10 of the best air fryers — including Hailey Bieber's fave

No more cooking for what feels like 10,000 hours

A selection of air fryers reviewed in at the Future Plc test kitchen in Reading
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(Image credit: Future)

Don't call it a comeback as the humble air fryer is still going strong in 2023, making pre-heating your oven and getting a face full of hot air a thing of the past. It's not just a useful kitchen gadget — this oven-in-a-box has got cult status too. You're officially this year's "it" girl if you've got one of these convection ovens. Because even Hailey Bieber has one in her kitchen. From lazy weekend brunch to a roast chicken with all the trimmings — using and cleaning an air fryer is a piece of cake. PSA: it's much more energy efficient too...

Unlike a deep-fat fryer, air fryers circulate hot air to cook and crisp your food with little to no fat needed for delicious results. Plus, your food will usually sit on a tray or grill plate, allowing any more excess fat to drip into the basket, making things less greasy (and smelly).

If you need any more convincing, take a look at all of the air fryers our experts have tried below and read our rave reviews from Real Homes editors and freelancers. Over time, we'll add to this list and spill the tea on superior models that we really love after they've been tested inside our own kitchens or in our test kitchen — or sometimes both.

The best air fryers as rated by the experts

Why you can trust Real Homes Our expert reviewers spend hours testing and comparing products and services so you can choose the best for you. Find out more about how we test.

Instant Vortex PlusReal Homes Rated Gold badge

(Image credit: Instant Brands)
Our #1 rated best air fryer

Specifications

Capacity: 5.7 L
Wattage: 1,700 W
Price to run (per hour): 58p
Interface: Digital
Dimensions (cm): H11.7 x W11.3 x D9

Reasons to buy

+
Removable air fry insert
+
6-in-1
+
It made some of the best chips we've ever eaten
+
The large tray can fit a whole chicken

Reasons to avoid

-
The drawer isn't dishwasher safe

The Instant Pot Vortex Plus 6-Quart 6-in-1 Air Fryer wowed us in testing with its generous capacity and multiple cooking modes. And it seems Hailey Bieber is too as this features in her latest YouTube kitchen series. We're a big fan of air fryers that have a slatted insert. This one allows you to air fry and remove the insert to use the flat base of the drawer for reheating leftovers and baking anything, from roasts to apple crumbles.

In review 

We found that it cooked frozen chicken breast fillets in just 12 minutes, which is just over half the time it takes in an oven to ensure there's no pink meat and that the juices run clear. It also made delicious and evenly-cooked homemade fries in just 25 minutes. This is due to the alert that reminds you to shake up your food as it's part-way through cooking, ensuring that your spuds get an even browning. Also, it remembers your most recent settings and timings, so if you cook a lot of the same air fryer recipes, it will save you from adjusting the timings and temperatures each time.

Energy efficiency

At 1,700 watts, this air fryer should cost approximately 25 cents to run for one hour. This is plenty of time to cook pretty much anything other than a large joint. Considering its capacity, this is pretty impressive. According to the brand, this model saves up to 80 percent energy when compared to using a 2400-watt electric oven.

Good to know 

The drawer is not dishwasher-safe, but the insert is. Because it's non-stick, you can easily clean it by hand each time. This air fryer is one of the larger options in our guide (if you want something smaller, we also think the Instant Vortex Mini air fryer is a top choice) but for families and those who can spare the counter space, we think this is the best air fryer you can buy.

Ninja Foodi MaxReal Homes Rated Gold badge

(Image credit: Ninja Foodi)
The best energy-efficient air fryer

Specifications

Capacity: 6 L
Wattage: 1,460 W
Price per use (per hour): 50p
Interface: Digital
Mixing: No
Dimensions (cm): H12.6 x W16.9 x D14.2

Reasons to buy

+
8-in-1 cooker
+
Large air fry basket
+
Loud alarm 
+
Easily adjusted timer
+
Can fit a whole chicken

Reasons to avoid

-
It's huge
-
Expensive
-
If you only want an air fryer, it's not the one

We adore this multi-cooker (that's also an air fryer) for its versatility. It can also bake, slow cook, pressure cook, and even dehydrate. It's one of the most affordable models in this guide to run, especially when you consider its hefty six-litre capacity, that is. However, if you are just looking for an air fryer, then this might be too pricey for you.

