Can you toast bread in an air fryer?

Air fryers can just about cook any food in record time - but can you toast bread in an air fryer and should you?

comp image of an airfryer and a pile of toasted white bread
(Image credit: Getty Images)

It's clear that the popularity of air fryers is not dwindling any time soon, but is this hero appliance really capable of cooking everything? Yes, it can easily tackle an entire roast chicken and deliver the crispiest chips, but what about something as simple as toasting bread? 

Should you be lucky enough to have one of the best air fryers on your countertop then you’ll know that their abilities are pretty impressive, from toasting, grilling, dehydrating and reheating there’s really not much they can’t do. But with the cost of running an air fryer and the endless list of foods you can cook in an air fryer, can it be used for simpler tasks and more importantly, should it? 

For an appliance that seems to do it all, are there certain foods that benefit from being cooked more traditionally? Say bread in a toaster. Well, this question is more common than you may think and is one we chatted to professional chefs and food experts to get to the bottom of it. 

Can you toast bread in an air fryer? 

The short answer is yes, you can toast bread in an air fryer.

"Airfryers are everywhere at the moment and you'll be happy to know that yes, you can make your morning toast in an air fryer," says Chef Al Roberto, founder of private dining and events catering company Simmer Kitchen

"Simply spray with oil (for best results make sure you give it an even spritz), and place in your airfryer at around 400F/200°C for 4-6 minutes." If you want to upgrade your breakfast, you can make french toast using the same method. "This is so easy and quick and will come out perfectly golden," adds Al. You can also reheat or toast bagels, rolls or muffins. 

If you have one of the best toaster air fryer ovens, the whole process is a little more straightforward as these contain a grill component. Simply place your bread on the baking pan or oven rack, following the same instructions as above.

Homemade french toast in an air fryer

(Image credit: Getty)

Should you toast bread in an air fryer?

We've covered how to use your air fryer to toast bread, but is it actually the best way to get your morning toast fix? 

The consensus here is that you should keep using your grill or toaster if you can. Speaking to our Shopping Editor and air fryer guru, Millie Fender, she says, "Nothing can beat the simplicity of a toaster, but if you're in a bind, it is possible to toast your bread in an air fryer. Because air fryers circulate air around your food, your toast could also end up more evenly browned than if you did it under the grill." 

However, after the preheating, turning halfway through and cooking, you could find yourself spending around 10 minutes making a piece of toast, which is far from ideal. In light of this, toast and toasties are actually some of the items that Jen Bedloe, w&h's Food Director stated as some of the foods you shouldn't cook in an air fryer

In summary, if you have no other method, you can definitely toast bread in the air fryer and it will taste good. But you'll save time and energy by making it in a toaster.

Millie Fender Author Image
Millie Fender

Millie Fender is Head of Ecommerce at Woman&Home and was formerly Head of Reviews across a number of Future Plc's leading Homes titles such as Ideal Home and Homes&Gardens. 

As our head of all things shopping, Millie is committed to giving readers honest, expert advice when it comes to spending their hard-earned cash.

How do you stop toast from flying around your air fryer?

Because air fryers work by circulating hot air around the food with a powerful fan, lighter foods can end up flying around. This can present a hazard if they get too close to the heat source, but it also means they might not get cooked properly. 

Depending on the weight of your bread and the size and power of your air fryer, you might find that your bread flies around. "If this does happen to you, I'd suggest weighing your bread down," advises Millie. "Some air fryers come with a removable grid insert, so putting your bread under this insert will stop it from moving while cooking."

You might be tempted to use parchment paper to line your air fryer in order to make cleaning your air fryer lighter work. For heavier foods this is fine, but avoid using parchment paper when toasting bread as neither the bread nor parchment paper are heavy enough to stay put, meaning they could both precariously float near the heating element of your air fryer. 

Buttered toast, created using an air fryer

(Image credit: Getty)

Can you make toasties in an air fryer?

Once again, it's possible to make toasties in the air fryer, but you might not get the most desirable results unless you're using a toaster oven air fryer. 

On the subject, Jen previously advised to "put the sandwich on a sheet of baking paper and make sure you have spread the outside with butter and you have plenty of cheese in the filling." The filling will weigh the toastie down so it doesn't stray away from the tray. 

"You can also revive croissants, filled with cheese and ham, or a nutty frangipane sweet filling for a fancy almond croissant," explains Jen. "And what about all those bakery items that get stuck in the toaster? Baguette burns, bagels get wedged and hot cross buns disintegrate or scald your hands when you try to remove them." So perhaps your everyday toast might benefit more from a toaster, but the speciality bakes are perfect for the air fryer. 

Picture of food editor Jen Bedloe
Jen Bedloe

An experienced recipe writer, editor and food stylist, Jen is Group Food Director at Future plc where she oversees the food content across the women’s lifestyle group, including Woman and Home, Women’s Weekly, Woman, Woman’s Own, Chat, and 

Anna Paul
Freelance writer

Anna is an editor and journalist, specializing in SEO and digital content production. First carving her career in communications and advertising agencies in Berlin and Barcelona, Anna's former life saw her work for film studios and inside a fashion house, before she moved to where her career highlights include heading up the SEO desk during the Covid-19 pandemic. Anna's published work ranges from culture and films to human interest features and live news coverage.

In her spare time, she enjoys watching movies, discovering the next big thing in music, traveling, online shopping, and poring over poetry and magazines. When she's not consuming those things, she's probably writing about them.  Originally from Glasgow, Anna has lived in Berlin, Barcelona, and London, not to mention stints in Guernsey and Athens. When she's not struggling to navigate a new language, she's always chasing the next hot trend and perfect black dress (you can never have too many). 

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