Keep your favorite kitchen gadget in top shape with our guide on how to clean an air fryer with ease! We’ll show you the best methods, products, and handy tips to keep your air fryer pristine and working like new for years to come.

A woman using a Scrub Daddy brush to clean the basket of an air fryer ina. sink.
Gently scrub any debris from the basket of your air fryer.

If you’re anything like us, you use your air fryer all the time. We’re talking every single day! With breakfast options like Cinnamon Roll French Toast Roll-Ups and afternoon snacks including Air Fryer Sesame Crusted Feta and Air Fryer Mozzarella Cheese Sticks to weeknight dinners like our Air Fryer Chicken Shawarma, we’re not kidding when we say our air fryer is always on. 

Cosori Air Fryer.


Learn how to clean an air fryer with ease so you can keep your favorite kitchen gadget working well for years to come! We’ll teach you the best methods, products, tips, and more to keep your air fryer pristine.
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And with all that cooking, it tends to get a little bit dirty. We used to dread cleaning it, thinking it took forever and was difficult to do. Then, we learned how to clean an air fryer properly, and it turns out it’s a breeze even if you have baked-on grease! 

We’re never ones to gatekeep. So, we’re sharing all the nitty gritty details with you to help you learn how to clean an air fryer, too. 

How to Clean an Air Fryer

Below, we’ll walk you through the complete process of cleaning your air fryer effectively. Use the steps below after every use (or every few uses) — doing so will prevent food build-up, and cross-contamination, and make the cleaning process easy. 

What You’ll Need

  • Water 
  • Degreasing Dish Soap 
  • Soft Sponge or Bristled Brush 
  • Damp Cloth or Clean Paper Towels
Our favorite

Step-By-Step Instructions

How Do I Keep My Air Fryer Clean? 

  1. Prepare. First things first, always start by unplugging your air fryer from any electrical outlets to avoid any accidents. We actually recommend always leaving your air fryer unplugged when it’s not in use.
  2. Cool. Allow the unplugged air fryer to rest and cool down completely before you begin cleaning. We don’t want any burns! 
  3. Disassemble. Next, remove the air fryer basket and interior pan from the air fryer. Separate any removable parts so they’re easier to clean. 
  4. Wash. Use hot soapy water or warm soapy water and a nonabrasive sponge to clean off any debris from the air fryer components. Alternatively, many air fryer pieces are dishwasher safe. Just be sure to check the label on your particular parts! 
  5. Clean the Inside of the Air Fryer. While the pieces are drying, wipe down the inside of the air fryer with a damp cloth or sponge. Avoid using abrasive cleaners, as they can scratch the interior of the air fryer.
  6. Clean the Heating Element. Use a soft brush to remove any food particles or debris from the heating element. Do not use water to clean the heating element, as this can damage the air fryer.
  7. Wipe Down the Exterior. Use a new damp cloth or sponge to wipe down the exterior of the air fryer. Be careful not to get any water inside the air fryer as this can damage the heating element and cause electrical damage! 
  8. Reassemble the Air Fryer. Once everything is clean and dry, reassemble the air fryer, and it’s ready to use again! 

Now that your air fryer is clean and sparkling, you’re probably wondering how to keep it that way. Unfortunately, because we’re dealing with food, there’s no way to prevent it from getting dirty.

However, keeping up with cleaning maintenance is the best way to keep the mess from getting out of hand. To make the cleaning process quick, wipe down your air fryer after every use. Also, try to clean it after every batch or two of cooking! 

A woman scrubbing an air fryer basket with soap and water in a sink.
Use warm water and soap to clean any removal components.

How Do I Remove Sticky Residue from My Air Fryer

Sometimes water and soap just aren’t enough to get rid of those super tough, sticky messes. In these instances, you may need to soak in hot water.

Or, mix roughly ½ cup of baking soda with water to form a paste. Then, dab the mixture over the residue, and let it sit for a few minutes. Gently use a soft-bristled brush to scrub the area and wipe it off with a damp paper towel or cloth. To finish, follow with a dry cloth, and your air fryer should be good as new. 

How Do I Get Rid of Smells? 

If you cook a particularly strong-smelling food like lemon or garlic, you may find that the odor lingers in your air fryer. To get rid of it, try rubbing the exposed part of half a lemon over the basket. Let it sit for about 30 minutes before washing it off, and the smell should be gone. 

Can I Use Parchment Paper or Foil to Help Keep My Air Fryer Clean? 

We don’t recommend it. Some recipes may call for foil, but small pieces can break off and burn, creating a big mess and possibly damaging the nonstick coating. If necessary, try using parchment paper sheets particularly made for air fryers. They allow the air to vent while helping to prevent as much of a mess. 

An air fryer basket being rinsed out with running water from a faucet in a sink.
Rinse your air fryer basket and parts thoroughly.

More Storage and Organization Tips

On a cleaning and organization kick? Check out more of our tips and tricks!

A woman using soap and water to clean an air fryer basket in a sink.

How to Clean an Air Fryer

5 from 1 vote
Author: Food Dolls
Total: 15 minutes
Learn how to clean an air fryer with ease to keep your favorite kitchen device functioning properly!


  • Unplug the air fryer, and let it cool completely.
  • Remove all the parts. Wash them with warm, soapy water and a non-abrasive brush or sponge, removing all debris. Set aside to dry.
  • Using a damp cloth, wipe down the inside of the air fryer. Dry it with a dry cloth.
  • Use a soft-bristled brush to remove any food particles from the heating element. Do NOT use water!
  • Using a damp cloth, wipe down the exterior of the air fryer, being careful not to get any water inside. Dry the device.
  • Reassemble.


Gentle Dish Soap
1 Soft-Bristled Brush
2 Clean Cloths or Paper Towels

Nutrition information is automatically calculated, so should only be used as an approximation.

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Meet Alia & Radwa

Welcome to Food Dolls! We’re so glad you found us. We are Alia and Radwa, sisters who want to share simple and easy recipes with you. We hope you find recipes here that you enjoy making as much as we do! Learn more about us!

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