In review
It comes with a basket and crisper lid to create delicious and healthy(ish) chips, fish, and veggies. It has a large footprint (the one we reviewed was the Max, which is seriously major in size) but if you can find the room for it, this air fryer is ready to usurp your slow cooker and pressure cooker. It has a lid for air frying and a separate lid for other options like pressure cooking, so space will be a concern if you're short on it.

Energy-efficiency
Bearing in mind that this is an eight-in-one appliance, it costs a mere 50 pence to run for one hour, on all modes.

Good to know
The air fry basket is large and circular. It could fit a whole chicken in theory, but the shape isn't quite right for larger, more awkwardly-shaped cuts of meat. So if you did want to cook joints, your best bet is to get your butcher to secure it tightly with some twine. The controls are incredibly intuitive, and the actual air frying quality is top-notch, so you won't miss out if you opt for this multi-functional machine.

Ninja foodi dual air fryerReal Homes Rated Gold badge

(Image credit: Ninja)
The best air fryer for families

Specifications

Capacity: 7.6 L
Wattage: 2,400 W
Price to run (per hour): 82p
Interface: Digital
Dimensions (cm): H39.7 x W37 x D31.5

Reasons to buy

+
6 ways to cook
+
2 independent cooking zones
+
Quick and easy to use

Reasons to avoid

-
 Expensive, but worth it

We love, love, LOVE this air fryer from Ninja. There are none of those ambiguous cooking modes, the Ninja Foodi Dual Zone Air Fryer allows you to take control of the temperature and timings with simple controls. You can sync the drawers so they finish at the same time, meaning if you take out one drawer to have a look, the other will pause too. 

In review
This air fryer can also be used for cooking two foods simultaneously, making it an idyllic machine for catering to different dietary requirements. While the capacity is large (because it's spread across a wider space), it still cooks evenly and very fast. We've tested every air fryer in this guide hands-on, but this is the one to beat. 

There are six ways to cook — Max Crisp, Roast, Bake, Reheat, Dehydrate, and Air Fry — which gives you the ultimate cooking experience. It's super quick, so you may have to adjust the cooking instructions that come with your food. 

Energy efficiency
Bearing in mind how large (and family-friendly) this air fryer is, it's still affordable to run. It works out at approximately 82 pence per hour to run, and with tonnes of capabilities, it can pretty much replace your oven, as well as your dehydrator (should you have one). 

Good to know
Most air fryers have a basket that lifts out of the drawer, but you simply pull out the slatted inserts in this air fryer. This means you can use the drawers without the basket, so even "wet" dishes like pasta bakes and apple crumbles are perfectly possible (and yes, we tried both in this air fryer when testing). So while you're enjoying your main course, you can have your dessert cooking.

Can't find slash afford the Ninja Foodi Dual Zone Air Fryer? Check out these Ninja dupes on sale for Black Friday.

Instant BrandsReal Homes Rated Gold badge

(Image credit: Instant Brands)
The best small air fryer

Specifications

Capacity: 2 L
Wattage: 1,300 W
Price to run (per hour): 44p
Interface: Digital
Mixing: No
Dimensions (cm): H29.8 x W22.9 x D28.6

Reasons to buy

+
Lovely colour selection
+
Tactile smart controls
+
Easy to clean
+
Removable tray insert 

Reasons to avoid

-
It won't cater to more than two people 

Mini by name and miniature by nature, this small air fryer left a big impact when we tested it. Not only was it small enough to sit neatly on our cluttered countertops, but it also produced some of the most crispy and evenly-cooked chips, chicken, and other snacks that we've tried. We think this is down to the EvenCrisp technology that creates that moreish texture, using 95 percent less oil than a deep fat fryer.

