This article contains the FAQs for the FG500 Series Ninja® Foodi™ Smart XL Indoor Grill. This supports the following product SKUs FG550, FG551, FG551C, FG551H, FG551HBK, FG551HBL, FG551HCN, FG551HCO, FG551HEG, FG551Q, FG551QBLK, FG551QCN, FG551QCO and FG551QWH.

Are the coated accessories nonstick?

Yes, the cooking pot, grill grate, and crisper basket are all nonstick and have a ceramic coating that is dishwasher safe.

What is the capacity of the cooking pot?

The cooking pot can hold up to 6 quarts.

What is the capacity of the crisper basket?

The crisper basket can hold up to 4 quarts.

What is the capacity of the grill grate?

The grill grate is approximately 9"x12" and can hold 6 burgers.

Can I use parchment paper in the Ninja Foodi Grill?

Yes, you can use parchment paper in the Foodi Grill.

Can I use aluminum foil in the Ninja Foodi Grill?

Yes, you can use aluminim foil in the Foodi Grill just as you would in an outdoor grill.

What do the different cooking functions do and what is included on each model?

- Grill: Grill your foods indoors to create even char, grill marks, and flavor. - Air Crisp: Give your food crispiness and crunch with little to no oil. - Roast: Prepare tender meats, roasted vegetables, and more in the cooking pot. - Bake: Create cakes, baked treats, and more. - Dehyrate (not included on all models): Dehydrate meats, fruits, and vegetables for healthy snacks. - Broil: Add a crispy finishing touch to meals or melt cheese on sandwiches.

What are the timer increments?

The timer increments vary depending on the function: - Air Crisp: 1-minute increments up to 1 hour (when the cook temperature is 425F or 450F, you can adjust the time in 1-minute increments up to 30 minutes). - Roast: 1-minute increments for the first hour, followed by 5-minute increments for the next 3 hours. - Dehydrate (not included on all models): 15-minute increments up to 12 hours. - Bake: 1-minute increments for the first hour, followed by 5-minute increments for the next hour. - Grill: 1-minute increments up to 30 minutes. - Broil (not included on all models): 1-minute increments up to 30 minutes.

How do I know if the unit is on?

When the unit is powered on, the digital display will show 0:00 and all the function lights will be illuminated.

Do I need to preheat the unit? Can I cancel or skip preheating?

The unit will automatically begin preheating after the doneness or time/temperature is selected. It will take approximately 10 minutes for the unit to preheat when using the Grill function and approximately 3 minutes when using all other functions. "ADD FOOD" will display when preaheating is complete. You can open the hood and add your food. Although preheating is recommended, you can skip preheat by pressing the preheat button. "ADD FOOD" will display, then you can open the hood and add your food.

Will the outside of the unit get hot?

Although the outside of the unit will heat up during cooking, the control panel and hood handle will remain cool to touch.

Do I have to shake the crisper basket while cooking?

Yes. It is important to shake or rotate food for consistent browning and crispiness. For best results, follow the recipe or cooking chart to see how often you should shake or rotate ingredients while cooking.

Do I need to add oil to air crisp?

Although oil is not required, we recommend starting with 1 tablespoon and adjusting for personal preference, or referencing the recipe for proper oil amounts.

Can I remove the basket from the unit to check on food while the unit is running?

Yes, we recommend checking on food regularly during cooking. When you open the hood, the unit will pause. Use silicone-tipped tongs to toss ingredients or oven mitts to shake the basket. When done, replace the basket and close the hood. Cooking will automatically resume after hood is closed.

How do I set the temperature?

Use the up and down arrows to the left to adjust the cook temperature in any function. If you want to adjust the temperature at any time during cooking, press the up and down arrows to the left at any time. The unit will then resume cooking at that setting. If you are using the thermometer and would like the adjust the unit temperature, first press the function button (e.g., GRILL) then use the left up and down arrows to adjust temperature.

How do I set the timer?

Use the up and down arrows to the right of the display to adjust the cook time in any function. If you want to adjust the time during cooking, press the up and down arrows to the right at any time. The unit will then resume cooking at that setting.

How do I properly insert the thermometer?

