The Ultimate Guide To Cooking Corned Beef In An Air Fryer

corned beef air fryer recipe

Corned beef is a flavorful and tender meat that can be enjoyed in a variety of dishes, from sandwiches to hearty stews. Traditionally, corned beef is prepared by boiling, but have you ever considered using your air fryer to give it a twist? In this comprehensive guide, we will delve into the wonderful world of cooking corned beef in an air fryer. We’ll explore the food science behind it, discuss culinary details, offer tips and variations, and provide a mouthwatering recipe. Let’s get started!

Food Science: Why Cook Corned Beef in an Air Fryer

Corned beef is usually tough and chewy due to the presence of connective tissues and collagen. However, cooking it in an air fryer can help break down these tough fibers and render the meat tender. The hot circulating air in the air fryer creates the perfect environment for browning and crisping the exterior, while the interior becomes moist and succulent.

Selecting the Perfect Corned Beef Brisket

Before diving into the cooking process, it’s essential to choose the right corned beef brisket for your air fryer endeavor. Here are a few tips to keep in mind while selecting your meat:

  1. Quality: Opt for high-quality corned beef that has been properly cured. Look for well-marbled briskets with a good balance of fat for enhanced flavor.

  2. Size: Consider the size of your air fryer when selecting the brisket. Ensure it fits comfortably without overcrowding the basket. A 3 to 4-pound brisket is usually a good choice for most air fryers.

Cleaning and Preparing Your Air Fryer

corned beef

Maintaining cleanliness in your kitchen is a crucial step before cooking any meal. Here’s how to clean and prepare your air fryer for the corned beef adventure:

  1. Cleaning: Follow the manufacturer’s instructions to detach all removable parts and wash them with warm soapy water. Wipe the interior and exterior of the air fryer with a damp cloth.

  2. Preheating: Preheat your air fryer to around 350°F (175°C). This step is essential to ensure the even distribution of heat during cooking.

Preparing the Corned Beef Brisket

corned beef

Now that your air fryer is ready, it’s time to prepare the corned beef brisket. Follow these steps for a delicious outcome:

  1. Rinsing: Rinse the brisket under cold water to remove any excess brine and reduce saltiness. Pat it dry with a paper towel.

  2. Seasoning: Prepare a spice rub by combining a mixture of coriander, black pepper, mustard seeds, and a touch of brown sugar. Rub the seasoning onto all sides of the brisket. Let it sit at room temperature for about 30 minutes to allow the flavors to penetrate the meat.

  3. Add Moisture: To prevent the meat from drying out during the cooking process, add some moisture. You can use a bit of water, beef broth, or even a splash of beer.

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Tips and Tricks for Cooking Corned Beef in an Air Fryer

close up view of air fried corned beef

To achieve the perfect corned beef in your air fryer, consider the following tips and tricks:

  1. Fat Side Up: When placing the brisket in the air fryer, position it with the fat side facing up. This allows the fat to melt and baste the meat, keeping it moist and tender.

  2. Tray or Foil: To simplify cleaning and prevent drippings from sticking to the bottom of your air fryer, consider using a tray or lining the basket with aluminum foil.

  3. Basting: Every 30 minutes, open the air fryer and carefully baste the corned beef with the accumulated juices. This ensures even cooking and adds extra flavor.

  4. Adjust Cooking Time: Cooking times may vary depending on the size of your brisket and air fryer model. Use a meat thermometer to determine doneness. For medium-cooked corned beef, aim for an internal temperature of 150°F (65°C).

Recipe: Air Fryer Corned Beef Perfection

close up view of air fried corned beef

Now that you’re equipped with essential knowledge and tips, let’s dive into the recipe:


  • 3-4 pounds corned beef brisket
  • 2 tablespoons coriander seeds
  • 1 tablespoon black peppercorns
  • 1 tablespoon mustard seeds
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • 1 cup water, beef broth, or beer (for added moisture)


  1. Preheat your air fryer to 350°F (175°C).

  2. Rinse the corned beef brisket under cold water and pat it dry with a paper towel.

  3. In a mortar and pestle or spice grinder, grind together the coriander seeds, black peppercorns, mustard seeds, and brown sugar to create a spice rub.

