Preheating can be sometimes a prerequisite for preparing a special kind of dish. Although it is not mandatory for cooking everything, the pro cooks always start their air fryer ovens with preheating. There are misconceptions among us regarding the right procedure of preheating the air fryer. In this article, I will guide you on how to preheat an air fryer in a step by step process. Finally, I will discuss a common confusion regarding preheating and reheating. Follow us.
Why should we preheat?
Preheating your air fryer is like warming up before the match. It is not only important for an air fryer but also equally important for any kind of oven. The question is, what is the importance of preheating? When we start the air fryer, during the first few minutes the heat is absorbed by the basket and heating chamber. Therefore, the food that we want to cook does not get the heat properly. The majority of the heat is consumed by the heating chamber itself. When we preheat the air fryer, the chamber absorbs the heat and it reaches its peak. After preheating done, when you start cooking, now the heating chamber does not get the share of the heat. Therefore, the food gets uniform heat which is important for a crispier output.
Preheating is not equally important for cooking all kinds of foods. For example, when baking something with yeast and baking soda, if you do not preheat the air fryer, you will find one side of the food as cooked and the other side raw. Therefore, it is recommended that you must preheat before baking. On the other hand, when you dehydrate apples with your air fryer for a long time, preheating is not that important. No recipe gets ruined for preheating the air fryer but some recipes can not be cooked properly without preheating. Therefore, if you want to be relaxed, preheat before anything you want to cook.
How to preheat the air fryer?
Preheating is not rocket science. It is heating the cooker or oven before you start cooking with it. To preheat your air fryer, you need to follow five simple steps that I am going to discuss right now. First, you need to clean the basket properly. Afterward, following the instruction booklet and checking the electrical requirement. Finally, you need to set the temperature and time. Let’s find the detail below.
Step 1 – Clean your air fryer
This is a common mistake that many of the new users of the air fryer oven do. You must clean the basket and tray before preheating. Always remember that by starting preheating the air fryer we start our cooking. You can not clean or wash the cooking basket after preheating is done. Therefore, before starting the process, prepare the ingredients, and wash the basket so that you can start cooking right after the preheating is done.
Step 2 – Read the instruction manual
Each air fryer might have its customized function to run a process. Therefore, you need to read the instruction booklet carefully. Your air fryer may already have a preheat preset option. You may not need to set the time and temperature manually. Another concern may be the risk of voiding warranty terms. If there is any condition that needs to be maintained to claim the warranty, you need to be careful about it. Different manufacturers may suggest different time and temperature settings. Therefore, know the condition and apply accordingly.
Step 3 – Check the electric requirement
Not it is time to pug in the air fryer. If you are using it for the first time, know the electrical requirement. Air fryers are power-intensive electric appliances. It requires a lot of power to run these machines. The tiniest air fryer may consume 1000-watt electric power. Therefore, check whether you have an appropriate utility line to run it. Another confusion may occur regarding the voltage rating. Always remember that 110 and 120 volts are the same things. You can directly plug in these appliances. But for 240 volts, you need to set up a customized utility line.
Step 4 – Set the time
After plugging in and powering on the air fryer, the next thing you need to do is set the timer. The common practice, is setting the timer for 3 to 5 minutes. For example, if you are using Philips TurboStar 2.75-quart air fryer, then set the timer as per my instruction. Maximum air fryers will reach the peak and the heating chamber will be perfectly heated. I always recommend you to go with the instruction manual. Set the time according to the instruction you find there. If there is nothing mentioned about the duration, you can set it for 5 minutes. However, if your air fryer has a preset preheating button, you need to just press it without manually setting the temperature and time.
Step 5 – Set the temperature
You need to set the highest possible temperature to preheat your air fryer. The reason behind it is that at high temperatures, the inside accessories of the heating chamber will be heated quickly. Therefore, it will save some time. Maximum air fryers can generate the highest temperature of around 400°F. As I mentioned earlier, if you have a preset preheating option, you do not need to set the temperature manually. I again remind you to check the instruction manual whether you find anything regarding preheating temperature. If there is any suggestion, you must follow it.
Preheating vs reheating
These two terms are often confused among the users of air fryers. As I mentioned, preheating is a precondition of cooking anything in your air fryer or any kind of oven. But reheating is heating an old food to give back its previous taste and condition. If you fry some chicken and keep it for a few hours, it will get soggy. Air fryers are popular for reheating these kinds of food to give back the crispiness. Now the temperature setting should be different from preheating. The reheating process needs to set a lower temperature – about 180°F for 5 to 10 minutes.
I think now you know the ins and outs of the preheating process. The summary is that you do not need to preheat for preparing everything but there is no harm of making it a practice before starting your cooking with the air fryer. If you liked my article do not forget to share it. You can also tell us any of your cooking experience through the comment section. We are always eager to learn new things. Happy cooking!