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Do Air Fryers Use Oil?

Air fryers or oil-free fryers attempt to replicate the delicious taste of deep-fried foods without the high-calorie content. The crispy results obtained from the air frying process are achieved by a phenomenon referred to as “The Maillard Effect,” which involves circulating very hot air that cooks the meal.

One common question for people and new cooks is related to the air frying process is, “Can one use oil in an air fryer?”.” The straightforward answer is yes, but there are a few things you should know and keep in mind. This article will take you through all these tips, and we’ll also provide some guidelines to help you get the best results with your air fryer.

Tips for Using Oil in an Air Fryer

Before we go much further, it’s pertinent to note that air fryers technically do not require oil to cook food and provide a crispy coating to the results. This can be accomplished without including any oil, which is one of the many benefits of utilizing an air fryer, but a small amount of oil added to your meal before cooking can make it even crispier.

When attempting to use oil in an air fryer, there are some important things to keep in mind to ensure the best possible results:

The best kind of oil to use – There are a variety of alternatives of oils manufactured from a lot of different materials, each with its own set of characteristics. With so many oils at your disposal to choose from, it cannot be easy to decide.

Because the air fryer typically cooks at high temperatures (between 350 and 400 degrees), the oil to be used in the air fryer must withstand that heat without losing its health advantages or spoiling the taste of your food.

As a result, the smoke point (the temperature required for the oil to smoke or burn) is critical while cooking with oil in an air fryer. For air frying, you should typically use an oil with a smoking point of at least 400 degrees Fahrenheit.

Oils with ideal smoke points – So, which oil should you use in an air fryer? There are many alternatives over the 400-degree mark. The following are a few of the best:

  • Avocado oil: Because of its high smoke point, it is ideal for use in an air fryer. It is one of the most stable that will not burn even at very high heat oils for high-temperature cooking. Avocado oil is made by simply pressing avocados, and it contains nutrients such as unsaturated fats and omega-3 fatty acids.
  • Coconut oil: Coconut oil tastes like a cross between peanut oil and something considerably sweeter in its refined form. It is made out of the meat of a coconut and adds a lot of flavor to the cuisine. Coconut oil has a high saturated fat content, one of its drawbacks. It can, however, be used to cook in the air fryer because it has a smoke point of 450 degrees, but using it sparingly is recommended.
  • Olive oil (Extra Light): The smoke point of extra light olive oil is 460-470 degrees. However, do not confuse it with Extra virgin olive oil, a 380°F smoking point. Because of its mild but tasty flavor, olive oil is a wonderful choice for the air fryer.
  • Peanut oil: Peanut oil has a smoke point of 450 ℉, so it can be used without burning in an air fryer. It’sIt’s moderate vegetable oil with a mild peanut flavor and a lot of unsaturated fats.

Oils to avoid using in an air fryer – Ideally, you should avoid any fats that can make your food taste bad or lose its nutritious value when exposed to high temperatures. These fats have a lower smoke point and are better suited for other applications besides the air fryer.

Some examples include the following:

  • Extra Virgin Olive Oil
  • Butter
  • Lard
  • Margarine
  • Non-Stick Sprays

Where to put oil in an air fryer – The air fryer doesn’t work the same way as traditional deep frying. There is typically no bath to contain larger amounts of oil; only a pan and a basket are available. So, where should you put the oil? Before frying in the air fryer, the food should directly be coated with a light oil coating.

Spraying or brushing the oil is highly recommended, or you could use a spritzer bottle containing a mixture of oil and herbs to manage the amount of oil you put on the food. For someone who intends to put their air fryer to frequent use, an oil spritzer bottle is a must-have.

The ideal quantity of oil to use – Everyone tends to add oil to their meals in their special way, so work with what works best. First, the quantity of oil to use in your air fryer depends on your preferences and the results you want to obtain with the air frying process.

We recommend using enough oil to coat the entire surface in a thin layer (chicken breast). If you don’t get enough crispness from that, add extra.

Clean your air fryer regularly – The disadvantage of using oil during air frying is that you must make plans to clean your air fryer more carefully after each use. This is necessary to avoid the accumulation of grease residue.

However, cleaning should still be done regularly regardless of the substances used.


Air fryers do not need any oil to cook your food, but some people prefer to add a bit to increase the degree of crispness in the results of their cooking. If you choose to use oil in your air fryer, you must do that under the guidance of important instructions to keep in mind to avoid damaging your appliance in the long run.

This article has provided you with all the necessary tips and guidelines to use oil in your air fryer when cooking properly. Keep all these instructions in mind to achieve the best results when air frying.