Yes, you can put butter in an air fryer. You can grease your Airfryer basket or your steaks with butter.
You can even melt butter inside an air fryer by placing it in an oven-friendly dish.
Read on to find out more about butter in an air fryer.
How to Use Butter in an Air Fryer?
Technically speaking an air fryer replaces deep frying with the help of hot air blowing across to give you the same results as deep frying in oil.
Adding butter or oil a little bit helps to transfer the heat more effectively and makes food crispier. It also helps to impart a juicy flavor.
Rubbing a bit of oil or butter helps the seasoning to stick to the meat
While you may use butter, keep in mind that the smoking temperature of butter is on the lower side so it may smoke as early as 350°F.
Beyond that, the butter may burn. Using a little bit to lightly grease the surface is fine inside an air fryer. Use one to two tablespoons for breaded foods
Most of the manufacturer’s booklets and cookbooks on air fryers advise a light greasing up with oil.
You may substitute oil with butter for cooking below 350-375 degrees and oil with a high smoking point like olive oil or avocado oil for recipes requiring 400 degrees.
Skip using butter for high-fat foods like bacon or hamburger patties. Use it in the end if you wish to make it crispier.
In case you are using butter in high-fat food, put a little water below your basket so when the grease drips down it lands in water instead of bare metal.
This will prevent excessive smoke formation.
Here I am going to list a few common everyday food preparations you can cook using butter in an air fryer
Some Common Food Preparations Using Butter in an Air Fryer
- Adding a lot of butter defeats the purpose of healthy air frying without oil and grease. Unless, of course, if you are making cannabutter in an air fryer. For that, you can use as much butter as needed.
- Grease your morning toast with butter in an air fryer. I would suggest not going beyond 350-375°F for five to seven minutes. Anything beyond that temperature range will give your buttered toast an overdone burnt look.
- Lightly marinate butter on the top of your frozen ready-to-cook steaks, meat, fish, or shrimps. Here is an example of shrimps coated with butter and fried in the air fryer. The result is a crunchy butter garlic shrimp cooked at 320 for 6 minutes.
- To melt butter in an air fryer, place your butter cube in an oven-safe bowl and put it inside the air fryer at 200 degrees for two to three minutes. Note that if the cookware is oven safe, it is safe to use it in your air fryer.
- Here are a few other ways of using butter in your everyday cooking inside an air fryer
When Not to Use Butter
- Do not put a lot of butter or oil with wet foods or marinations inside an Airfryer. The hot air circulation will cause the grease to splatter all over Airfryer resulting in a mess.
- Do not use butter for cooking food beyond its smoking point. The smoking point of butter is 350°F.
- Do not use butter for cooking high-fat foods like bacon and hamburger patties.
- A study in the American Journal of clinical nutrition in 2015 showed that people with high cholesterol should keep butter consumption to a minimum in their diet. Butter was found to increase cholesterol.
How to Remove Butter Grease From the Airfryer
The grease from leftover butter, if left uncleaned can cause smoking and charring and may alter the food taste of the next dish that you cook.
Removing grease feels like a tough job. Follow this method for easy cleaning up of grease.
- Let the butter/grease turn cold at room temperature. Wipe it away with a kitchen towel.
- Next, put hot soapy water inside your Airfryer basket and let it soak for some time.
- After a while, wash it with warm water and it’s done.
Although most air fryers are dishwasher safe, they capture a lot of space due to their bulky size and you have to be careful of the non-stick coating.
It’s best to hand wash them with warm soapy water and leave them to dry.
Here are some frequently asked questions :
Can We Cook in an Air Fryer Without Butter/Oil?
Yes, you can cook comfortably without butter or oil in an Airfryer.
Just make sure to flip or shake them halfway into cooking to get an evenly cooked surface on both sides.
Air fryers will rotate hot air and air fry your food just like deep frying.
Please avoid canned or pressurized sprayers.
They contain chemicals and propellants that have been shown to cause problems with the coatings inside the air fryer basket. Plus they are chemicals that you don’t want in your food anyway.
What Kind of Oils Can We Use Inside an Air Fryer?
It is highly recommended to grease the Airfryer and food with a spoonful of oil. They prevent the food from dehydrating and drying up and help to make the food crisp.
When choosing your oil, keep in mind the smoking point of the oil. It is the approximate point at which the oil begins to smoke.
Choose an oil with a high smoke point for higher temperatures and longer durations.
Oils with high smoke points include grapeseed oil (420° F), Avocado (520° F), vegetable oil (400°-450° F approx), Palm oil ( 450° F), and extra virgin Olive oil (325° F).
Coconut oil and butter have their smoking points at 350. Use them for recipes below 350° F.
Purchase a good oil spray and put your favorite oil in it. You can also pour a little oil in your paper towel and wipe down the inside of your basket with it.
I want to add that if oil is an ingredient in your raw food like cookies, pastries, etc, you can use any type of oil in them.
The smoke point rule will not apply here.
What Else Can You Use in in Airfryer (Apart From Oil/Butter)?
Most of the air fryer baskets are non-stick.
But it is always encouraged by the manufacturer to lightly grease the basket with a few drops of oil for a perfect non-stick experience.
If you do not want to grease your basket, use parchment paper. It will stop food from sticking and make the after-cleaning easy.
Use parchment paper for baking cheese tortilla chips, cookies, chicken wings, and anything that may turn gooey after it’s cooked.
Place it at the bottom of the basket and spread out food weight on it especially covering the corners. This will prevent the paper from flying when hot air starts to blow from the high-speed fan.
The second option is aluminum foil. You can safely place it at the bottom of the basket. For even air circulation, you might want to puncture tiny holes around it.
Hold it down by spreading raw food all around so it does not fly when the high-speed fan starts to blow hot air.
You can also wrap food in parchment paper and use aluminum foil as a second layer.
Being a good conductor of heat, it will ensure the contents inside are evenly cooked without directly being exposed to hot air.
Oven Safe Dish
The third option is to use an oven-safe dish to bake or heat food that may turn gooey once cooked like cheese.
Any cookware that is oven safe will work safely inside an air fryer.
You can use iron skillets and even steel bowls provided they fit into the dimensions of the Airfryer basket.
A dish will minimize the mess and prevent any sticking of food.
What Are the Things I Shouldn’t Put Inside an Air Fryer?
Here I am sharing a few things that are not suitable to go inside an air fryer
- Never place a lot of water inside an Airfryer or below the basket. A spoon or two is enough for the grease to fall from above and prevent smoke formation. A lot of water can turn harmful for the machine as the high-speed fan can splatter it up all around and may damage your air fryer.
- Do not use plastic cookware as it’s likely to melt. Similarly, any material that is not oven safe can crack and break inside the air fryer harming the machine.
- Avoid placing or making sauces or curries in the air fryer. Any wet marinades should not be placed. The liquid will fall and get splattered due to the high-speed fan inside damaging food as well as the air fryer basket.
- Paper towels should not be placed inside an air fryer. They will burn up and can also cause a fire inside the air fryer.
Read up on the manufacturing instruction booklet that comes along with your air fryer.
If you plan to cook any recipe, make sure the air fryer is designed to handle and cook it well.
Summing up, you can use butter in an air fryer. Take care not to go beyond its smoking point.
A tablespoon or two is enough to grease your basket or marinate it on top of your meat.
Follow the instructions above on how to use and when not to use butter in an air fryer.
Do try my common food preparations mentioned above using butter in the air fryer. All the best!
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