Can You Steam in an Air Fryer? (Yes or No)

Are you thinking of the best way to make delicious meals without spending much time? An air fryer is a modern kitchen appliance used for cooking tasty, crunchy meals. An air fryer has different functions, including dehydrating, air frying, baking, etc.

This cooking method is considered safe compared to the traditional frying in oil. In addition, it is healthy for the heart and reduces calories by 80%.

Everyone wants to have an appliance that can perform several functions. And that’s one of the potentials of an air fryer. You can use it for cooking your vegetables, roasting, baking, and frying. However, we have chosen not to add steam as part of its functions for some reason.

In this post, we shall address significant questions concerning the functions of an air fryer and its uses. So keep reading to learn more about the fantastic kitchen appliance.

Is It Possible To Steam in an Air Fryer?

No, you should not. You may question why this is not possible since an air fryer is multi-purpose and can cook different types of food. You’re right. You can cook anything in an air fryer, but you shouldn’t steam in an air fryer. Sounds weird, right? But it’s true.

Air fryer performs an entirely different function from steaming. Generally, in cooking and kitchen management, steaming requires water, and it is highly advised that you don’t put water in your air fryer. If you put oil, you should add just a little, so your food won’t get moist.

Warning: Your air fryer must not be in direct contact with water. This is a big mistake people usually fall for. Also, you can’t steam your food in an air fryer because it will damage your air fryer.

A Handy Tip: You can use a steamer or a pressure cooker if you need to steam your food. Don’t add oil to your air fryer because it can cause it to break down. Instead, carefully regulate your pressure cooker to the required heat level.

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How is a Steamer Different From an Air Fryer?

As earlier mentioned, steaming and air frying are two different cooking methods. While a steamer needs water, an air fryer does not require any liquid at all (the least you can do is add a little oil). On the other hand, steamer needs water to boil to create steam unless you have nothing to start with.

When using the steamer, food ingredients are not directly in contact with water. Instead, the steam makes the food moist. However, an air fryer is not created to make your food sticky. Instead, they give your food a crunchy and crispy taste.

Some of the differences between a steamer and an air fryer are;

The steamer makes your food soft and soggy, while an air fryer makes your food crispy and crunchy.

A steamer makes your food taste plain and less spicy since they are cooked in water. On the other hand, the air fryer keeps your food spicy because of its crunchy texture.

A Steamer makes your food juicy both inside and outside, especially if you are cooking vegetables in it. However, an air fryer is only succulent inside.

Can You Steam Veg in an Air Fryer?

Yes, you can use an air fryer to steam your vegetables or fruits. An air fryer will only make it edible enough for you to consume. However, it won’t give you the same outcome that a steamer would. To achieve a perfect meal, you can try other ways to cook with your air fryer.

Air frying: frying vegetables is one way you can use your air fryer for cooking vegetables. All you have to do is add spices to your vegetable with oil. Then, stir thoroughly, turn on the fryer, and wait until it’s set.

Tip: place your vegetable in a bowl to make it easier to mix your seasonings.

Dehydration: What if you can’t steam your vegetable with an air fryer? You can use an air fryer to dehydrate your vegetables.

Can You Steam Broccoli in an Air Fryer?

No. You don’t need to steam Broccoli when you can air fry it instead. Cooking your Broccoli with an air fryer is fast, but it will burn if you don’t add water. Adding a little bit of water steams your Broccoli while cooking it.

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You won’t be steaming your Broccoli. All you have to do is add a few tablespoons of water to the air fryer before cooking. The little water you add will help soften your Broccoli inside.

You will not be dipping the Broccoli into much water to steam like you would do in a steamer. The essence of using water is to ensure that the inside is edible.

Steaming Broccoli requires you to use at least 2 cups of water which has to boil first before adding your Broccoli. You won’t be able to do this in an air fryer because water can damage your air fryer beyond repair.

Handy Tip: Chop your broccoli floret into small pieces and season. Preheat your air fryer, wait for about 3-5 minutes, then add little water before putting your Broccoli—fry the Broccoli for 4 to 8 minutes tossing each side.

Can You Steam Dim Sum in an Air Fryer?

Yes, you can. But you have to ensure that the water doesn’t touch the base of your air fryer. So you will also need a little water.

Warning: Your air fryer is an electronic appliance, and water is a good conductor, so you need to be careful with water. You can damage your device, and it can be dangerous, especially when you are reckless in approach. Also, steaming dim sum is unhealthy because of the calories and high fat and sodium. Your heart health may be at risk, so it’s best you air fry your dim sum instead.

Can You Put Water in an Air Fryer?

Yes, you can put water in the air fryer but only a few tablespoons at a time and that too if needed. As earlier mentioned, adding so much water can damage your air fryer. Knowing when to add water and how much water you need is essential for your cooking process.

You only need to put a tiny bit of water at a time to reduce smoking when cooking fatty and greasy foods. Do not add water without seeing any smoking. This would be bad because adding excess water makes your food tasteless or soggy.

Warning: Don’t put water on the heating element or the inside part of your air fryer. You can use water to clean your air fryer but be careful with pouring water inside. You can bring out the trays to wash and dry them before placing them back.

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Safety Tips: Ensure that the air vents of your air fryer are opened so smoke and steam can emit efficiently. Do not use too much oil and water. Your air fryer must not be overheated to avoid a fire hazard.

What Can You Use an Air Fryer For?

1. Air frying

You can fry your chicken for a tasty and crunchy taste. Air fryers are fast and easy to use. However, to avoid overheating, always be alert and set the regulator at a level that suits you. It would help if you did not use an air fryer for large cooking. Broccoli, vegetables, and the dim sum can all be air-fried. You could also prepare french fries.

2. Dehydrate

The air fryer also helps dehydrate your vegetables, Broccoli, sprouts. So if you need your food to stay healthy, an air fryer is a perfect option. Because the air fryer would dehydrate your veggies without destroying that active ingredient, thus making it safe and nutritious for consumption.

3. Roasting and Baking

You can choose to roast or bake your potatoes, hot dogs, and vegetable. You can cook a tasty steak and cook some bananas. Finally, you can bake your sugar cookies. It’s so yummy because roasting gives it a unique taste.

Please, note when you are roasting, it’s important not to add excess water because this would affect the taste. It’s also essential not to over-roast, so the taste and smell remain palatable.

4. Reheating food

An air fryer is suitable for reheating frozen food or cooking a new meal. You can reheat your frozen foods, including vegetables. But be warned not to overheat. Usually, 10-15 minutes is ideal and healthy three times a day. You could also add up spices flavor while reheating. This would make it delicious.

Conclusion: Can you steam in an air fryer?

No, you cannot, and we won’t advise you to do that. There are diverse reasons you should not. First, there could be a fire hazard that can damage your device.

You can add a little water to an air fryer, but it shouldn’t touch the heating element or the inner part of the air fryer. Air fryers are fantastic appliances you should have in your kitchen. They are safe, versatile, and healthy.

About Sylvette Brown

Sylvette is a homemaker and is passionate about cooking and other kitchen-related stuff. She also loves to do home improvement related tasks and keeps on writing about food and cookware on her blog. When she is not writing, she keeps herself busy with her 2 little kids. :)