Can You Put Plastic In An Air Fryer? (Find Out Now!)

Emily Carr
by Emily Carr

The air fryer is a relatively new invention that has quickly become one of the most popular devices in American households. However, many people are unsure about what’s allowed to be placed inside the fryer. Can you put plastic in an air fryer?

You shouldn’t put plastic in an air fryer because it has a lower melting point and will disintegrate inside. Burning plastic releases toxins like BPA, mercury, and furans that can cause hormone disruption and even cancer. Air fryer-safe alternative materials include ceramic, glass, and aluminum foil.

Keep reading to learn if it’s safe to put plastic in an air fryer and about other materials that can be used inside. Furthermore, we’ll cover whether or not an air fryer can be washed in a dishwasher!

Is It Safe to Put Plastic in an Air Fryer?

Air fryers usually have several plastic components, but is it safe to put this material inside of them?

The short answer is no; it is not safe to put plastic in an air fryer. This applies to all types of plastics (yes, even items that are deemed microwave-safe). Although certain plastics can withstand microwave radiation, they aren’t strong enough to deal with oven-like heat.

Plastic has a fairly low melting point, and air fryers heat up to between 300 and 400 degrees Fahrenheit. This means that if you put plastic in the fryer, it’s likely going to melt and release harmful toxins into the air.

Risks Associated with Melting Plastic

Plastics contain all sorts of health-harming and hormone-disrupting chemical compounds that include toxic gasses like :

  • Furans
  • Dioxins
  • Mercury
  • BCPs (polychlorinated biphenyls)
  • BPA (bisphenol A)

If we ingest any of the above poisonous substances, they can cause all sorts of health problems that lead to serious conditions like cancer or infertility.

Additionally, when these toxins are released into the air, they can cause severe respiratory issues and damage to our planet’s atmosphere. To avoid these negative reactions, it’s best to stick to air fryer-approved materials.

We’ll get more detailed below.

What Materials Can You Put in an Air Fryer?

While plastic is a huge no-no, there are other types of dishware that can be safely used inside of an air fryer.

Approved materials for most air fryers include:

  • Aluminum foil
  • Parchment paper
  • Toothpicks
  • Glass or Pyrex
  • Ceramic
  • Iron Skillets
  • Steel

Aluminum Foil

Aluminum foil is a great option for air frying because it’s non-stick and won’t melt like plastic. Plus, it’s a cheap material to use whenever you want to cover a dish or cook your vegetables in a contained sauce.

Just make sure that the foil isn’t crinkled and completely covers whatever you’re air frying. If there are any gaps, the food will cook unevenly.

Parchment Paper

Parchment paper is a good alternative to foil because it doesn’t have any toxins, and it’s also non-stick. If your air fryer doesn’t come with a liner, this is a great material to use.

Ensure that the parchment paper isn’t too big, or it might not fit inside of the fryer. You can always cut it down to size if needed.


Toothpicks are perfect for frying small finger foods, like shrimp or chicken nuggets. If you’re using wooden toothpicks, make sure they’re food-safe and splinter-free!

Glass or Pyrex

Glass or a Pyrex dish is the perfect choice for air frying because it can withstand high temperatures without breaking or shattering.

However, it’s important to note that you should never put a hot glass dish into cold water after heating it- this can cause the glass to shatter due to thermal shock.


Ceramic is another suitable material for air frying because it doesn’t conduct heat very well. This means that your food won’t cook too quickly on the outside while the inside remains undercooked.

Iron Skillets

An iron skillet can easily go into an air fryer because it distributes heat evenly and doesn’t contain any harmful toxins.

It will probably be difficult to find a skillet small enough to fit in your fryer, but if you do- go for it! Just stay away from skillets that have other components on their handles, such as plastic.


Steel is another safe metal to use inside of an air fryer. It will get hot, though! Use oven mitts when removing your food.

While most of these items are air-fryer safe, not all of these materials are approved to use with every type of air fryer. Be sure to check your appliance manual for specific instructions.

Can You Put an Air Fryer in the Dishwasher?

You can put many of the air fryer parts in the dishwasher, but definitely not the entire appliance. If you get any of the electrical components or the exterior of the fryer itself dirty, manually clean them with a damp cloth; never submerge them in water.

The parts of an air fryer that can be cleaned in the dishwasher include:

  • Basket
  • Tray
  • Pan

Always consult your owner’s manual first to 100% guarantee that this is a safe practice. Not all air fryers have the same requirements.

Related Questions

Is an air fryer healthy?

That depends on what you put inside! Air fryers are great for cooking a lot of food quickly. This is because the air fryer uses hot air to cook instead of oil, which makes it a healthier alternative to deep-frying.If you put chicken nuggets inside, it’s not going to make them good for you, but it may cook them with less oil (and thus, less fat). This lessens the number of residual calories you’d be eating.

Can air fryers toast bread?

Yes, you can toast bread in an air fryer, and it’s usually pretty quick (around 3 minutes or so).The trick is to put in one slice or as many pieces that can fit on the bottom of the fryer at a time. Layering them won’t allow the slices to toast properly.

Can air fryers make popcorn?

This is actually a great way to make a healthier version of homemade popcorn!Just throw the kernels inside the air fryer basket for 3-5 minutes, and watch the magic happen. Add butter and seasonings after the popcorn is popped.

Final Thoughts

Avoid putting plastic in the air fryer due to its lower melting point and the risk of releasing dangerous toxins into your food.

Parchment paper and aluminum foil make suitable alternatives, but always consult the company’s recommendations before trying something new in your appliance!

Emily Carr
Emily Carr

Emily is a copywriter with over five years of experience in crafting content for the home renovation and remodeling industry. She loves house projects, whether it be painting a room or tweaking small design elements to transform a space. Her favorite aesthetic is french modern because of its clean lines and airy feeling! When not writing, Emily loves to travel and check out architectural details all over the world.

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