5 of the best air fryer hacks of 2021

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If you're looking for the kitchen gadget of the year it is, without a doubt, the air fryer.

This humble portable oven has overtaken the slow cooker as the must-have appliance for busy professionals and parents. 

Here are the air fryer hacks TikTok fans went crazy for this year. Photo: TikTok
Here are the air fryer hacks TikTok fans went crazy for this year. Photo: TikTok

And while many people share their favourite air fryer recipes online, sometimes it's the hacks to make life simpler that really impress.

Some of these hacks may seem obvious, but judging by the feedback, fans are happy someone showed how to make their lives easier!

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The baking hack

American mum Kim Pauckner went viral in June when she showed fellow Tiktokkers how quick and easy it was to bake cupcakes in the air fryer.

Since then, 7.4 million have watched Kim use a packet cake mix and silicon cupcake pans to make the sweet treat for her kids in just 10 minutes.

"Thanks for sharing. I will be using my air next time for my baked goods," one follower wrote.

"I made brownies in mine! They were great! Definitely gonna try this," another said.

Woman backing cupcakes in an air fryer
One woman went viral for showing people how to bake cupcakes in an air fryer. Photo: TikTok/Kim Pauckner

The fresh bread hack

South Australian Chloe Grayling shows off her five-minute hack to transform cheap or stale bread rolls so they are fluffy in the middle and crunchy on the outside.

She runs the bases of the rolls under cold water before putting them in the air fryer at 180 degrees for five minutes.

"The water rises up from the base and steams the inside while the outside gets crunchy," Chloe explains in her video.

"Literally the best way to rescue stale bread," Megan says in the comments. 

"My dad used to brush milk on stale bread rolls before popping them in the oven. They turned out so nice," Elle added.

Chloe Grayling washing bread roll to make it not stale
Aussie Chloe Grayling went viral for showing people how to bring stale bread back to life. Photo: TikTok/Chloe Grayling

The pizza hack

American Kyle Young is better known on TikTok for videos of him eating food the wrong way (think starting pizza slices at the crust instead of the point!). 

However, his hack for a quick after-class pita pizza made an impression, accumulating 7.6 million views since it was posted last month.

Kyle makes the pepperoni pizza and bakes it for six minutes at 400 degrees Fahrenheit (about 200 C) for the perfect snack.

"Bro, I also make this. It's so good man," one fan comments.

Kyle has also recently hit the headlines after Elon Musk offered to give Kyle a Tesla if he ate pizza backward for 420 days, an offer he's well on his way to achieving!

Person making pizza in an air fryer
Who doesn't love pizza? Even better if you can make it in the air fryer. Photo: TikTok/Kyle Young

The cleaning hacks

Former US pro-footballer turned fitness instructor, AJ Hotchkins, not only gives his followers workout tips but also shares a few food and cleaning hacks.

"Put a piece of tin foil in your air fryer before you fry anything," he says in his video.

"It catches all the grease and makes the pan way easier to wash and everybody know that's the worst part about having an air fryer. 

So you're welcome in advance!"

His followers also point out that parchment paper works just as well.

Person cleaning their air fryer with tin foil
Air fryer cleaning hack videos are all the rage. Photo: TikTok/AJ Hotchkins

Tanya in the clean

And if you forget to line your air fryer first, there is another hack to help you with the clean-up.

British-based home hack TikTok influencer Tanya Home Inspo, shows how you can use the fryer's built-in cooking system to clean it with just water and detergent.

And 4.4 million views can't be wrong!

"This method of cleaning an air fryer is easy," she says.

"Fill it up with water, dish soap and let the fryer work its magic. 

"You only need to use it for three minutes or so and it will loosen up all the grease. 

"Lastly, give it a good rinse and voila, it's like new."

Though she did offer a quick warning: "Disclaimer, be sure to read your manual before trying this."

Some air fryers warn against putting water in them.

Person cleaning their air fryer with Fairy dishwashing liquid
Popping some Fairy dish soap into an air fyer appears to work wonders. Photo: TikTok/Tanya Home Inspo

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