In review
We found this air fryer to be the best bet for smaller households, and it particularly came in handy when cooking frozen foods for kids. The design is smart, with a tactile touchscreen display that's easy to use, especially if you're in a rush. This allows you to adjust timings and temperatures using a dial, as well as choose between reheat, roast, bake, and air fry modes. Despite being only two litres, the capacity was capable of cooking chips and a quarter chicken (enough for two). It also managed to do this very evenly, despite looking a little cramped. There's even a reminder to shake your food halfway through cooking. Our food cooked fast and came out very crispy. 

Energy-efficiency
With a small capacity, this is naturally one of the cheapest air fryers on our list to run. It'll cost you around 44 pence an hour, whilst you'll rarely use it for more than that time anyway. It doesn't have space for joints and it only has one basket.

Good to know
It's advisable to clean the air fryer after each use, or it will start to smoke. Cleaning this air fryer is easy though because you can pull out the insert and place it in the dishwasher. Because it's so small, the tray also fits easily into a slimline or normal-sized dishwasher. It also comes in a range of colours to suit your home decor, including teal and red, which are great for adding an accent to a white kitchen. Aside from cooking meals from scratch, this machine does a great job of warming leftovers for lunch while maintaining taste and texture... because soggy and watery reheats just aren't it!

COSORI LITE air fryer in truffle greyReal Homes Rated Gold badge

(Image credit: COSORI)
The most stylish air fryer

Specifications

Capacity: 4qt
Wattage: 1500 W
Price to run (per hour): 22c
Interface: Digital

Reasons to buy

+
Smartphone-enabled
+
Stays cool
+
Back design stops you from pushing all the way to back
+
Silicone corners keep crisper from damaging nonstick coating
+
2-year warranty

Reasons to avoid

-
Oil sits below basket
-
App setup could be fussy if you're not tech savvy

If you're looking for an air fryer that ticks the boxes for style and substance without taking up too much space, you need the Cosori Lite. Available in grey, Truffle White, and Sage Green, this machine proves that air fryers can be trendy too.

In review
No task was too small or large for this design-led device. We tried family favorites including bacon, 'boiled' eggs (no water needed!), breaded fish fillets, fries, and even a fakeaway-style crispy seaweed (made from kale). One of the most impressive features was the crisper plate which allowed food to be cooked on a raised shelf without swimming in oil. The silicone feet on said feature meant that it was easy to detach and clean, without the risk of scraping the non-stick base.

Energy-efficiency
As a mid-sized air fryer, this sits bang in the middle energy-wise and costs 22 cents per hour to run. The pre-heat and keep warm functions allow you to get the machine nice and hot (up to 450F), and keep food temperate once the initial cook time is over. Great for late guests, or if you want to reheat leftovers without burning them.

Good to know
If you're often multi-tasking while cooking, you'll be pleased to know that you can remotely monitor your meals, adjust settings, and even ask Amazon Alexa or Google to fire up your fries using the free VeSync app.

best air fryerReal Homes Rated Gold badge

(Image credit: Cosori)
The best Amazon air fryer

Specifications

Food capacity: 5.5 L
Wattage: 1,700 W
Price per use (per hour): 58p
Interface: Digital
Dimensions (cm): H30 x W22 x D30

Reasons to buy

+
Extra-large basket
+
Easy to use & clean
+
Good price point

Reasons to avoid

-
Modes are a bit confusing

Boasting an extra-large capacity, we think that this air fryer is perfect for those who want the most value for their money. The smart modes offer custom cooking times and temperatures depending on what you're cooking, which can be a big help for amateur chefs or those who want a reminder to shake halfway through.

In review
After testing what feels like a mountain of air fryers, the Cosori was one of the best when it came to actual quality results. Chips? Done in 15 minutes. Frozen food? Always crispy. The 5.5-litre capacity makes this air fryer suitable for families of up to six people, and it can fit a whole chicken in for that delicious crispy skin you want from a Sunday roast.

Energy-efficiency
Similar in size and price per usage to our first pick from Instant, if you want a no-frills air fryer that's affordable to run then this should be it. At only 57 pence an hour to run, there's no point in even turning your oven on to preheat.

Good to know
The fryer comes with a recipe book that's crammed with 100 ideas and plenty more inspiration. These really utilise the 14 cooking modes, which could feel overwhelming if they came without instruction.

