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All The Air Fryer Egg Cooking Hacks You'll Wish You Knew Sooner

Air fryers have boomed in popularity over the past few years and for a good reason. They are incredibly convenient, great for small spaces (hello apartments and dorm rooms!), and can help you make healthier alternatives to deep fried foods. It's a fun appliance to have, and exploring different recipes and concoctions is a rite of passage for an air fryer owner. It's like having a grown-up easy bake oven, and what could be better than that?

If you think that eggs are only reserved for the stovetop, or you don't want to deal with the dreaded clean up time after cooking eggs in the oven, then it's time to take a chance and use your air fryer. With so many air fryer recipes posted on TikTok, you can use all the endless possibilities of simple, egg-cooking magic that lies ahead.

From hard boiled, scrambled, muffins, burritos, omelets, and more — the possibilities are endless for cooking eggs in the air fryer. We spoke to a handful of experts who have experience with this method of cooking eggs, and they shared some great hacks and insights that'll help you nail your air fryer egg recipes.

You'll want to get accessories

If you're using the air fryer for any egg recipe that isn't hard boiled eggs, you're going to want to get some accessories. There are many options out there — so we'll cover a few that we think are worth getting.

Ramekins, especially the mini kind, are great to make small egg dishes like omelets, casseroles, fried, or scrambled eggs. Ranveer Brar, owner of Kashkan Restaurants, shared with us, "For perfectly shaped eggs consider using silicone molds or small ramekins; these utensils help to maintain the shape of eggs, preventing them from spreading too much." This mini ramekin pack from Jean-Patrique is a great option. Its aesthetic colors and non-stick ceramic coating will definitely step up your egg-cooking game.

Another great accessory is silicone molds. There are many different types that you can choose from, and there are some that are specifically designed for cooking eggs in the air fryer. These Williams Sonoma air fryer cups are great for single-serve egg bites or muffins. Or you can opt for these Amazon egg bite molds, which make 6 servings in one go.

Gabrielle Marie Yap, Senior Editor & Culinary Entrepreneur at Carnivore Style, shared with us that cooking eggs with the silicone molds in the air fryer has changed the game for her. She uses them for a variety of recipes that leaves her with little clean up time and perfectly shaped creations.

Preheating and maintaining temperature is key

A common mistake that air fryer owners make is not letting their air fryer preheat, especially if they have a model without a screen that tells the current temperature. A good rule of thumb is to preheat your air fryer for a minimum of 2 minutes for a smaller unit and up to 5 minutes for a larger one. You also want to make sure your air fryer is clean and that the basket is empty in order to thoroughly heat the cooking chamber.

Nic Vanderbeeken, the executive chef of Apéritif Restaurant who has given us great insight on this topic, shared, "Preheating the air fryer helps achieve consistent cooking temperatures, which is especially important for eggs to ensure they cook evenly." He also explained that you should always follow the recipe's recommended temperature, as using too high of a temperature can lead to a rubbery consistency in the eggs.

Ranveer Brar gave us the insight that cooking eggs on a lower temperature, in general, helps the eggs to cook evenly while avoiding that chewy, rubbery consistency that Vanderbeeken spoke about above. Brar suggests cooking at a temperature of 270 degrees Fahrenheit for hard and soft boiled eggs. Ultimately, you don't need to rush your egg creation by cranking up the heat. Keep it at the recommended temperature (or lower) to get the best result.

Don't put too many eggs in at once

We all want to optimize time and cook our food as efficiently as possible. However, you don't want to forgo the quality of the food in the process. There are also many photos and videos that circulate around showing photos of air fryers being filled to the brim with food being cooked — but that is incredibly misleading. No matter what you're cooking, it's never good to overcrowd the basket.

Kelsey Patterson, food blogger at Sigsbee Street, told us that it is key to have space around each egg to ensure they cook evenly. Specifically speaking about hard or soft boiled eggs, she recommends not cooking more than four eggs at one time. Air fryers do come in all sizes, so take that into account as well. As long as each egg can sit with space in between the other eggs and the basket, you can fit as many as you can within that criteria.

