Everybody talks length about how much they love their air fryer. So are air fryers worth it? I will try to give you an unbiased answer by exploring the advantages and disadvantages of air fryers.
First things first: What is an air fryer? Air fryers use convection cooking to circulate hot air through the food and make it crispy. Everything from french fries and tortilla chips to salmon fillets and chicken drumsticks can get a tasty, satisfying outer layer with an air fryer. In many cases, you can even skip the oil entirely. Most brands advertise that their air fryers use 60-85% less oil than deep fryers and for this reason generally considered healthier. So the main promise of an air fryer is that you can enjoy your favorite comfort food in a healthier fashion.
Since these appliances have become very popular it is a legit question to ask: Are air fryers are worth it? So let’s dive in!
- Why are air fryers worth it – Advantages:
- Air fryers offer a lot of advantages over deep fryers.
- Why are air fryers not worth it for some – Disadvantages:
- Are you in search of a cool new air fryer?
Why are air fryers worth it – Advantages:
1. Air Fryers are cheap and efficient
You can get an air fryer under $100 but the single person air fryers can be even under $50. A built in wall oven is at least $1500 and will give you a similar experience.
So in case you constantly have bad luck and buy faulty air fryers that breaks in 6 months you are still better off for 15 years if you don’t spend more than $50 on it.
Also air fryers use a lot less electricity so they can spare you money on the long term. Especially if you buy a low watt air fryer they can operate for less than $25 a year even with a daily usage. We analyzed 33 air fryers based on their wattage if you’d like to know more.
2. Air fryer save time
Time is the most valuable asset for all of us. For those who cook a lot at home (instead of just ordering) might now how much time cooking can take up. Air fryers can decrease the cooking times dramatically for 2 reasons:
- Air fryers preheat very fast! Most standard and small sized air fryers can heat up to 400 degrees in 3 minutes. Compared to the 10+ minutes with ovens this is a huge plus. You don’t even need your microwave to reheat your food anymore.
- Because they are smaller but still powerful they blow the hot air inside the food more effectively and therefore cooking your food even faster.
3. Air fryers save space.
Whether you’re short on space or just prefer a more streamlined kitchen aesthetic, air fryers are much smaller than traditional deep fryers, toaster ovens or let alone traditional ovens. In fact, they’re classified as countertop appliances. This is a big reason why air fryers are worth it, since most of us don’t have a huge kitchen where everything fits.
Most air fryers have a footprint of about 16 by 12 inches and stand just over 15 inches high. By comparison, one of the highest rated deep fryer (the Waring Pro DF280) measures 19 inches wide by 13-1/2 inches deep and stands 10-1/2 inches high.
I know from personal experience that when I get a new kitchen appliance, it’s tempting to leave it out on the counter all the time—but not everyone has that kind of space. One of the great things about air fryers is how easy they are to store away when not in use: You can either keep them in a cupboard or tuck them on a shelf if you don’t have any shelves available.
4. Air fryers are easy to use.
Air fryers are simple to master, even if you’re a beginner in the kitchen. They often come with pre-set functions for cooking different foods, and many also have a manual setting that lets you adjust the time and temperature yourself as needed. You don’t need to use any oil when cooking food in an air fryer (although some people like to drizzle their food with oil before cooking it). You also don’t need to wait for your air fryer to preheat—just put your food in the basket and cook.
The learning curve for air fryers is so low that even picky eaters are likely to enjoy using them. The phobia of hot boiling oil, which is common among those who avoid deep frying, isn’t an issue here. Most air fryers are safe enough for children or others new to cooking — just make sure you read through the safety instructions included with your device!
5. Cleaning is quick and easy with an air fryer.
Cleaning is quick and easy — and you’ll want to clean your air fryer after every use. Luckily, most parts of the air fryer can be removed and are dishwasher safe, so cleaning is easy as you only have to clean the non-stick basket (don’t put it in the dishwasher).