For more Amazon air fryers, see our dedicated guide.

Cusinart Air Fryer Toaster Oven in Reading test kitchen with faux plant and crushed garlic on chopping board

(Image credit: Future)
The best air fryer toaster oven combo

Specifications

Capacity: 3 lbs
Wattage: 1800W
Price to run (per hour): 61p
Interface: Digital touch
Dimensions (cm): 39.37 x 29.21 x 31.75

Reasons to buy

+
Cooks evenly
+
Great for use in the summer
+
Cleaning is easy

Reasons to avoid

-
Temperature runs a little high
-
Large dimensions

If you're looking for a more versatile appliance — perhaps if you have a small kitchen or simply like to maximize efficiency — the Cuisinart TOA-60 Air Fryer Toaster Oven is our top choice.

In review
Our reviewer found that the Cuisinart TOA-60 had a generous capacity, perfect for cooking for her family of five. Her kids were able to eat chicken nuggets that had been air fried for just seven minutes, and they found that pizza cooked in half the time, with crispy crusts after 10 minutes. While it was on the large side, we found that it's easy on the eyes and something worth displaying in your kitchen. The instructions were easy to use, and the air fryer even came with some recipes to get you started.

Energy-efficiency
Costing 61 pence to run an hour, this is one of the most expensive air fryers to run that we've reviewed. 

Good to know
Cleaning is surprisingly easy, but be aware that the bottom tray needs to be in place at all times to catch fat and crumbs. There was a slight plastic smell upon first use, but it disappeared after a couple of cooking sessions. We also found that the speedy cooking was facilitated by an elevated temperature, so this will take some adjusting. Consider turning the temperature down by about 10 degrees if you plan on cooking a familiar recipe.

Dreo air fryer with bottle of extra virgin olive oil faux houseplant and green ombre Le Creuset salt and pepper millsReal Homes Rated Gold badge

(Image credit: Future)
The best value air fryer

Specifications

Food capacity: 3.8 L
Watts: 1,500 W
Price per use (per hour): 51p
Interface: Digital
Dimensions (cm): H30 x W24 x D21.5

Reasons to buy

+
Low running costs
+
Small and compact
+
Sleek, stylish design
+
LED display screen
+
Easy to clean
+
Great for couples
+
Good for cooking side dishes

Reasons to avoid

-
Preset programmes are hit and miss
-
Not great for large families

The Dreo air fryer is the newest recruit to our catalogue of reviews, but if you're co-habiting, consider this glossy countertop cutie! With a 3.8-litre capacity, it can't compete with the big boys, but it's great for grabbing a bite with bae or your BFF while cutting down on the cost of a takeaway. The sleek, stylish design won't cramp your interior style. In fact, the LED screen actually makes it look quite fancy.

In review
Our reviewer put the Dreo air fryer through its paces cooking breakfast, lunch, and dinner in this device so that she could be super thorough. Given how deep the gadget is, she noted that it could have done with having a cooking tray which would open up opportunities for cooking multiple items at a time. Otherwise, think outside of the box when using this machine, as it's great for hosting a boujee brunch, complete with hot pain au chocolat pastries and maybe boozy coffee. Because it's 5 pm somewhere in the world, right?

Energy-efficiency
Given how the cost of living has burned a small hole in our pockets, you'll be pleased to know this bill-busting buy costs just 51p per hour. This works out to less than a penny per minute.

Good to know
The presets are hit-and-miss, but given all of its plus points, it pays to be patient. It runs on less than half the wattage of an average oven, so it's worth getting used to if you want some decent savings.

Russell Hobbs SatisFry Air & Grill Multi CookerReal Homes Rated Gold badge

(Image credit: Russell Hobbs)
The best air fryer for couples

Specifications

Capacity: 5.5 L
Wattage: 1,745 W
Price to run (per hour): 59p
Interface: Digital
Dimensions (cm): H28.2 x W32 x D37.8

Reasons to buy

+
Keep warm function
+
Perfect for couples
+
Spacious basket
+
Easy to clean
+
Also a slow cooker

Reasons to avoid

-
No basket for pouring or shaking
-
Exterior gets very hot

If you live in a pair or a couple and are concerned about your energy bills (who isn't right now!) then this might be the best air fryer for you to buy. Its spacious capacity offers plenty of room to cook almost anything, not just your homemade chips, and it doesn't even need to preheat. It's ready to cook instantly. This is also a slightly more affordable option than the Ninja, in our eyes.

