Frying without oil, how does it work? The whole idea of air frying sounds so incredible. You may have heard about air fryers and how that they can produce crispy fried foods with 70% – 80% less oil than deep-frying. Is it even possible?
This trendy appliance has been very popular recently, but with your coffee machine, toaster oven, Microwave oven, Instant pot on your already-packed kitchen top, do you still need another appliance?
If you’ve been on the fence about whether or not to purchase this trendy appliance, let’s take a look at how does the airfryer works to help you figure out if it is worth the money and the space of your kitchen countertop.
What is an Air Fryer?
Philips introduced the Air Fryer in 2010. The electric appliance makes use of a patented Rapid Air Technology that enables you to fry crispy chips with less fat than a deep fryer! Its unique combination of fast circulating hot air and a grill element allows you to cook a variety of delicious vegetables, snacks, meat, and more, quickly and simply. As people are becoming more health-conscious, air fryer has also become a household essential for many families. According to Consumer Reports in 2019, the five best air fryers brands were Elite, Farberware, GoWISE, Ninja, NuWave, respectively.
How Does an Air Fryer Work?
The air fryer does not actually fry like a deep fryer, by submerging food into a bath of hot oil. It works similarly like a countertop convection oven. It’s a kitchen appliance with a heating element and a fan that blows air around in a cooking chamber. By placing the food into a perforated basket, the machine cooks the food by this circulating air technique called convection. The air combining with just a little bit of oil, swirl very quickly around all of the surfaces of the food to create a crispy crust.
What Can You Cook in an Air Fryer?
The most common food that people tend to cook with the air fryer are packaged frozen foods like frozen chicken wings, chicken nuggets, burgers, and French fries.
You can cook anything that you can bake in an air fryer. Lamb chops, steak, roasted potatoes, banana bread, anything that you can think of baking, you can try to make in the fryer. The only drawback is that for food that needs to be breaded, it cannot be too wet.
Some of the recipes that you can try:
Can I Skip the Oil Entirely?
Frying without oil entirely may not be possible with the airfryer. Most manufacturers recommend that you spray foods with at least a little oil. To add flavor to the food, I recommend adding some olive oil or butter.
7 Benefits About Air Fryers
1. Easy to Use
The air fryer is very easy to use. You just have to marinate the food that you are going to cook, place them into the basket. Set the temperature and timer, and the delicious air fried food will be ready in no time. For frozen food, it is even simpler, food like french fries, you just have to take it out from the freezer and place them into the basket and just follow the instruction for the required time and temperature for cooking the food. There is no mess at all.
2. Save Lots of Calories
Deep-fried food is usually very high in calories. With an air fryer, you can enjoy fried food with lesser calories. By using the hot air circulation technology, the food is cooked with hot air and with very little or no oil; hence you can save lots of calories from these air fried food.
3. Save Time and Space
With the air fryer, you can bake, fry, grill, or even dehydrate food for some models. With all these functions all in one appliance, you can reduce the number of kitchen appliances in your kitchen, saving those limited countertop space. Furthermore, it cooks much faster than a conventional oven, and you can achieve the same taste and result with the air fryer at a much shorter time.
4. Ideal for Cooking Frozen Food
The air fryer is ideal for frozen food. For those of you who love frozen food, like french fries, chicken nugget, chicken wings, you can take the food out from the freezer, and within minutes, you will have food ready on the plate. For those that are health conscious, this will save you lots of calories.
5. No Mess or Smell
Unlike deep frying, the air fryer cooks the food with hot air; hence there is no oily mess and smell that deep frying will create.
6. Easy to Clean
Thanks to the dishwasher-safe parts, the air fryer is so easy to clean. You can just put them in the dishwasher to wash and clean after each use. Moreover, the air fryer basket is usually made of non-stick material, hence cleaning it is effortless too.
7. You Can Even Make Dessert
Beside making fried food with the air fryer, you will be surprised that the air fryer can make delicious dessert as well. You can make banana cake, cookies, apple pie and more.
How Do You Choose Air Fryer?
There are many different air fryers available in the market. There are different sizes, with various features and functions. The most suitable one for you depends on your family size, the space available on your kitchen countertop, and your budget. Also, you have considered do you need all the high-tech built-in functions or you only need one that can fry food. It will be useful to read some air fryer reviews before making your purchase.
Is Air Fryers Worth Buying?
While you may be able the same cooking results with the convection oven, it does not mean an airfryer isn’t worth adding to your kitchen collection.
The air fryer is convenient as it is easy to use and consume less energy than a convection oven. Preheating is not required before cooking, although some recipes do recommend preheating. Even the time need for preheating is much lesser compared to the convection oven. Furthermore, it produces crispy foods way faster than your oven.
With all the benefits of the airfryer like healthier food, shorter cooking time, ease of maintenance, and efficiency use of energy, it is an appliance that is very worth it to add to your kitchen.