Garlic bread is arguably the ultimate accompaniment for any type of dish. But, not a lot of us have time to make this delicious side from scratch anymore. So what do we do?
Well, either you make a couple of loaves in advance and freeze them, or for those extra busy weeks, we simply buy frozen store-made garlic bread.
So, how do you cook frozen garlic bread in an air fryer? To cook garlic bread in an air fryer, simply place the slices inside and heat the appliance to 370°F (188°C). Cook the bread for 5-7 minutes, checking to make sure it doesn’t burn. Let it cool for 2-3 minutes before serving.
Today, we will be looking at exactly how air fryers work, how they can cook frozen store-bought and homemade garlic bread, and why this is the preferred method we chose.
We will also of course discuss the many pros and a few cons they have. Let’s dive in!
How Do Air Fryers Work?
If you’ve missed the whole air fryer craze, don’t worry, we’ve got you covered! Air fryers may seem intimidating and extremely fancy, but they are actually made to be convenient and easy to use.
The name might be a little misleading as it implies greasy foods; however, what makes them so unique is that you get extra crispy food without having to fry it. This is all thanks to its very unique design and the way the appliance functions.
An air fryer works using two main parts: a heating element and a fan. Think of it as a countertop convection oven with a few tweaks.
The air fryer is designed to hold food in an enclosed chamber. This is where the heating element lies.
Thanks again to technology, this element has been designed to heat at an extremely quick pace to very high temperatures – it only takes a couple of minutes to reach its max temperature!
Depending on the air fryer model (and believe us, there are a ton!) this can be as high as 480°F.
Then, while the element is heating, a fan built into the fryer helps distributes the heat evenly throughout the chamber.
This distribution of extremely hot air at an extreme rate is what helps make the food so incredibly crispy – all without a drop of greasy oil! This ultimately means you have a much healthier product without sacrificing delicious texture.
Another great bonus to using air fryers is that they work much faster compared to regular deep-fryers and they also heat much faster than convection ovens.
How To Cook Pre-Packaged Frozen Garlic Bread
So, now we finally get to the garlic bread goodness! Very few people have time to make homemade garlic bread from scratch.
However, what’s very easy and convenient is grabbing one of those pre-packaged frozen garlic breads from the store! This way you can still enjoy your mouth-watering side without the effort.
But, can you even cook pre-packaged frozen garlic bread in an air-fryer? Luckily, it is arguably one of the easiest ways to cook it! The air fryer helps ensure that you get an uber crispy outer layer with a soft fluffy buttery inside.
All that you have to do is place the garlic bread inside the chamber, ensuring it isn’t overcrowded and put the fryer on to the correct temperatures.
You can look at the packages’ instructions regarding baking temperatures and times, and even whether or not you should defrost the garlic bread before baking it.
Different brands have obviously developed different recipes and ways their product is prepared at its best.
A good frame of reference if the package doesn’t specify is to set your air fryer to 370°F and cook the garlic bread for roughly 5-7 minutes. Check the bread after 5 minutes to make sure it isn’t burning.
Tips For Cooking Frozen Store-Bought Garlic Bread
Depending on the shape and size of your store-bought frozen garlic bread, you may want to slice it into a few sections to help it fit into your specific air fryer.
Most frozen garlic breads already come pre-sliced though, so you probably just have to pull it into a few sections.
It is also important to lightly spray the air frying basket to prevent the bread from sticking to it when it’s cooking. Make sure you use an air-fryer-safe spray that won’t damage your appliance.
Also, never overcrowd an air fryer. This will prevent the garlic bread pieces from cooking evenly and from getting nice and crispy. Rather work in small batches. Remember, the air fryer doesn’t take as long compared to regular ovens!
How To Cook Homemade Frozen Garlic Bread
Okay, so maybe you squeezed in a quick bread-baking session over the weekend, or simply made a large batch and decided to freeze it.
Reheating homemade frozen garlic bread is just as easy and convenient compared to store-bought bread. One thing we do have to say is that for some reason, homemade garlic bread often takes a bit less time to fully heat.
Probably because there are much fewer artificial ingredients and preservatives in homemade garlic bread, and maybe even because usually homemade versions are denser and thicker.
Whatever the reason may be, still check on it after 5 minutes to keep it from burning.
Again, make sure to portion it so that it fits into your air frying basket, and please don’t overload it.
Definitely set the temperature lower when reheating homemade frozen garlic bread. We would say to about 370°F. This is because homemade garlic bread is made using real butter, not the artificial type commercial breads are made with.
Those types of butter are made to withstand high temperatures and thus take longer to melt and become soft.
So, set your air fryer to a lower temperature and bake the bread for roughly 4-6 minutes. Always check the bread to ensure it is crispy enough before completely removing it.
How Air Fryers Affect the Food
As we already know, garlic bread comes out of the air fryer perfectly! It stays gooey and moist on the inside, full of butter and garlicky goodness, while still being crunchy on the outside. The best of both worlds!
But how does it compare to other methods? There’s always the good old-fashioned conventional oven and the trusty microwave!