To clean it, remove the basket from the air fryer and wash it with warm water and a bit of soap. Some parts can be soaked in water while others need to be wiped with a soft sponge. You can also wipe the inside of your air fryer with a damp cloth — just make sure not to immerse it in water!
6. Health benefits of air fryers
The big benefit of air fryers is that they can cook your food with less fat. In my opinion this is the number one answer to the question: why are air fryers worth it. By creating a 360 degree convection of hot air around the food, it’s able to mimic the consistency of deep frying with a minimal amount of oil. In fact, one study found that fries cooked in an air fryer contained up to 80% less fat than traditional deep-fried foods. So if you like a crisp on your fries without all the guilt, air fryers are a great choice!
Another advantage is that these appliances are safe and convenient. Since they don’t use excess amounts of hot oil like deep fryers do, even if you haven’t been paying attention to your cooking process and accidentally let the food burn, you won’t have put yourself or your family in harm’s way by letting excess heat get out of control (as is possible with any stovetop or freestanding oven appliance). Air fryers also tend to be compact enough for kitchen counters and easy enough for kids and adults alike to operate independently.
7. The taste of foods cooked in an air fryer is improved by the hot, circulating air.
You may be wondering how a device with such few cooking options can produce similar results to all of these processes. The answer lies in the movement of hot air and the effect it has on food. As the air circulates, moisture is moved from the surface of your food towards the center, which helps brown and crisp up your food. Many people (including us) were surprised how much better simple food (like french fries, or brussel sprouts) tastes that are prepared in an air fryer. This is also a huge plus for why are air fryers worth it. Check out our recipes for some inspiration.
Air fryers offer a lot of advantages over deep fryers.
Air fryers offer a lot of advantages over deep fryers. For one thing, they use a lot less oil than traditional deep fryers and can cook some dishes with no oil at all (you don’t even need to add any when you cook frozen french fries). As a result, air-fried food is often touted as healthier. Air fryers are also faster than ovens and require much less space on your countertop. And because the baskets in most models pull out like drawers, they’re easier to use and clean up than deep fryers—especially if you have arthritis or mobility issues.
Why are air fryers not worth it for some – Disadvantages:
They can use a lot of counter space
If you buy an air fryer that is bigger than 6 quarts be prepared that it is going to take up some space. You can’t push it to the walls because it needs “breathing air” to ventilate which is also an issue.
For smaller kitchens air fryer ovens don’t even fit. But luckily there are small air fryers that can be stored very effectively.
They can burn food easily
As they are powerful machines with a relatively low capacity they can easily burn food. They circulate 400 degree in a small cooking space so sometimes there is a possibility that you’ll burn your food. Luckily with a bit of experimenting and following the booklets usually provided by the manufacturer this risk can be minimized.
So to the question that are air fryers worth is a definitive yes from our opinion. They are much healthier, not a big investment, saves you time, very compact and you can cook a lot of foods in them. Air fryers are a great way to cook food at home, and they have plenty of advantages over traditional fryers. They use less oil, making them a healthier option.
They are also easy to use and clean, and they don’t take up much space in the kitchen, which is an important factor if you live in an apartment or a smaller home.
Lastly, air fryers cook food quickly, which makes them ideal for people with busy lifestyles.
While there are many benefits to using an air fryer, it’s worth noting that there are many other appliances on the market that you should consider like air fryer grill combos or air fryer microwave combos.
So before you decide whether or not an air fryer is worth it for you personally, we recommend doing some additional research into the options available and reading through several product reviews from real-life customers to get their unbiased perspectives on how well those products work.
Although we are a big fans of air fryers but we tried to give an unbiased answer to the question of are air fryers worth it.
All in all we think that the advantages greatly outweigh their small shortcomings.
Are you in search of a cool new air fryer?
We regularly review brands that we are fond of. If you are thinking of getting a new air fryer be sure to check out some of our reviews: