All you need to know about air fryers

All you need to know about air fryers

What is an air fryer?

In recent years air fryers have become increasingly popular, you may have heard one of your friends talk about how they can "put anything in the air fryer or you might have seen your favourite celebrity chef using one, but the question remains, what is an air fryer?

An air fryer is practically an amped-up version of a countertop convection oven. Air fryers don't actually fry your food, they mimic the results of deep frying by circulating hot air around the food, giving it a crisp texture. The top section of an air fryer has a heating element and a fan, when you place your food inside an air fryer, hot air rushes around the food rapidly creating that desired deep-fried texture that so many of us but without the use of oil making it much healthier.

Air fryers have surged in popularity in the last 5 years and a recent study shows that 30% of Britons have one in their households.

Phillips air fryer

Are air fryers healthy?

Whether or not air-frying food is healthier or not, is largely dependent on the food you are cooking.

For example, if you decide to make fried chicken or chips in the air fryer because you would be using much less if any oil than if you were to deep fry it would be much better for you as you are eliminating a large amount of the fat associated with those foods. when it comes to foods such as chips. making them in the air fryer can be healthier than making them in the oven, as most oven chips are quite high in fat. If you often eat deep-fried foods, making the switch to an air fryer would be extremely beneficial.

If you are cooking food that you would deep fry or add fat to when you are cooking it, whether it be breaded chicken, bacon, or oven chips, putting them in the air fryer won't make them healthier as you would not have added fat in the normal cooking method. Cooking foods that you wouldn't normally add fat to can taste a lot better when cooked in the air fryer.

air fryer chicken wings

What can I cook in an air fryer?

If you are cooking anything crispy, an air fryer is the best option for you. Air fryers can cook a huge number of foods, making them crispy, tastier, and in many cases healthier. Some of the most common foods to cook in the air fryer are chips, fried chicken, other meats, and roast potatoes.

Below is a list of foods that are less common but turn out amazing when cooked in the air fryer:

  • Battered fish
  • Falafels
  • Jacket potatoes
  • Tofu
  • Mozzarella sticks
  • Pigs in blankets
  • Tofu
  • Chicken nuggets
  • Green beans
  • Onion rings
  • brussels sprouts
  • French fries

Air fryers are also amazing for reheating leftovers, they can even make them taste better than the first time! So next time you have some leftovers, whack them in the air fryer and let it do its magic.

air fryer pizza

The pros and cons of air fryers


Lower fat cooking which can promote weight loss

When compared with deep-fat fryers, air fryers function with little to no oil which produces food that has up to 80% less fat. If you are someone who eats fried food regularly or someone who finds it hard to give up high-fat foods, cooking with an air fryer could drastically decrease your calorie intake which intern would promote weight loss.

Faster cooking times

When compared to conventional cooking methods such as grilling, back or pan frying, air fryers tend to be much faster. The majority of air fryers do not require pre-heating, so you can get your food cooking straight away rather than waiting. If you purchase a large-capacity air fryer or an air fryer with multiple compartments, you could even cook multiple dishes at once.

Easy to clean

Typically air fryers don't leave much mess and when they do they are very easy to clean. They only get messy if you cook fatty foods such as chicken wings or steak. To clean your air fryer pull the tray out and wash with washing-up liquid or water, some air fryers are dishwasher safe but make sure to check before you put it in the dishwasher.

Environmentally friendly and use less electricity

Air fryers use considerably less power than most electric ovens, which helps you save money and reduces carbon emissions.

It is safer to use

Air fryers are much safer to use as there is no risk of hot oil splashing or spilling anyone, this is one of the reasons that air fryers are very good for beginners in the kitchen.


Some air fryers come with multifunction settings, which make them extremely versatile. They can include options like "roast" which is great for roasting meats on a Sunday, "grill" which can mimic BBQ-like grilling very well, "steam" which can be great for steaming veggies, and "heat" which can heat your food and is a great alternative to a microwave.

Less mess and waste

More conventional cooking methods, such as deep frying or pan frying can leave cooking oil or fat residue which can be difficult to dispose of and you cannot reuse it which makes it very wasteful. Air fryers can cook your food without using any oil which creates much less mess and waste.

Hand free cooking

All air fryers have a timer, so the air fryer will stop cooking your food when the timer is up, which means you can just set and forget, making it easy to get on with other tasks whilst your food cooks.

Convenient to use

Most air fryer models do not require heating, which means you can start cooking your food almost instantly, saving you time and making it convenient to use.

Reduce the risk of toxic acrylamide formation

Using an air fryer to cook your food can reduce the risk of creating a chemical called acrylamides compared to frying food in oil. Acrylamide can form in food when they are cooked using high-temperature cooking which has been known to cause some negative health effects.


