You Need To Follow These 3 Rules When Using An Air Fryer, According To Drew Barrymore

Drew Barrymore may have already found her way to your bathroom vanity thanks to her ventures in the beauty sphere. But now, you just might be placing some Barrymore-branded items in your kitchen as the actress and talk show host recently created the new Beautiful Kitchenware line (available at Walmart), which sells everything from pots and pans to — you guessed it — small appliances like air fryers (via People).

Barrymore is apparently such a huge fan of the device she wanted to share some of her tips when it comes to whipping up crispy treats in the air fryer. "They really are the 'it' gadgets of the moment. I think because they're innovative and different,'" she tells People.

Her first tip involves the amount of moisture in the food. As Barrymore explains, many foods should be patted down and dried as much as possible in order to prevent the item from becoming steamed rather than delectably crispy — whether you're whipping up vegetables or proteins. Avoiding too much moisture also helps create that perfectly browned exterior, according to Dan Zuccarello, executive food editor at America's Test Kitchen (via Insider).

Barrymore's second rule involves the quantity of what you load into the device at one time. This is a frequent problem people stumble on when learning how to best use their air fryers (via The Kitchn). While it may be tempting to fill the little basket to capacity for a quick meal, avoid adding too much to the air fryer at once. Barrymore suggests that an overcrowded basket will lead to the items cooking unevenly. The Kitchn suggests ensuring the air fryer has at least five inches of space on all sides.

Don't be afraid to experiment with an air fryer

The third rule that Barrymore follows when it comes to using her air fryer is, well, a lack of rules. She advises home cooks not to be afraid of mixing things up and using the small appliance in a variety of ways (via People). While there are a few staples dishes and uses for the kitchen appliance, from cooking salmon to roasting veggies, the actress suggests finding ways to use it for more than just crafting crispy dinner fare. One of Barrymore's favorite hacks is to use it in place of a microwave in order to reheat leftovers.

For cooks new to the air fryer world — whether you have an older trusted model or one of the new sage green Beautiful Kitchenware models (maybe not since they sold out within 24 hours) — it's all about learning a few simple guidelines in order to execute any dish flawlessly. Beyond Barrymore's advice, other helpful tips include allowing the device to preheat, just as you would a regular oven, for optimal cooking (via Cooking Light). Be mindful of the amount of oil used as well. Though an air fryer is a much healthier alternative to frying food in oil, you still want to incorporate only a small amount — roughly a half teaspoon — of oil. You don't need to add much more, but that small bit will help achieve the ideal finished product.