Air fryers have become increasingly popular over the years for their ability to cook crispy and delicious meals with less oil than traditional frying methods. Among the many meals that can be made in an air fryer are sheet pan meals. For those who are not familiar with sheet pan meals, they are easy to make one-pan dishes where everything is cooked together on a single baking sheet. With the convenience of Bird's Eye frozen vegetables, creating healthy and delicious sheet pan meals in an air fryer has never been easier. In this article, we will cover everything you need to know about making Birds Eye sheet pan meals in an air fryer, including tips, tricks, and recipe ideas.
10 easy and healthy sheet pan meals for air fryer beginners
If you are new to air fryer cooking or just need some inspiration to get started, here are ten easy and healthy sheet pan meals to try. These recipes are great for weeknight dinners or meal prep.
1. Lemon herb chicken with roasted vegetables
To make this dish, marinate chicken breasts in a mixture of olive oil, lemon juice, garlic, and fresh herbs before cooking them on a sheet pan with your choice of vegetables such as Brussels sprouts, green beans, and carrots.
2. Shrimp fajitas with bell peppers and onions
Create a Mexican-inspired meal by tossing shrimp with fajita seasoning and cooking them with sliced bell peppers and onions. Serve with tortillas, avocado, and salsa for a complete meal.
3. Teriyaki salmon with roasted broccoli
For a healthy and flavorful meal, marinate salmon fillets in teriyaki sauce and cook them on a sheet pan with roasted broccoli. Serve with brown rice or quinoa for a complete meal.
4. BBQ chicken with sweet potato wedges and green beans
For a classic American meal, coat chicken thighs with BBQ sauce and bake them with sweet potato wedges and green beans until everything is crispy and delicious.
5. Mediterranean vegetable and chickpea bake
For a vegetarian option, combine chickpeas with roasted vegetables such as zucchini, eggplant, and cherry tomatoes. Season with Mediterranean spices like oregano, thyme, and basil for a full-flavored dish.
6. Honey mustard pork chops with asparagus and potatoes
Create a satisfying and balanced meal by seasoning pork chops with honey mustard and cooking them with asparagus and potatoes. The sweet and tangy sauce pairs perfectly with the savory vegetables.
7. Beef and broccoli stir-fry with rice
Instead of ordering takeout, make your own beef and broccoli stir-fry on a sheet pan. Coat strips of beef with soy sauce and sesame oil before cooking with broccoli florets. Serve with steamed rice for a complete meal.
8. Rosemary garlic lamb chops with roasted root vegetables
For a fancy but easy meal, season lamb chops with rosemary and garlic before cooking with roasted root vegetables such as carrots, parsnips, and turnips. The earthy flavors of the vegetables pair well with the juicy lamb.
9. Mushroom and spinach stuffed chicken with roasted tomatoes
For a twist on regular chicken, stuff chicken breasts with sauteed mushrooms and spinach before cooking on a sheet pan with roasted cherry tomatoes. The juicy and flavorful chicken is the perfect centerpiece to this dish.
10. Tuna steaks with roasted asparagus and cherry tomatoes
For a healthy and delicious seafood meal, season tuna steaks with salt and pepper before cooking on a sheet pan with roasted asparagus and cherry tomatoes. The fresh and light flavors pair perfectly with the tender tuna.
How to cook frozen vegetables perfectly in an air fryer
If you are using frozen vegetables from Bird's Eye, it is important to cook them correctly in the air fryer. Here are some tips to ensure your vegetables come out perfectly every time.
1. Do not thaw the vegetables
Frozen vegetables are already blanched before being frozen, so they do not need to be cooked before going in the air fryer. Cooking them directly from frozen will ensure they cook evenly and retain their texture.
2. Cut the vegetables into similar sizes
To ensure even cooking, cut the vegetables into similar sizes. This will allow them to cook at the same rate and prevent some pieces from becoming overcooked while others are undercooked.
3. Use a little bit of oil
While air fryers are designed to cook with little to no oil, adding a small amount of oil to the vegetables can help them crisp up and prevent sticking to the pan. Use a spray bottle or brush to lightly coat the vegetables with oil before cooking.
4. Season the vegetables
To add extra flavor to the vegetables, season them with your choice of herbs, spices, or sauces before cooking. This will allow the flavors to penetrate the vegetables and add depth to the dish.
One-pan chicken and vegetable dinner made easy with the air fryer
One of the best things about sheet pan meals is that they are easy to make and require less cleanup than traditional cooking methods. Here is a delicious and satisfying one-pan chicken and vegetable dinner that can be made in the air fryer.
- 4 chicken thighs
- 2 cups of broccoli florets
- 1 red bell pepper, sliced
- 1 yellow bell pepper, sliced
- 1 red onion, sliced
- 2 cloves of garlic, minced
- 1 teaspoon of paprika
- 1 teaspoon of dried oregano
- 1 tablespoon of olive oil
- Salt and pepper
- Preheat the air fryer to 375°F for 5 minutes.
- Season the chicken thighs with paprika, oregano, salt, and pepper. Rub the seasoning into the chicken with your hands.
- In a separate bowl, toss the broccoli florets, bell peppers, red onion, and minced garlic with olive oil, salt, and pepper.
- Arrange the chicken and vegetables on a sheet pan in a single layer.
- Cook in the air fryer for 20-25 minutes or until the chicken is cooked through and the vegetables are tender and lightly charred.
- Remove the sheet pan from the air fryer and let it cool for a minute before serving.