Insert the thermometer horizontally into the center of the thickest part of the piece of protein (if cooking more than one piece see below), close to (but not touching) the bone. DO NOT insert the thermometer vertically or at an angle, as it will not deliver an accurate reading. ALWAYS insert it into the thickest part of the protein. USING THE THERMOMETER IN DIFFERENT COOKING SCENARIOS: Cooking 2 or more proteins of the same size to different levels of doneness: - Set the Preset feature to the highest desired level of doneness. - Insert the thermometer in the protein with the higher desried level of doneness. - After preheating, place proteins inside the grill. When the lower desired level of doneness is reached, remove the protein without thermometer. - Continue cooking the remaining protein until the next desired level of doneness is reached. Cooking 2 or more proteins of different sizes: - Insert thermometer in the smaller protein and use the Preset feature to choose the level of doneness. - When that protein is done cooking, remove it from the unit. - Using oven mitts, transfer thermometer to the larger protein and use the arrows to the left of the display to choose its level of doneness. Cooking 2 or more different types of protein: - Insert thermometer in the protein with the lower desired level of doneness. - Use the Manual feature to choose the desired internal temperature. - When that protein is done cooking, remove it from the unit. - Using oven mitts, transfer thermometer to the other protein and use the Manual feature to choose the desired internal temperature.

Where is the power button located?

The power button is located on the left side of the control panel. It will illuminate once plugged in.

Does the unit automatically pause when I open it?

Yes, the timer will automatically pause when the hood is opened and then automatically resume after it is closed.

How do I clean my unit using the dishwasher?

We recommend the following: The unit should be cleaned thoroughly after every use. Always let the appliance cool before cleaning. - Unplug the unit from the wall outlet before cleaning. Keep the hood open after removing your food to allow the unit to cool quicker. - The cooking pot, grill grate, crisper basket, splatter shield, cleaning brush, and any other included accessories are dishwasher safe, except the thermometer. DO NOT place the thermometer or unit base in the dishwasher. - If food residue or grease are stuck on the grill grate, splatter shield, or any other removable part, soak in warm soapy water before cleaning. - For the best dishwasher cleaning results, we recommend rinsing the grill grate, crisper basket, splatter shield, and any other accessories with warm water before placing them in the dishwasher. - DO NOT wash the main unit in the dishwasher.

How do I clean the splatter shield?

We recommend the following: - Clean the splatter shield after every use. Soaking the splatter shield overnight will help soften the baked-on grease. After soaking, use the cleaning brush to remove the grease from the stainless steel frame and front tabs. - Deep clean the splatter shield by putting it in a pot of water and boiling it for 10 minutes. Then, rinse with room temperature water and allow to dry completely. Over time the splatter shield may discolor as grease burns onto it. This will not effect the performace of the splatter shield.

How do I clean the Foodi Smart Thermometer?

To deep clean the thermometer, soak the stainless steel tip and silicone grip in warm, soapy water. -DO NOT immerse the cord or jack in water or any other liquid. -The Foodi Smart Thermometer holder is hand-wash only. -NOTE: DO NOT use liquid cleaning solution on or near the thermometer jack. We recommend using compressed air or a cotton swab to avoid damaging the jack.

Should I place ingredients in the unit before or after preheating?

For best results, add ingredients after the unit has preheated. The display will read "ADD FOOD" when the unit is preheated.

Do I need to defrost frozen foods before grilling them?

No, you can cook all your favorite ingredients on the Foodi Grill straight from the freezer.

How do I pause the countdown timer?

The countdown timer will pause automatically when you open the hood of the unit. Please note that pressing the START/STOP button during cooking will cancel the current cooking function.

Is it safe to place the crisper basket and pot on my countertop?

Place the crisper basket and pot on heat-safe surfaces only and use caution when handling, as the both will become hot during cooking.

When should I use the grill grate?

When cooking with the Grill function you should always use the grill grate, as it promotes optimal airflow for even cooking, crisping, and charring.

When should I use the splatter shield?

ALWAYS ensure the splatter shield is installed when cooking. Failure to use the splatter shield will result in oil buildup on the heating element, which can cause smoking. It's located on the underside of the hood, the splatter shield keeps the heating element clean.

How do I install and remove the splatter shield?

To install, insert the splatter shield so the grooves on the splatter shield ring match those of the fixed heat shield ring notch on the right. Then gently push the splatter shield upward until it clicks into the tab on the left side. Remove the splatter shield for cleaning after every use. Once the splatter shield has cooled completely, remove it by pushing the upper left tab toward the back of the hood. This will release the splatter shield, allowing you to remove it.

