Crispy, crunchy, and finger-lickin’ good—that’s what you get when you cook in an air fryer! Oh, and let’s not forget, easy. In this roundup of 16 Air Fryer Recipes for Beginners, I’m listing my all-time favorites in mouthwatering detail!
The Best Easy Air Fryer Recipes
What’s your favorite recipe to make in the air fryer? I’ve tried to pick one, but I just can’t! Frying in my air fryer makes so many of my favorite recipes possible, with no mess. On top of that, the air fryer cooks quickly and gives the food inside a great crispy crunch. It doesn’t get better than that!
Whether you’re new to air frying or a major fan, I hope you’ll take a look at this fun recipe roundup and find something you love. There’s something (or hey, maybe a lot of things) for everyone! We’ll start with appetizers, move on to main courses, and highlight a few simple sides as well. And if you want even MORE ideas, check out these air fryer recipes.
Do You Spray Food Before Air Frying?
One of the great things about air frying, as opposed to deep frying, is that it takes so little oil. Deep frying means that your food is cooking in a lot of oil, usually several cups of oil! That can be time-consuming, messy, and expensive, depending on the kind of oil you use. It can also lead to overly-greasy food. With air-fried recipes, you usually only need a light spray of oil before you cook the food – and sometimes, you don’t need any oil at all!
16 Air Fryer Recipes for Beginners
So what foods do really well in the air fryer? The list is practically endless – chicken, veggies, beef, crispy appetizers, and more! Let’s take a look at a few great recipes that work equally well for air fryer ninjas and air fryer newbies.
I think we can all agree that fried zucchini are pretty magical. The mellow, wholesome flavor of everyone’s favorite summer veg really shines when air-fried with chipotle and lime. Give ‘em a try. You’ll be glad you did!
Have you ever made your own potato chips? If not, you’re in for a treat. Freshly made chips are just a whole different level of amazing. And with an air fryer, the whole process is super easy and mess-free.
The O.G. reason for getting an air fryer? Almost certainly chicken wings. Who doesn’t love savory, spicy buffalo wings (or any kind of wings!), fresh out of the fryer?All you need is a teeny bit of oil, and the perfect appetizer is only minutes away.
This recipe for air fryer chicken is super special, because of the 20-minute salt brine! It makes each piece juicy and full of flavor. From there, a flavorful spice rub seasons the chicken to perfection, and the air fryer does the rest.
While bone-in, old-fashioned, Sunday picnic fried chicken will always have a special place in my heart, this easy air fryer version is pretty amazing – and nowhere near as messy. Each piece is marinated in buttermilk and Frank’s hot sauce (don’t worry, it won’t be spicy) plus a Panko coating.
Your favorite steak just got even more sizzlin’. Cooking up a juicy T-bone, ribeye or other special steak is super easy in the air-fryer, and the meat comes out tender and delicious every time! You’re going to love this well-seasoned, tender and juicy steak dish.
This is one of my favorite ways to enjoy salmon! Healthy and low-carb, these salmon fillets are topped with garlic, lemon, and butter, and then air-fried until they delicately flake. Just ten minutes and your air fryer are your key to a fabulous, easy dinner.
Super-easy cooking method? Check. Gorgeous presentation? Check. Amazing buttery flavor and meltingly sweet lobster meat? Double check! Yep, this beautiful lobster recipe has everything you could want, and more. Try it, you’ll love it!
Olive oil, fresh garlic, and Parmesan cheese take yummy fried potatoes to new heights. And since this easy side cooks up fast and crispy in the air fryer, it’s a great choice for busy weeknights. You’ll want to serve these all the time, and since they go with everything—why not!
Broccoli, in the air fryer? You bet! Like most veggies, broccoli really shines when you let it roast, but you don’t even have to heat up the oven to get that deep, sweet, lightly caramelized result. Try this easy recipe – you'll be hooked.