Reheating frozen garlic bread in a traditional convection oven yields similar results to an air fryer; however, it takes much longer.
The oven first needs to preheat and because it is larger than an air fryer, this takes quite some time.
And, then there’s always the hassle of cleaning the oven tray. Air fryer baskets are much easier to clean than oven trays and they don’t usually burn as much as the trays.
Microwaves are not always the go-to method when reheating frozen bread, especially buttery bread like this.
One of the biggest downfalls is that microwaves make the garlic bread soggy, especially if it has to be microwaved for a longer period of time.
Microwaves work through electromagnetic waves that target water molecules in the food to heat up. And we all know what happens to the water that heats up: steam!
Steam makes food soft and soggy, which is why microwaves don’t crisp up frozen garlic bread.
Pros Of Using Air Fryers
Since air fryers have been taking the world by storm it must have more than a few pros to it! Air fryers are designed for the modern, busy, working-class of society.
The biggest pro is that air fryers work extremely fast and efficiently.
You don’t have to first thaw the bread, you don’t have to wait forever for the fryer to pre-heat, and the overall cooking time is also much shorter because of the effective technology that is used.
These appliances are also very easy to use. All you have to do is set the correct temperature and time, put your garlic bread inside and wait for it to finish.
The air fryer will automatically shut off once the timer has run out, preventing the bread from burning.
Another great benefit that not many people think about or consider is that air fryers don’t have any hot spots.
Ovens on the other hand can sometimes be a nightmare! You have to constantly monitor your food, change the rack level and even try to prevent the food from burning in certain areas.
They are also much safer to use compared to ovens and don’t take up as much kitchen space! You have a lower risk of burning yourself on the handle (even though you should still keep in mind that the inside basket is still very hot).
Another thing that makes air fryers convenient and easy to use is that they tend to be made from non-stick materials – this also contributes to easy clean-up. You can simply wipe the basket out with a damp cloth.
And finally, one of the best aspects of owning and using an air fryer is the astonishingly easy clean-up!
You can use it as much as you want and all you have to clean is the inside basket or drip tray – that’s it! No more hours of scrubbing and cleaning!
Cons Of Using Air Fryers
How can a machine that is this handy have any cons? Well, most of the cons air fryers have are usually due to negligence; however, there are some other downsides, unfortunately.
If you don’t do proper research, especially on cooking times, they can burn your food very easily. This makes sense if you consider the fact that what makes them great (their instant high temperatures) is what can make them annoying.
To avoid this, simply make sure to check how long and at what temperatures you should cook your food, and to also regularly check your item to ensure you don’t end up with a piece of charcoal.
Another downside (that can be prevented) is that air fryers can dry out your food too much. This happens because of the lack of oil which acts as an almost protective layer or rather, an insulation layer.
You can add an extra knob of butter to your garlic bread if it’s starting to look a bit dry, or simply brush it with a bit of olive oil before putting it inside.
Only add the extra butter to the garlic bread after it has been inside for a while, otherwise, it’s just going to melt off.
Air fryers are also an additional appliance that will take up counter space. While this may not be the biggest con, what is very inconvenient is its size.
Even the smallest-sized air fryers are still pretty bulky – this again, makes sense because it is essentially a convection oven.
And what makes this bulky size even worse is that the appliance itself cannot even hold that much product.
If you thought that you would be able to fit a whole loaf of garlic bread inside, think again. Unless you have the biggest air fryer (and maybe not even then) you won’t fit a whole loaf.
This means you might spend an equal amount of time heating a whole loaf in a small fryer compared to simply putting it in the oven. Not to mention all the extra labor!
Now that we’ve gone over how you can cook frozen garlic bread in the air fryer, let’s take a look at a few related questions on the subject!
How long can frozen garlic bread be stored in the freezer?
Garlic bread freezes very well! Make sure to seal them tightly in freezer bags or wrap them individually in wax paper. Your garlic bread will last up to 6 months in the freezer if you store it properly!
Does the size of the garlic bread influence the time and temperature of the cooking process?
Yes! Smaller pieces of garlic bread like slices will cook faster than whole pieces like a loaf.
Make sure to reduce the cooking time for slices by a minute or two, especially if the slices are extra thin! The article’s cooking time is based on medium-sized slices.
Can you reheat previously cooked garlic bread in the air fryer?
So, maybe you’re left with a few pieces of leftover garlic bread and you want to heat it up again.
Simply pop it back in the air fryer with a tiny knob of butter and set the air fryer to a lower temperature (300°F) for about 1-2 minutes.
Just make sure to check on the bread after a minute, it’s already cooked, you just want to reheat it.
- 1 loaf of frozen garlic bread
- Portion your garlic bread out in your air fryer. Be careful not to overcrowd the air fryer as this can potentially lead to burnt bread.
- Set your air fryer to 370°F.
- Cook for about 5-7 minutes. If it's not done after 7 minutes, heat for another 3-5 minutes, checking on it constantly to keep it from burning.
- Take out of air fryer and let cool for 2-3 minutes.
- Serve and enjoy!
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