When we think about eating healthy and living well, one key factor in being successful is to reduce your intake of saturated and trans fats. Knowing how and having the option to make healthier choices when preparing food can really help with this. There are so many delicious foods out there, fried food being one of the most popular and flavorful. But what if you could have the flavor and enjoyment of deep-fried food without the deep-frying?
That’s exactly what air fryers are all about. Rather than using a traditional deep-fat fryer, which plops your food into a vat of oil, an air fryer simply uses hot air to get the same (but far healthier) effect. Air fryers are a relatively new innovation that give you a healthier alternative and can help to drastically reduce bad fat consumption.
With new models coming out all the time, how do you know which is the best air fryer to get? Let us help you with that!
Benefits of Air Fryers
Before we take a detailed look at the best models, let’s look at the many advantages using an air fryer.
1. Prevent Weight Gain
The biggest advantage of this application is its ability to reduce the bad fat content in fried food by 70%. This reduction in fat content also helps the user to reduce their intake and can aid in losing weight.
2. Offer Multiple Uses
Despite the small, compact size, these versatile tools have a lot to offer. Apart from frying, they also excel at grilling, baking, and roasting. Some high-end models might come with extra functions which allow you to defrost frozen foods and reheat leftovers.
Many affordable models even allow you to prepare multiple dishes at once. Since their interior is much larger than it appears from the outside, preparing a big meal is no longer a hassle.
3. Provide the Balance between Great Taste and Good Health
Unlike traditional fryers, these revolutionary cooking gadgets work by circulating hot air around the food at high speed. That way, it can help you to get a crispy layer more quickly and conveniently. And during the cooking process, the food is coated in only a thin layer of oil, which is a great solution to limit the overall calories consumed. With the ability to cut back on fatty oils while still offering a similar flavor and texture, air fryers not only support your wellness but also appeal to your taste.
How to Choose the Best Air Fryer
Like many other kitchen appliances, these machines have a varying range of capacity. This normally go from 2 to 10 quarts, depending on the price and size.
If space and weight are your major considerations, medium-sized air fryers are shorter, weigh less, and have a more compact footprint. But they’re usually equipped with almost all the notable features that you’ll find in larger models. With capacity ranging from 1.7 to 4 quarts, they are spacious enough to accommodate 4 slices of toast, a rotisserie chicken of 2-4 pounds, or a 12-inch pizza. If you have a family of 2-4 members, these models are perfect options.
But if you want something to feed a family larger than 4, consider getting air fryers with a 5+ quart capacity. Of course, because they’re bigger, they may look a little bulky on your countertop. But, do not worry! All the designs are still compact enough to provide the option for portability and a comfortable amount of cooking space.
In general, you can get a quality air fryer for around $80-$100 that will perform fairly well in its role. There are other high-priced models (about $150-$200) designed with higher capacity. For more precise cooking, easier clean up, and better flavor retention, such fryers may also come with improved cooking technology and several additional specific features.
3. Other Standard Features
Beyond convection frying, which is the standard function of all air fryers, here are some other important features to be expected in a good air fryer:
- Digital touch screen: Air fryers with a built-in digital touch screen menu featuring cooking presets and a timer will make it easier to have more control over your cooking.
- Dishwasher-safe parts: All the removable parts, including the food basket, non-stick drawer, and stirring paddle, should be dishwasher safe for easy cleaning and sterilizing.
- Auto shut off: Apart from conveniently allowing you to do other jobs while your favorite dishes are being cooked, this feature is also beneficial in protecting your kitchen from a potential fire hazard.
- Accessories: A set of standard accessories typically includes one detachable basket, multi-use rack, cookbook, and non-stick coated drawer. Paying for an extra cooking rack is a wise option if you plan on preparing two different types of food at once.
Top-rated Air Fryers Comparison Chart
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Reviews of the Best Air Fryers in 2021
If this tool seems to have everything you need for an inspirational cooking experience, refer to the product summaries below to pick out the one that suits you most.
- COSORI Air Fryer – Best to Buy 2021
- GoWISE USA GW22956 – Best Large Air Fryer
- Instant Omni Plus – Best Toaster Oven Air Fryer
- Ninja AF101 – Best Small Air Fryer
- Secura Air Fryer – Best Budget Air Fryer
- Yedi Total Package – Best Air Fryer for Family of 4
- Philips HD9641/96 – Best Digital Air Fryer
Here is our list for the Best Air Fryers.