5 delicious vegetarian sheet pan meals you can make in an air fryer
Sometimes it can be hard to come up with vegetarian meal ideas that are both satisfying and easy to make. Fortunately, sheet pan meals are a great option for vegetarians as they allow for a lot of creativity and can be customized to personal preferences. Here are five delicious and easy vegetarian sheet pan meals to try.
1. Butternut squash and chickpeas with tahini sauce
Toss diced butternut squash and chickpeas with olive oil, salt, and pepper and roast them in the air fryer until tender. Serve with a drizzle of tahini sauce for a Middle Eastern-inspired meal.
2. Roasted vegetable and black bean enchiladas
Slice zucchini, bell peppers, and onions and toss them with your choice of Mexican seasoning before roasting in the air fryer. Use the roasted veggies to stuff tortillas with black beans and cheese for a delicious and filling meal.
3. Veggie-packed frittata
Whisk eggs with milk and your choice of diced vegetables such as mushrooms, bell peppers, and spinach before pouring the mixture onto a sheet pan. Bake in the air fryer until the frittata is set and golden brown.
4. Crispy tofu and roasted vegetables with peanut sauce
Cut extra-firm tofu into cubes and toss with cornstarch, salt, and pepper before baking in the air fryer until crispy. Serve with roasted vegetables such as broccoli, carrots, and bell peppers and a drizzle of peanut sauce for a delicious Asian-inspired meal.
5. Mediterranean roasted vegetable wrap
Toss sliced eggplant, zucchini, and bell peppers with olive oil and Mediterranean spices before roasting in the air fryer. Wrap the roasted veggies in a warm pita with hummus, tzatziki, and feta cheese for a flavorful and filling meal.
The benefits of using an air fryer for cooking sheet pan meals
There are many benefits to using an air fryer for cooking sheet pan meals. Here are some of the advantages of using this cooking method:
1. Less oil
When cooking in an air fryer, you only need a small amount of oil to achieve a crispy and delicious texture. This means you can enjoy your favorite fried foods without the guilt of excess oil and fat.
2. Even cooking
Air fryers use hot air to cook food, which means that the heat is distributed evenly across the entire sheet pan. This results in food that is cooked evenly with no hot spots or burnt edges.
3. Energy efficient
Compared to a conventional oven, air fryers use less energy to cook food, which can help reduce your electricity bill.
4. Easy cleanup
One of the best things about sheet pan meals and air fryer cooking is the easy cleanup. Most air fryer baskets and sheet pans are dishwasher safe, making cleanup a breeze.
Tips for getting the perfect crispy texture on your sheet pan meals in the air fryer
If you want to achieve a perfectly crispy texture on your sheet pan meals in the air fryer, follow these tips:
1. Use a non-stick spray or parchment paper
To prevent sticking and ensure even browning, use a non-stick spray or line your sheet pan with parchment paper before cooking.
2. Do not overcrowd the pan
To ensure everything cooks evenly and gets crispy, make sure not to overcrowd the pan. Give each ingredient enough space to cook and brown properly.
3. Toss the vegetables halfway through cooking
To ensure that the vegetables cook evenly and get a crispy texture, toss them halfway through cooking. This will prevent any vegetables from getting soggy and help them achieve a full char.
4. Increase the temperature at the end of cooking
If your sheet pan meal is almost done but not quite crispy, increase the temperature for the last few minutes of cooking. This will help to get a nice char on the food and create a delicious texture.
A complete guide to meal prepping with sheet pan meals in the air fryer
Meal prepping can be a lifesaver for busy weekdays when you do not have time to cook. Sheet pan meals are perfect for meal prepping because they can be made in advance and quickly reheated when you are ready to eat. Here is a complete guide to meal prepping with sheet pan meals in the air fryer.
1. Choose your recipes
Choose sheet pan meal recipes that use ingredients that will keep well in the fridge for a few days. Ingredients such as roasted vegetables, cooked meats, and grains are perfect for meal prepping.
2. Prepare the ingredients
Follow the recipe and prepare all of the ingredients, cutting them into similar sizes for even cooking. Toss the ingredients with oil and seasonings before baking them in the air fryer.
3. Store the meals
Once the sheet pan meals have cooled, portion them into meal prep containers with any additional sides such as grains or salads. Label the containers with the date and store them in the fridge for up to 4 days.
4. Reheat and enjoy
When you are ready to eat, simply reheat the meal in the microwave or oven until hot and crispy. Enjoy your delicious and nutritious sheet pan meal without any extra hassle!
How to make sheet pan breakfasts in the air fryer for a quick and healthy start to your day
Sheet pan meals are not just for dinner! You can also make delicious and healthy sheet pan breakfasts in the air fryer. Here are some ideas for easy and quick breakfasts to start your day right.
1. Breakfast burrito bowls
Toss diced sweet potatoes, bell peppers, and onions with olive oil and roast them in the air fryer until tender. Serve the roasted veggies with scrambled eggs, black beans, and avocado for a delicious and filling breakfast.
2. Greek yogurt and fruit parfait
Cut assorted fruit such as strawberries, blueberries, and peaches into small pieces and roast them in the air fryer until slightly caramelized. Layer the fruit with Greek yogurt and granola for a healthy and satisfying breakfast parfait.
3. Egg and veggie muffin cups
Whisk eggs with diced vegetables such as spinach, mushrooms, and tomatoes before pouring the mixture into muffin cups. Bake in the air fryer until set and golden brown for a convenient and nutritious breakfast on-the-go.
4. Breakfast pizza
Top a whole wheat pita with scrambled eggs, roasted vegetables, and shredded cheese