Longer cooking times in comparison with traditional deep frying

When compared to deep frying, air fryers can take up to two times longer to cook your food, although they are still faster than your average conventional oven.

Some models have a small capacity

Some air fryers have a small capacity that is suited for one or two people, which can be an issue if you are cooking for a large family or a group of friends, forcing you to cook in multiple batches. Look for a large-capacity air fryer if you are planning to cook for groups regularly.

Higher risk of burning your food

Air fryers tend to cook food at pretty high temperatures, between 150-200ºC You have to make sure you know how long to cook your food for, or it could come out as charcoal!

Your food could dry out quickly

Air fryers can dry out your food if you leave it in for too long. Cooking food in oil beats air frying in this sense as oil develops that outside crispiness desired whilst keeping food nice and moist inside.

Build up potential carcinogens

When you use an air fryer to cook meat, there is a potential you may notice a black crust-like build-up on the outer layer of the meat. The black crust that forms is acrylamide, a compound that has been found to potentially cause cancer. If you see this on your food it is advisable to not take any chances and throw it away.


What is the difference between an air fryer and an oven?

air fryer vs oven

The first and most obvious difference air fryer and an oven is clearly the size. Air fryers are relatively small countertop appliances that can mostly only cook one dish at a time, whilst an oven is considered a full-size appliance that you can use to cook multiple dishes at once or in very large portions.

The second considerable difference between the two is the function of each appliance. Air fryers circulate heated air to cook foods, making them really crispy, whereas a conventional oven also uses air to cook food, most ovens have different settings such as grill, roast, and bake. Certain ovens can get similar results to air fryers in terms of crispiness as they essentially use the same technology.

A countertop oven that has an air fry setting can be a great choice if you are looking for the best of both worlds. These appliances are also much more environmentally friendly and are super convenient because they can do everything an oven can do, as well as air fry.

An air fryer is a great addition to your kitchen and is great if you feel like cooking up a small batch of chicken wings, fries, or some roast potatoes. Although it is important to consider that an air fryer cannot replace your oven when it comes to capacity. If you are planning to frequently cook multiple dishes or large quantities, you would want a full-sized oven in your kitchen.



You can put oil in the air fryer and it is advisable to put a small amount of oil in when you use it for that extra crunch.

It may seem slightly strange when you realise you can put oil in an "air fryer", but air fryers are so you can still get that delicious crispy texture without deep frying. In fact, even though you can put a small amount of oil in the air fryer, it is still much healthier and even saves you money as you don't have to use a whole bottle of vegetable oil.

olive oil


When you cook with your air fryer, you can use anywhere from a few sprays of oil to a tablespoon of oil depending on the dish that you are cooking.

While air frying, you use anywhere from a few sprays to 1 tablespoon of oil depending on the type of food you are cooking.


There are a bunch of different cooking oils that you can use in your air fryer, we recommend olive oil or canola oil for the best results possible.


So which air fryer should you get?

Ninja Foodi Max

We recommend the Ninja Foodi MAX Dual Zone Air Fryer, which is possibly the greatest air fryer ever!

The air fryer constantly featuring in some of our most popular videos, the Ninja Foodi Max is a large capacity air fryer with two compartments, this air fryer will be living on your countertop due to its size.

This air fryer comes with two distinct cooking zones, so you can air fry multiple dishes at once and place each basket at a different temperature.

You can set separate timers for each basket, or you can use the sync feature, which stalls the basket that has the short cooking time so the two separate zones finish cooking at exactly the same time!

The Ninja Foodi has six different cooking methods: air fry, roast, bake, dehydrate, reheat, and max crisp which is designed for foods that would normally be deep fried such as fried chicken and french fries. Each air fryer basket has a capacity of 4.25 liters.

The temperature ranges offered in this air fryer range from 40ºC to 240ºC. The Ninja Foodi is also very easy to clean and the baskets and crisper plates are dishwasher safe.

Making crispy food is where this air fryer exceeds, from chicken wings to fried chicken and french fries, this Ninja Foodi is your go-to replace your deep-fried favorites

The sync feature is possibly the most impressive feature of the air fryer, as said previously, it allows you to cook two different foods at different temperatures and they will be ready at exactly the same time.

The Ninja Foodi does require you to use a tad more cooking oil than most air fryers for the most optimal results, although if you are being calorie conscious, you do not have to use cooking oil and you will still get great results.

Whilst cooking the Ninja Foodi is about as loud as a standard household refrigerator.

If you are looking for the best air fryer recipes check out the Airfryer Hand Book 1 and our Instagram!

See you on the next blog!

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