You have to clean your air fryer as much as you need to clean regular pots and pans, and most tips will include using baking soda. But can you use baking soda to clean your air fryer as well?
Burnt grease build-up for a long while will be tough to clean, so you will need all tools available to you. A clean air fryer works better so it is important to keep up the cleaning after it’s cooled off, but also thoroughly clean it when needed.
How hard is it to clean an air fryer?
Cleaning an air fryer is not much more difficult than cleaning a regular pot. You do a little patience around some areas that are harder to reach, and you also have to be gentle. Some parts of the air fryer can be damaged so caution is important.
How to clean your air fryer?
First of all, keep up with cleaning the air fryer every time you use it after you let it cool off. But we all know we get lazy and leave it for a while longer. This is how we end up with quite the cleaning job. It can get so bad that you won’t be able to clean it all, especially because you can’t reach some spots.
Take out all the loose parts like the basket and large cooking pan, if you have one, and clean those first. You will use the basket or bowl to clean the upper part of the air fryer where the fan and heating parts are.
Cleaning around the heating element
Put water in the basket mixed with some lemon juice and turn your fryer on for a few minutes. Leave it to soak for a while, around 10 minutes or so, and now you can begin cleaning. The heating element where all the grease has gathered should be softened enough to clean easier.
You might not have a unit with a lid that can be opened and thus offer more access to cleaning. In this case, you will have to find a way to reach the upper part. Either by gently placing it on the side, upside down or bending down to look up. It will be a challenge and you might need a light source to see what you’re doing.
Use a microfiber cloth to gently clean away grease build-up around the coiled heating element and on it. This will require some patience and dexterity, as you try and reach every part that is covered in grease. It may not be as easy as it sounds; unfortunately, you can’t dismantle it.
Air fryers with a lid, like the ninja foodie, go through the same process but there are a few extra pieces. The fan part will be there and pose an inconvenience to cleaning. In most cases, you won’t really have access to clean the fan itself.
To reach around the fan or other elements that are in the way, you may also need some pipe cleaner brushes. The size of these brushes will depend on how much space you have to work with. Smaller brushes like a toothbrush are also very useful, although you have to get a new one just for this.
Use baking soda
It’s not recommended to use coarse tools or harsh soaps to clean the basket part of the air fryer. This is mainly because it damages the part where you cook food and can lead to sticky burnt remnants. You can, however, use baking soda around the lower part where the basket goes in.
Don’t mix baking soda with vinegar or lemon juice to make a paste because the chemical reaction can damage your device. Mix in some baking soda with water and use that to clean fallen and burnt grease. This mixture will not be ideal for the upper part where the heating coil is.
Be gentle when cleaning around the heating coil so that you don’t damage it. You could need some mild degreasing dish soap but make sure to wipe it as much as you can after.
You can also run the air fryer for a few minutes with water so that it drips the soap or lemon juice off. This is just a way to rinse it around the area where you can’t just put it under a tap.
Cleaning the exterior side
You will have to clean the exterior of the air fryer as well. It will not as greasy which will make it easier to clean. Don’t forget about the little container that collects water from the lid, if you have one. Ninja foodie usually has this little container, so remember to empty it regularly but also clean it.
You may be tempted to take out screws that hold certain parts like the fan or heating coil. Don’t take these out, not only because it will make your warranty void, but because you might not put them back on right. The fan in particular is balanced to perfection and you are not going to be able to put back exactly the same.
Cleaning your air fryer is mundane and a chore, we know, but you need to get it done so it will last longer. Use various tools and bring some patience and perseverance. Mix and match what works best and be gentle with more sensitive parts.
You’ve got this!