What Is an Air Fryer? Is Air Frying Food Healthy?

Air Fryer

Air fryers were first launched in 2010 in Australia and Europe. They have since become a household staple with people becoming more health conscious. An air fryer makes use of a patented Rapid Air Technology that makes food crispy on the outside, while keeping it juicy and tender on the inside.

An air fryer doesn’t require food to be cooked in oil, unlike a deep fryer that increases the fat and calorie content of foods. Consumption of deep fried foods may lead to cholesterol, obesity, and a number of other health hazards. With the help of an air fryer, you can enjoy all kinds of food without being concerned about the ill effects like those of deep frying.

How Does an Air Fryer Work?

At this point, you are probably wondering if the air fryer is healthy and how it works. An air fryer cooks food by circulating hot air around it. The food is placed in a cooking basket that sits on top of a drip tray. The Rapid Air Technology uses a mechanical fan to circulate 400°F hot air around the food to produce a crispy layer around it.

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The air fryer has adjustable temperature and timer knobs for more precise cooking, as well as an exhaust system that ensures even air flow. It controls temperature increases caused by internal pressure, and releases the extra air only after filtration, making it safe for the environment. The cooking chamber radiates heat and is designed so that it ensures the food gets heated evenly throughout.

Some of the models require you to shake the basket to ensure the food is cooked evenly, while others have a food agitator that continuously churns the food during the cooking process. This appliance cooks a variety of foods like potato chips, chicken, fish, and can also be used for other purposes like baking. Some air fryer brands claim that you can get rid of up to 80% fat with air frying.


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Advantages of an Air Fryer

The shape and texture of air-fried foods is similar to those of deep fried foods. The taste, however, is different to that of deep fried foods, and some find air-fried foods better. Without compromising much on taste, a health-conscious person can have a healthier diet with reduced calories.

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The air fryer has removable dishwasher safe parts, so it’s very convenient to use and maintain. It doesn’t require cleaning up messes like those of other traditional frying methods since the oil doesn’t splatter while frying. It doesn’t require a large quantity of oil to fry food either, unlike the deep-frying method that requires soaking foods in oil. An air fryer only needs a tablespoon of oil to get the job done.

Deep-frying is time consuming and you have to wait until the oil reaches the desired temperature. Meanwhile, air fryers comparatively cook food faster. They are efficient and can heat up to 300°F in less than three minutes. They heat up faster than the time required to pre-heat an oven.

Air fryers are not limited to frying alone. They can also be used for baking muffins and cupcakes, grilling, and roasting foods. Some air fryers even have levels in the baskets that make it possible to cook two separate food items at once.

It doesn’t require you to be around while it’s in use. Also, you don’t need to worry about splattering oil, grease fires, burning, or food sticking to it. Air fryers are always safer and more convenient to use than conventional fryers.


Disadvantages of an Air Fryer

Although an air fryer has many benefits, there are a few disadvantages to consider.

  • Most air fryers are expensive and cost over $200
  • They cannot be used to cook large quantities of food (suitable for only two to three people)
  • Some air fryers become too hot on the outside making it difficult to handle
  • Even though it doesn’t require preheating, it takes a longer time to cook foods as compared to deep frying
  • It’s a heavy appliance.

Deciding to buy an air fryer would be a great option considering the ample benefits it offers. If you love fried food, this is the best appliance you can have in your kitchen to please your taste buds without compromising on taste and hindering your health.


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Sources:

“Air fryer,” Wikipedia web site; https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Air_fryer, last accessed February 17, 2017. 

Jones, E., “How Does an Air Fryer Work and is it Worth Buying?,” Oil Free Frying web site; http://oilfreefrying.com/how-does-an-air-fryer-work/, last accessed February 17, 2017. 

“Factors to Consider Before Buying an Air Fryer,” Air-n-water.com web site; http://www.air-n-water.com/article/before-you-buy-air-fryer.htm, last accessed February 17, 2017.