Can you use Olive Oil in Air Fryer?- 4 REASONS You Should!

The question of whether you can use olive oil in an air fryer sparks a heated debate among cooking enthusiasts. Some argue that it’s not suitable due to olive oil’s relatively low smoke point.

However, I’m here to offer a different perspective.

Yes, You CAN use olive oil in your air fryer if you know how to use it effectively. If you cook with olive oil at temperatures lower than its smoke point, then you are good.

It’s worth noting that olive oil is commonly used for deep frying, which raises the question: If it can be used for deep frying, why not in an air fryer?

The internet can be a maze of conflicting viewpoints, which can make things confusing.

So, what is it?

Should you use olive oil in the air fryer?

And what is a smoke point, and why does it matter?

I would answer all these questions one by one, but first; it is essential to consider is that there are different types of olive oil one can use for cooking food.

What is the smoke point of an oil?

The smoke point of an oil refers to a temperature at which the oil starts to break down and produce visible smoke.

When an oil exceeds its smoke point, it can lead to unpleasant flavors, release harmful compounds, and produce smoke that can fill the kitchen.

Different oils have different smoke points due to variations in their chemical composition. Oils with higher smoke points are more stable at higher temperatures and are suitable for high-heat cooking methods like frying, searing, and stir-frying.

On the other hand, oils with lower smoke points are more prone to breaking down at high temperatures and are better suited for low to medium-heat cooking methods, such as sautéing or baking.


There are tons of olive oils available in the market these days, but personally, I stick to Extra Virgin Olive oil for all my cooking needs. Interestingly, some folks even use olive oil for frying.

So, which olive oil is actually the best for this purpose, and what factors make it a wise choice for frying?

Extra Virgin Olive Oil

Extra Virgin Olive oil is the go-to choice for a wide range of cooking applications.

With a smoke point ranging from 375 to 407°F, it’s perfect for drizzling over salads, as a delectable pizza topping, and even for cooking or light sautéing.

Extra Virgin Olive oil showcases a rich, deep golden to almost deep green color, and it holds the distinction of being the purest form of olive oil.

Can you use Olive Oil in Air Fryer

What sets it apart is its distinct olive-like flavor, which distinguishes it from the other olive oil varieties.

While it’s not typically recommended for high-heat cooking due to its tendency to evaporate quickly, it can still be used in an air fryer when cooking at temperatures below 400°F.

For deep frying, Extra Virgin Olive oil can be utilized since deep frying typically occurs between 330°F and 350°F. However, many consider refined olive oil to be a better option for frying purposes.

Virgin Olive Oil

Here we have another type of cold-pressed olive oil, distinguished by its lighter color compared to Extra Virgin Olive oil. It carries a slightly milder flavor profile compared to EVOO.

This particular olive oil boasts a smoke point of approximately 410°F. If given the option between this and Extra Virgin Olive oil, I would argue that EVOO is the healthier choice.

Extra Light Olive Oil/Refined Olive Oil

Refined olive oil undergoes additional processing, resulting in a lighter golden color compared to other varieties.

While it is well-suited for frying purposes, it is not considered as healthy as Extra Virgin Olive oil.

The refining process itself raises concerns in terms of overall health benefits. However, due to its refining, this oil boasts a higher smoke point, ranging from approximately 390 to 470°F.

Can you use Olive Oil in Air Fryer?

When it comes to using olive oil in an air fryer, I have my own preferences.

Personally, I reserve Extra Virgin olive oil for dishes that don’t require high heat.

Extra Virgin Olive Oil(EVOO)

If you’re cooking something at 400°F, I would suggest opting for alternative oils like sunflower or avocado.

Extra Virgin olive oil tends to be more expensive, so it’s best to reserve it for recipes that require temperatures below 375°F.

For most of my cooking, I like to blend olive oil with sunflower oil. However, when I know I’ll be cooking at higher temperatures, I switch to sunflower oil because it’s more affordable and easily accessible.

While sunflower oil may not be the healthiest choice, it’s worth exploring other options, such as avocado oil or even ghee, when using your air fryer for cooking.

Benefits of using olive Oil for cooking

Olive oil offers numerous health benefits. Firstly, it is rich in monounsaturated fats, which aid in lowering bad cholesterol levels and reducing the risk of heart disease.

Additionally, olive oil contains powerful antioxidants like vitamin E and phenolic compounds, which protect against oxidative stress and inflammation.

