These 21 Air Fryer Side Dishes will make your weeknight dinners easy and delicious. From potatoes and carrots, to okra and eggplant, this list has a side dish to go with every meal!
If you’re anything like me, you might find yourself always going for the same side dishes, or pressed for time in the evenings and rushing to prepare dinner.
I’ve been turning to my air fryer quite a bit lately for quick and easy side dishes. So, I wanted to round up some air fryer sides that we could all keep in our back pockets. This list includes some of my tried and true favourites, as well as some new and delicious options from fellow food bloggers.
And, with Christmas and the American Thanksgiving just around the corner, these air fryer side dish recipes can also help you round out your holiday menu.
What is an air fryer?
An air fryer is a countertop appliance that ‘fries’ food by rapidly circulating hot air around it to achieve a crispy texture (for most foods) with much less oil than a deep fryer. The air circulation evenly cooks food, and the air fryer’s compact cooking space helps cook food quicker than in the oven. And while they take up a bit of counter space, they’re simple to use and they make clean up easy too.
Reasons to use an air fryer to prepare side dishes
- Air fryers usually cook food in less time, so a side dish that might take 30 minutes in the oven, can be ready in almost half the time in an air fryer.
- They free up valuable oven space, which is especially important if you’re cooking a big meal and need your oven space for main dishes.
- It’s also a great alternative to using your oven when the days are hot and you just don’t want to turn on your oven.
- You can get crispy food, like french fries or tortilla chips, with minimal oil.
- It’s also a delicious way to roast up veggies that are fork tender with caramelized edges.
What type of air fryer do you recommend?
For most of my recipes, I use a Philips air fryer with a 2.75 quart capacity. I’m usually cooking for two, so this size works well for me. I also have a Cuisinart air fryer/convection/toaster oven, which is essentially a toaster oven with a built in air fryer. It has a larger air frying surface than the Philips, so it’s perfect for preparing double batches of side dishes. It usually gets used when I’m preparing a meal for a crowd.
Air fryer brands will differ slightly in operation (for example, some need to preheat, while others don’t) and they also come in different sizes and capacity. That’s why I always note in my recipes that depending on the make and model of your air fryer, you may need to adjust the temperature and air frying time slightly.