Best Air Fryers For Fast And Delicious Dinners

Shop the best air fryers on the marker, from simple and efficient to the multifunctional.

best-air-fryers

by Hannah Mellin |
Updated on

Transform your cooking experience with one of the best air fryers. First introduced to help cook crispy chips with less oil in 2012, air fryers have grown rapidly over the past couple of years, and it's easy to see why. They cook food quickly, use little to no oil and tend to be more energy efficient than turning your standard convection oven on.

The reduced cooking time makes this appliance great for saving money and energy, while the lower use of oil means you can still enjoy crispy and crunchy food made in a healthier way. In fact, there are so many on the market, it is a huge task to find the best air fryers out there.

Best Air Fryers At A Glance:

• Best overall: Ninja Foodi AF300UK Dual Zone Air Fryer - View on John Lewis
• Best for small households: Russell Hobbs Satisfry Small Air Fryer - View on Amazon UK
• Best for large households: Philips Premium XXL Airfryer - View on Amazon UK

We know that purchasing the best air fryer can be an investment so you'll want to make sure you know everything about it. In this guide, we've got everything you need to know about air fryers, and we've whittled down the best on the market, whether you're a novice or are looking for the next big thing to help cook tasty and speedy meals. If you want to find out more about the different types of air fryers and what you should be looking for, scroll down to our FAQs section below.

Best Air Fryers

Best overall

Ninja is the leading brand when it comes to mid-range air fryers, and the Ninja Dual Zone Air Fryer has everything you need to make the switch from cooking meals in your normal oven. With two independent cooking zones, you can mix and match cooking programs, times and temperatures to create delicious meals in moments. You can even sync them so your whole meal will be ready at the same time. Washing up is easy thanks to non-stick, dishwasher-safe parts.

Customer review: "Best kitchen appliance ever. I've used it nearly every day since I bought it. Unlike other appliances which have ended up either in the garage or in one of the top cupboards never to be used again."

Pros

  • Dual zone makes cooking lots of different components easy
  • Programmable times and temperatures
  • Easy instructions

Cons

  • Takes up room on size

Best fast air fryer

Featuring a DC motor (rather than AC), the Turboblaze's fan spins 28% faster while using less energy and producing less noise. Cosori says this model can cook 46% faster than its older air fryers while still using 55% less energy than a conventional oven.

You get nine preset modes - preheat, reheat, dry, bake, proof, warm - including four "turbo" modes that utilise the faster fan speed, called air fry, roast, grill, and frozen. Each gives you a predetermined heat and time, but these can be adjusted using the touch-sensitive controls.

Capable of temperatures ranging from 30-230 degrees C, the 6L drawer is large enough for 3-5 people, and the compact design (34x30x30cm, not including the handle) means it'll fit on most worktops too.

Pros

  • Super-fast and quiet cooking
  • Compact design

Cons

  • Can be tricky to remove crisper plate

Best for small households

The Russell Hobbs Satisfry is perfect for a two-person household as it only has a 1.8L capacity, therefore, it takes up much less room on the side. Despite being small in stature, it is super simple to use and will serve up deliciously cooked meat, fish, vegetables, and potatoes quickly and easily with no fuss or mess. It comes with seven cooking functions and an intuitive touchscreen display so you can control and monitor your cooking with a single touch.

Customer review: "I've been wanting to try an air fryer for some time so wasn't pleasantly surprised when this exceeded all my expectations. I thought this would be the perfect starting size and I was correct. The air fryer's controls were easy to understand and the instructions having suggestions for cooking times and temperatures were a big help. I did a potion of chips which came out fluffy on the inside and a little crunchy on the outside, they tasted amazing and the cooking time was half my usual. I would highly recommend and I will be investing in a bigger version when I can."

Pros

  • Easy to understand digital display
  • Great value
  • Dishwasher safe

Cons

  • The frying drawer is small

Best for large households

This Phillips Airfryer has a mammoth capacity of 7.3 litres, which is the highest of the single-drawer fryers. Perfect for larger families, it can fit a whole chicken or 1.4kg of chips, so you know no one will go hungry. We love the super simple touchscreen display and the fact it comes with the accompanying NutriU app, where you have access to over 300 recipes. Keep your food warm for up to 30 minutes and clean with ease thanks to the dishwasher-safe removable part.

Customer review: "After looking at all the models of Air Fryers and getting confused, I finally decided on the Phillips XXL Airfryer. At first, I thought that it may be too large, but it is just perfect, does not take up too much room at all. Cooks a treat, is simple to use and is very easy to clean. This machine can take a whole chicken, and cooks it to perfection, I do not think I shall use my main oven again for some time. My only regret is not getting one sooner."

Pros

  • Loads of five-star reviews
  • Easy to clean
  • Doesn't take up much room, despite the capacity

Cons

  • Large footprint on the countertop

Best dual air fryer

Dual air fryers have risen in popularity recently, with fans of the machines wanting separate drawers to cook two things at once. The Vortex ClearCook has mirror settings in both drawers, so you can check on the cooking progress without having to open the baskets. There's also a sync Finish function which automatically sets the different cooking programmes to finish simultaneously.