1. COSORI Air Fryer – Best to Buy in 2021
The COSORI is a very promising air fryer that works well and can be purchased for an unbeatable price, knocking out most of its rivals in this category. If you’ve been considering a mid-range pop-shaped air fryer that lets you enjoy your favorite fried, grilled, baked and roasted foods while still being able to get fit and lose weight, do not hesitate to give this model a shot.
- Large capacity
- Wide ranges of cooking presets
- One-touch LCd panel
- Hard to clean
Like most air fryers, this machine has been developed with Rapid Air Circulation Technology allowing it to cook food with 85% less fat and faster cooking time. At 5.8 quarts capacity, it’s large enough to feed a family of 5 or a small gathering.
Besides producing crispy and browned foods, the Cosori air fryer makes it possible to enjoy different styles of cooking in quick and easy ways by offering many unique features that are hard to find in other models/appliances.
These features include the Shake Reminder alerting when it’s appropriate to shake the contents for an even outcome, the keep warm function in case you can’t get to your food right away, but would like it kept warm. And the preheating option which aims at improving the food’s texture.
The Cosori is also so easy to operate that you may barely need to consult the instructions. The built-in digital touch screen menu features 11 presets to greatly help simplify the operation. It also allows you to set your own temperature and cooking time for personal recipes. With one-touch selections, it will take care of all the calculations. No matter what food you’re going to cook, it will be done properly.
As a great bonus, the included cookbook gives access to 100 original, delicious, and easy recipes for any meal. You can find out how people cook their food with a Cosori air fryer on social media. Or you can also join the Cosori community of passionate home cooks for more recipe ideas and healthy inspiration.
The frying basket and basket holder are non-stick and very easy to separate. This can be both good and bad. They are quite hard to clean by hand, but can be cleaned well with the dishwasher. So for some users, it’s not a big deal at all.
What makes them really annoyed is when the non-stick basket easily comes detached from the pan without their intention, causing a spill and wasting a lot of delicious food as well as a lot of time used to clean up the mess.
Capable of tackling 5 main dishes or 8 small servings at once, the Cosori is a no-brainer for any large family that is struggling to eat fried foods while also craving fried goodies. Of course, in preparing hearty, healthy meals, the machine does have some annoyed issues. But given its all-around performance, it’s totally worth your consideration.
2. GoWISE USA GW22956 – Best Large Air Fryer
The GoWISE is a perfect option for those who regularly cook in large batches. Though its price is pretty much the same as the top pick, it comes with a larger cooking capacity, higher power, and sleeker touch screen design. For sure, there would be plenty of space for you to prepare a 2 pound bag of fries, an 8-inch round cake, and 14 chicken wings, respectively. Still, with an extra large cooking area comes a relatively large footprint. Together with a tall and heavy profile, this makes the fryer itself does not allow for portability.
- Auto shut off function
- Reliable & Durable
- Fast cooking
- Cheap price
- Gets hot easily
At 7-quart capacity, the non-stick basket has an ideal size for serving a whole family of 5-6 members or to whip up some snacks for a small gathering. And since this dishwasher-safe, removable part is designed with a button guard, it is less likely to slip and create a mess in your kitchen. In other words, the GoWISE itself can protect your foods from accidental detachment of the basket — a great bonus that you won’t find in other models.
Benefiting from the rapid air circulation technology, the GoWISE can efficiently circulate super hot air around the food to ensure fast and even cooking. Not only that, it also comes with the advantage of locking in moisture to give your fried foods a delicious crispy, golden brown finish, without all the added fat.
Powered by an efficient heating element, with a wide temperature ranging between 180°F and 400°F, your fryer can even serve as a food dehydrator. It dries as well as you could expect, removing enough moisture from food to preserve its nutrients. Though the device’s performance and flexibility does not compare well to those of a solely-dedicated dehydrator.
The digital control display offers ease of use and precision adjustments over the cooking time, temperature, cooking function, and more. Featuring a full touchscreen menu, it allows you to switch between 8 built-in smart programs, including air fry, roast, bake, boil, grill, and keep warm. It also gives you more control by letting you manually change the temperature settings in 5-degree increments. Obviously, this extra large air fryer allows you to get healthy and delicious meals on the table, quicker and easier than you’d ever expect.
