Can I Put a Paper Towel in the Air Fryer? A Definitive Guide

By Sayeem Neer

Published on:

No, you should not put a paper towel in the air fryer. Doing so can cause a fire hazard and damage the appliance.

Air fryers have gained popularity in recent years as a healthier alternative to traditional deep fryers. These compact appliances use hot air circulation to cook food, resulting in crispy and delicious meals without the need for excessive oil.

However, when it comes to using an air fryer, it’s important to follow certain guidelines to ensure safety and avoid potential damage to the appliance. One question that often arises is whether it is safe to put a paper towel in the air fryer. We will provide an accurate and concise answer to this commonly asked question, emphasizing the potential risks and why it’s best to avoid using paper towels in the air fryer.

Understanding The Potential Risks

Understanding The Potential Risks

Understanding the potential risks of putting a paper towel in the air fryer is crucial. While it may seem convenient, it can pose various dangers such as fire hazards and the release of harmful toxins. It’s best to avoid using paper towels in the air fryer to ensure your safety and the longevity of the appliance.

Paper Towels In The Air Fryer: An Emerging Concern

When it comes to using an air fryer, many people are curious about the possibility of putting paper towels in it. After all, paper towels are commonly used in cooking to absorb excess oil and moisture. However, before you reach for that nearby roll of paper towels, it’s important to understand the potential risks involved.

In this section, we’ll explore the safety aspects of using paper towels in an air fryer and highlight some key factors to consider. So, let’s dive in!

Exploring The Safety Aspects Of Using Paper Towels

Using paper towels in an air fryer may seem convenient, but it’s crucial to be aware of the safety implications. Here are some important points to keep in mind:

  • Fire hazard: Paper towels are highly flammable, and placing them in an air fryer can increase the risk of a fire. The hot heating elements and circulating air in the fryer can easily ignite the paper towel, leading to potentially dangerous situations.
  • Airflow obstruction: Air fryers rely on hot air circulation to cook food evenly. When paper towels are introduced, they can obstruct the airflow, preventing the food from being cooked properly. This can result in undercooked or soggy food.
  • Release of harmful chemicals: Certain types of paper towels may contain dyes, fragrances, or chemicals that can release toxic fumes when exposed to high temperatures. These fumes can be harmful if inhaled or consumed along with the food.
  • Increased cleaning effort: Paper towels, when used in an air fryer, can leave behind residue or small fragments in the appliance. This can make cleaning more tedious and may require extra care to ensure the fryer remains in optimal condition.

Factors To Consider Before Using Paper Towels In An Air Fryer

Before deciding to use paper towels in your air fryer, consider these factors:

  • Manufacturer’s instructions: Always refer to the user manual or guidelines provided by the air fryer manufacturer. They will explicitly state whether or not using paper towels is safe. Following their recommendations is essential to ensure both the safety and the longevity of your appliance.
  • Alternative options: Instead of using paper towels, consider alternatives like perforated parchment paper or a baking mat. These can help absorb excess oil and moisture without posing the same risks as paper towels.
  • Food type and preparation: Evaluate the specific food you’re cooking and its moisture content. Some foods may naturally release more oil or liquid during the cooking process, while others may not require any absorption. Adjust your cooking technique accordingly to avoid the need for paper towels.
  • Personal safety: Prioritize your safety and the safety of those around you. If you have any doubts or concerns about using paper towels in the air fryer, err on the side of caution and avoid using them altogether.

While using paper towels in an air fryer may seem like a convenient solution for absorbing excess oil or moisture, it carries potential risks. Fire hazards, airflow obstruction, release of harmful chemicals, and increased cleaning efforts are all factors to consider.

It’s always best to consult the manufacturer’s instructions, explore alternative options, and prioritize personal safety when deciding whether or not to use paper towels in your air fryer. Stay safe and enjoy cooking with your air fryer!

The Effects Of Using Paper Towels In The Air Fryer

The Effects Of Using Paper Towels In The Air Fryer

Using paper towels in the air fryer can have negative effects on your cooking experience. It is not recommended as it can pose a fire hazard and potentially damage the air fryer.

Using an air fryer has become increasingly popular in the realm of healthy cooking. It is known for its ability to provide a crispy texture to food without the need for excessive oil. However, when it comes to using paper towels in the air fryer, there are certain aspects to consider.

In this section, we will analyze the impact on cooking performance and food quality, as well as the potential hazards and health risks associated with using paper towels. Understanding these consequences will help you make informed decisions about using paper towels in your air fryer.

Impact On Cooking Performance And Food Quality

  • Absorbent properties: Paper towels are designed to absorb liquid and grease, which may lead to uneven cooking when used in an air fryer.
  • Air circulation: The presence of paper towels may obstruct the proper circulation of hot air within the air fryer, resulting in less effective cooking.
  • Crispy texture: Paper towels tend to absorb moisture on the surface of food, compromising the desired crispy texture that the air fryer can provide.

Analyzing The Potential Hazards And Health Risks

  • Paper towel combustion: The high temperatures reached by the air fryer can potentially cause paper towels to ignite, leading to fire hazards.
  • Chemical reactions: Some paper towels may contain bleaching agents or other chemicals that, when exposed to extreme heat, can release harmful substances into the air and contaminate food.
  • Inhalation risks: If paper towels burn or release toxic fumes, they could pose inhalation risks to individuals using the air fryer.