  4. Rub the spice mixture onto all sides of the brisket, ensuring an even coating.

  5. Place the seasoned brisket in the air fryer basket, fat side up, and pour the water, beef broth, or beer around it for added moisture.

  6. Cook the corned beef at 350°F (175°C) for approximately 1 hour per pound. Open the air fryer every 30 minutes to baste the meat with the accumulated juices.

  7. To check for doneness, insert a meat thermometer into the thickest part of the brisket. For medium-cooked corned beef, aim for an internal temperature of 150°F (65°C).

  8. Once cooked to your desired doneness, carefully remove the brisket from the air fryer and let it rest for 10-15 minutes before slicing.

  9. Slice the corned beef against the grain for maximum tenderness. Serve with your favorite sides, such as steamed vegetables, roasted potatoes, or sauerkraut.

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Variations and Serving Suggestions

While the recipe above is a fantastic starting point, don’t be afraid to get creative and experiment with different flavors and serving options. Here are a few variations and serving suggestions to consider:

  1. Glazed Corned Beef: During the last 15 minutes of cooking, brush the corned beef with a glaze made from a mixture of brown sugar, mustard, and apple cider vinegar. Let it caramelize in the air fryer for an irresistible sweet-savory twist.

  2. Corned Beef Reuben Sandwich: Thinly slice the air-fried corned beef and use it to create a mouthwatering Reuben sandwich. Layer the beef, Swiss cheese, sauerkraut, and Thousand Island dressing between two slices of toasted rye bread. Grill until the cheese melts and enjoy!

  3. Corned Beef Hash: Transform leftovers into a delightful breakfast or brunch dish by making corned beef hash. Chop the air-fried corned beef and combine it with diced potatoes, onions, and bell peppers in a skillet. Cook until crispy and golden, then serve with fried eggs on top.

Cleanup and Maintenance

After enjoying your scrumptious air-fried corned beef, it’s time to tackle the cleanup. Follow these steps for a breeze:

  1. Cooling: Allow the air fryer to cool down completely before cleaning.

  2. Removable Parts: Remove all detachable components and wash them with warm soapy water. Dry thoroughly before reassembling.

  3. Interior Cleaning: Wipe the interior of the air fryer with a damp cloth or sponge. For stubborn residue, use a mild detergent or baking soda paste.

  4. Exterior Cleaning: Wipe the exterior with a damp cloth to remove any grease or dirt. Dry with a clean cloth.

Regular cleaning and maintenance will ensure the longevity and optimum performance of your air fryer.


Cooking corned beef in an air fryer opens up a world of possibilities, transforming this traditional dish into a flavor-packed delight. With our comprehensive guide, you’re now equipped with the knowledge of food science, culinary details, cleaning and preparation, tips and tricks, and an irresistible recipe. So, fire up your air fryer, get ready to savor the tenderness, and let the aroma of air-fried corned beef fill your kitchen! Enjoy!

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  • FAQS On Corned Beef Air Fryer Recipe

    What Types Of Corned Beef Can Be Used For An Air Fryer Recipe?

    Brisket and round cuts are the most commonly used for corned beef air fryer recipes.

    Can I Cook Frozen Corned Beef In My Air Fryer?

    It is not recommended to cook frozen corned beef in an air fryer. Thaw it first before cooking.

    How Long Should I Cook Corned Beef In My Air Fryer?

    The cooking time varies depending on the size of the corned beef. Usually, it takes around 30-40 minutes for a 2-pound corned beef in an air fryer.

    Do I Need To Add Oil When Cooking Corned Beef In The Air Fryer?

    There is no need to add oil since the corned beef has enough fat to cook itself.

    Can I Add Vegetables To The Air Fryer While Cooking Corned Beef?

    Yes, adding vegetables like cabbage, carrots, and potatoes to the air fryer while cooking corned beef is a great idea.

    Is It Necessary To Preheat The Air Fryer Before Cooking Corned Beef?

    Preheating the air fryer is crucial for even cooking of corned beef. So, it is always recommended to preheat it before cooking.

    Can I Use A Marinade Or Rub For Corned Beef Before Cooking In The Air Fryer?

    Yes, you can use a dry rub or marinade to add flavor to the corned beef before cooking it in the air fryer.