Can You Use PAM In An Air Fryer?

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When it comes to using PAM spray instead of oil in an air fryer

There is a general disagreement about whether these two things can safely go together.

If you Google the compatibility of PAM spray and air fryer, you will find variable opinions.

Based on our experience, we will try to clear up the confusion surrounding the use of PAM spray in the air fryer basket.

No, you cannot use PAM spray in an air fryer. Its composition includes aerosol that can damage the non-stick coating of the air fryer basket. Instead, you can use non-propellant cooking sprays.

What Happens When You Use PAM In An Air Fryer Basket?

Using PAM sprays seems very convenient.

As with just a few squirts, a thin layer of oil appears on your air fryer basket without adding extra calories.

However, these sprays are also enemies of the air fryer because of a substance called lecithin.

When spraying PAM on your air fryer, lecithin cooks on its surface, creating an impossible-to-clean build-up.

With time, the non-stick coating on the air fryer starts to flake off and contaminate your food, forcing you to eat metal inadvertently.

Considering these results of using PAM cooking spray, avoiding it seems like a better option.

What Can You Use Instead Of Pam?

Some of you might think about using PAM directly on foods like French fries and chicken wings before adding them to the air fryer.

While spraying PAM on food is an option (not without side effects, though), a safer alternative is using oil sprays in air fryers.

You can easily find refillable oil sprays, one option is EVO oil Misters; they are refillable, easy to use, and hold.

What Cooking Spray Is Safe For Air Fryers?

When choosing an oil spray, always consider the smoke point (the max. temperature and oil can be heated before it begins to smoke) of the oil.

Oils like canola, grapeseed, and Avocado oil are the best options because of their higher smoke point.

Furthermore, you can also use an olive oil spray in air fryer instead of PAM. 

What Happens If You Don’t Use Oil In The Air Fryer?

While using oil in air frying is not mandatory, avoiding it completely can affect your food’s taste and crispiness.

It is experienced that using a little oil helps enhance the food's flavor.

Applying or spraying oil on food before cooking allows the Maillard reaction to happen more efficiently, resulting in a crispy exterior.

Ways To Prevent Food From Sticking In An Air Fryer Basket

You can stop food from sticking to the basket without PAM spray.

Below, I have listed some effective ways of doing so:

  • Spray oil on the air fryer basket or use a brush to coat the basket lightly.
  • Add a few tablespoons of oil to the food during marinating or preparation.
  • Use food-grade foil or parchment paper to line the basket—both are excellent options for creating a non-stick surface.
  • Avoid overcrowding the basket, as it can lead to food sticking to the surface.
  • Preheat the air fryer before adding food, as food tends to stick more stubbornly when the surface is not sufficiently hot.
  • Before starting a fresh cooking cycle, make sure the air fryer basket is clean and there are no food residues from previous cooking. Food residues increase the likelihood of sticking food to the appliance surface in the absence of PAM or oil.

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Final Thoughts

We hope that after reading this article, the fact that PAM spray is not safe for your air fryer is as clear as daylight. The chemicals present in these sprays can corrode the non-stick lining and damage your air fryer basket; therefore, it is better to avoid using them. The good side? You can use non-aerosol cooking spray when required. 

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