The perfect pork crackling is very crispy, but not smoky or burnt. The balance can be hard to strike, particularly if you’re not used to cooking pork or you’re using an older, more sensitive oven. There’s also another layer of added difficulty: you want the crackling crisp, but the pork nice and juicy. If you overcook the crackling, you’ll end up with hard, chewy pork. Luckily, there’s an answer: use an air fryer.
To prepare pork crackling for the air fryer, all you need to do is rub copious salt on that bad boy, let it sit and chuck it in the bottom of your air fryer to cook. It’s super simple, low effort and incredibly tasty.
For my purposes, I used a $573 Philips Air Fryer XXL. You don’t have to fork out that much for an air fryer that’ll do the job, but if you’re looking for the best (and easiest) results, the investment is worth it.
You’ll also need a meat thermometer, which should run you close to $15-30. (It’s also very handy for other recipes.)
Here’s how you can achieve the crispiest, best-tasting pork crackling of your life:
- Rub salt flakes onto your pork in a thin layer (smoked salt is a fantastic choice)
- Let it sit for 5-10 minutes
- Brush the pork with olive oil
- Stick a meat thermometer into your pork
- Line the air fryer’s basket with baking paper and place the pork in the basket
- Set the air fryer for 180 degrees Celsius and set the time based on your pork’s weight (for every 0.5 kilograms, add 25 minutes)
- In the cooking process, your pork’s internal temperature should hit 63 degrees Celsius (set the cooking timer for longer if needed)
- After the air fryer is done, let the pork sit for 5-10 minutes, then cut it
(Important note: When you’re putting baking paper into the air fryer, make sure you weigh it down. As I discovered the hard way, leaving the baking paper in an air fryer that’s still on will lead to the baking paper getting sucked up and melted into the heating element.)
After all this is done, you can kick back and enjoy the crunch.
See the full review of the Philips Air Fryer XXL.