- The best air fryers can fry, grill, roast, and bake an array of foods in a short time. They are also durable, have an intuitive user interface, and a large capacity.
- The Yedi Houseware Deluxe Digital Air Fryer is our top pick thanks to its large capacity and built-in smart programs that make perfect cooking incredibly easy.
According to Kitchen Weapon, Philips was the first to introduce the air fryer in 2010. Since then, dozens of brands have entered the market with their own version of this innovative appliance.
Air fryers work using the Maillard reaction. In case you aren’t well-versed in early 20th-century chemistry, the Maillard reaction is a chemical reaction between reducing sugars and amino acids that give a distinctive flavor to browned foods. With traditional fryers, this is achieved by submerging the food in hot oil. On the other hand, air fryers achieve the same reaction by using a mechanical fan to circulate hot air at high speeds around the food. The result is fried foods that use up to 80% less oil. In fact, most recipes just call for a few squirts of spray oil.
When shopping for an air fryer, there are a few features that differentiate them. Digital display air fryers are generally more expensive, but they are a must for precise cooking. Many models come with dishwasher-safe components that make cleanup simple. Also, pay special attention to the warranty information on the appliance you are considering, because many brands have had issues with the cooking drawer busting.
Our guide to the top air fryers is based on thorough research into the ratings and experiences of countless experts and users. Based on our analysis, the following models meet the highest standards of reliability, functionality, and value.
Here are the best air fryers you can buy:
- Best air fryer overall: Yedi Houseware Deluxe Digital Air Fryer
- Best air fryer on a budget: Dash Compact Air Fryer
- Best air fryer for large meals: Secura Air Fryer
- Best air fryer for easy cleanup: Air Fryer by Cozyna
- Best easy-to-use air fryer: Bella Air Convection Fryer
Updated on 07/18/2019 by Les Shu: Updated prices, links, and formatting.
Read on to check out our top picks.
The best air fryer overall
The Yedi Houseware Deluxe Digital Air Fryer features multiple built-in smart programs that remove all the guesswork from the cooking process.
Using most air fryers is easy. In fact, along with health benefits and food taste, ease of use is one of the major selling points of these popular appliances. But most air fryers still require a little guesswork, some careful clock watching, or both. Not so with the Yedi Houseware Deluxe Digital Air Fryer.
This exceptional cooker comes loaded with multiple smart programs that require no more than the tap of a few buttons to commence a perfect cooking session with the temperature and timing settings managed for you. You can use a built-in smart program to air fry up shrimp, fries, chicken, steak, and more. And its 5.6-quart capacity means plenty of perfectly cooked eats for the whole gang.
Using the many accessories that come with your Yedi Houseware Deluxe Digital Air Fryer, you can prepare everything from an eight-inch pizza to a fish fillet to a cake to veggie skewers. If you thought air fryers were relegated to making French fries and chicken fingers, this one is ready to change your mind.
Be prepared to spend a little time learning how to use it, as the multi-button control panel and the aforementioned programs are not as intuitive as some of the easier controls of other units on our list, but one read-through of the instruction manual should have you covered. Plus, just look at those accessories.
With hundreds of reviews logged on Amazon at the time of this review, the Yedi Housewares Deluxe Digital Air Fryer enjoys a sizzling 4.5-star overall rating. One buyer wrote, “[The Yedi] cooks faster, better quality, and is much more wel- built than other” air fryers she had used in the past.
The product testers from JustNewReleases called this air fryer “sleek and stylish” and said: “You’ll get your ingredients cooked very nicely” whether you use the included “three stainless steel skewers [and] multi-purpose rack, an 8-inch pizza pan, an 8-inch cake carrel,” or any of the other accessories. – Steven John
Pros: Large capacity, pre-programmed cooking options, well-made
Cons: Learning curve prior to easy use, relatively pricey
The best budget air fryer
The Dash Compact Air Fryer is charming, reliable, and it costs less than forty bucks, too.
You don’t buy an air fryer for its looks – you buy it for its cooks, so to speak. But that’s no reason your air fryer can’t look great, and with its retro styling and five different color options, the Dash Compact Air Fryer certainly looks great. But guess what? That’s still not why you buy this one. It’s the sub-$40 price that makes it a great buy.
With that small price tag comes a small capacity cooking chamber, it must be noted. The Dash has a mere 1.2-liter (that’s 1.27 quarts, for reference) cooking capacity, meaning it’s not suitable for family meals. But for the couple or the individual, this low-cost air fryer is a fine choice indeed. And if space is at a premium in your kitchen, its overall small size will be a sure bonus.
As for operation, the Dash Compact Air Fryer is one of the easiest to use on our list. It has a temperature dial, a timer, and … that’s it. As long as you make sure not to overload the rather small basket, you can count on evenly cooked fries, wings, rings, veggies, tofu, and much more.
Do make sure to take the frying basket out and move the foods around midway through the cooking to ensure even “frying,” and be aware that a few people have reported the handle coming loose, so be as gentle as you can.
With more than 1,000 reviews on Amazon, the Dash has a 4.2-star overall rating. Many people note its small price, but many note its quality of cooking, too. One owner called it a “great little air fryer” that’s “perfect for cooking for one or two people.”