In review
We're still testing this beauty, but it's safe to say that it has earned a space on our kitchen countertop. We found that we used it so much that it wasn't worth constantly taking it in and out of the cupboard. It's super easy to use on air fryer mode. Whilst we are yet to test the other modes, it can essentially do everything. It can air fry, roast, bake, sear, grill, and even slow cook. We've loved using its keep warm function when our timings are slightly off too. Its capacity is plenty sizeable to cook two meals for two people, and we've used it to cook homemade chips and fish cakes for two at one time, and it's a breeze. Better yet, its basket and grill plate fits in a dishwasher (even a slimline one!) for a simple clean-up.

Energy-efficiency
This generous capacity air fryer works out at 59 pence per use and considering that it can also keep food warm, that's pretty good. 

Good to know
This air fryer doesn't have a shakable basket, so when cooking you'll need to have some sort of utensil at hand as you can't pour your food from a basket onto your plate. Likewise, a pair of tongs should be on hand if you need to turn food for even cooking. Otherwise, its exterior gets really hot, so keep it away from little hands. It also looks quite smart on our countertop, just bear in mind that its alert noise is pretty quiet.

Breville Air air fryerReal Homes Rated Gold badge

(Image credit: Breville)
The best air fryer with an in-built divider

Specifications

Capacity: 5.5 L
Wattage: 1,700 W
Price per use (per hour): 58p
Interface: Digital
Dimensions (cm): H43 x W34 x D40

Reasons to buy

+
Comes with a divider
+
Easy to clean
+
Handy pre-sets
+
Nice and quiet

Reasons to avoid

-
Large and awkward shape

The Breville Halo Air Fryer has a fresh approach to air frying thanks to the included divider insert that can separate food when cooking meals or for picky eaters. It has a selection of pre-set modes for cooking anything from steak to frozen chips, but we like that you can also adapt the cooking time and temperature using the touch controls on either side of the digital panel. 

In review
When we tested the Breville Halo Air (opens in new tab), it made delicious homemade chips in only 12 minutes, even when we used the included pre-set mode which allotted 16 minutes of cooking time. We also made cakes and the whole process from making the batter to taking them out of the air fryer took only 30 minutes. They were very browned on top, but totally delicious.

Energy efficiency
There seems to be a theme with this guide, as this is the third air fryer we can recommend that costs 58 pence to run for one hour. Choose this one if you can imagine yourself using your air fryer to cook different foods at the same time. This way you can grill your chicken and air fry your chips using one machine, and wave goodbye to having to clean a frying pan.

Good to know
You can press a button to lift the cooking insert, handle and food away from the basket. This is not our favourite way of cleaning an air fryer but it does mean that your food lifts away from any drips of fat or juices at the bottom of the basket. Alternatively, you could use an air fryer liner if food residue in the device gives you the ick.

Real Homes review process — how we test air fryers

Four black air fryer models on grey countertop

(Image credit: Future)

All of the air fryers in this guide have been tested hands-on for over a month by a member of the Real Homes team. When testing, there are a few recipes we always follow so that we're able to compare cooking results directly. You can read about our air fryer testing process, otherwise, one food that we always cook is homemade fries, obviously. Some of the speediest air fryers have been able to crisp these up in just 12 minutes, while others have taken as long as 20. Even then, this is much quicker than cooking fries in an oven. Other recipes will depend on the type of product and what it claims to do well. Some air fryers come with their own recipes, so we like to try these out alongside our own dishes to see if they are a good introduction to the product. 

With all of the above air fryers, you can click through to read full reviews with images of our hands-on experience. 