Customer review: "I've been using this quite a lot since getting it. No problems whatsoever. I love the windows in the drawers and the lights enable food to be checked without opening the drawers. Very easy to clean. I haven't needed to put any of parts in the dishwasher. From chips & wedges to pies and roast chicken and roast potatoes, you can cook almost anything. Everything cooks super fast so you need to recalibrate your cooking times as you learn them. Touch screen works well and is wipe clean. My electricity bill has reduced since getting it. Overall very good and very happy."

Pros

  • Can perform six different functions
  • Baskets can be synced to cook at the same settings, time and temperature
  • Dishwasher-safe trays

Cons

  • The fans are at the back, so you need to make sure it’s brought forward on your countertops so you don’t block them
  • Takes up space

Best air fryers for beginners

Tested

If you're considering your first air dryer and don't want to be overwhelmed with buttons, screens and features, this compact option from Salter may be the perfect answer. Boasting a two-litre tray, it may not be designed for families, but it will be simple to use with only two dials and simple printed reminders for the perfect cooking time of popular foods.

Pros

  • Very easy to use
  • Removable non-stick cooking rack for easy cleaning
  • Compact design

Cons

  • Casing gets hot during use

Best air fryer oven

Air fryers are taking over, and many who own them have admitted that they hardly turn their oven on anymore. The Cuisinart Air Fryer Mini Oven is the closest you will come to having an oven on your worktop and is so much more than just an air fryer. With 7 different cooking functions to choose from, it can also be used to cook perfectly baked treats, delicious joints of meat, crisp, tasty 12” pizzas and evenly cooked toasties and paninis. It is compact in size, yet with a large 17L capacity and looks stylish on your work surface. Honestly, who even needs an oven anymore?

Customer review: "Air fryer is amazing. I've had toaster ovens most of my life and it is just amazing how quickly the air fryer heats food up. The other features of the oven are great too: toaster, broiler, warmer. The only thing I wish is that the tray at the bottom was a bit more non stick. I immediately put aluminum foil over it but some juices seaped through and I can't remove the stains. Other than that live this oven."

Pros

  • So many features, including a toasting setting
  • Compact in size
  • Quiet
  • Shelf rather than drawer is easier when cooking chips etc.

Cons

  • There's a lot of programmes to use, which may be a little overwhelming
  • Some reviews say they wish the bottom was more nonstick

Best for cooking chips

A while ago, air fryers were marketed as how they transformed the way we cooked chips at home. Instead of using tonnes of oil, air fryers helped us all achieve crispy chips with little to no oil. A gamechanger! The Tefal Actifry Genius+ makes cooking easier, quicker and tastier with an auto-paddle that stirs your food for you. No need for a shake in between cooking. You can download loads of recipes on the free Tefal app, plus access to a hand-picked selection of seasonal recipes and tips you'll never run out of meal ideas.

Customer review: "Bought this as a present for my son and partner and they love it. Think the additional basket is great, we don’t have that on our older model which is a shame. They would recommend."

Pros

  • Auto paddle stirs food for you
  • Little to no oil for chips
  • Great for crisping food

Cons

  • Too small for a family

Best for one-person households

The smallest of Ninja's offerings, this air fryer is perfect for a one-person household. Small but mighty, it is full of functions, including Air Fry, roasting, reheating, and dehydrating. The generous 3.8L capacity fits all sorts (including 900g of fries), and it is so easy to clean, as the parts are non-stick and dishwasher-safe.

Customer review: "Amazing! I was a bit not sure if I would use or just keep it in the cupboard.After I bought it and tried it I really loved it, now I use it almost every day 🤩🙂 it’s not a waste of money. Easy to use and easy to clean. The taste it gives to food such an amazing!"

Pros

  • Saves time and energy if cooking for one
  • Easy to use
  • Top air fryer brand

Cons

  • Single drawer

Best multifunction air fryer

The Salter Aerogrill works like an oven and grill as well as an air fryer What more could you want? The neat multifunctional countertop appliance has 16 cooking functions. It cooks faster, is healthier and runs at a much lower wattage than an oven. Salter claims that this appliance claims can save you 68 per cent on your energy bill for cooking*. The appliance reaches a maximum temperature of 230 degrees. The touch control display means you can precisely adjust the time and temperature. 

*Comparing the energy used (kWh) per kg of chicken using a 1.8 kW oven.

Read our full Salter Aerogrill review.

Pros

  • It cooks meat, grills chips, bakes buns and dehydrates perfectly
  • Cooks food from frozen
  • Less intense cooking smells and no fumes

Cons

  • It has to preheat – so think about what's really worth cooking in it. For example, if you're heating up some flatbreads, it's quicker to use a toaster.

Best for quick results

The Ninja Speedi boasts 10 cooking functions including Air Fry, Steam Bake, Steam, Grill, Air Fry, Bake/Roast, Dehydrate, Sear/Saute, Slow Cook. You can cook every component of your dinners in this machine, from the base, the protein, and the potatoes or grains. With the ability to cook three parts of your meal at once, it guarantees your meal will be ready pronto, whilst the Speedi Meal Builder app opens up a world of recipes you can customise.

