Reasons Why Air Fryer Burning Food

10 Reasons Your Air Fryer Is Burning Your Food (Solved)


An air fryer is a piece of kitchen equipment that, like a conventional oven, rapidly distributes hot air to cook 23 of our simple and tasty air fryer recipes. But did you know that your air fryer has the potential to burn your food? 

Yes, you read that correctly; if you’ve been using your appliance frequently and have noticed that some of the food you’re cooking tastes charred, this could be the source.

And if this happened again yesterday, we understand your frustration after putting in so much effort to cook your favorite comfort food to end your day with a smile following a hectic day at work. 

But don’t worry because here at DaDongNY, we’ll go through why food burns in your air fryer microwave oven combo and how to avoid it so that you can enjoy the wonderful dishes without spoiling your day because your food tastes burnt.

Why Does Your Air Fryer Burn Everything?

There are lots of reasons why your air fryer is not properly cooking food. One of the most common causes of your air fryer burning everything is that you do not clean it after use or if you do not adjust your equipment’s temperature setting. Let’s have a look at all of them here:

1. You Don’t Clean Your Air Fryer On A Regular Basis

As much as we all hate cleaning, an air fryer must be washed after the use of all recently cooked food remnants on a regular basis. Lazing around will result in burnt food since leftover food scraps will become caught on the basket or along the walls of the air fryer. It is the Albatross that we will be carrying for all future cooking.

Related Article: Air Fryer Cleaning: Simple Hacks For Getting Grease And Food Out

2. Temperature Setting Is Incorrect

An air fryer microwave combo gets too hot. And when you increase its temperature for a long time, it will lead to overheating of your equipment and overheating leads to overcooking, thus burning your food.

Cooking in your air fryer is different from cooking on other kitchen appliances since it doesn’t require a very high temperature for a long time.

If you must cook at higher settings, make sure to do it in small durations and keep an eye by opening up the drawer to make sure that your food is burning.

Pork350-177  °F10-15 mins
Beef (NY Strip Steak)400-204 °F8-14 mins
Chicken350-177 °F45-65 mins
Fish400-204 °F8-12 mins
Vegetable (Broccoli)400-204 °F5-9 mins
Frozen Food (Pizza)325-163 °F8-15 mins
Here is a sample of cheat sheet on how long to cook food and what temperature to use

3. You Used Far Too Much Oil

Too much oil and grease in your equipment is a sure formula for disaster. An air fryer for a family of four is specially designed to cook food with little to no oil, as all that is required is hot air circulation to cook your food to the desired crispness and doneness. Excessive cooking oil will overheat your meal and cause it to burn.

Aside from causing food to burn and overheat, too much oil will also cause your appliance to heat up. This is potentially dangerous because the air fryer has electronic parts that can catch on fire.

DaDongNY facts: Foods with high-fat content, such as beef, lamb, and pork, generate a lot of grease and oil, which causes them to burn faster than other foods. 

4. You Used Little To No Oil

Failure to use cooking oil may result in burnt food. Even though you can cook almost anything in an air fryer without using oil, manufacturers always advise spraying oil on your meal since not using oil can cause the food to stick to the basket and burn.

The natural moisture present in fresh foods will evaporate, leaving no moisture on the item. Food will shrivel, dehydrate, and finally burn when exposed to hot air emitted by your air fryer.

5. You’re Cooking With A Cooking Oil That Has A Low Smoking Point

To a large extent, burning is influenced by the type of cooking oil used in your air fryer. If you use an oil with a low smoke point, your food will begin to burn as soon as certain smoking temperature points are met.

Because an air fryer offers a variety of temperature settings, use cooking oil with a high smoke point. Olive oil, ghee oil, and avocado oil are just a few examples. On the other hand, low-smoke point oils are vegetable oil, peanut oil, and butter.

OilSmoking Point
Avocado Oil570 °F smoke point
Ghee Oil (Clarified butter)485 °F smoke point
Extra Light Olive Oil468 °F smoke point
Extra Virgin Olive Oil375 °F smoke point
Soybean Oil450 °F smoke point
Coconut Oil450 °F smoke point
Peanut Oil450 °F smoke point
Vegetable Oil400 °F smoke point
Butter200-250 °F smoke point
Here are some of the cooking oils that can be used in an air fryer, along with their smoke points

6. You Are Overflowing Your Air Fryer Basket

An air fryer must have enough space for your food to brown and crisp evenly. If you clutter up your air fryer, it will be more difficult for the equipment to circulate hot air throughout your compartment. As the air fryer overheats, so will your food, resulting in burnt texture and flavor.