It should also be said at this point that since the fryer is built with high-quality materials, its whole construction can ensure a long lifespan, as long as you maintain it in a proper manner. The only downside is that the fryer’s exterior surface can get gradually hot when it’s heated at a high temperature. For your safety, rather than stand by it to wait for it to finish cooking, activate the automatic shut-off setting to turn the fryer off once everything is done.
The GoWISE USA GW22956 offers more spacious cooking space than any air fryers on this list. With responsive controls, it’s so easy to operate that you may not even need to consult the instructions. And thanks to a range of cooking presets, it could certainly save a lot of space on your countertop if you can combine all the cooking styles into one kitchen appliance. We’re really loving it.
Read more: Top Large Air Fryers in 2021
3. Instant Omni Plus – Best Toaster Oven Air Fryer
The Instant Omni Plus comes with everything you need in a convenient, stylish design: an LCD display presenting all values, a variety of cooking functions, and an improved convection fan that allows for greater cooking control.
- Large capacity
- Fast and efficient
- Exceptionally durable
- Eleven smart programs
- Easy to use dials and function buttons
- Small basket size
- No cookbook included
Powerful yet versatile, this oven lets you bake, broil, toast, reheat, and defrost at the touch of a button. With an air frying setting, it also allows you to prepare your favorite French fries without the hassles that come with traditional pan-frying.
With 1800 watts of cooking power, the Instant Omni Plus works well and efficiently circulates hot air around the food to make it more crispy and delicious. As a matter of fact, most air fryer toaster ovens can produce crispier fried food than any pod-shaped air fryers available on the market.
The Instant Omni Plus is a multi-function oven allowing you to choose from 11 cooking presets. So you can handle a greater variety of tasks without having to rely on guesswork to find the optimal temperature or cooking time.
Besides preset functions, the Instant Omni Plus also features easy-to-use dials that allow you to select your own time and temperature for the cooking results you desire. Thanks to the large glass viewing window, you can easily observe the entire cooking process which aids in eliminating the risk of overcooked food.
The Instant Omni Plus has a 26-liter capacity. This is enough to fit 6 slices of toast, a whole chicken, or a 12-inch pizza. It can even accommodate both cooking trays in one go. This is a perfect advantage for those who often cook large batches or prepare multiple meals at a time.
Weighing about 30 pounds, with a footprint of 14.5-inch tall by 17.5-inch wide, the oven is quite tall and heavy. So it may not be a good choice if you have a tight kitchen space.
With the Instant Omni Plus, you don’t need to pay extra for any optional accessories. The oven comes with everything you need to get your cooking game going— right out of the box. There are up to seven accessories included: an air fryer basket, cooking pan, oven rack, rotisserie spits and forks, and a rotisserie lift. However, for some users, the air fryer basket is quite small. At 6-quart capacity, it isn’t enough for a large batch of French fries.
If you want to limit the overall calories consumed by cutting back on fatty oils but are addicted to fried food, the Instant Omni Plus won’t let you down. Indeed, this model is formulated to change the way you cook to ensure you create some of the habits you need to be healthy. Compared to pod-shaped air fryers, it takes up more countertop space and is less portable. But when it comes to producing crispy, crunchy fries, its efficiency is greater than most.
4. Ninja AF101 – Best Small Air Fryer
Users are generally satisfied with the ease of use and the construction of this air fryer. The device does what it’s supposed to do well— making onion rings, French toast, or cheesy loaded potatoes, using very little oil. With the help of this air fryer, you’re ready to enjoy your favorite fried foods without consuming too much fat or too many calories.
- 75% less oil usage
- 50% less cooking time
- Dishwasher safe parts
- Produces unpleasant smells within the first few uses
As stated by the manufacturers, you’ll use up to 75% less oil when cooking with the Ninja 4-quart fryer. No matter what you’re trying to cook, everything will come out perfectly, without fuss and without breaking the bank.
In addition to being an all-in-one appliance, which can be used to fry, grill, bake, and roast food, the machine also gives you peace of mind with its long-lasting performance. Plus, its temperature can be flexibly adjusted up to 400 degrees which is hot enough to heat up almost every kind of food.
