Why You Shouldn't Bake Your Pies in an Air Fryer

Oven management is one of the hardest parts of cooking a Thanksgiving meal. If you’re fresh out of oven space and still have one pie left to bake, it’s only natural to start making eyes at your trusty air fryer, but that’s not a good idea. That’s because a pie is basically an open or semi-open pool of liquid contained by two layers of solids — crust and pie pan. For the center to cook through, you want to heat the whole shebang from all sides. Unfortunately, air fryers heat from the top down and blow the resulting hot air around with a fan. There’s no bottom heating element at all. Baking a pie in an air fryer is like warming up a swimming pool by pointing at hair dryer at the surface. The top inch or two might heat up a little, but you can forget about the sides and the bottom. That’s what will happen to your poor little doomed pie if you toss it into an air fryer. Even if you’re willing to take your chances, there’s one more thing to consider. By the time the pie is done — if it ever is — you’ll be left with a puddle of butter and filling overflow dripping out of the doors and onto the counter. If an undone pie isn’t enough to sway you, maybe the mess factor will be the final nail in the air fryer pie coffin.