We recommend that you avoid stacking food because anything near the heating element may overcook and burn, while the rest will be slightly undercooked.

7. You’re Cooking the Wrong Food in the Air Fryer

We hate to break it up, but an air fryer does not always cook everything. It has some limitations, primarily because of its built and cooking method.

Some foods do not cook well in the small heated kitchen appliance with hot air circulating around them.

Here are some foods you should avoid cooking in an air fryer:

  • Battered Foods
  • Fresh Greens
  • Whole Roast
  • Cheese
  • Grains
  • Hamburger
  • Popcorn

Anything with high moisture or water content will not cook properly in an air fryer. Furthermore, because of the rapid hot air circulation, lightweight foods such as spinach will fly around the compartment and may become attached to the heating element, resulting in burning.

8. You Don’t Allow Time Between Cooking

If you don’t allow your fryer some room or resting time between cooking procedures, it won’t have the time to cool down, perhaps scorching your food.

Consider the following scenario: you have a heated element and chamber as a result of hot air circulation. The food is then placed, and the temperature and timing are set. Your actions will overheat your appliance and meal, causing it to char and burn.

9. You Do Not Flip Your Food Halfway Through The Cooking Process

Even though your air fryer can perform a lot of things on the go, it has some limitations. One of these is that you may need to turn or toss your food halfway through the cooking process to obtain an even brown color and crisp crunch.

Regardless of the fact that an air fryer has strong airflow because of the hole in its basket, food facing the heating components cooks faster than food facing the drawer below. If you don’t turn or shake the pan midway, the food on top will burn while the stuff underneath will remain uncooked.

To avoid burning and ensure evenly cooked food, flip or shake the air fryer basket or drawer halfway through.

10. Your Nonstick Components Have Been Scraped Away

If the non-stick surface around your air fryer basket has been scraped or peeled away, your food will stick and burn underneath.

The non-stick layer can wear away due to contact with your dishwasher, frequently cooking meals at high temperatures, or using aerosol cooking spray.

Your air fryer will break if the non-stick layer is exposed to temperatures it cannot handle. Using sharp metallic utensils or cleaning scrubs also contributes to peeling the non-stick layer in your kitchen equipment. This could potentially lower your air fryer’s lifespan.

How Can You Keep Your Air Fryer Food From Burning?

  1. Spray an ample amount of cooking oil in your air fryer to coat the surfaces of the food before they are cooked. When you use little to no oil, the food might easily burn or dry out because there isn’t enough moisture left over after the cooking process.
  1. Make sure your air fryer is not overcrowded, as this will cause some of the food to burn. You can precook some of your ingredients before adding them to the air fryer or cooking them in separate batches.
  1. Wipe off the walls of your air fryer after usage with a wet dishcloth to avoid ending up with burned food all over the place because there were too many leftovers stuck to the wall. 
  1. Keep an eye on your food through the cooking process. Open the drawer and check your food periodically. Adjust the temperature and cooking time when needed.
  1. Use oils with a high smoking point, such as extra virgin olive oil, avocado oil, etc. Oils with lower smoking points will cause food to burn more quickly.
  1. Remember to flip the food halfway through the cooking. In other circumstances, such as fries, you can shake the basket to ensure equal frying.
  1. Cooking meals at high heat is not recommended. Always use a medium temperature and a long time duration.
  1. If the non-stick layer of your air fryer has been scraped away, coat the basket with cooking oil spray. You can also cook your food with parchment paper or aluminum foil.
  1. Since an air fryer is not like a conventional oven, knowing the proper cooking time and temperature is critical when cooking in one. 


At the end of the day, if you don’t read the instructions handbook for your model, overcrowd the appliance with the wrong food or cooking oil, don’t clean it after each use, and so much more, your air fryer will burn everything. 

However, with the help of the above guidelines and tips, you should be able to avoid the problem and enjoy stress-free air frying. If none of these work, it could be a technical or manufacturing fault, in which case you should seek professional assistance.

To understand more about air fryers, visit the link to discover everything you need to know about this handy kitchen appliance.