An easy-to-read control panel allows you to switch between 4 programmable cooking functions, including air fry, roast, reheat, and dehydrate. It also allows you to adjust the cook time and temperature manually as desired. While the one-touch operation might certainly give you a convenient and stylish experience, the manual controls for the 30 minute timer and a wide range of temperature are simple to set, serving well even the pickiest of customers.
The ceramic coated nonstick basket holds 4-quart capacity, which is enough for about two pounds of French fries. It works with a ceramic coated crisper plate for all-around cripsing and features an easy to grip handle which stays cool to the touch even when on the highest heat setting. If you want to make two dishes at once, the included multi-layer rack will help you through. The rack also helps to increase dehydrating capacity. All the removable parts are dishwasher safe for hassle-free cleaning.
We also love the two exclusive cookbooks included. With more than 50 recipes for some of the most delicious treats you can make, they will help and inspire you to discover multiple ways of cooking.
Some users did notice a smell of burning plastic or rubber within the first few uses. Even when they have followed the instructions to thoroughly wash all the removable parts with warm, soapy water before using it for the first time, their air fryer still gives off unwanted smells and odors.
There are a few reasons for this issue. The most common of which is: when a protective coating of your air fryer is exposed to high temperatures, it begins to burn and produce unpleasant smells. In most cases, this coating will burn off completely after 2-3 cooking cycles. After that, you will not experience any more bad smells.
Ninja is a famous brand and it’s popular for a reason: it makes high-quality kitchen appliances that offer a great combination of quality, price, and efficiency. So regarding reliable air fryers, this brand should be on the first page of your consideration list. And if there’s a Ninja product you have your eyes on, do not hesitate to give this model a shot.
Read more: Best Small Air Fryers in 2021
5. Secura Electric Hot Air Fryer – Best Budget Air Fryer
If space and price are your top considerations, the Secura is shorter, has a smaller footprint, and is cheaper. But it has the same frying method and powerful motor, compared with the best to buy pick.
- Big capacity
- Cheap price
- Adjustable temperature
- Modern technology
- Hard to use dial control
Offering convenience, stylish design, and value pricing for customers, Secura has got our seal of satisfaction. At this low price point, of course, it doesn’t come with all the bells and whistles. But overall, it’s a good item that you deserve to experience.
The air fryer measures about 14 inches tall by 13 inches wide. It is compact enough to fit on any countertop. Despite the small size, its extra large 4.2 quart (4-liter) basket is big enough to cook a complete meal (meat or fish and veggies) for a family of 3-5 members.
The Secura Electric Hot air fryer contains 1500W of power. Besides an adjustable temperature control range of 180° to 390°F, it also has a 60-minute cooking timer. All work nicely together, giving the users total control over the food being cooked.
Thanks to the “Hot Air Cooking” method, you’re able to cook crispy golden-brown treats, using just a small amount of grease, or none at all. The fact that it comes with a 2-year manufacturer’s limited warranty and added accessories for further versatility is also a huge plus. Included is a cookbook with recipes, a BBQ rack, and skewers. Apart from the frying basket, all these accessories are dishwasher safe for quick and easy cleaning.
Many buyers complain that they often have difficulties in using the fryer’s dial control and setting the timer precisely. It’d be better if the manufacturers could improve these weaknesses in the near future.
When you’re craving healthy fried foods, but running on a tight budget, go for the Secura air fryer. Though it’s cheap, it comes with a thoughtful design, solid construction, and many exclusive features, making it an ideal upgrade from your current regular fryer.
6. Yedi Houseware Air Fryer – Best Air Fryer for Family of 4
The top things that make the Yedi Houseware air fryer exceptional are that it heats up quickly, consumes 85% less fat, and possesses a ton of useful accessories. We know some people may think the size is too small. But with a 4 quart capacity basket, it’s big enough to hold an entire 4lb chicken, serving a family of 3-4 members well.
- Ideal capacity
- Full range of cooking options
- Digital touch screen
- Plenty of accessories
- Undurable cooking basket
The Yedi Houseware is a straightforward model with an easy-to-use LED Digital Touch Screen. Aside from 7 built-in smart programs for specific food items, this intuitive control panel also allows users to set their desired cooking time and temperature when preparing food.
