Can You Put Coffee Filters In An Air Fryer? (read this first)

There seems to be some confusion about whether coffee filters can be used in an air fryer. We don’t really understand why it’s confusing, coffee filters are designed to be used to filter coffee not for use in an air fryer.

If you’re cooking food in an air fryer we would suggest that you don’t use coffee filters because that’s not what they’re designed for.

The safest rule of thumb when it comes to air fryers is, if it’s safe to use in a conventional oven, then it’s safe to use in an air fryer. You wouldn’t dream of putting coffee filters in an oven, so why put them in the air fryer?

The problem with online content is that it can be confusing and misleading at times. There have been Tik Tok videos that claim to use coffee filters in an air fryer. This information has found its way onto a few cooking blogs and is then taken as fact.

Why You Should Never Use Coffee Filters In An Air Fryer

You should never use coffee filters in an air fryer because;

  • Coffee filters are made from thin paper
  • They could block the perforations in the air fryer basket, preventing your food from cooking properly
  • They’re not designed to withstand the high temperatures found in an air fryer
  • Coffee filters are very likely to catch fire if they touch the element in the air fryer

So to ensure your food cooks correctly, and to ensure the air fryer doesn’t catch fire, we would strongly recommend not using coffee filters in an air fryer.

Why Would You Want To Use Coffee Filters In An Air Fryer?

Obviously someone somewhere thought it would be a good idea to use coffee filters in the air fryer, but why? Most probably because they wanted to save on cleaning up after cooking something particularly greasy or messy in the air fryer.

That makes perfect sense, cooking food in an air fryer already cuts down on grease and mess. It makes sense to want to reduce the cleaning up even more. However, there are better things to use to save on mess when cooking food in an air fryer.

What Can You Use To Save On Cleaning Up In An Air Fryer?

There are several things that have been specifically designed for use in the air fryer to reduce washing up. These include;

Baking (Parchment) Paper

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Baking or parchment paper is designed to be used in a conventional oven and can also be used in an air fryer. It has minute holes that allow the heat to pass through but prevents grease, fat or crumbs from making a mess in the air fryer.

Also parchment paper has non-stick properties which makes it far easier to remove the food from the air fryer once it has cooked.

Air Fryer Paper Liners

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Made from reinforced baking paper, these liners come in many shapes and sizes to fit most air fryers. They are waterproof, grease proof, non-stick, non-toxic and can be thrown in the general waste when finished with.

Or in some cases they can be recycled (check with your local authority).

Air Fryer Silicone Liners

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Made from food grade silicone, these liners are available in many shapes and sizes to fit most air fryers. They are waterproof, grease proof, non-toxic, non-stick and dishwasher safe.

They can be reused time after time which makes them environmentally friendly too.

Aluminium Foil Trays

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As long as the foil tray doesn’t fill the whole of the basket, and allows hot air to flow freely, you can use them in the air fryer. The only restrictions for using aluminium foil trays is that they should not be used with any acidic foods.

This is because there has been some scientific evidence that links aluminium with Alzheimer’s. Acidic foods cause a chemical reaction with aluminium foil that allows the aluminium to leach into the food.

So you should never use aluminium foil trays in the air fryer if you’re cooking any acidic foods. Acidic foods include;

  • Tomatoes
  • Peppers
  • Citrus –
    • Lemons
    • Oranges
    • Kumquats
    • Grapefruit
    • Limes
  • Wine
  • Vinegar

Or any sauces containing any of the above.

Aluminium Foil

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You can use aluminium foil in the air fryer as long as it is secured. This is because if it blows around due to the powerful fan, it could get caught up with the heating element and cause a fire.

If you’re using foil, always add it to the basket after any preheating has been done. You should also ensure that it doesn’t block all of the perforations in the air fryer basket.

Ceramic Dish

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As long as the ceramic dish will fit comfortably in the air fryer without blocking all of the perforations in the basket, it can be used to cook food. This allows you to cook foods that have been marinated without worrying about drips spreading all over the basket and getting burnt on.

Ceramic dishes can be used over and over and are dishwasher safe. They can also withstand the high temperatures produced in an air fryer.

Which Types Of Liners Are Not Safe To Use In An Air Fryer?

Coffee Filters

There are several types of liners that should not be used in an air fryer. Liners which are coated in wax or other flammable materials for example.

Plus, you should only use liners that are oven safe. As we said at the beginning, if the liner is oven safe it can most likely be used in an air fryer.

Items To Avoid Using In An Air Fryer Include;

  • Wax Coated Liners
    Wax is highly flammable and could drip into the basket and clog the perforations or cause a fire.
  • Wooden Liners
    You should avoid using wooden bowls or sushi rollers in the air fryer unless it states on the packaging that they are oven safe.
  • Paper Liners (which are not oven safe)
    Oven safe parchment paper or air fryer paper liners are OK but you should never use any paper liner in the air fryer which is not oven safe.
  • Paper Plates
    Paper plates are very likely to catch fire in the extreme heat produced in an air fryer.
  • Kitchen Paper
    Kitchen paper or kitchen towel should never be used in an air fryer. It is highly flammable and will most likely cause a fire.
  • Coffee Filters
    Coffee filters are likely to be less flammable than paper plates but they are not safe to be used in an air fryer.

Is There Any Time When Coffee Filters Can Be Used In An Air Fryer?

Oddly enough, some people say that you can, at a pinch, use coffee filters to cook baked goods like cupcakes or muffins in an air fryer. We would still advise against it because it is still risky, but it can apparently be done.

However, you should never use a coffee filter in an air fryer if you are cooking greasy foods. This is because the grease will become trapped in the coffee filter and is then liable to catch fire. This wouldn’t happen with a paper liner specifically designed for use in an air fryer.

Another point worth considering is the material the coffee filter is made from. Some coffee filters are made from material, others are made from paper. While it might be possible to use some coffee filters in the air fryer, is it worth the risk? Especially when air fryer paper liners are so inexpensive.

Also, parchment paper is non-stick whereas coffee filters are not, which means anything cooked using coffee filters is likely to get the filter paper stuck to it.

For peace of mind we recommend only using coffee filters for filtering coffee.

What did the coffee addict say to his doctor?
I don’t believe I have a problem with coffee… But I do have a problem without it! 😂


Frequently Asked Questions

How do you use coffee filters in an air fryer?

You should not use coffee filters in an air fryer. Coffee filters are flammable which makes them too dangerous to be used safely in an air fryer. You should use air fryer paper liners if you want to prevent too much mess in the air fryer. Paper liners have been specifically designed to be used in an air fryer safely.

What can I line an air fryer with?

You can line an air fryer with parchment paper, a paper liner made from reinforced parchment paper, a silicone liner, aluminium foil tray or a ceramic dish.

Are coffee filters oven safe?

No, coffee filters are not oven safe. They are not designed to withstand high temperatures. They can handle hot water and in some cases they can be used at a pinch in microwave ovens, but they are not oven safe.

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