Many new air fryer fanatics may wonder: can you put aluminum foil in an air fryer? Air fryers are becoming increasingly popular due to their ability to “fry” foods at a fraction of the calorie content.
Now that these handy tools are in more and more people’s kitchens, many are navigating the various tips and tricks of using air fryers. Lining a pan with aluminum foil is very common for roasting foods in the oven, but can you also put this practice to use in the air fryer?
Let’s find out.
Try Air Fryer Liners
Can You Put Aluminum Foil in an Air Fryer?
Luckily the answer will relieve many users of air fryers:
How to Use Tin Foil in the Air Fryer
Be sure to follow these tips when using foil in your air fryer:
- Only place foil in the bottom of the cooking basket
- Do not place foil in the bottom of pan where grease and food particles fall. Keep your foil in the cooking basket only
- Don’t cover the entirety of the basket with aluminum foil — your air fryer needs some of these holes to be exposed for proper air flow and cooking
- Don’t let the foil stick out of the edge of the basket — keep it small and only within a small portion of the cooking basket
- Important: ONLY use aluminum foil when you have placed food on top of the foil! If there is nothing to weigh the foil down, it could be sucked into the heating unit and cause a fire!
Check Your Air Fryer Manual
Of course, it’s important for us to put a disclaimer here to always check your particular model’s air fryer manual before adding tin foil to your air fryer.
While most models should not have a problem, there could be a particular model that has different advice, especially with the air fryer market constantly changing and rapidly growing.
Things to Avoid When Using Aluminum Foil in Your Air Fryer
Again, as mentioned earlier, always place food on top of the foil in your air fryer.
Without something to weigh the foil down, it could be sucked into the heating unit by the power of the air fryer. This could cause a fire or damage the unit.
In addition, use a small amount of foil, tucked nicely inside the unit, allowing optimal air flow for proper cooking.
Cooking with Acidic Foods
One thing to avoid when using alumninum foil in your air fryer is cooking with acidic foods, like these below:
- tomato juice/marinade
- fruit juices
- vinegar/vinegar-based marinade
The heat from your air fryer combined with the acid in these foods on the aluminum foil can decompose the foil. This can leave tiny specks of black particles left in your fryer and on your food!
This process can also pull more aluminum into your food, which many people might want to avoid for health reasons and because it can give a metallic taste to your food.
I recommend using air fryer liners as mentioned above when cooking with acidic foods.
Is Cooking with Aluminum Foil Bad for Your Health?
Some experts argue that cooking with aluminum foil could be bad for your health. Some studies show a link between too much dietary aluminum and Alzheimer’s disease. For this reason, many people try to avoid ingesting excess aluminum.
In the past, I personally cooked on aluminum foil regularly, but I am trying to switch to baking paper like this for this reason. Another option is perforated parchment paper liners specifically made for an air fryer like these options.
While there may or may not be some toxicity related to cooking on aluminum foil, I prefer to play it safe for me and my family with baking paper or air fryer liners.
Can You Put Baking Paper or Parchment Paper in an Air Fryer?
As mentioned above, yes you can put baking paper in your air fryer, but follow the same tips as outlined above for aluminum foil. In fact, some people may prefer parchment paper over tin foil due to the fear of aluminum leaching into the food.
A great alternative to standard parchment paper or baking paper is perforated parchment paper liners specifically made for an air fryer (found here). These liners fit perfectly in the bottom of your air fryer basket.
An added bonus is that these parchment papers making cleaning your air fryer extremely easy. Anyone who has ever used an air fryer will tell you that cleaning them can be a chore. Even if you put them in the dishwasher, they can take up half of a rack!
Bottom line: you can put aluminum foil in an air fryer as long as you follow a few tips. Keep it small, allow air to flow by not covering the entire basket, and never use it without food on top of it to keep it in place.
Now enjoy those yummy low-calorie fried foods!
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