as baking soda, vinegar, and even lemons for effective, non-toxic cleaning.

The Importance of Regular Air Fryer Cleaning

The humble air fryer is a culinary workhorse. From crispy fries to juicy chicken, this nifty appliance can cook up a storm. But with great power comes great responsibility - in this case, the responsibility of regular cleaning. Why should you clean your air fryer often, you ask? Well, let’s talk about that.

Firstly, maintaining food hygiene necessitates cleaning your air fryer. It helps get rid of crumbs and bacteria that can make your food less than appetizing. Who wants a side of bacteria with their fries? No one, that’s who. If you don’t give your air fryer a good scrub regularly, you increase the chance of getting sick from bacteria that grow in leftover food and grease stuck on food itself. Yikes!

Beyond hygiene, regular cleaning also extends the lifespan of your air fryer. Cleaning your air fryer baskets regularly prevents food gunk and grease from building up, which can hamper how well the appliance works. Plus, a clean air fryer is a happy air fryer, running smoothly and performing at its best. So, roll up those sleeves and let’s start cleaning!

Pre-Cleaning Safety Measures

Before embarking on your air fryer cleaning journey, it’s vital to follow a few safety measures. No, you don’t need a helmet or safety goggles (although if you feel the need, we won’t judge). But you do need to take a few precautions to keep things safe and avoid any mishaps.

First things first, unplug your air fryer and let it cool down before cleaning. Not only does this prevent any unpleasant electric shocks, but it also keeps you safe from burns. Cleaning a hot deep fryer can create a lot of smoke, increase the chance of getting burned, and even damage the fryer itself. Not exactly what we’re going for here!

You should also avoid using abrasive cleaning tools. These can scratch and damage the surface of the air fryer, affecting its appearance and performance. And as much as it might seem like a quick solution, do not dunk your air fryer in warm water either. This can damage the heating element and electrical parts, and even cause water to splash, creating fire hazards, motor damage, or even making the whole thing explode. Now, that’s a cleaning disaster we definitely want to avoid!

Gathering the Right Cleaning Tools

Having established the safety basics, we can now discuss the necessary tools for making your air fryer pristine. You don’t need anything fancy or expensive - just a few household items that will get the job done without damaging your precious appliance.

Regular non-abrasive sponges, dish bowls, and microfiber cloths are perfect for cleaning an air fryer. They’re gentle, yet effective at tackling the grease and grime that can build up in your air fryer. Soft bristle scrub brushes are also a great choice for loosening crumbs and baked-on food without scratching the air fryer’s surface. And for those tricky spots? A soft-bristled brush, like the Infraovens Air Fryer Grill Brush, can reach those hard-to-clean areas where leftover food particles might be hiding.

When it comes to cleaning solutions, you can use soapy water and a soft sponge, a mix of dish soap with hot water, and even Dawn Powerwash Spray for tough grease. And here’s a fun tip - rubbing a lemon over the basket can help get rid of strong food smells. Who knew cleaning could be so…citrusy?

Cleaning Removable Components

Now, equipped with our cleaning tools, we can proceed with the actual cleaning process. We’ll start with the removable components - the heating element, mesh basket, and drip tray. These parts do the heavy lifting when it comes to cooking, so they tend to get the dirtiest.

The good news is, cleaning these parts is a breeze. You can simply:

  • Wipe down the air fryer basket with a paper towel or washcloth
  • For a deeper clean, use warm, soapy water and a soft sponge or cloth
  • If the removable parts are dishwasher-safe, just pop them in the dishwasher for a hassle-free clean

Dawn dish soap works really well for cleaning air fryer parts, so it’s a good choice if you’re hand washing.

And what about those stubborn, hard-to-clean spots? That’s where our trusty baking soda comes in. Here’s how to clean your air fryer using baking soda:

  1. Make a paste with 3 parts baking soda and 1 part water.
  2. Spread the paste on the stubborn spots.
  3. Leave it for 30 minutes.
  4. Scrub the spots with a toothbrush.
  5. Rinse it off.

It’s like giving your air fryer a mini spa treatment!

