The Best Air Fryer

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The Best Air Fryer

Air fryers are one of the latest trends on the move to healthier eating. When grilled chicken and vegetables aren’t cutting it, air fryers are there to help curb the craving for fried, greasy foods without the post-meal guilt. If you’re looking to add some air fried meals to your menu, look no further. We’ve taken a close look at the most popular air fryers on the market to better understand how they compare, what other buyers have to say, and which brands and models are the best to buy. Our pick is the GoWISE 8-in-1 Air Fryer XL 5.8 Qt., as we feel it meets most of the air frying needs at a good price.

What to Look For in an Air Fryer

Everybody has a different price point and a different desire. Before buying an air fryer, take the following aspects into consideration:

  • Price–There are dozens of air fryers on the market so don’t overspend on this kitchen appliance. You will have no problem finding the right air fryer for your needs and within your budget.
  • Temperature–Depending on your cooking or baking needs, temperature options will make a difference. If you want crispy foods, comparable to deep frying, then you should look for high temperatures. If you simply want to cook your food quickly, then a low-temperature air fryer should work just fine.
  • Usability–Do you want a touch screen? Do you want preset options? Figure what you want, before making your choice.
  • Accessories–Each air fryer has its perks. Consider the accessories, before making a purchase. Do you have to flip the foods yourself, for instance? Does the air fryer come with a recipe book? The accessories aren’t necessary, but are added bonuses.
Price Colors Warranty
GoWISE
8-in-1 Air Fryer XL 5.8 Qt.
Check Price
Price

$$$

Colors

Chili Red, Plum, White, Black

Warranty

One-year limited

Secura
4 Liter, 4.2 Qt., Extra Large Capacity 1500 Watt Electric Hot Air Fryer
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Price

$$

Colors

Black

Warranty

Two-year limited

BLACK+DECKER
Purify 2-Liter Air Fryer
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Price

$

Colors

White with Black

Warranty

Two-year limited

T-fal
FZ700251 ActiFry Low-Fat Healthy AirFryer
Check Price
Price

$$$$

Colors

Black

Warranty

Limited lifetime warranty

GoWISE 8-in-1 Air Fryer XL 5.8 Qt.

What are the best features?

This air fryer comes with a touch screen with eight cooking options built into the machine. With a temperature of 180 to 400 degrees, you get a lot more versatility than some of the other air fryers. Includes an alarm so you don’t forget about your food, and comes with a recipe book so you can make the most of the machine.

What are the cooking options?

With built-in options, you can use choose any of the following frying options: Fries/Chips, Pork, Chicken, Steak, Shrimp, Cake, Fish, and Pizza. Like the Secura 4 Liter, 2.2 Qt, it uses 1700 watts of electricity so make sure it’s plugged into a high-powered outlet before using.

Is it worth it?

This air fryer is a great value. It is a large fryer capable of cooking large quantities and various foods. It will take up a lot of counter space and you have to flip your own food, but it has a sleek exterior, comes in multiple colors, and is worth the price.

Secura 4 Liter, 4.2 Qt., Extra Large Capacity 1500 Watt Electric Hot Air Fryer

What are the best features?

This air fryer is much larger than the others. With a 4-liter frying basket, you can fit a lot of food. This air fryer also comes with an automatic timer so you don’t have to track time, as well as power indicator lights so you know when the fryer is hot enough. Best of all: this air fryer, unlike the others, comes with a toaster rack and skewers which you can use for chicken, beef, or vegetables. The fryer’s removable parts (nonstick pan, basket, and separator) make it easy to use and, most importantly, clean.

What are the cooking options?

This air fryer has temperature options of 180 to 390 degrees. With a temperature dial, you can vary the temperature to best fit the food.

Is it worth it?

Considering this air fryer is typically on sale, it is a good option. You can take advantage of the frying capabilities and the great accessories without stressing over the fryer’s original high price.

BLACK+DECKER Purify 2-Liter Air Fryer

What are the best features?

This air fryer has half as much liter space as the Secura 4 Liter 4.2 Qt. fryer, so it is best use for smaller quantities. If you want to keep it on the kitchen counter, it won’t take up a lot of space. With two lights indicating preheat and heat, you’ll know when the fryer is ready to use. The manual includes directions, cooking tips, and a cooking guide so you know long it takes to cook potato skins vs. frozen broccoli. One con? You have to manually flip your food to get a more even cook/bake.

What are the cooking options?

It heats from 175 to 400 degrees, making this air fryer more versatile than the others. It also comes with a 60-minute timer so you don’t overcook your food.

Is it worth it?