If you are cooking with ramekins or silicone molds, stick to the same recommendation. As long as there is negative space between each one, they will cook optimally. The food should also cook more quickly when there is less volume crowding the basket, so you're actually saving time by not trying to shove more food into the air fryer.

Make sure to grease the basket or molds

Many people think that air fryers don't need any oil at all, but that's not entirely the case. Just like you would use butter or oil on the stove to cook an egg, you'll want to do the same in the air fryer. Part of the reason that people cook with an air fryer in the first place is because it creates less mess and is overall more convenient. You'll take that convenience away if you choose not to grease the basket or molds that you're cooking with — and instead you'll be left with the frustrating task of scraping off burnt egg debris.

You don't want to just use any type of grease. Definitely steer away from using aerosol sprays like Crisco spray. These can potentially ruin your air fryer basket. Most people love to reach for a cooking spray for almost everything, but there are some great alternatives. Try out affordable spray bottles on the market, in which you can fill with your favorite cooking oil, making it easy to grease your cookware without the use of aerosol.

If you're not insistent on using a spray, you can simply rub your oil of choice along the basket or mold. Once your egg is done cooking, it'll come right out without sticking. Then, you'll have a perfectly shaped egg creation and a simple clean up process after you're done.

Don't shake the basket

Almost every air fryer recipe tells you to shake the basket while cooking. This is because it allows the air to hit every surface of the food, getting it to cook more evenly and preventing certain pieces from sticking. For certain foods, shaking the basket also helps to get each piece to have that signature air fryer crisp. It's also one of the perks of using an air fryer, because you don't need to use any sort of spoon or spatula to mix the food around. Simply pull out the basket, shake forward and back a few times, and pop it back in.

When cooking eggs, however, no shaking is necessary. This is a tip we received from food blogger Kelsey Patterson. If you shake the basket while making hard boiled eggs it can cause the shells to crack. This can lead to the eggs leaking out of the shell, causing your eggs to not cook properly, and a mess to clean up afterward.

Whether you are cooking hard boiled eggs or recipe that calls for molds, you should still take the basket out every so often during the cooking process. It does vary by recipe, but it's always a good idea to open it up and rotate each individual egg or mold — this way the food is cooked evenly.

Make perfect hard or soft boiled eggs

There are many methods out there for cooking soft and hard boiled eggs. The practice of boiling eggs goes back centuries – and there are many schools of thought on the proper way to do that (We love to get water and eggs to a boil and then turn off the heat, let the eggs sit covered for 8 minutes, then remove — but we digress). Now with the existence of air fryers, we can make soft or hard boiled eggs without any boiling. Maybe we need a new name!

Nic Vanderbeeken has a simple method for making his hard boiled eggs in the air fryer. He shared, "I place the eggs directly in the air fryer basket and cook them at 270 degrees Fahrenheit for about 15-17 minutes, depending on the size of the eggs. After cooking, I immediately transfer them to an ice bath to stop the cooking process and make peeling easier."

Soft boiled eggs have always been more difficult to get right. Chigz Food Vlog shared a YouTube video with their soft boiled egg air fryer technique, and it seems pretty foolproof! They cook their eggs for 8 minutes at 180 degrees Fahrenheit, and once they're done they place them in cold water. You'll be left with a perfectly runny yolk and well cooked egg white, perfect to top onto a piece of avocado toast or smoked salmon, or to be enjoyed by itself.

Try adding extra ingredients to your recipes

You don't need to stick to fried or plain scrambled eggs when it comes to cooking eggs with the air fryer. You can make filling and satisfying meals quickly and easily with a few ingredients. The first thing you'll want to try is take a silicone mold, crack an egg or two, and whisk up some herbs and spices with the egg.

Gabrielle Marie Yap gave us some great recipe ideas that include adding meats to the mix. One simple tip she gave was to cut up some sausage or ham and mix them up with your eggs. Throw in some spinach to the mix and pair it with breakfast potatoes. Now, you've got a well-rounded breakfast. Another great recipe that Yap shared with us included steak. She said, "You can pre-cook thin strips of steak and lay them at the bottom of your silicone molds before adding the eggs. The steak juices infuse into the eggs as they cook, giving you a delightful combination of tender meat and fluffy eggs."

