Can You Put a Paper Bowl in an Air Fryer? Safety Tips & Guidelines

Originally posted on 11 September 2023 @ 16:59

Can You Put a Paper Bowl in an Air Fryer?

Air fryers have become incredibly popular in recent years as a way to cook crispy and delicious food without all the oil and fat of traditional frying.

Their convenience and versatility make them a staple in many kitchens. But what types of containers and dishes can you safely use in an air fryer? Specifically, is it okay to put a paper bowl in an air fryer?

No, you should never put a paper bowl in an air fryer.

Understanding How Air Fryers Work

Air fryers circulate super hot air around the food at high speeds to cook it fast and evenly. This rapid circulation of scorching air gives air-fried foods a crispy-fried texture without submerging them in oil.

Most air fryers reach temperatures between 350 and 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Some may go even higher, up to 450 degrees. Air fryers use a lot of energy and generate intense heat to cook food rapidly.

Potential Risks of Putting Paper Bowls in an Air Fryer

Paper bowls are not designed to withstand the high heat inside an air fryer. Paper plates start to burn around 425 F, and paper bowls are even more vulnerable as they are less dense and sturdy.

Here are some of the potential risks and consequences of putting a paper bowl in an air fryer:

  • The paper bowl could burn, catch fire, or melt from the heat. This can damage your air fryer and cause a fire hazard.
  • Even if it doesn’t catch fire, the paper will likely turn black and smoke, leaving debris and residue inside the air fryer.
  • A paper bowl may not hold up structurally. It could warp, fold, or have the bottom fall out when you try to remove it after cooking. Hot food could spill out and burn you.
  • Any printing or coatings on the paper bowl could release toxic fumes or chemicals when exposed to high heat. This can contaminate your food.
  • Bits of paper could detach and get into your food while cooking. Eating burnt paper fibers or coatings is not safe.

Safer Alternatives to Use Instead of Paper Bowls

Since using paper bowls in an air fryer has many risks, you’ll want to opt for more heat-safe vessels. Here are some excellent alternatives:

  • Oven-safe glass or Ceramic Bowls are sturdy enough to withstand air fryer temperatures. Use bowls labeled oven-safe or ovenproof.
  • Stainless Steel Bowls – Steel won’t melt and can resist high heat. Make sure the bowl has no plastic parts.
  • Metal Cake or Pie Pans – Opt for something round that fits your air fryer basket.
  • Heat-Resistant Silicone Bowls – High-quality silicone bowls are flexible and can handle over 400°F safely.
  • Oven-Safe Ramekins – Small individual ramekins work perfectly for air-frying eggs, mini casseroles, and more.
  • Air Fryer Liners or Parchment Paper – You can put food directly on liners made for air fryers. Parchment paper is also heat-safe at air fryer temps.

Tips for Cooking in an Air Fryer

When cooking in your air fryer, follow these tips for the best results:

  • Ensure any vessel or liner fits appropriately in the air fryer basket and allows maximum airflow. Overcrowding impairs cooking.
  • Use some oil for crispy results – about two teaspoons per pound of food. The air fryer dries out food, so oil helps.
  • Flip or shake foods mid-cooking to ensure even browning. The constant air circulation can lead to hot spots.
  • Brush a thin oil coating on the vessel you use for an extra crispy finish. Try olive, avocado, or coconut oil.
  • Check food frequently, as air fryer cooking times are much faster than oven cooking.


While using paper bowls in the air fryer may seem quick and easy, it comes with substantial risks. To avoid potential fire hazards, food contamination, and appliance damage, opt for oven-safe, heat-resistant vessels instead. With some prep, you can safely cook almost anything in your air fryer. The suitable containers make air frying food easy and delicious.


Can I put a paper bowl directly in my air fryer?

No, it would help to never put paper bowls or plates directly inside an air fryer. The high heat will cause them to burn or melt. Use oven-safe bowls instead.

What temperature do paper bowls burn?

Paper bowls start burning around 425°F, and most air fryers heat up to 400°F or beyond. The intense hot air will cause paper bowls to scorch, smoke, or catch fire.

Can I put foil over a paper bowl before air frying?

No, aluminum foil directly touching paper inside an air fryer is still a fire hazard. The bowl could heat up, ignite, and burn beneath the foil. Both materials could melt together.

Can I put food in a paper bowl and then in an oven-safe dish to air fry?

This is risky as the paper bowl will still be exposed to hot circulating air. A safer bet is to transfer the food directly into an oven-safe vessel before air frying.

What can happen if I use a paper bowl in my air fryer?

Potential consequences include fire, smoke damage, melting, and contamination from chemicals in the paper. Your food could be unsafe, and your air fryer may be damaged.

Key Takeaways

  • Never put paper bowls or paper plates directly in an air fryer
  • The intense heat (up to 450°F) will cause the paper to burn
  • Use oven-safe ceramic, glass, silicone, or metal bowls instead
  • Parchment paper liners or foil pouches are safer paper options
  • Transfer food from paper dishes into proper air fryer vessels first

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