After several uses, Actifry™ owners start facing the issue of how to keep the paddle clean.
The issue can be that food becomes baked onto the paddle during cooking.
Here are a few comments from Actifry owners about the topic, to let you know you are not alone in wondering about this:
“The paddle gets greasy and although I soak the parts of the appliance that are removable, it never really comes up clean. I don’t have a dishwasher but saying that, I would be reluctant to place the parts into a dishwasher are they are quite flimsy.”  18 Jul 2011. Amazon Review Comment. Retrieved August 2014.
“Only thing against is I can’t get the paddle really clean – tried soaking in soda crystal solution which loosened it a bit but it’s got quite a few crooks and crannies that I can’t reach, so still use it as it is!!!”  16 Oct 2013. Amazon Review Comment. Retrieved August 2014.
Food can particularly become baked on when you are making dishes such as risottos and curries; crispy bits from potatoes can also get caked on when you are making fries and roast potatoes.
Some users suggest using oven cleaner:
But I would be worried about the caustic chemicals of the oven cleaner, which are meant for metal, weakening the plastic of the paddle.
The best method of cleaning baked-on stuff away seems to be to simply soak the paddle in water for about half an hour or longer; most of the built up stuff should just fall off after that. The stuff that truly is baked on, in a layer, you can go at it with a scrub brush.
Some users suggest after a soak, scraping the paddle with a knife:
But I’d be worried in general about scraping the surface of the paddle and making it even less non-stick than it has already become.
Another issue uses ask about is that the plastic of the paddle will discolour over time.
PLEASE – how do I clean the discoloured paddle??”
“Cannot think of anything. Because it is so fragile, if you put extra pressure. IT WILL BREAK. SORRY.”
“Robert, I think the short answer is that you can’t get the discolouration off the paddle – it goes discoloured and stays that way I am afraid. I know it does not look nice, but as long as it is clean it will be OK. As [noted], don’t put too much pressure on it. Sorry. ”  4 May 2012. Amazon Review Comments. Retrieved August 2014.
Cleaning the inside of a paddle
While I am leery of using a knife to scrape the outside of a paddle, the tip of a knife is sometimes useful for digging out food (such as rice) that has got trapped in the hollow spaces inside the paddle. The inside of the family-sized Actifry can be particularly challenging to clean, because they made it like the inside of a nautilus shell, with lovely small compartments for food to get trapped in. I’m not sure what the purpose of this design is; it sure isn’t to make clean-up any easier.
By comparison, the inside of the regular-size Actifry is a breeze to clean, with fewer compartments inside.
My Advice about Cleaning an Actifry Paddle
My advice is to approach thinking about an Actifry paddle, the way you would think about a cast iron frying pan, a bread pan, or a wooden spoon.
If you want a paddle for display as a showpiece, then mount it unused on the wall and order a second paddle for actual use. Otherwise, know that in daily use, it is going to start to look seasoned and battleworn. It is, after all, a very hard-working tool.
Wooden spoons acquire a patina with use; so too does an Actifry paddle.
Cast iron frying pans acquire a certain amount of built-up, baked-on food on their surfaces over time. So too does your Actifry paddle. That being said, I’m not sure that the baked-on food layer necessarily helps to make the paddle non-stick, the way it does a cast iron frying pan….
I will clean an Actifry paddle with a plastic scrub brush or plastic scouring pad after soaking, but never with a metal Brillo / SOS pad. (Tip: If you use an Actifry for several sessions in a row without cleaning the paddle in between, it will be harder to clean and require a longer soak at the end.) And, I will use the tip of a knife to ensure all gunge is out of the interior of the paddle.
I would never bang a paddle or immerse a hot paddle into water. T-fal maintains that paddles normally only break if weakened outside of normal usage: “Jack Williams (Customer Relations Department Team Leader at Tefal), who stated that the paddles usually only break after impact damage or thermal shock.”  As per user review. 1 Jul 2013. Amazon Review Comment. Retrieved August 2014.
I also don’t worry about tossing the paddle in the dishwasher, if the dishwasher will be running before I need the paddle again. I’d say my paddles get cleaned in the dishwasher about 25% of the time.
But I’ve long since ceased to worry about returning a paddle to it’s brand-new pristine state and colouring. In fact, I’d be worried that too much heavy hacking away at a paddle would weaken it and shorten its life span. (I’ve never had one break on me yet, in 4 years, touch wood.)
And, personally, I would suspect that a pristine-looking paddle probably comes from a neglected and underused Actifry! Here’s a shot of one of my 4-year-old paddles!
* Actifry™ is a registered trademark of SEB, France.
|↑1||16 Jan 2014. Amazon Review Comment. Retrieved August 2014.|
|↑2||18 Jul 2011. Amazon Review Comment. Retrieved August 2014.|
|↑3||16 Oct 2013. Amazon Review Comment. Retrieved August 2014.|
|↑4||31 Oct 2013. Amazon Review Comment. Retrieved August 2014.|
|↑5||10 Feb 2014. Amazon Review Comment. Retrieved August 2014.|
|↑6||4 May 2012. Amazon Review Comments. Retrieved August 2014.|
|↑7||As per user review. 1 Jul 2013. Amazon Review Comment. Retrieved August 2014.|