Interior Cleaning Techniques

With the removable parts cleaned, we can focus on the air fryer clean interior. It might seem daunting, but with a few simple steps, you can get it sparkling clean.

The best way to clean the inside of an air fryer is to:

  1. Wipe it down with a damp cloth or a soft sponge and some Dawn dish soap. This helps get rid of all the grease and gunk that builds up inside the air fryer.
  2. Be careful not to get too aggressive with your cleaning - you want to avoid damaging the heating element.
  3. For the heating element, use a warm soapy sponge to gently wipe it down, rinse well, and wipe off any soap residue.

And yes, you can totally use dishwasher soap in an air fryer to clean it. Just be sure to rinse thoroughly to avoid any soap residue, which can affect the taste of your food. Because nobody likes soapy French fries, right?

Exterior Maintenance Tips

After cleaning the interior, it’s time to focus on the exterior of your air fryer. After all, it deserves to look as good on the outside as it works on the inside, right?

The best way to clean the outside of an air fryer is to:

  1. Use soapy water and dish soap.
  2. Use a soft-bristled brush or toothbrush to gently scrub the air fryer’s exterior, which will help avoid scratches and remove any residue.
  3. Use a damp microfiber cloth to clean the air fryer’s surface. It’s soft, won’t scratch the exterior, and can pick up grease and grime effectively.

As for how often to clean the outside of your air fryer, it’s a good idea to give it a wipe down every time you use it, or at least once a week. This keeps it looking good and clean, and also prevents any build-up of grease or grime.

Dealing with Stubborn Grease and Residue

Despite diligent cleaning, some stubborn baked on grease and residue may persist. But don’t worry, we have a secret weapon for these pesky spots: a vinegar and baking soda solution.

Just mix up a thick combo of baking soda and vinegar to tackle the stubborn grease and grime in your air fryer basket. The vinegar’s acid breaks down the baking soda, releasing carbon dioxide gas that’s excellent at getting rid of dirt and grime. Let the mixture sit for a few minutes on the air fryer’s grease and residue before you start scrubbing. This will help break down the grime and make it easier to remove.

For those extra stubborn spots, here’s what you can do:

  1. Make a paste with baking soda and water.
  2. Use a toothbrush to gently scrub the inside of the air fryer.
  3. If you don’t have a toothbrush, you can use other brushes like the Infraovens Air Fryer Grill Brush or a soft-bristled brush to get rid of stuck-on gunk in the tight spots of your air fryer.

Reassembling and Inspecting Your Air Fryer

With everything now clean and shiny, you can start reassembling your air fryer. But before you do, make sure everything is completely dry to avoid any potential damage or malfunctions.

Reassembling your air fryer is pretty straightforward. Just follow these steps:

  1. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions and fit all the removable parts back together.
  2. Once everything is back in place, take a moment to inspect your air fryer to make sure it’s clean and ready for use.
  3. Look for any leftover food or grease, and scrub it off with a soft sponge or brush if there’s any stubborn residue.

And just like that, your air fryer is as good as new and ready to air fry some tasty, healthy meals using air fryers!

Preventative Measures for a Cleaner Air Fryer

The adage ‘prevention is better than cure’ rings true for air fryer maintenance as well! There are a few simple steps you can take to keep your air fryer cleaner, which can save you time and effort in the long run.

Consider using air fryer liners in your air fryer. Parchment liners and silicone liners are great options. They are lightweight, let the heat circulate, and are easy to clean. Also, try to avoid using cooking spray in your air fryer as it can create sticky spots that could damage the nonstick coating on the basket or racks.

Finally, make it a habit to clean your air fryer after every use. As suggested by Molly Maid, this is the best way to keep your air fryer in top condition. It might seem like a hassle, but trust us, your future self (and your air fryer) will thank you for it!


In conclusion, keeping your air fryer clean is essential for both food hygiene and the longevity of your appliance. By following the tips and tricks shared in this blog post, you can ensure your air fryer remains in top-notch condition, ready to deliver delicious, healthy meals for you and your family. Remember, a clean air fryer is a happy air fryer!

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