Meet our air fryer testers below:

Millie Fender illustration
Millie Fender

Millie is Real Homes' head of reviews and was previously our small appliances and cookware editor. She's had hands-on experience with dozens of air fryers and reviewed all but a couple of the air fryers in our guide, so her verdict is the best you can find. Her favourite has to be our number one pick from Instant Pot (opens in new tab) as it has a generous capacity and sturdy build, and it made some delicious chips while in review. In her own small kitchen though, Millie prefers to use the Instant Vortex Mini Air Fryer. It's an excellent option for her two-person household, and she loves the colour options. 

Christina illustration
Christina Chrysostomou

Christina is Real Homes' ecommerce editor and has recently taken on the (big) responsibility of testing all the air fryers on the market for this guide. Her favorite air fryer (so far) is the Cosori Lite (opens in new tab), but she looks forward to seeing if there's anything out there that pips it to the post in our test kitchen. Here she'll be able to test around 10 air fryers side by side to truly examine the performance of each kitchen appliance and compare apples to apples... or in her case, fries to fries.

Louise Oliphant author illustration
Louise Oliphant

As a single person who often finds themselves cooking meals for one, the Dreo air fryer has become somewhat of an appliance Louise can no longer do without. Perfect for cooking just about anything in the oven (and more), she uses it for just about every meal. Think: air frying a pain au chocolat, crisping toasties, and cooking chips, veggies, and meat. She rarely has the need to turn the oven on, which has also helped with her energy bills.

Lindsey illustration
Lindsey Davis

Lindsey is one of our content directors, focusing on ecommerce at Real Homes, and she's also a keen foodie working with a smaller kitchen. Lindsey tested the Ninja Foodi Multi-Cooker, which she still uses on a regular basis after awarding it a rare gold rating. 

Annie Collyer illustration
Annie Collyer

Annie is our head ecommerce editor and she spends her time testing everything from air fryers to BBQs and candles for us at Real Homes. Annie has reviewed both the Instant Vortex Mini and the Russell Hobbs SatisFry and she thought they were both great. The Instant Mini is better for side dishes (sweet potato fries ftw) and single servings, and she stores it in her kitchen cupboard. However, the super versatile Russell Hobbs model is a do-it-all appliance that can also slow cook and more, though it's so large that it needs worktop space.

What is the #1 air fryer?

Our favourite option, the Instant Vortex Plus Air Fryer (opens in new tab), has a total of six cooking modes and a drawer insert that can be removed to cook things with sauces and even make brownies. It's a do-it-all machine with a rather reasonable price tag, and it costs just 58 pence to run for one hour. In fact, we've listed the run price (per hour) of every air fryer on this list and the cheapest comes out at just 44 pence per hour of use. If you need any more convincing, take a look at all of the air fryers our experts have tried below and read our rave reviews. Over time, we'll add to this list and spill the beans on superior models with souped-up features.

How much does an air fryer cost?

Expect to pay anywhere from £70 to £200 for a top-quality air fryer, depending on its size. While they aren't the most expensive investment, if you go for a cheaper one you'll likely have less room to cook in it. The majority of smaller air fryers won't be able to offer a large enough capacity to cook a whole chicken, for example. Either way, though, you should get frequent use from your new appliance once it's on your kitchen counters. If you want to know if it will be worth it, take a look at our top reasons to buy an air fryer

7 things to consider when buying an air fryer

1. How much capacity can it offer?
To start with, how many mouths do you have to feed? Compare the litres with how many people are in your household. This will also depend on what you are planning on using it for. If you only want an air fryer for chips, then you can go small(er), but if it's a whole chicken that you want to squeeze in there, the bigger the better. Ideally, you don't want to cram food items in, as air needs to circulate properly for the real crisp factor.

2. What size is it? Will it fit inside your kitchen cupboards?
With a bigger capacity unfortunately comes a larger size air fryer. Depending on where you'll want to place your air fryer, you might want to get out your tape measure, as some models can be quite large. If you're planning on keeping your air fryer on your kitchen worktop, think of where it will go (preferably in a corner!) as you need to allow some room behind your air fryer for air to escape. Otherwise, a lot of the models above can easily be squeezed inside a cupboard after use.

