Air Fryer Food Taste Like Plastic: Reasons & Effective Solutions

You spend a fortune on an air fryer to cope with your busy life and have the taste of your favorite restaurants. But what’s the point of having it if the air fryer food taste like plastic?

Not just you, like many others – I have also kept wondering why does my food taste like the air fryer for some time. Some may even experience a metallic taste!

For the first few times, it is acceptable. But it should not keep going like that after several times of heating and cooling of your air fryer. In this article, I will solve the problem forever! Just keep reading…

Reasons Why Air Fryer Food Tastes Like Metal Or Plastic

air fryer food taste like plastic

Of course, air fryer is the main culprit. And there are plenty of air fryers that don’t smell and people spend a good amount of money to get them. Sadly, some of them still experience a metallic or plastic smell.

So, it’s important to figure out the probable reasons why it might happen. Then I will show you what should be done to solve the problem.

  • Plastic Components/Coatings

Air fryers are mainly made of metal. But it has some heat-resistant plastic components too. The venting fan is nothing but a plastic mold.

Besides, some of those metal components have plastic coatings too.

Naturally, as you can guess, when you fry or cook something at a higher temperature, such as plastic coatings or components burn off. So, you get the plastic smell and taste.

But, why they use plastic components in the first place?

Well, they have to. An air fryer has to distribute the heat evenly to make it work efficiently. And the heat-resistant components are just great to insulate the heat.

These plastic components help to concentrate the heat inside and keep the outside cool so that you can touch it. So, that’s the reason.

Apart from the plastic coatings or components of the air fryer, some people use plastic accessories to reheat their food. You can guess the rest, right?

Now, this problem is not an issue for the latest air fryers from trusted brands. Reputed brands ensure that their air fryers go through multiple heating and cooling processes to get rid of the smell at the factory level.

So, if you must have an air fryer that doesn’t smell like plastic – you should get it from a trusted and reputed brand in the first place.

But if your brand is unknown and you bought a cheap air fryer, the plastic smell will keep going for a very long time.

They simply don’t spend enough time in the heating and cooling process to get rid of the smell at their factories.

Even if you have the latest one from a reputed brand like Nuwave Bravo XL and it has some plastic coatings, the smell should go away after using it 2 to 3 times.

If it does not, there is an easy fix which I will talk about later.

How To Get Rid Of Air Fryer Metallic Taste Or Plastic Taste?

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Now that you know why does your food taste like the air fryer, it’s time to take action.

It simply can’t go like this forever! Luckily, there is some easy fix you can try. Here are some of them:

  1. Give It A Test Run

If you have access to the electric outlet outside your home, you should do this task outside to keep the fume and smell outside.

When the air fryer is completely new, you can remove all the smells you may face in the future. Just give it some test runs.

When you heat and cool it several times, all the smell will go away before affecting your food.

Don’t run it completely empty though. Just don’t put any food. Put all the accessories to the air fryer one by one to release all the plastic fumes.

You can test run it for 3 to 4 minutes setting the temperature at 350-400 deg. Then let it cool down for 15 minutes. Pretty soon, it will be settled down just like any new car.

  1. Vinegar & Lime Juice

I strongly recommend giving your air fryer a nice bath of lime juice and vinegar from day one. This should take care of the metallic and plastic smell from your food fried or cooked in the air fryer.

This is how you should give it a wash….

Get an oven-safe small dish and put 1 tablespoon of lime juice and 1 tablespoon of distilled vinegar. Mix it up and make a solution. Now, place the dish inside the air fryer.

Set the temperature of the air fryer to 350-400 degrees and run it for 3 minutes. Then let it cool for the next 15 minutes keeping the dish inside.

The vinegar and lime will create a coating inside the air fryer and absorb any excess fumes. Use a clean but damp cloth to wipe the inside and all the smell will be gone!

You can give another steam bath to avoid your air fryer food taste like plastic if the plastic smell is too strong.

  1. Clean The Accessories

Apart from the plastic taste, you may notice some kind of metallic smell too. That’s mainly because your air fryer comes with lots of accessories like the frying basket, baking pan, grill pan, basket divider, and so on.

These accessories may come with some smell when they are fresh. They are not metal but you should clean them nonetheless. That way you can avoid the metallic smell.

You can use any dishwashing soap to thoroughly wash the tray and basket. When done cleaning the air fryer, let them air dry.

  1. Seasoning The Basket & Tray

Once the accessories are cleaned, it’s really helpful to give the basket and the grease separating tray a coating of cooking oil.

Take a paper towel and dampen it with your regular cooking oil. Use the dampened paper towel to coat the inside of the basket and tray. Now, run the air fryer at 350 -400 degrees temperature for two minutes.

Let them cool down for the next 10 to 15 minutes.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Does Air Fried Food Taste Different?

Yes, if you compare it with deep-fried food. Since the air fryer does not require using any oil and use nothing but heated air, the food texture and taste will look somewhat different.

Are Air Fryers Toxic?

Everything you cook or fry with oil has toxic element. But your fryer is not more harmful than your deep fryer or microwave oven.

Why Does My Air Fryer Stink?

Most likely, your air fryer is completely new or you don’t wash it after each usage. If it’s new, the plastic coating may give you a plastic food taste. If it’s old, thoroughly wash your air fryer.

Does An Air Fryer Make Your House Smell?

No. But you should test run it outside the home to get rid of the smell. That way, the plastic smell won’t fill your house.


The air fryer has become an integral part of our busy life. But it’s so painful when your air fryer food tastes like plastic. You know the reason and the solution. So, stop scratching your head and get to the action!

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