Do I need to let my food rest?

After grilling meat, let it rest for 3-5 minutes before cutting it. As it rests, it will retain more moisture and stay juicy.

What type of oil should I use while grilling?

We recommend using one of the following oils when grilling: -Canola -Refined coconut -Avocado -Vegetable -Grapeseed We DO NOT recommend using the following oils when grilling: -Olive -Butter -Margarine

Why is the unit taking so long to preheat?

Preheat times may vary depending on the voltage provided by your outlet. Another reason the unit may still be preheating is if you add food to the grill before preheating is complete. Make sure to add food only when preheating is complete and the unit displays "ADD FOOD".

Why is the unit emitting smoke?

When using the Grill function, always select the recommended temperature setting. Temperature should be adjusted depending on oil used, in addition to food type. Recommended settings can be found in the Quick Start Guide and Inspiration Guide. Make sure the splatter shield is installed.

Why is my food overcooked or undercooked even though I used the thermometer?

It is important to insert the thermometer lengthwise into the thickest part of the ingredient to get the most accurate reading. Make sure to allow food to rest for 3-5 minutes to complete cooking. For more information, refer to the Using the Foodi Smart Thermometer section.

How do I develop char on my food?

Here are a few tips to develop char on your grilled foods: - Make sure your grill is preheated before placing food in the unit. Preheating the grill ensures it is hot enough to create char. - Ensure the grilling temperature for your food is the proper temperature. You can find recommended grill temperatures for different food types in the instruction booklet. - Let your food cook long enough to develop char. - Make sure you have applied enough rub or seasoning to your food. We recommend using a low-density, coarse ground kosher salt rub. This allows you to season liberally without over-salting, and results in a better char.

Why did a circuit breaker trip while using the unit?

The unit uses 1760 watts of power, so it must be plugged into an outlet on a 15-amp circuit breaker. Using an outlet on a 10-amp breaker may cause the breaker to trip. It is also important that the unit be the only appliance plugged into an outlet when in use. To avoid tripping a breaker, make sure the unit is the only appliance plugged into an outlet on a 15-amp breaker.

Why does the unit have a 1-9 scale for the Beef Preset?

Perception of what a specific internal doneness looks like differs from person to person, even restaurant to restaurant. The 1-9 scale provides a wide range of options for each doneness level so you can customize doneness to your liking.

What is batch grilling?

Batch grilling is when you grill more than two consecutive batches of food. It is recommended that you empty the fat/oil from the removable cooking pot between batches. It is also HIGHLY recommended to clean the splatter shield in between uses. This will help prevent grease from burning and causing smoke.

Can I skip preheat?

While it isn't recommended for grilling, but if you would like to skip the Preheat process, press the PREHEAT button.

Can I use the Foodi Smart Thermometer when cooking frozen meats?

No. The Foodi Smart Thermometer can only be used when cooking fresh or thawed meats.

Will the thermometer grip melt if it touches the hot grill grate?

No, the grip is made of a high-temperature silicone that can handle the Ninja Foodi Smart XL Grill's high temperatures.

How do I use the Foodi Smart Thermometer using the MANUAL option?

1. Pull the thermometer storage compartment on the right side of the unit outward. Then unwind the cord from the compartment to remove the thermometer. 2. Plug the thermometer into the jack. Push firmly on the plug until it cannot go into the jack any further. Place the storage compartment back onto the side of the unit. 3. Once the thermometer is plugged into the jack, it will enable and illuminate the PRESET and MANUAL thermometer buttons. First select the desired cook function (e.g., Grill) and cook temperature. 4. Press MANUAL and use the arrows to the right of the display to select your desired food type and the arrows to the left of the display to set the internal doneness of your food (in degree F). 5. Place the accessory required for your selected cook function in the unit and close the hood. Press START/STOP to begin preheating. 6. While the unit is preheating, insert the thermometer horizontally into the center of the thickest part of the piece of protein. 7. When the unit has preheated and "ADD FOOD" appears on the screen, open the hood, place food with inserted thermometer in the unit, and close the hood over the thermometer cord. 8. The progress bar at the top of the display will track doneness. Flashing doneness indicates progression to that doneness. 9. The unit will automatically stop when desired doneness is almost reached, as it accounts for carry-over cooking, and "GET FOOD" will display on the screen. 10. Transfer the protein to a plate while "REST" displays on the screen. Thermometer does not need to still be inserted. The protein will continue to carry-over cook to your set doneness, which will take about 3-5 minutes. This is an important step, as not resting could lead to results looking "less" cooked.

