Here is a healthy alternative for all your favorite fried food recipes. Mini-convection, in essence, is created by an air fryer, promising to match the taste and texture of your favorite deep-fried foods without all the fat or those extra calories.
Despite the name, an air fryer doesn’t actually fry food. Instead, it circulates hot air through a fan, above and around food present in the fryer-style basket, basically functioning the same as the chamber of a convection oven. The rapid circulation results in the familiar crispy texture of food, much like deep frying but only using a little oil.
An air fryer is fast and does not need to be preheated. Another great part of air frying is that it not only saves time, but is also easy to clean, and most units have dishwasher-safe parts.
Foods in the air fryer
You can use an air fryer to cook just about anything you would cook in an oven or deep fryer. It does a marvelous job cooking frozen foods like frozen french fries, chicken wings, mozzarella sticks, and more. It will also do an amazing job at cooking fresh food like chicken, steak, pork chops, salmon, etc. The crispy, air fried bits pack a lot of flavor. Not only this, but you can also use it to bake and tackle desserts like doughnuts and cookies.
Regardless of being touted as one of the healthiest methods of frying food, the air fryer comes with a few limitations. You cannot use the air fryer to make anything with a liquid batter. Also, while air fryers come in a range of different sizes, even the largest models can’t cook anything in large quantities. So be prepared to cook in batches if you plan on feeding your family.
Other things to consider
These are the features and factors you should be looking out for a while you’re shopping for an air fryer.
An air fryer is not a small appliance. Most countertop models are bigger than a toaster. To house an air fryer, you’ll need to make space or give up valuable storage or counter space.
An air fryer is an easy appliance to understand and use. You essentially just plug it in, place your food in the basket, set time and temperature, and you’re cooking. It is fast, compact, and good for low-fuss cooking. It is also easy to take apart and clean.
Taste and texture
An air fryer will give you similar results to deep-frying, but it is still not quite the same. The air fryer makes the food crispier, more dried out, and browner.
Air fryers range in price from around US$70 for a really small one, suitable for one person and ideal for a dorm room or an RV, to over US$300 for a tricked-out family size model with all the bells and whistles. But in general, you should expect to pay right around US$100 for most models.
Air fryers offer a healthy alternative for your lifestyle if you are trying to cut back on fried food. At most, you will only need a teaspoon or two of oil to get your food cooking, which is practically nothing compared to the amount of oil usually used to deep fry food. This will result in fewer calories consumed and less saturated fat than your typical fried food, without straining your fitness.
Bottom line, there is no other home appliance more efficient than an air fryer once you get the hang of it. When cooking french fries or chicken nuggets, there is not a single better alternate option if you consider that it does a better job than baking in the oven while being healthier than deep-frying and doesn’t heat up your kitchen.