Can You Cook Frozen Food in an Air Fryer? – What To Avoid?

These days, air fryers have become a necessary item in most homes and also can be found in almost every home. This modest yet amazing machine produces fried dishes that are excellent and quick to prepare. Thus, it is a lot of fun to try different cooking techniques with your air fryer.

When it comes to innovative cooking techniques, air fryers can be the best choice to prepare different kinds of fried dishes. But can you cook frozen food in an air fryer? Yes, it is safe to cook frozen food in an air fryer without any issues.

Let’s discover how and which frozen food you can cook in an air fryer!

Can You Cook Frozen Food in an Air Fryer?

Can You Cook Frozen Food in an Air Fryer?

Undoubtedly, you can use an air fryer to prepare frozen food without much effort. But for maximum performance and delicious outcomes, you will need to adjust the air fryer settings such as temperature and timer. It is essential to set the temperature of the air fryer according to the condition of your frozen meal.

The time that is mentioned on the machine must be altered according to the food type. It must fit the air fryer because it prepares meals more quickly than an oven

The general method for preparing frozen foods like spring rolls or morsels is to utilize the same heat as you would use in a microwave. But you will have to decrease the cooking process as time and temperature for frozen meals.

If the time and temperature given in the instructions will be 20 minutes at 400 degrees, you must change it. You will have to cook your frozen meal for 10 minutes at 400 degrees in an air fryer. So, you will get an evenly cooked meal in the end with maximum crunch and crispiness.

How to Cook Frozen Meal in an Air Fryer?

How to Cook Frozen Meal in an Air Fryer

For a frozen dish to prepare in an air fryer to an excellent level, it needs to be cooked at a specific temperature. For this, it will require a specific time duration.

You must be sure to leave sufficient space between each item of food and avoid stacking it on top of itself. To avoid foods adhering to the container during the preparation of food, you must thoroughly rotate the container twice.

Well, you can follow the instructions in the below section to prepare and cook food in an air fryer to perfection!

  • Set the Temperature and Preparation Time

The highest temperature on an air fryer can reach is 400 degrees. You will have to turn down the temperatures by 10 to 25 degrees. Then you will have to decrease the air fryer’s temperature by 50% according to the directions on your foodstuff box. It must meet a temp degree that your air fryer can accomplish.

If your meal hasn’t been prepared by this time, you must examine the condition of the meal. So, you must continue cooking it for the necessary duration of time.

  • Utilizing Grease or Oil
add only a thin layer of oil

After that, you will have to add a thin layer of oil to an air fryer using the same way that you would use in a pan, stove, or grill. If you will oil the pan before placing foodstuff in it, this can be very beneficial.

If your meal already contains fat, you should not need to coat the air fryer’s container with oil. It is because the fat will prevent the food from adhering to the container. Thus, only a small amount of oil will require for this.

Instructions: The quality of material you choose to oil your air fryer is another necessary factor. If you will use a sprayer that contains liquid fuel or other chemicals, it will dissolve the non-stick covering on many air fryers. Instead of this, you must coat your container and foodstuff with a spatula and your preferred oil or grease.

  • Avoid Overfilling

To decrease the cooking time, you might load the container with all of your frozen foods instantly. This is wrong! To cook the meal correctly and evenly, it is required that hot heat must be capable of reaching every part of it. But if you will fill the basket with a frozen meal, it will not cook accurately.

Risks: A clog in the airflow will occur due to overloading the air fryer bucket. Items like mozzarella sticks or spring rolls dipped in crumbs can be stacked in the air fryer. They will break if you constantly rotate the container to get even cooking.

The better method would be to arrange your foodstuff in a thin layer at the bottom of the baskets. For this, it must be open-faced or uncovered.

  • Air fryer’s Preheating Process

Now you will have to set your air fryer to 400°F for frying. After that, you will have to add some oil to the container where the food is placed. Then, fill the container with frozen food according to the space of your air fryer. Here you will have to fry for 15–20 minutes, or until brown and crunchy.

Food Items You Should not Cook in the Air Fryer

Food Items You Should avoid Cooking in airfryer

There are some foods that you should never use for air frying. Below is the list of that items:

  • Wet Batter, fried meals: 

You should avoid using the air fryer to cook wet batters unless the item is pre-cooked and frozen.

  • Greens veggies:

Due to the fast air, green plants like spinach can fry inaccurately. So, you should not use them in an air fryer.

  • Whole roasts:

It is the type of meal that is not suitable for air fryers.

  • Cheese: 

This is the food item that will not cook in the air fryer and can create a mess in your air fryer.

  • Uncooked cereals: 

You should never try to cook raw cereal and grains in an air fryer. They will not cook accurately.

  • Broccoli:

You must never try to cook broccoli in an air fryer because it will get dry when placed in the air fryer.

  • Rice: 

As the air fryer cooks a meal at a high temperature using hot air, the rice will become dry and not cook accurately.

Frozen Items You Should Cook in an Air Fryer

Frozen Items You Can Cook in an Air Fryer

Now let’s move toward the food items that you can cook in an air fryer:

  • Frozen Chicken Breast
  • Frozen Chicken Nuggets
  • Frozen Boneless Wings
  • Frozen Chicken Fries
  • Frozen Chicken Fajita
  • Frozen Chicken Tenders
  • Frozen Chicken Strips
  • Frozen Corn Dogs
  • Frozen Mini Corn Dogs
  • Frozen Fish Sticks
  • Frozen Hoagie Patty
  • Frozen Meatballs
  • Frozen Turkey Filet (Bacon Wrapped)
  • Frozen Hot Pockets
  • Frozen Pizza 400° F
  • Frozen Salmon Fillet (thaw first)

Is it Necessary to Defrost a Frozen Meal?

Food that has been frozen is not required to be defrosted before using an air fryer. You can simply place the frozen food into the air fryer and fry it according to your instructions and the air fryer will defrost it by itself.

Thus, to sort out this problem, you must preheat your air fryer at the right temperature. As frozen food defrosts, it will be inclined to become soggy.

The additional heat will cause the food’s liquid to evaporate more quickly. In this way, this will give the food a lovely and delicious taste. To keep food away from becoming mushy in an air fryer, you can also use wax paper! In this way, you will not have to defrost your frozen meals before placing them in the air fryer.


Can you cook frozen food in an air fryer is a question widely asked by air fryer users. So, I have tried my best to deliver the answer to this question in this article. It will prevent to purchase of a new machine for cooking frozen meals.

If you use proper instructions correctly, air frying any frozen dish will result in a delicious meal every time. Frozen food products will become crunchier and sweeter when air-fried. Additionally, you won’t need to defrost anything!

Are you going to try this technique?


After a lot of testing, it is verified that you can cook frozen meals in an air fryer. You can cook frozen French fries, frozen chicken, springtime buns, and frozen rolls in an air fryer without much time.

Yes, you can cook frozen fries in an air fryer but you must be sure to read the instructions carefully because every model is different. In an air fryer, foodstuff must be precisely arranged. Also, you will need to adjust the preparation time if you want properly cooked frozen meals.

Frozen food does not need to be defrosted before using an air fryer. You will simply have to place the frozen food into the air fryer and fry it according to your instructions. The temperature of the air fryer will remove the extra liquid in the meal.

Mery kitchen aims

Mery Webber

Mery Webber, the founder of Kitchen Aims, is a passionate home cook with extensive experience in the kitchen appliance industry. Through her blog, she aims to share her knowledge and help readers create the perfect kitchen.

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