Understanding The Consequences Of Using Paper Towels

  • Reduced efficiency: Using paper towels may decrease the overall efficiency of your air fryer, as they can hinder air circulation and result in longer cooking times.
  • Potential food contamination: When paper towels come into direct contact with food, there is a possibility of ink or chemicals transferring onto the food, potentially causing health issues.
  • Fire hazards: Depending on the quality of the paper towel and the temperature settings of the air fryer, a fire hazard risk may emerge.

While it may seem convenient to use paper towels in your air fryer for easy cleanup, there are significant drawbacks to consider. From compromised cooking performance to potential health risks, it’s essential to weigh the convenience against the consequences. Considering alternative methods for air fryer cleanup, such as using parchment paper or non-stick mats, may provide a safer and more effective solution.

So, when it comes to using paper towels in the air fryer, it’s crucial to prioritize safety and food quality.

Alternatives And Best Practices For Air Fryer Cooking

Alternatives And Best Practices For Air Fryer Cooking

Discover alternative methods and best practices for air fryer cooking. Find out if it is safe to put a paper towel in the air fryer and learn about the potential risks and recommended alternatives for a healthier cooking experience.

Air fryers have become a popular choice for quick and healthy cooking. They offer a convenient way to achieve crispy and delicious results, without the need for excess oil. However, many recipes recommend using paper towels to absorb excess moisture or oil during the cooking process.

You may wonder whether it is safe to put a paper towel in the air fryer. In this section, we will explore safe alternatives to using paper towels, along with tips to minimize mess and enhance cooking efficiency. So, let’s dive in!

Safe Alternatives To Using Paper Towels:

  • Parchment Paper: Replace paper towels with parchment paper to absorb excess oil and prevent food from sticking to the air fryer basket. Place the parchment paper in the basket before adding your ingredients. It will create a barrier between the food and the basket, ensuring easy cleanup without sacrificing taste or texture.
  • Silicone Baking Mat: Another excellent alternative to paper towels is a silicone baking mat. These mats are nonstick, heat-resistant, and reusable, making them ideal for air fryer cooking. They can absorb excess moisture and oil, leaving your food crispy and preventing any mess in the air fryer basket.
  • Cooking Rack: If you want to elevate your food and allow any excess oil or moisture to drip away, using a cooking rack is a great option. Place the rack in the air fryer basket and then arrange your ingredients on top. This method promotes better airflow and even cooking, resulting in perfectly crispy dishes.
  • Absorbent Kitchen Towel: Instead of using disposable paper towels, opt for an absorbent kitchen towel. It can effectively soak up excess moisture while cooking in the air fryer. Just make sure to choose a towel that is safe for high temperatures.

Tips For Minimizing Mess And Enhancing Cooking Efficiency:

  • Preheat the Air Fryer: Preheating your air fryer before cooking can help prevent food from sticking to the basket and ensure even cooking. Give it a few minutes to reach the desired temperature before adding your ingredients.
  • Use Cooking Spray or Oil Spray Bottle: To further reduce the chances of food sticking to the air fryer basket, lightly coat it with cooking spray or use an oil spray bottle. This will create a nonstick surface and make cleanup easier.
  • Shake or Flip the Food: During the cooking process, remember to shake or flip the food halfway through. This will ensure even cooking and help to prevent any excess moisture from becoming trapped.
  • Avoid Overcrowding: Overcrowding the air fryer basket can lead to unevenly cooked food. Leave enough space between the ingredients to allow proper air circulation, resulting in crispier and more evenly cooked dishes.
  • Clean the Air Fryer Basket Properly: After each use, clean the air fryer basket thoroughly. Remove any food particles or grease to avoid unpleasant odors and maintain optimal performance.
  • Experiment with Cooking Times and Temperatures: Every air fryer is slightly different, so it may require some trial and error to find the perfect cooking times and temperatures for your favorite dishes. Begin with the recommended settings and adjust accordingly to achieve your desired results.

By following these safe alternatives and best practices, you can optimize your air fryer experience without the need for paper towels. Enjoy deliciously crispy and healthier meals while keeping your kitchen tidy!

Sources: YouTube

Frequently Asked Questions For Can I Put A Paper Towel In The Air Fryer

Can You Put Aluminum Foil In The Air Fryer?

Yes, you can use aluminum foil in the air fryer for cooking, but with caution.

What Can I Use Instead Of Paper In Air Fryer?

Parchment paper is a good alternative to paper in air fryers to avoid sticking.

Can You Put Paper In the Air Fryer?

No, it is not safe to put paper in an air fryer.

Is It Okay To Put Tissue In The Air Fryer?

No, it is not safe to put tissue in the air fryer. Tissue may catch fire due to high heat.


It is not recommended to put a paper towel in the air fryer. Although it may seem like a convenient option to absorb excess oil or prevent food from sticking, using a paper towel increases the risk of fire hazards and can potentially damage the air fryer.

It is important to prioritize safety and follow the manufacturer’s guidelines to ensure the optimal functioning of the appliance. Instead, you can opt for alternative methods such as using a slotted air fryer basket or parchment paper to achieve similar results without compromising safety.

Remember to always read the instruction manual and experiment with different techniques to discover the best practices for cooking with your air fryer. So, next time you’re preparing delicious fried foods, leave the paper towel aside and savor the crispy goodness worry-free.

Happy cooking!

Sayeem Neer is a full-time niche blogger. As a content Writer I have 4 years Experience. Expert at SEO and Web Design. Explore the captivating world of our feathered friends at