This fryer is reasonably priced and extremely quiet, but is reported to have a faulty fan and according to users, the removable tray can cause problems. Good news? BLACK+DECKER customer service is extremely responsive when it comes to complaints, so you may not have to worry if the machine doesn’t work as planned.

T-fal FZ700251 ActiFry Low-Fat Healthy AirFryer

What are the best features?

This is a small, compact air fryer that comes with a digital LED timer and removable components that are dishwasher safe. A huge pro is that it comes with a built-in flipper which means it automatically moves the food around so you don’t have to. The only problem is that you cannot vary the temperature. It is set to one temperature, which means you have to know how long to leave food in for, but it does come with an on/off switch and a timer. This plastic air fryer comes with a removable lid and a stainless steel screen in the tank making it easy to use and clean.

What are the cooking options?

With a temperature dial, you can vary the temp, but it does not heat higher than 338 degrees. In order to cook the food evenly, it is best not to overfill the basket.

Is it worth it?

This air fryer is not worth buying at full price. It is not as aesthetically-pleasing as some of the others and with a shallow cooking basket, this fryer is less versatile than some of the others. There have been complaints about the metal ring falling apart, as well as a broken oil filter, but customer service is very responsive and willing to replace the product in a timely manner. In fact, even if your product is no longer sold, T-fal will make sure you get a similar replacement if needed, so if your heart (or stomach) is set on this fryer, the customer service makes it worth buying.

What Makes Air Fryers Healthier Than Deep Fryers?

With an air fryer, you can achieve similar results as a deep fryer, but without the additional oils. Traditionally deep fried food is cooked in large amounts of oil, but air fryers are taking over–and for good reason. An air fryer can be used as both a low-fat fryer and a multi-cooker. It allows you to deep fry your food in hot water (and a tiny bit of oil, if you desire), allowing you to cut back on unhealthy fats. Instead of using a deep fryer, you can cook frozen food within minutes using this piping-hot air-frying machine. Fryers aren’t just for french fries anymore either. Air fryers can cook food like cake and pizza.

Some may argue that the food doesn’t taste as good in the air fryer, but that depends on your taste buds and what sort of flavor you’re looking for. Another win: air fryers also take up significantly less counter space than deep fryers.

How Does Air Frying Work?

An air fryer cooks foods using the convection mechanism. Basically, it circulates hot air. Very similar to a convection oven, the air fryer is simply a smaller, more compact version. The air fryer heats the food the same way a convection oven does, but because of its small size, has the ability to produce higher speeds of air circulation and therefore cook the foods even faster. An air fryer reaches higher temperatures in a shorter time frame, which helps retain your food’s nutrients and gives you fresh cooked food in minutes. Sounds great, doesn’t it?

An air fryer, contrary to its name, doesn’t actually fry foods, but it does produce a fried-food result. Some basic steps to using an air fryer include:

  • Setting the right temperature in advance of cooking. When cooking food in an air fryer instead of an oven, make sure you adjust the temperature so you don’t overcook the food.
  • Add a tiny bit of oil–or skip it completely. The air fryer doesn’t need oil to do its job, so unless you want a little bit for flavoring or crispiness, you don’t need it.
  • Make sure you read the directions of your air fryer before using it for the first time. Most air fryers require manual flipping, but not all do. If you want to avoid this extra step, look for an air fryer that doesn’t require flipping. Think of it like bacon: if you forget to flip it on the pan, you won’t get an even cook. The same goes for air fryers.
  • Keep your air fryer in a heat-resistant place and depending on the wattage, make sure it’s plugged into the right outlet before using.
  • Don’t overfill the basket. This will prevent you from cooking the foods evenly, but will also put too much stress on the machine.

What Can You Cook With an Air Fryer?

Many air fryers do much more than just cook basic foods like sweet potato fries, french fries, and chicken. The air fryer can actually be used to roast or bake food. You can cook fish, pizza, donuts, and even bake a cake. How? After setting your temperature and mixing your cake base, you fill a pan, stick the pan in the basket, and simply wait. It’s as simple as that. You’ll find that food cooks quicker in the air fryer than in a convection oven. Although you can make fried food with the air fryer, it won’t crisp as well as it would in a deep fryer.

Start cooking healthier foods and buy an air fryer today. If you’re looking for new recipes to try with your air fryer, we’ve got you covered there, too.

Sources:

The Spruce Eats: https://www.thespruceeats.com/what-is-convection-995767

Heavy: https://heavy.com/tech/2015/04/air-fryer-vs-deep-fryer/

Spaceships and Laserbeams: https://spaceshipsandlaserbeams.com/blog/party-food/how-to-make-a-chocolate-cake-in-an-air-fryer

Epicurious: https://www.epicurious.com/expert-advice/how-to-use-an-air-fryer-article

 
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