3. Is it versatile in its functions or can it only air fry food?
What else can your air fryer do? Some models are great little multi-taskers and have the ability to reheat, roast, or grill as well as fry, so if you’re in the market for a versatile small appliance, these are a good bet. 

4. How easy is it to clean?
If you have a dishwasher, then be sure to check that your new air fryer is safe to be cleaned in there. This makes washing your air fryer a whole lot easier, though they are pretty simple to clean regardless. See our guide on how to clean an air fryer the proper way for more tips and tricks. In most cases, there is a button to retract the basket or drawer, making it easier to get rid of dirt, grease, or grime. 

5. How much does it cost to run an air fryer?
We've researched the price per usage (based on one hour) and popped those stats alongside each air fryer we've reviewed, so if your energy bills are at the forefront of this purchase, you can choose wisely. We've tallied it up using the current energy price cap and rounded it to the nearest penny so you can get an accurate idea of how much energy it will consume.

6. Does it have a cooking rack?
Finally, if you’re short on time, but your ingredients list is long, look for an air fryer with a cooking rack included, which offers an extra compartment for cooking two different foods at the same time, or one with a mixing paddle, so you don’t have to hover over it.

7. Can it separate foods?
Vegan, veggie, or coeliac? Whether you've chosen to adopt a certain way of eating, or you've had strict dietary requirements since birth, sometimes it's important to separate mains and sides from what others are eating. Aside from the aforementioned cooking racks, we've checked whether any of these air fryers have drawers so there's no risk of cross-contamination.

Can I put aluminum foil in an air fryer?

Many people use aluminum foil in their air fryer in the same way that you'd line a cookie sheet to stop grease, breading, and food debris from sticking. While this is a W to save on washing up, reusable air fryer liners are a more sustainable choice in our humble opinion. You can wash these over and over again instead of scrunching balls of aluminum into your kitchen bin.

What are the negatives of an air fryer?

Air fryers are absolutely worth it. But, from personal experience, there are two downsides to owning this appliance: size and power. Smaller air fryers, (while great for compact countertops) won't hold the same capacity of food as your oven. And don't underestimate the wattage of your gadget either. I've followed conventional oven cooking times for air fryer recipes before, and my food has come out a little cremated. RIP dinner.

Oh, and another thing! If you want to cook things with a wet batter — don't. Air fryer vs. deep fat fryer, the former takes an L here. So shallow fry your tempura shrimp or let them swim in a big sea of fryer oil.

Is eating air fried food healthy?

Though they've been around for a while, many people still do question how healthy air fryers are, so we spoke to an industry expert to settle the debate.

"Air frying allows for healthier cooking methods that don’t require extra fat or oil to cook food properly — keeping them both dry on the outside while maintaining moisture within each bite thanks to its circulating hot air system," says Sarah Farquharson, senior marketing manager at Instant Brand (opens in new tab)s. "Healthy meals have never been so easy."

We agree — of course, eating a balanced diet is key, but swapping fried eggs for air fryer boiled eggs is a simple way to enjoy this protein-rich food without cooking it in oil.

How much oil should you use in an air fryer?

Hannah Niu, marketing manager at Xiaomi (opens in new tab) explains that "the oil inside the food is thoroughly fried through the 360° heated air circulation, providing delicious food with less grease and fat." Niu also adds that the technology within an air fryer results in food that's cooked through and crispy on the outside. 

The exception in our experience of testing is that if you're going to make homemade chips, a little oil goes a long way in ensuring your chipped spuds have a golden and crispy exterior.

Christina Chrysostomou
Ecommerce Editor

Bonjour, Yasou, Hello — I'm Christina, ecommerce editor at Real Homes. Along with my super creative colleagues, I create content to help you create a chic home on a budget. I live in a two-bed maisonette with a garage and garden in Essex. Geographically, it's perfect; I've got the forest on my doorstep, and London is just 15 minutes by tube or car. I specialize in small kitchen appliances so that you can prepare food with ease at home. Prior to working for the Future plc family, I've worked on a number of consumer events including the Ideal Home Show, Grand Designs Live, and Good Homes Magazine. With a plethora of experience in digital marketing, editorial, and social media, I have an eye for what should be in your shopping basket.

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