Here's How To Keep Food From Sticking In The Air Fryer

Air fryers are a great tool for cooking your favorite foods in the crispiest (and healthiest) of ways. Although some believe — based on the name — that air fryers actually fry food, what they really do is use convection heat to cook food in a manner that leaves it lightly "fried" on the outside and soft on the inside (via Taste of Home). Many seasoned and amateur cooks love having this little appliance in their culinary arsenal because of its ease of use. You can cook all kinds of foods in an air fryer (like hard boiled eggs, French fries, and baked goods, to name a few), but, as is the case with many cooking tools, it's very important to properly grease your frying chamber so that the food you're making does not stick to its surface. Another thing to be aware of when using an air fryer is that the type of oil you are using is incredibly important. Oils with a lower smoking temperature are ones you should steer clear of, as they are not suitable for using in an air fryer the way oils with higher smoking points are.

Why is greasing your air fryer chamber important?

As is the case with all other forms of cooking, it's always a good call to use a little bit of oil to keep the food you're making from sticking to your cooking surface (no one likes to scrub stuck-on food off of a skillet). Air fryers generally come with a nonstick coating to help prevent food from sticking to the frying chamber, but just because your unit comes with this particular coating doesn't mean you shouldn't show it some extra TLC by lightly coating food or the basket (or both!) with a little oil. Dan Zuccarello, an executive food editor at America's Test Kitchen, told Insider that using a little oil can go a long way in terms of cooking your food in an air fryer. Not only will it help crisp your food better, but you'll achieve better overall cooking results.

Using a high smoke point oil is the way to go.

According to Buzzfeed, the best oils to use for air fryers are the ones that have a high smoke point. What does that mean? These particular oils can take on high temperatures (400 degrees Fahrenheit or more) before they start to create smoke. Some oils that fall under this category are: refined avocado oil, almond oil, corn oil, canola oil, grapeseed oil, peanut oil, safflower oil, sesame oil, and sunflower oil (via The Globe and Mail).

Oils to stay away from when using an air fryer? Ones that have a lower smoke point like extra-virgin olive oil says Buzzfeed. You should steer clear of cooking aerosols as well, as they have a propensity to harm the air fryer unit. This is caused by the added properties many of these sprays are made with, which can damage the nonstick coating. Using oils like canola oil and sunflower oil is much safer for your air fryer when compared to their aerosol cooking oil brethren. By utilizing the correct oil for your air fryer, you will achieve the most delicious and perfectly crispy foods as your end result.