How do I use the Foodi Smart Thermometer using the PRESET option?

1. Pull the thermometer storage compartment on the right side of the unit outward. Then unwind the cord from the compartment to remove the thermometer. 2. Plug the thermometer into the jack. Push firmly on the plug until it cannot go into the jack any further. Place the storage compartment back onto the side of the unit. 3. Once the thermometer is plugged into the jack, it will enable and illuminate the PRESET and MANUAL thermometer buttons. Select the desired cook function (e.g., GRILL) and cook temperature. 4. Press PRESET and use the arrows to the right of the display to select your desired food type and the arrows to the left of the display to set the internal doneness of your food (Rare through Well). 5. Place the accessory required for your selected cook function in the unit and close the hood. Press START/STOP to begin preheating. 6. While the unit is preheating, insert the thermometer horizontally into the center of the thickest part of the piece of protein. 7. When the unit has preheated and "ADD FOOD" appears on the screen, open the hood, place food with inserted thermometer in the unit, and close the hood over the thermometer cord. 8. The progress bar at the top of the display will track doneness. Flashing doneness indicates progression to that doneness. 9. The unit will automatically stop when desired doneness is almost reached, as it accounts for carry-over cooking, and "GET FOOD" will display on the screen. 10. Transfer the protein to a plate while "REST" displays on the screen. Thermometer does not need to still be inserted. The protein will continue to carry-over cook to your set doneness, which will take about 3-5 minutes. This is an important step, as not resting could lead to results looking "less" cooked.

What is the temperature range for each function?

The temperature range varies depending on the function: - Air Crisp: 300F-450F - Roast: 250F-425F - Dehydrate: 105F-195F (not included on all models) - Bake: 250F-400F - Grill: (LO-MAX) - Broil: 450F-500F

What types of food should I cook using the different Grill cook temperatures?

- Low 400F - Bacon and sausages and when using thick BBQ sauces - Medium 450F - Frozen meats and marinated/sauced meats - High 500F - Steaks, chicken, burgers, hot dogs, and meat kebabs - Max 510F - Veggies, fruit, fresh and frozen seafood, pizzas, and vegetable kebabs

Why is the unit taking so long to preheat?

Preheat times may vary depending on the voltage provided by your outlet, as well as starting temperature of your unit. Another reason the unit may still be preheating is if you add food to the grill before preheating is complete. Make sure to add food only when preheating is complete and the unit displays "ADD FOOD".

Why is my food overcooked or undercooked even though I use a thermometer?

It is important to insert the thermometer lengthwise into the thickest part of the ingredient to get the most accurate reading. Make sure to allow food to rest 3-5 minutes to complete cooking. For more information, refer to the Using the Foodi" Smart Thermometer section.

The cooking pot doesn't fit in the unit.

Please make sure you are placing the cooking pot in the unit so the indent on the pot is aligned with the bump on the front of the main unit.

I can't find the doneness presets?

Ensure that the probe is properly inserted into the unit and the option to select either "Preset" or "Manual" cooking temperatures will appear. Here is where you can pick the desired preset. These presets will not be visible unless the probe is fully and properly inserted into the unit.

My unit is jumping from my preset doneness level to "RARE".

This is a funtion on the unit. Once a preset is chosen and cooking begins, the unit will jump back to "RARE". Once the probe senses the internal temperature of the meat is higher than that defined as "rare", the unit will automatically move into the next cooking level, up until the level selected by the customer. The current temperature of the probe is visible on the right side of the digital display. The temperature on the left side of the screen is the upper limit of the current cooking level. Once this temperature is achieved, the unit will move to the next highest cooking level, until the level selected.

What are the interior dimensions for FG5xx?

The inner product dimensions (usable cooking space): 12in. W x 9in. D x 2.5in. H

Is it safe to use my unit with a 2 or 3 prong plug?

Yes, the unit is compatible with both a two and a three prong plug.

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