Most impressively, you’re welcome to get further supports and other benefits with its deluxe accessory cooking kit. These baking supplies consist of 50 perforated parchment steaming papers, an 8 inch cake, an 8 inch pizza pan, a multi-purpose rack with 3 stainless steel skewers, a metal holder, and a rubber mat. We love that all the included accessories are dishwasher safe. You won’t have to spend too much time cleaning them after each use.
And, if you are new to air fryer cooking, the included recipe book and cooking time table will help you comfortably reach your health goals and optimize your nutrition plan as fast as lighting. Or you can consult Yedi Hourseware’s unique website, on which content and new recipes are uploaded weekly.
Regarding warranty and after service, in case anything goes wrong with this order, Yedi Houseware guarantees to refund your money and/or replace your purchase for up to 12 months after delivery.
Some claim that after days of use, the non-stick coating on the basket started to chip and seemed to be not dishwasher safe as advertised. This could be a manufacturing flaw.
Even though being not as powerful as the larger counterparts, the Yedi Houseware can still be a perfect addition to your kitchen appliance collection, given its compact size, great cooking skills, and stylish design. Of course, it’s far from perfect, but for the price and the number of essential baking supplies, this unit is obviously a great value for your money.
7. Philips HD9641/96 – Best Digital Air Fryer
Many customers who have purchased this Phillips model admit they got the machine mainly for the unique TurboStar technology. And also because it’s continual masses of positive reviews. Once they used it though, they saw for themselves how effective and brilliant it is.
- Quick and Convenient
- Thoughtful design
- Easy to set time and temperature.
- Dishwasher safe parts
- Small capacity
In addition to ensuring healthier cooking, this unit is also capable of delivering 50% more evenly cooked and keeping your food warm for 30 minutes. With 5 presets for many popular dishes, it gives more cooking options to speed up the process and achieve the results you want. Furthermore, there is virtually no preheat time required. That way, food cooks fast and evenly on both sides without heating up your kitchen.
Thanks to the quick control dial with digital display and the dishwasher safe, non-stick basket, this product is extremely easy to use and convenient to clean up.
Compared to other models in this segment, the price seems to be fairly high. But with all the benefits offered, we think it’s worth every penny you pay for it.
Another thing you should consider is its small capacity which can accommodate food for just 2-3 people. It would be nicer if the size could be increased a little more. The small footprint and compact design, however, makes it ideal for travel or for couples/small families.
Philips has manufactured an abundance of powerful air fryers, and this HD9641/96 model could be one of its best. Despite the small capacity, the machine impresses thanks to its excellent reliability and top-notch performance, leading the way when it comes to quality kitchen appliances.
The Best Air Fryer Brands
When it comes to air fryers, COSORI should be on the first page of your consideration list. This brand is famous all over the world, not only for their high-performance products, but also for their excellent after-sale service.
With a passion for achieving customer satisfaction and providing you with quality electric appliances for your cooking enjoyment, COSORI produced a new device that completely changed the way we cook. This is the COSORI air fryer using rapid 360° air circulation technology to cook with little to no oil.Performing well in their job, these models are also 100% safe to use. Especially given that they comply with all standards regarding electromagnetic fields (EMF). If properly cared for, your air fryer could be with you for years to come.
With stylish construction, COSORI air fryers have recently won the Red Dot Award for best design, and for good reason; they fit well with any kitchen decor and setup, leaving you more counter space to spare.
2. GoWise USA
According to Consumer Report ratings, GoWise is one of the five top air fryer brands in the industry. Apart from producing professional air fryers, the firm is also famous for providing their customers with a variety of great cooking styles.
GoWise air fryers have made a world of difference in homecook culinary experience. They offer you the ability to cook faster and healthier than you’d ever be able to with traditional ovens. They also live up to their reputation by working and giving you the best cooking experience you’d expect.
3. Instant Brands
Instant Brands Inc. (formerly Double Insight Inc.) started its mission of manufacturing smart multi-cookers in 2010. Committed to offering people worldwide the quicker and more efficient way to prepare healthy meals, the company has since expanded with revolutionary all-in-one air fryers.
For such an inexpensive price, Instant Brans’s air fryers are totally worth your investment. Especially given that they come with tons of useful features to accomplish almost all of your daily cooking needs.
So that is our list for the best air fryers this year. We strive to make sure all the reviewed products offer a balanced combination of price, versatility, performance, and durability. We love these air fryers and all they can do! Browse and buy the one you like the most to make cooking at home faster, easier, and healthier.