Just don’t try to save money by buying a unit that’s too small for your family, because a 1.2-liter cooker fills up fast. – Steven John
Pros: Great price, comes in several colors, easy to use
Cons: Small capacity
The best for large meals
- Secura/Business Insider
The Secura Air Fryer is cost-effective, has a large frying capacity, and does an excellent job of cooking evenly.
Aside from the 4-liter/4.2-quart cooking capacity, the Secura Air Fryer is a fairly basic device. There are two dials for setting the temperature (up to 390 degrees) and time (up to 60 minutes). There are also heating and power indicator lights. The unit comes with a nonstick fryer basket, toaster rack, and skewer.
As with most gadgets, when there is a lack of features, such as digital settings, there are fewer parts that could potentially break down. Secura stands by the quality of this device with a two-year limited warranty.
Corrie Cooks reviewed the Secura XL air fryer and gave it high marks for its durability, size, and functionality. However, the reviewer disliked that it didn’t have an LCD display and thought the 4-liter size didn’t warrant an “XL” distinction. BestSmokerz.com included the Secura XL on its list of the top ten air fryers because of the heavy-duty construction and large capacity. But, this unit lost points because the dial makes it hard to precisely set the timer.
Around 90% of the reviews of the Secura Air Fryer on Amazon are positive. Reviewers were impressed with how this model is able to cook healthier French fries, reheat leftover fries to their original glory, make small pizzas, roast turkey breasts, toast bread, and more. One buyer pointed out that it can do everything an oven can do, but it’s easier and faster. One buyer mentioned they did have trouble making onion rings from scratch.
Pros: Two-year warranty, durable, easy to use, relatively affordable
Cons: Relies on dials instead of digital settings
The best for easy cleanup
- Cozyna/Business Insider
The Air Fryer by Cozyna makes delicious, healthy meals, and after you’re done, cleanup is a breeze.
The 1,500-watt Cozyna Air Fryer is another simple air fryer on our list that has only two dials for the timer (up to 30 minutes with auto shut-off) and temperature (up to 392 degrees). The easy-to-clean basket holds 3.2 liters or 3.5 quarts of food, and when you pull out the tray, the easy-grip handle is cool to the touch.
In addition to frying, this model also grills, roasts, and bakes. This is basically a no-frills unit that doesn’t come with any extras, aside from physical and electronic cookbooks that have more than 50 recipes.
Several of the top review sites have tested the Cozyna Air Fryer. Healthy But Smart found that this model performed just as well as pricier options. The reviewer gave it four stars and recommended it for first-time air fryer owners. Air Fryer Blog also gave the Cozyna air fryer four stars because it cooks a diverse range of simple meals well. The reviewer also liked that it cooks food quickly, ensures the food is cooked evenly, and that it’s easy to use out of the box.
The Air Fryer by Cozyna has more than 700 5-star reviews on Amazon. Buyers had success cooking a variety of foods in this air fryer, including quail, French fries, hash browns, and an array of snack foods. Reviewers were particularly impressed by how little oil they needed to make foods that tasted deep-fried. There are several comments about how easy the device is to clean. One verified purchaser destroyed the basket due to (self-admitted) misuse, and Cozyna was quick to replace it free of charge.
Pros: Simple, streamlined design, dishwasher safe
Cons: Lacks advanced features
The best easy-to-use air fryer
The Bella Air Convection Fryer is operated by two switches and features just two indicator lights to show when it’s ready to cook.
Here’s a comprehensive guide on how to use a Bella Air Convection Fryer. First, you plug the thing in. Then you set the temperature dial to the desired heat and turn the timer dial to just about anything. Both an orange and a blue light will illuminate. Once the blue light turns off, set the timer dial to the exact time called for in your recipe, dump your food in the fry basket, and … that’s it.
Having tested the Bella air fryer long-term, I can tell you that it really is that easy to use one. And the foods that it cooks, really do taste fried without any extra oil added. We have used ours to air-fry tofu, chicken, fries, glazed cauliflower, and just about every other food that I would normally cook in a pan filled with oil.
The Bella Air Convection Fryer heats up fast thanks to a 1500-watt heating element and cooks foods evenly thanks to its powerful convection fan. It’s rather noisy while it operates, but the foods produced are well worth the din. And at just under $60, the 2.6-quart 14538 model Air Convection Fryer is well worth its price, too.
With some 650 reviews currently posted on Amazon, this air fryer has a 4.2-star rating. A reviewer with AirFryer-Review blog noted its “really easy timer settings” and called the Bella one of “the best air fryers that you can get in the given price range.” – Steven John
Pros: Very easy to use, decent capacity, good price point
Cons: Loud during operation
Check out our guide to the best deep fryer you can buy
- Eric Gaillard/Reuters
The best deep fryers make it simple to fry French fries, chicken, donuts, fish, and other food from scratch. They are also easy to clean, safe to use, and packed full of features. The Presto Dual Basket Pro Fry Deep Fryer has all of these characteristics, is affordable, and can fry large batches of food.
You might also like the Presto DualDaddy Electric Deep Fryer if you’re on a budget. The Char-Broil The Big Easy TRU-Infrared Oil-Less Turkey Fryer is a great choice if you want to avoid oil, and the T-fal Oil Filtration Ultimate EZ Clean Deep Fryer is super easy to clean after use. For precision, you’ll want to get the Cuisinart Deep Fryer.