The 9 Best Air Fryers You'll Love for Simple, Speedy Dinners
Aside from the Instant Pot, the most popular kitchen trend of the past few years might just be the air fryer. It's not hard to see why—the versatile appliance makes crispy, finger-licking foods like fried chicken, fish and chips, and chicken tenders with minimal use of oil. Yes, making fried food without a large ladle of oil sounds too good to be true, but air fryers work their magic by circulating hot air throughout its inner chamber, giving your food crunchier and crispier skin than if you'd tossed it into the oven.
Apart from fried foods, air fryers are also capable of roasting vegetables, baking pizza, and even making bread or cakes. But choosing a great air fryer is no simple matter. There are plenty of factors to think about (size, value, and versatility are just some of the most important considerations). The good news, however, is that unlike their greasier cousin, the deep fryer, nearly all air fryers are easy to clean. Air fryers usually contain a pull-out food drawer from the bottom that's easy to wipe. And with so little oil, there's almost no risk of splatters getting everywhere.
So, to find the best air fryer you can get according to your needs, we've rounded up seven top choices with thousands of positive customer reviews between them. You'll find options from brands such as Philips, GoWise, Instant Brands, as well as Ninja, the brand nearly synonymous with the words "air fryer."
- Best Budget Buy: GoWise 3.7-quart Digital Air Fryer
- Best Splurge: Philips Premium Digital Airfryer with Fat Removal Technology
- Most Versatile: Ninja Foodi OL601 14-in-1 8-quart XL Pressure Cooker Steam Fryer with SmartLid
- Best for Single Portions: Instant Vortex 2-Quart 4-in-1 Air Fryer
- Best Large Fryer: Instant Pot Vortex Pro Air Fryer Oven
- Best Dual-Basket Fryer: Ninja Foodi 6-in-1 10-Quart 2-Basket Air Fryer with DualZone Technology and IQ Boost
- Best Indoor Grill Air Fryer: Ninja Foodi XL Pro Grill and Griddle
- Best Toaster Oven Air Fryer: Instant Pot Plus 11-in-1 Toaster Oven
- Best Air Fryer Lid: Instant Pot Air Fryer Lid
Read on to find out more on each air fryer, and get ready to enjoy some not-so-guilty pleasures with your favorite fried foods.
Best Budget Buy: GoWise 3.7-quart Digital Air Fryer
Don't let its low cost fool you—GoWise's digital air fryer comes with tons of presets and functions that make it one of the best value air fryers available. There are eight settings with programmable temperature and cooking times, and frying is as simple as tossing food in. Its automatic shut-off function saves energy too, so no wonder it has scored a 4.6-star rating from over 12,000 reviewers at Amazon.
To buy: $62; amazon.com
Best Splurge: Philips Premium Digital Airfryer with Fat Removal Technology
Philips' Premium Digital Air Fryer is a worthwhile splurge. You'll find that it's super easy to make crispy chicken wings, fries, and more by following its accompanying recipe book. Simply plug in the air fryer, turn its incredibly sleek knob to the correct temperature and time, and press to begin frying. The machine is so silent, you might forget it's there, and its large basket fits everything from a whole bag of frozen fries to a small chicken for four. You can even grab Philips' baking kit to make a cake and the grill kit for barbecue salmon, steak, and vegetables. One reviewer used their air fryer to make "the crispiest, tastiest nuggets… The same was true with my experiment with grilled cheese sandwiches. Wow, perfect toasting and no greasiness. Roasted vegetables, also a hit. I am using this fryer more than I initially imagined."
To buy: $250; amazon.com
Most Versatile: Ninja Foodi OL601 14-in-1 8-quart XL Pressure Cooker Steam Fryer with SmartLid
A pressure cooker and air fryer rolled into one, Ninja's OL601 Foodi multi-cooker comes a whopping 14 programs that include pressure cooking, steaming, crisping, baking, air frying, baking, roasting, dehydrating, searing, sauteing, slow cooking, yogurt making, and sous-vide settings. Using Ninja's SteamCrisp technology, the 1,760-watt cooker is capable of steaming and crisping your meat at the same time, so you'll get your meal done 40 percent faster (compared to traditional cooking methods) without sapping too much moisture from your food. It even comes with a double rack so you can cook a main course and two side dishes all at once, and its nonstick frying basket, cooking pot, and racks are all dishwasher safe. Although this model was just launched earlier in September, it has already racked up glowing reviews, with a shopper calling it "an entire kitchen in one."
