Homemade Air Fryer Tater Tots are worth the effort and use less grease than deep frying them. Serve them with dipping sauce or use in your favorite recipes.
Homemade tater tots require only a few simple ingredients that you likely have in your pantry. You can make them in less than 40 minutes and yes, the best part is that air fryer tater tots aren’t deep fried. Homemade tater tots are delicious when they’re made in the air fryer because you get some of that fried crunchiness without the excess grease.
If you don’t have an air fryer yet, you’re going to want one ASAP because we have a ton of tasty air fryer recipes. The one I have is no longer available but this is the one Christine uses and loves.
What are tater tots?
Tater Tots are made from grated potatoes and can be served as a side dish or in place of french fries. They are often deep fried like in this recipe for Homemade Tater Tots, but they can also be baked or air fried. Tater tots are small with an oval shape and crispy outer layer.
How do you get that tater tot shape?
The potato mixture might be sticky but it will still be workable with your hands. How sticky the mixture is often depends on the type of potatoes you use. The best way to shape them is to wet your hands occasionally as you shape them. Scoop about 1 tablespoon of potato mixture and form a tater tot into a cylindrical shape with your hands. You can also use 2 tablespoons of potatoes to make bigger tater tots.
Can you freeze them?
The simple answer is yes. There are some important things to note about this. Freshly made tater tots cooked in the air fryer right away taste the best, so this is the option I recommend.
However, if you want to make the tater tots ahead of time and freeze them, you can do so either cooked or uncooked. Once you shape the raw potato mixture into tots, place them side by side on a baking sheet lined with parchment paper. Then freeze until solid (4+ hours) before packaging them together.
How do you cook them from frozen in the air fryer?
Directions for Frozen Uncooked Tater Tots
Place frozen uncooked tater tots in the air fryer basket then set temperature to 400°F and the time for 15 minutes. If they are still cold inside, add an extra 2 – 3 minutes to cook. The easy way to know they are done is when the temperature inside them reaches 140°F when checked with an instant read thermometer like this one. These tater tots tend to be much softer than if they were cooked fresh or heated from pre-cooked then frozen.
Directions for Frozen Cooked Tater Tots
Place frozen cooked tater tots in the air fryer basket, set the temperature to 400°F and the time for 10 minutes. These tater tots have a thicker outer layer from being cooked before they were frozen so they have slightly harder/drier texture than when you make the tater tots the same day you make the potato mixture.
What dipping sauce should you use?
Of course, ketchup is a go-to sauce! However, there are other sauces that can be used like mayonnaise, honey mustard, or barbecue sauce.
- 2 lbs. potatoes, peeled
- 1 and 1/2 tsp. salt, divided
- 1 Tbsp. cornstarch
- 1 tsp. garlic powder
- Cooking spray
- Place potatoes in a large pot, cover with cold water, and add 1 teaspoon salt. Bring to boil, reduce the heat to medium, cook for 6-8 minutes. Drain potatoes, then cool.
- Use a box grater to finely grate potatoes.
- Place grated potatoes in a large bowl, add 1/2 tsp. salt, cornstarch, and garlic powder and mix well.
- Wet your hands and form tater tots. You should get approximately 20 – 25 small tater tots, but it will depend how big you form them.
- Place a few tater tots in the air fryer basket so they aren’t touching, then spray with cooking spray. Turn the temperature to 400°F and set the time for 8 minutes.
- If your air fryer is small you will have to cook the tater tots in batches.