Yes, you can use a steel bowl in an air fryer as long as it’s marked as oven safe. While it can be used, cooking results may be inconsistent and you also need to be mindful about not blocking air circulation.
You love your new air fryer but now you’re looking into preparing even more healthy dishes. If that sounds like you, then you may have wondered whether or not you can use a steel bowl in your air fryer.
The answer to that is a yes but it does come with some caveats. You need to ensure that it’s safe to use in an oven and there are a few other considerations.
You need to know that it can handle heat coming from the fryer. Additionally, you should also ensure that it’s adequately sized with no part of the bowl touching any heating elements.
Can You Use a Steel Bowl in an Air Fryer?
As we’ve mentioned, there should be no issues with using a steel bowl in an air fryer. A lot of oven trays and baking sheets are made from stainless steel as it’s a great option for cooking due to its ability to handle high temperatures and distribute heat.
That being said, not all steel is made equal. If you have thin steel, then two things may happen to it under high temperatures.
The first is that the bowl may warp due to the expansion and contraction that happens to steel (and any material) when subjected to temperature change. Also, your steel bowl may become discolored if it’s not suited to the oven.
Most steel bowls won’t have this issue but it’s a good idea to look for an oven-safe mark on them. This is usually placed on the bottom of the bowl.
How to Use a Steel Bowl in an Air Fryer
You’ve found out that your steel bowl is oven (and therefore air fryer) safe? Great! But before you get started, there are a few things that you need to know.
Air fryers are similar to convection ovens but designed differently. It cooks food at extremely high temperatures while continuously circulating air around the food.
This allows you to cook food faster while making it crispy without needing any extra fat/oil. While that’s great, this circulation of hot air can be a problem when using a bowl of any kind.
The bowl is going to block that circulation of air and therefore any food may not cook as effectively as it would in a frying basket. That being said, you won’t have this problem if your bowl has holes throughout it.
You should also be mindful of the size of the bowl too. If it’s too big, it can block the vents that deliver that superheated air which can stop the fryer from working effectively.
How to Properly Use Air Fryers
Once you understand how an air fryer works, cooking with it will be as easy as pie. Here are some tips to get the most out of your food.
Yes, you read that right. Shake it. Make sure to open the air fryer then shake the food that you place inside.
Smaller food like fries and chips can compress together and limit the airflow that gets to them. Shaking them means that all parts of your food get crispy and evenly cooked.
To get the best results, don’t forget to rotate your food every 5 to 10 minutes.
Give your food a lot of space so air can properly and effectively circulate. This is what gives you nice and crispy results when cooking. Overloading your fryer or placing a bowl that is too big will lead to disappointing results.
Spray the Food
Lightly spray your food with cooking spray. If you don’t have cooking spray, that’s totally fine. You can add a bit of oil so the food you put it won’t stick to the basket.
Keep Things Dry
If the food you’re cooking is marinated, pat them dry before you start. This is to avoid splattering and having excess smoke when cooking.
Similarly, when cooking high-fat food like chicken wings, ensure that you periodically empty fat from the bottom of the machine.
Other Bowls You Can Use in Air Fryers
Aside from steel bowls, you can use other materials for cooking with the air fryer. These are mostly oven-safe materials such as glass, aluminum, ceramic, and silicone.
Oven-safe glass bowls can handle the heat of an air fryer. However, you’ll need to be careful when using these since they can shatter with abrupt temperature changes.
Never transfer glass from the freezer into an air fryer and likewise, don’t put a hot glass bowl straight into cold water.
Aluminum is a good heat conductor so it’s always a great material to cook with. When cooking with an air fryer, use a heavy-duty aluminum pan without a handle, plastic, or other sensitive accessories.
Silicone bowls are soft and bendy containers that have become common in baking and cooking. The best thing is, it can work well in the air fryer without any safety worries.
What Can You Cook in an Air Fryer?
An air fryer is great for cooking food that’s usually deep-fried since it gives the crisp and crunch without much oil. You can cook frozen mozzarella sticks, fries, chicken nuggets, tater tots, and much more.
Air fryers can also cook fried chicken. Plus, it can brown and make roasted vegetables crispy and perfectly cooked in the center. Aside from that, you can bake cookies, bread, and s’mores.
FAQs On can i use steel bowl in air fryer
What’s the difference between a deep fryer and an air fryer?
Air fryers cook food using a fan with superheated air and oil. Deep fryers, on the other hand, cook food in a tub of oil heated up to a specific temperature.
Can you put aluminum foil in the air fryer?
You can but parchment paper is a better option as it’s less likely to stick.
Is an air fryer better than the oven?
They are very different types of cooking and both are great, depending on what you’re cooking.