The polyphenols found in olive oil have anti-inflammatory effects, potentially benefiting conditions such as arthritis and inflammatory bowel disease.

It is also a good source of healthy fats necessary for brain function and the absorption of fat-soluble vitamins.

Olive oil supports digestive health, reduces the risk of digestive disorders, and can improve skin and hair health.

Its antioxidants contribute to skin moisture and can be used as a natural hair conditioner.

Furthermore, despite being calorie-dense, olive oil has a satiating effect that aids weight management by controlling appetite and preventing overeating.

Pros and cons of using olive oil in air fryer


1. Healthier Cooking

2. Enhanced Flavor and Aroma

3. Versatility

4. Rich in Anti-Oxidants


1. Expensive

2. Slightly lower smoke point.

Can you use Olive Oil Spray in the Air fryer?

Yes, you can use olive oil spray in an air fryer.

Now there are two ways that you can do this-

1. Use an Olive oil spray that is not aerosol. If you are wondering how you know if a can of oil spray is aerosol or not, then check out this very interesting post on using Pam in the air fryer. Just make sure that the ingredient list has ONLY olive oil and nothing else.

Can you use Olive Oil Spray in Air Fryer
Can you use Olive Oil Spray in Air Fryer

2. The second method is more straightforward, where you buy a reusable spray bottle and fill it up with olive oil.
This way, you do not have to keep on buying cans, and you refill the bottle with an oil of your choice.

Tips and tricks on using Olive oil in Air Fryer

1. Take care of the smoke point; if you are using EVOO, make sure not to cook above 370°F

2. You can brush, spray or toss your food before cooking it inside the air fryer. You do not always need an oil spray and can explore other ways to use olive oil in your air fryer cooking.

3. Choose the right kind of olive oil depending on the cooking temperature and take their different smoke points into consideration.

4. You can mix the olive oil with different seasonings and spread it on top of the food to get that extra flavor.

How much oil to use in Air Fryer?

You need very little oil to cook anything in an air fryer. I have never used more than 1 tbsp oil for frying food in an air fryer when cooking for 2-3 people.

Depending on the recipe, your oil requirement might vary, but it is very less compared to a deep fryer in comparison.

Alternatives to Olive Oil in air fryer cooking

It’s important to know that you don’t have to limit yourself to olive oil when cooking with an air fryer. There are several excellent alternatives worth considering. Here are a few options:

1. Avocado Oil – With a high smoke point of 570°F, avocado oil is my personal top choice for air frying.

Avacado Oil

It not only boasts a rich nutrient profile but also offers a subtle buttery flavor that sets it apart from other oils.

2. Ghee (Clarified Butter) – Coming in at a smoke point of 485°F, ghee is a favorite of mine. I make it at home and always have plenty on hand.

Its creamy and buttery texture adds a delightful touch, and it even offers benefits for skin and hair health.

3. Coconut Oil – Another healthy alternative is coconut oil, which has a smoke point of 450°F.

If you desire a subtle coconut flavor in your dishes, it’s worth trying.

The flavor is mild and pairs well with a variety of recipes.

4. Grapeseed Oil – Made from grape seeds, which are leftover from the wine-making process, grapeseed oil has a smoke point ranging from 390°F to 420°F.

It’s a popular choice for high-temperature cooking and frying. In addition to its versatility in the kitchen, it contains vitamin E, healthy fatty acids and offers various health benefits.


When it comes to selecting the healthiest oil for your air fryer, my top choices are avocado oil and ghee.

These oils not only offer great flavor but also have excellent cooking properties, making them my preferred healthy options.

That being said, I must admit that sometimes convenience wins, and I resort to using sunflower oil, which has a smoke point of 450°F.

It ultimately comes down to personal preference and the specific recipe you’re working with.


There’s a wide variety of oil sprays available in the market, and I have a recommendation that might interest you.

I suggest investing in a spray bottle you can fill with your preferred oil.

This way, you’ll only need to make a one-time investment, and you can clean and reuse the bottle with different oils as needed.

In my opinion, this is the best approach for oil spraying in air fryers.

However, if you prefer ready-to-use spray bottles, I have two favorite brands: 365 Whole Foods and La Tourangelle.

These brands offer spray bottles filled with 100 percent oil, ensuring authentic and high-quality cooking oil in a convenient spray form.

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