If you're really looking for a filling meal that could be great for meal prepping or hosting guests, you can try making a casserole. For this, Yap said you can use mini-sized ramekins or bigger sizes that can still fit in your air fryer. Take your ground meat of choice, add chopped vegetables, cheese, and herbs, and then pour the beaten eggs on top.

Make your own Starbucks Egg Bites

If you love Starbucks Egg Bites but your wallet isn't too happy about it, you'll want to turn to your air fryer for a solution. You can make almost the exact same recipe at home in your air fryer for a fraction of the cost! Starbucks sells a few variations on these egg bites: Bacon & Gruyère, Kale & Mushroom, and Egg White & Roasted Red Pepper. The first thing you'll need to recreate them is a small muffin-sized silicone mold. Once you have those greased and ready, you can add your ingredients.

No matter what flavor of egg bite you're going for, they all have the same base of cottage cheese and eggs. Mix up one part cottage cheese and two parts egg (you can adjust serving size depending on how many you make, but most egg bites have about one egg each). Then, depending on the egg bite, you'll want to chop up your ingredients. For the Kale & Mushroom, for example, simply chop those up and put them in the bottom of the silicone mold. Then, pour the egg mixture on top and sprinkle with your cheese of choice.

These are a great option if you like to meal prep. You can batch-make a bunch of egg bites then pop into a freezer safe container. They easily defrost in the microwave and can be enjoyed as a quick and easy breakfast or snack, without having to pay the Starbucks price.

Make an easy egg breakfast burrito

Breakfast burritos are a great way to add variety to the way you eat eggs. The burritos themselves also don't have to be made the same way each time. There are tons of different things you can use to fill your egg burrito: peppers, spinach, mushrooms, kale, onions, cheese, potatoes, tomatoes, and more. You can also add variety by adding different sauces or seasonings.

Executive Chef Nic Vanderbeeken loves to make his breakfast burritos in the air fryer. He first cooks the scrambled egg mixture, which can be easily done in the air fryer with an oven-safe dish. After that, he folds the egg mixture into a tortilla and places it in the air fryer for 5 minutes at 370 degrees Fahrenheit. Cooking it in the air fryer will keep the tortilla in a compact shape so that it's easier to eat and has a crisp in every bite.

Breakfast burritos can be a great choice for a healthy breakfast. They have a great balance of all three macronutrients (carbohydrates, fats, and protein) while also having a satisfying taste. It's important to start your day with all three macronutrients because they each play an important role in how your body functions and produces energy. Also, depending on what type of tortilla you use, you could also be getting a great source of fiber to start your day. Overall, you'll have tons of energy and stay full longer.

The egg recipes and benefits are endless

Many of us get stuck into the habit of eating the same meals day in and day out. One of the best parts about owning an air fryer is that you can easily explore new recipes. When it comes to recipes with eggs, there are endless ones to try. Even if a recipe doesn't specifically say that the person used an air fryer to cook it, you can transfer that recipe with the knowledge you have and make it air fryer-friendly.

One thing about eggs is that so many other types of food pairs well with them. Nearly any type of vegetable tastes good with eggs. Next time you're at your local farmer's market, pick up some veggies that you normally wouldn't buy, and try cutting them up and throwing them into the air fryer with an egg scramble. Meats pair well with eggs, too, so don't shy away from that either. Whether ground turkey, beef, bacon, chicken, steak, or even smoked salmon is your favorite -– try incorporating those into different egg dishes.

Eggs are also incredibly nutritious, as they have a great source of protein, fat, vitamins, and minerals. Some people shy away from eggs because of the fat content, but they have actually been proven to raise the levels of good cholesterol (HDL) in the body, which can prevent heart health issues. When the already nutrient-dense eggs are paired with other sources of fuel, it makes a great meal.