This question can be answered in just one word: No. At least some air fryers don’t have a rotating basket, but some do. The reason given is usually that it would cause uneven cooking – something which is apparently more common with an automated rotisserie-type basket rotation.
An air fryer is a great way to cook food without using oil. It’s also called an oven, and it has been around for many years! You can use the same basket on different machines as well so you don’t have buy another one when your old one breaks down or wear out in some other way that doesn’t involve tearing off pieces of plastic like they do with frying pans but then again we’re not all perfect grownups who always know best because silly things happen right?
Well enough about me – let’s talk baskets shall we? Scrappers rejoice: there are two types worth knowing about; bowls & buckets. Bowls generally rotate around the front axle that is fixed into its center. The bucket has a fixed pivot point and moves only on the back axle (this type used to be called “Turbo” until they changed it).
The shape of these baskets determines how you’ll fare using them in your air fryer. Buckets are more efficient at stirring or flipping food mid run whereas bowls lack this capability; although some have lids which can serve as a substitute for this purpose as seen in the picture below:
So -do- certain brands sell their potatoes with built in lids? Well now here’s a helpful hint from someone who knows what she is talking about but isn’t afraid to admit when she doesn’t know stuff too: there are no such things as perfect people. That’s not a typo but it is a bad joke that only makes sense to me and the rest of my family so don’t be messing around trying to look smart with them because you will just look stupid instead. Trust me on this one please…
Why Might some People Think that an Air Fryer Basket Rotates?
It’s kind of like the game whack-a-mole – one reason pops up only to be replaced by another. Many air fryers (so far it appears most of them) use an automated basket rotation mechanism for this not to be an issue, but in most cases they can still be used without this option. The most common reasons given are:
Many models’ manufacturer instructions say that you should NOT use your air fryer if it does not have a rotating basket (or rotates automatically). And with good reason; the absence of that feature renders the machine dangerous or useless for its intended purposes. While some people might conclude that it is okay to use their failed appliance in any way they please because they no longer need it anyway, this is not the best option. It’s far better to invest in a new one than to use your equipment incorrectly because you are hoping for it to work anyway.
As stated earlier the reason given most often for an air fryer without a rotating basket being dangerous or useless is that food won’t “cook” evenly throughout if it doesn’t rotate around like they do on rotisserie grills. I happen to think there might be some truth in this; but not having used an automatic rotating basket myself can’t say for sure. However, after doing some research I’m still sceptical about their necessity (in my opinion). From everything I’ve read so far, really what you need here is even heat distribution (hence the single direction rotation to avoid uneven cooking).
However, this is just what I’ve read so far. If anyone has experience or expertise in this area please feel free to share your thoughts. One thing I do know for certain though is that you should not put metal items INSIDE an air fryer unless they are made of stainless steel (steel wool pads etc.) because the hot air CAN cause them to heat up to levels which can potentially be dangerous. So if you have a basket without a plastic handle it’s safer to use tongs instead of metal utensils when removing food from your appliance – except when using one with a lid like in the picture below:
Basket lids supposedly help reduce cooking time and turn jerky into crackling – but I’m not convinced because the food is not deep enough in the air fryer for a lid to make a difference.