Air-fried snacks are crowd-pleasers while you wait for food to come off the grill. Fast, healthy, and yummy with easy cleanup. Air fryers help you prepare healthy meals, save cooking time, and make you a family kitchen all-star. With air frying, you use only a fraction of the cooking oil for deep frying. Often a few squirts of an oil-based cooking spray are all you’ll need. We found super deals on air fryers from Instant Pot, Dash, Ninja, and more. If you’re wondering about air frying and convection cooking (they both cook with hot air), we cover that, too, below the deals. You probably clicked on this post to see the best air fryer deals, so here they are:
Today’s best air fryer deals
How do I choose the right air fryer?
With the growth of air fryer popularity, the variety of models on the market has grown to the point that choosing the best model for your kitchen can be confusing. The primary considerations in shopping for an air fryer are capacity, controls, added air frying features, and additional cooking functions.
In general, you’ll find air fryer baskets that range from about 3 quarts to 6 quarts. For a single person or a couple or if you want to heat some wings and fries, smaller is just fine. If you’re going to be preparing dishes and full meals for a family with an air fryer, even if only once in a while, buy a larger model.
Air fryers with manual controls usually have two settings: Dooking temperature and cooking time. As long as you know the desired settings, turn the dials to the proper temperature and time and let it cook. Digital air fryers are usually pretty easy to use, but they are more complicated than manual models. If the fryer you’re looking at also roasts, bakes, broils, dehydrates, and more, chances are it will have a digital control panel, often with several presets for various cooking modes or types of food.
Single-purpose air fryers do one type of cooking. If you already have a countertop full of other appliances, including toaster, convection oven, and perhaps an indoor grill, a multifunction air fryer is just duplication. If, on the other hand, counter space is at a premium in your kitchen, a multifunction model is a smart buy because one appliance can serve several purposes. One common and desirable feature for air fryers is the ability to crisp the outside of food. Typically crisping is the last step in the air frying process and may require a separate add-on component. Because traditional deep-fried foods usually have crispy exteriors, an air fryer with a crisping function isn’t considered a multifunctional cooker. It’s just a complete air fryer.
As you saw above, you can spend from $50 to $200 or more for air fryers. Larger models with digital controls and multiple cooking functions cost more than smaller air fryers with manual controls solely for air frying time and temperature.
Is air frying the same as convection cooking?
Air fryers have become so popular in the past few years you wouldn’t be alone in thinking it’s a new cooking technology. The core technology for air frying has been used in cooking for more than 70 years. It was and still is called convection cooking. Air fryers and convection ovens both cook food by using fans to circulate hot air.
While the underlying technology is identical, the implementations differ, at least in their purest senses. A simple air fryer usually resembles a squat cylinder. Convection ovens generally have a rectangular shape with a door that opens in the front to reveal one or more removable trays. Food cooked in an air fryer sits on a rack on the bottom of a removable basket. You put food on trays or shelves to cook in convection ovens.
Convection ovens generally have a larger capacity than air fryers so the ovens can hold more food to cook at the same time. Because air fryers don’t have to fill as much space with hot moving air, air fryers usually cook food faster than convection ovens. Often, air fryers are louder than convection ovens they use fans to circulate hot air around the cooking area.
You can find multifunction cookers that claim to be both air fryers and convection ovens. Based on the size and shape, you can tell which of the two variations on the same them the device more closely resembles. Both forms often have settings for baking, roasting, broiling, and dehydrating food, but at heart, they’re either an air fryer or a convection oven.
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