Customer review: "My Ninja Speedi has renewed my interest in cooking. It has become a new hobby and a challenge to experiment with its many cooking modes. I have baked bread, cakes, scones, casseroles, pastas bakes, dinners and much much more. It’s amazing! The cons are: The none stick coating could be thicker A range of compatable accessories would be good The little handle on the crisp plate could be easier to grasp - a tool to grasp this would be good. I wouldn’t let any of this put me off buying a Speedi though."

Pros

  • Can cook a whole meal in one
  • Nonstick
  • Saves time cooking meals

Cons

  • Will need to try our recipes a few times to get them right
  • Hard to get food out

Best versatile air fryer

Tested

 Salter EK4221 Digital Family Hot Air Fryer
Price: £69.99

This Salter EK4221 Digital Family Air Fryer is perfect for a family of four to a one-person household. With a sizeable deep capacity, you can cook frozen chips in a jiffy or even reheat leftovers. It is a versatile air fryer that is well-suited to any home. One of the biggest wins of owning an air fryer is how quick it is to heat up - no preheating needed. 

Read our full Salter EK4221 Digital Family Air Fryer review.

Pros

  • Large 4.5L capacity
  • Easy-to-navigate touch-sensitive display
  • Simple to clean
  • Affordable price for the size

Cons

  • The circular design feels a little clunky

OUR VERDICT: Which Is The Best Air Fryer?

Taking into account price, functions, capacity, positive customer reviews, and energy rating, we believe the Ninja Dual Zone Air Fryer has everything you need from an air fryer. The Ninja models just keep on getting better. Whether you're a large family or a fan or trying out new recipes, the Ninja makes it so easy to make the switch from cooking meals in your oven. We love the two separate cooking drawers and the versatility of the cooking programmes. If you're looking for something a little smaller that still does the job and feeds the whole family, we would have to pick the Salter EK4221 4.5L Digital Air Fryer, which is large in capacity but much more affordable in price.

FAQs: Best Air Fryers

What are the different types of air fryers?

In some households, air fryers have become the family's preferred way to cook pretty much everything, as they're quicker than ovens, especially when you include cleaning your oven in the process. They can also come with preset modes, reminders, and auto-shut-off capabilities, taking the stress out of cooking for the whole family.

Despite being similar in how they cook food, there are a few different models of air fryers on the market. These include:

Standalone

Standalone air fryers have one drawer for cooking food. You can buy separators and stands to help separate food to cook two things at once.

Dual

Dual air fryers have two drawers which means you can cook two foods with completely different settings at the same time. You can roast a chicken in one basket while air-frying potatoes in another. They're great if you want to cook a whole meal at once.

Ovens

An air fryer oven is the closest you can get to a normal convection oven. They use excessively hot air to quickly circulate heat around food which is why you get faster cooking times compared to a regular oven or range. They are great for busy households or for those who choose not to have an oven. They are compact and can sit on top of your worktop.

What to look out for when buying an air fryer

You will need to think about how much you want to spend on an air fryer, especially as what is on offer is so broad, with prices ranging from £29.99 to £400. The functions on offer and capacity play a big part in how expensive the air fryer is, so if you just want to fry a few chips every now and then, you're much better off buying a smaller appliance. You'll also have to think about how much space your air fryer will take up in your kitchen and if you have room in your cupboards to store it.

If you're a larger family, what you cook in your air fryer will play a bit part in what type you want to buy. For example, dual air fryers are great for cooking two things at once and multifunctional air fryers will cook every component for you and offer you different cooking functions such as Grill and Steam.

According to The Money Edit, "An air fryer is cheaper to use than the oven, but this is not always the case. An oven costs 21p to use on average, and a 800W air fryer costs 13.6p to use. But if you own an air fryer that is a lot more powerful, you could be using near enough the same energy as an oven." However, some air fryers are more energy-efficient than most convection ovens because they cook food much faster, so you use electricity but for a lot less time. If you're looking to buy an air fryer, it is worth looking into if your purchase could save you money on your energy bills in the long run. The actual figure will vary based on your energy tariff, location, and size of the air fryer you’re using.

How does an air fryer work?

Air fryers work by circulating hot air around the food using convection - basically a smaller version of a convection oven. They're great for getting that crispy outer layer we all love while the inside remains fluffy or moist, depending on what you're cooking.

They were created to replace deep fryers, which use hot oil, but instead, they use either a minute amount of oil or none at all. This means we can have healthier versions of our favourite fried treats in our homes. Over time, they've been tweaked to include many other features, such as steaming, grilling, baking, roasting and more.

Are air fryers healthy?

Air fryers were pretty much invented to cut the amount of oil you use to fry your favourite foods, from chips to prawn toast. Most new air fryers don't even need any oil these days, but even if you do choose to use oil, you'll use significantly less and cut the amount of calories you consume.

Hannah Mellin is a Homes & Garden Product Writer for A Modern Kitchen. She has been working in the Journalism industry for over a decade and has written for an array of brands. When she's not writing, cooking, researching or testing products, she's busy baking, rennovating her Victorian terrace and chilling in her jungle garden with her three cats and sausage dog Waffle.

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