Can an air fryer be used as a microwave? 

  • By: Emma
  • Date: July 20, 2022
  • Time to read: 7 min.

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Can an air fryer be used as a microwave?

The question of whether an air fryer can be used as a microwave is something that we get asked often. For those who are wondering if their particular Air Fryer can be used as a microwave, please read through this blog post for more information!

So, can an air fryer be used as a microwave? The answer is yes and no, depending on the model and wattage. Generally, we can use an air fryer as a microwave.

Read More: What size fryer for a 20 lb turkey?

How to check whether you can use an air fryer as a microwave?

First, you need to acknowledge the wattage of your air fryer. Most standard home appliances have a label on the front or back of the product that states the voltage and watts it uses.

After checking the wattage, you can compare it with the wattage of your microwave. Most microwaves require between 600 and 1,500 watts to run; thus if you own an air fryer with less than 600 watts or more than 1,500 watts it may not be possible to use your air fryer as a microwave.

What is the best air fryer to use as a microwave?

The answer may differ depending on how you intend to use your air fryer. If you want to bake, sear, and stir-fry in your air fryer then it is recommended to go for an air fryer with at least 600 watts. It will be able to handle all three functions.

If you only want to reheat, then a smaller wattage fryer may be sufficient. If you already own an air fryer and can’t find the label with its wattage information, please consult the manual that came with your appliance.

To save your time below, the table contains the bestselling combo of air fryer microwave ovens

Panasonic HomeChef 4-in-1529 $
Toshiba ML2-EC10SA(BS)219 $
Cuisinart AMW-60 3-in-1209 $
Galanz GTWHG12S1SA10298 $
Galanz GLOMJB17S2ASWZ-10 30″469 $
Calphalon Air Fryer Oven269 $
Table 2. List of the best air fryers in the market with their approximate prices (Note: the prices maybe slightly different at the time of your purchase)

8 Ways you can use an air fryer as a microwave

Reducing the cooking time

Bear in mind that as an air fryer is a combination of a convection oven and a microwave, the cooking time may vary from what you have been accustomed to using your microwave for.

In general, cooking times should be reduced by half compared with traditional methods. This is because an air fryer heats up quickly and gets ready for cooking quickly.

Altering the cooking methods

First, when using an air fryer to reheat foods you will need to determine if the product needs thawing out before placing in the oven. If it does, be sure to do that properly beforehand.

Uncovering the items

Another way you can adjust the air fryer as a microwave is by the way you open the lid. When using a microwave, we tend to put an item on a dish and cover it with another dish or top and cook it like that. This is not possible in an air fryer as covered items will not be able to cook properly; thus you need to take off the lid during cooking.

Reversing the cooking trays

Another way to use your air fryer as a microwave is by turning the cooking tray upside down. This method isn’t possible with every model, but it should work for most.

Adjusting the temperature

Finally, if your air fryer has a temperature feature please adjust the heat setting accordingly. Ensure you know what type of cooking it does as some models can cook on both low and high heat; thus you may need to switch between those two settings once or twice during cooking.


Note that the timer of the microwave and that of an air fryer are not the same. Not every air fryer has a digital timer. So when using an air fryer as a microwave, you need to be more careful with time.

Not using a dish

To use an air fryer as cookware, be mindful of not putting in the dish you have used in the microwave oven. While it is okay to use in some models, not all are okay with this. Thus it is best to check before putting any dishes into your air fryer.

Warming up food

Another way that you can use an air fryer as a microwave is by warming up cold food. If you want to eat a cold pizza, for example, place the pieces in the air fryer and warm it up. The same process can be done with leftovers.

Can an air fryer be used as a microwave?

Another good question that comes to mind is that if we can use an air fryer as a microwave then should I buy an air fryer or a microwave? To help you with this answer, we have researched and presented some facts to you in the following table:

Material in MicrowaveUsabilityThe material in Air FryerUsability
Aluminum FoilNoAluminum FoilYes
Table 2. Air fryer vs microwave. The difference in material and usability.

Read More: How much does fryer oil weigh?

Changes you should expect when using an air-fryer as a microwave

Bear in mind that using an air fryer as a microwave can cause variations to the end result. For instance, if you choose to reheat a piece of beef or fish then it is possible that it will be streamed from inside instead of seared on the surface like in an oven. Some of the other changes are listed below:


That’s a good chance. Expect crispy and crunchy foods while cooking or reheating the cooked food in an air-fryer.


This is a change you need to try and control by adjusting the cooking time. However, if the food you are microwaving has sauce or gravy it may be wetter than expected as some of those liquids may leak into the air fryer. Make sure to dry the items first before putting them inside an air fryer.


Although some people love the noise, others may not. The noise is due to the fan inside the air fryer which blows hot air across the food during cooking. This will be more noticeable in smaller models or cooking for a few minutes.


Air Fryers are known to take less time compared with microwaves when it comes to reheating food. That’s because an air fryer uses direct heat from the hot air coming in contact with food without having to go through the heating element. This is especially true when cooking or reheating small quantities of food.

Fruits and vegetables

One thing you need to remember is that fruit and vegetables cook differently when using an air fryer than they do in the oven and with stove-top methods. The most important thing to remember is that fruits and veggies will require less cooking time when using an air fryer compared with when cooking them in the microwave.


We tend to lose some of the flavors when using a microwave so you can expect different flavors from an air fryer during cooking or reheating.

The above tips can be used to help you adapt your air fryer to a microwave. One of the most important things we need to remember is that the air-fryer heats faster and evenly, and thus we should adjust cooking times based on our experience with the appliance.

Does air fryer use radiation?

No, an air fryer doesn’t use radiation to cook food.

Radiation is a form of energy that includes all types of waves. Microwaves are a type of radio waves while ultraviolet rays from the sun are also one of the types of radiation.

Generally, air fryers work like traditional ovens. They are designed to transfer heat into food through convection. This is similar to how microwaves operate through air fryers using hot air that surrounds the food instead of microwaves which rely on waves to pass through the food.

In an air fryer, the electricity turns into heat when it flows into the metal mesh which is found at the bottom of the appliance. The heat then spreads across to the rest of the inside chamber. Inside the heating element of an air fryer, there is a fan and a mesh made from metal. As the metal mesh heats up, it begins to emit heat and distribute it evenly inside the appliance. The temperature is regulated by adjusting the time and power level of the food.

In short, air fryer doesn’t use radiation to cook food. So, it can be used as a replacement for microwaves and ovens due to its ability to produce similar results.


In summary, air fryers can be used as microwaves and they are healthy because they don’t use harmful radiation as a microwave oven does.

However, you will need to adjust settings accordingly and it will take less time to cook food in an air fryer compared with microwaves.

Best of all, microwave waves can create hotspots within foods that can burn or even cause a fire; whereas hot air is used in an air fryer without the risk of any of these issues.

So use an air fryer as a microwave without worrying about health issues or accidents!

Read More: How much oil does a deep fryer use?

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