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How to cook bratwurst in an air fryer

How to cook bratwurst in an air fryer

Often when you look up how to cook something, you’ll come up with recipes that use grills, ovens, stovetops, and microwaves. However, you can also see many recipes that use the air fryer.

In fact, this kitchen appliance is quickly becoming one of the most popular kitchen gadgets because it is convenient and easy to use.

The air fryer allows you to cook things without needing to fry them in fat or oil, which means less mess and less fat on your food.

How do you cook bratwurst in an air fryer? To cook bratwurst in an air fryer, set the air fryer to 350°F and place the sausage on a parchment-lined air fryer tray for about 15 minutes. Different air fryers may cook slightly faster or slower, so be sure to account for differences in temperature or time. 

In this guide, we will share with you the step by step instructions on how to cook bratwursts in the air fryer. We’ve got all the details and tips and tricks to help you make the best bratwursts.

Whether you use a basket air fryer or one that resembles a mini oven with racks and trays, we’ve got you covered!

Stick with us to learn how to cook bratwursts in an air fryer and much more.

Instructions for cooking bratwurst in an air fryer

Do you have an air fryer that you want to use more of or maybe you are thinking of trying new things in the air fryer? Foods like hot dogs are super easy to cook in the air fryer and come out absolutely delicious.

They will have a crispy exterior with an interior that is still juicy and flavorful. This method rivals the traditional method of pan-frying, only without all the added fat!

Here are the basic step-by-step instructions for cooking bratwurst in an air fryer.

  • Prepare the sausages in your air fryer. Most packages of hot dogs contain 5, which should fit nicely side by side in a basket or on a rack air fryer. Try to space them out a bit, but it’s okay if they touch, as long as you can get them horizontal. 
  • Set your air fryer temperature to 350°F.
  • Set the air fryer time to 15 minutes (or you can start with 6 and then start a new timer when you flip them over).
  • Start the cooking process and let the sausages cook for 6 minutes without touching them. 
  • At 6 minutes, flip all sausages to the other side. 
  • Return the sausages to the same temperature and cook another 6 minutes. 
  • Check the sausages to see if they are done. If you want them to cook a bit longer, pop them back in for another 2-3 minutes. 

In this interval, your sausages should be perfectly browned and have some crispy spots, almost like a grill would cook them. They will also be juicy and flavorful.

You can use covers in your air fryer if you are concerned about the natural fat in the meat as well. We recommend that you let the sausages rest for 3-5 minutes after air frying. Afterwards, you can serve them however you like and enjoy!

The best thing about bratwursts is that once cooked, you can keep them in the fridge for 2-3 days.

You can use them for any meal or any snack and they work well. Some people like to use them for breakfast.

If you need a way to determine if your bratwursts are cooked through, you can always test the internal temperature, which should be 160°F.

Is the air fryer better than the grill or oven?

So why would people want to air fry their bratwursts? There are a number of reasons why bratwurs are perfect for cooking in an air fryer.

Let’s look at these reasons why you might want to try the air fryer to cook your bratwursts, and what you can expect.


One of the most important things you’ll notice when cooking bratwursts in the air fryer is timing.

If you factor in prep time and “rest” time (which is totally optional, but you should always let meats rest after cooking), dinner will be ready in less than 30 minutes. 

It takes very little time to remove the sausages from the packaging they are in and put them in the fryer. From there, you just have to press a couple of buttons to start cooking them.

Within 12-15 minutes, you have perfectly cooked and delicious sausages.

Although we recommend letting them rest for a few minutes before serving, this is optional. Normally you can use those 5 minutes of rest to finish preparing the things to serve them.

If you think this sounds too easy to be true, think again! It’s fast, it’s easy and it’s true.

Now, what about other cooking methods? When you cook bratwursts in the oven, they take at least 20 minutes to cook and sometimes longer, so that time is double and possibly triple if you think about the whole process.

For example, when you preheat the oven, you can allow about 10 minutes of preheating.

If you add the cooking time, you will be adding between 20 and 30 minutes. And then if you let your bratwursts sit, that’s another 5 minutes at the end.

Although bratwursts don’t necessarily take very long to cook in the oven, they do take longer than they do in the deep fryer.

In the oven, preheating needs to take almost as long as the cooking processes for items like this that don’t actually take that long to cook.

In total, you should allow a minimum of about 40 minutes to cook bratwursts in the oven. 

And what about the grill? It’s a similar story. You will need to preheat your grill. The duration of this process will probably depend on your grill.

Some grills can take a long time to preheat, especially charcoal grills where you have to prime the charcoal to get the grill piping hot.

Sausage grilling recipes recommend slow roasting, which will take about 20 minutes to grill to perfection. Of course, don’t forget the 5 minute rest at the end.

You’ll notice again that the cooking time really isn’t very long, but preheating the grill takes almost as long as cooking on the grill.

This is where the air fryer comes in handy. It is much faster if you take into account the total time. 

This is one of the biggest draws to the air fryer.


There’s nothing like a pork sausage cooked on the grill. Grilling caramelizes them and makes them tasty and juicy. The good news is that the air fryer can do something very similar.

Although the air fryer doesn’t perfectly mimic the smoky flavor of the grill, we don’t think you’ll miss the flavor too much, because the flavor in the air fryer is really just as good as when you cook them on the grill.

With the juiciness and flavor of frying, it will come very close to the flavor of the grill as well.  It’s amazing how flavorful bratwursts are in the air fryer when you compare them to how they taste on the grill. 

The unique process of air frying brings out the juices and what you’ll find is that the end result is very similar to grilled bratwurs.

When you prepare bratwursts in the oven, you still get the juicy flavor, but it’s not comparable to air frying or grilling. If you want our opinion, the air fryer is superior and we think the flavor is something you’ll appreciate too.


Lastly, one of the reasons why the air fryer is a great option is its comfort.

It is a simple device that you can use for many things. It simply sits on the counter in your home. You don’t have to worry about heating up the house like with an oven and you don’t have to worry about making a grill dirty.

It’s quick and easy, with just a few buttons and turning the sausages halfway through the cooking process. 

If you think about it, it doesn’t get any easier than that!

Air Fryer Liners

Some people like to use air fryer liners because it helps cut down on some of the mess and just makes cleanup easier. This is totally optional.

We recommend purchasing liners made for this purpose or being very careful about creating holes in the paper. Most are silicone mats with vent holes or parchment paper with round vent holes.

The holes are there to allow air to flow through them, so you shouldn’t avoid or skip this addition.

You can use your own parchment paper, but make sure it won’t block or hinder airflow, as this could affect the outcome of your meal.

If you need a good liners option, take a look at this.

We hope you found this guide to cooking bratwursts in the air fryer a valuable resource. It is very easy and we believe that in the end your sausages will turn out delicious.

Take a look at the following Q&A section to see if there is anything you might find useful.

Can hot dogs be reheated in the air fryer?

Yes of course you can! If your hot dogs are already cooked and you just want to warm them up without getting soggy, pop them in the air fryer.

We recommend cooking them at 350°F for about 7 minutes. You can also flip them halfway. 

Can you use aluminum foil in the air fryer?

You can use aluminum foil, but it is not highly recommended. It’s best to use something like parchment paper in your air fryer as it works much better for the cooking process and doesn’t pose any risk. 

Can you cook frozen sausage in the air fryer?

Yes, you can cook the hot dogs frozen or thawed and it won’t change the process much.

It will probably take 2-5 minutes longer to cook them when frozen, but you can follow the same process as long as you flip them in the center. You can also flip them one more time, but it’s not necessary