To buy: $330; amazon.com
Best for Single Portions: Instant Vortex 4-in-1 2-Quart Air Fryer
If you live alone and simply want a quick, no-fuss dinner, then the Instant Vortex 4-in-1 is right for you. Don't underestimate the mini 2-quart Instant Vortex: Although it measures just 12 inches tall, the air fryer is capable of frying, baking, roasting, crisping, and reheating. Like its bigger 6-quart sibling, this air fryer uses Instant Brands' EvenCrisp technology to ensure every side of your roast chicken or every single French fry you're craving gets evenly heated. The LED touchscreen makes it easy to select pre-programmed settings or to adjust temperatures precisely, but shoppers love it most for how compact it is. "The footprint is small, so I was easily able to find space in my space-deficient kitchen," wrote a reviewer. "Even if you have to stow it away, it's so small and easy to bring out to use."
To buy: $50 (originally $60); amazon.com
Best Large Fryer: Instant Vortex Pro 10-quart 9-in-1 Air Fryer
The Instant Vortex Pro isn't just big in size, but in features, too. With nine pre-programmed settings such as proofing, broiling, and dehydrating, there's almost nothing you can't cook with this massive fryer. Its huge rotating basket can fit a whole chicken, and the fryer even comes with a rotisserie kit, so you'll have everything you need for big family dinners. Plus, the Instant Vortex Pro includes two baking trays that you can fit in the air fryer simultaneously, so it's incredibly simple to fry up your main course and side dishes all at once. You can even create custom programs based on your go-to temperatures and preferred time settings and return to them for reheating dinner from the previous night. It currently has more than 7,500 five-star ratings, with a reviewer saying it's "the best kitchen appliance" they have ever bought, adding, "we use it for so many different things and it saves me from having to heat up the whole kitchen with the regular oven."
To buy: $160; amazon.com
Best Dual-Basket Fryer: Ninja Foodi 6-in-1 10-Quart 2-Basket Air Fryer with DualZone Technology and IQ Boost
Currently Amazon's top-selling fryer, Ninja's newest Foodi 6-in-1 appliance has reviewers hooked. Its two 5-quart baskets are held in separate compartments, which is perfect for making two dishes simultaneously or for households with multiple dietary needs. The temperature and cook time settings can be adjusted separately, but the Ninja Foodi air fryer has a few functionalities that help ensure both sides finish cooking at the same time for equally delicious results. Cooks can choose between "Smart Finish," which cooks the two baskets in different ways but finishes both at the same time, and the "Match Cook" function that copies settings across both baskets. Ninja's IQ Boost technology helps balance cooking methods when both baskets are handling extremely different ingredients by distributing power across each compartment as quickly as possible—something that is incredibly handy when, say, you're baking a chicken on one side and roasting asparagus on the other. Although this new 10-quart version (an upgrade to the previous 8-quart version) is relatively new, reviewers have already praised how convenient it is for large family dinners. One shopper called it the best air fryer they've used, adding, "if you are looking to upgrade or need to fill that need because you have a large family, look no further. The cost is well worth it."
To buy: $200 (originally $220); amazon.com
Best Indoor Grill Air Fryer: Ninja Foodi XL Pro Grill and Griddle
Air frying might be a quick and easy way to make dinner, but many choose grilling as their preferred method because it's so good at preserving natural umami flavors of ingredients while adding classic smoky elements from an open flame. With Ninja's Foodi XL Pro Grill and Griddle, you can combine the best of both worlds. It comes with three baskets, one each for griddling, grilling, and frying, making it perfect for cooking burgers, making pancakes, grilling steaks and vegetables, and so much more. The tool heats up to 500 degrees Fahrenheit, and promises to balance edge-to-edge cooking so you won't be left with charred bits on one side of your steak and raw meat on the other. Its large 12-inch cooking surface fits as much as six burger patties or pancakes, and cleaning up is easy since all its accessories are dishwasher-safe.
To buy: $300 (originally $350); bestbuy.com
Best Toaster Oven Air Fryer: Instant Pot Plus 11-in-1 Toaster Oven
A beast of a machine with 11 smart programs (air fry, dehydrate, toast, roast, bake, broil, slow cook, proof, reheat, convection, and rotisserie), the Instant Pot Plus is the go-to appliance for making everything from morning bagels and apple crisps for snacking to proofing buns and air frying potatoes. It comes with an oven rack, a cooking pan, a rotisserie spit and forks, and an air fryer basket, and its large capacity fits 12-inch pizzas and whole chickens. The toaster oven air fryer achieves the same crispy texture as a deep fryer with 95% less oil than the latter usually requires. One Amazon reviewer crowned it a "game-changer in the best way." "It's a little large, but it can accommodate two racks that can cook at the same time," said the shopper. "I barely use my oven anymore." The air fryer is out of stock at Amazon, but you can still find it at Williams Sonoma.
To buy: $200; williams-sonoma.com
Best Air Fryer Lid: Instant Pot Air Fryer Lid
It's technically not an air fryer, but the Instant Pot Air Fryer Lid deserves a spot on this list purely for its ingenuity. For those who already own an Instant Pot, it could be difficult to commit to another big appliance, but this lid solves that problem by turning your Instant Pot into an air fryer. It fits most Instant Pot models to fry, roast, bake, broil, reheat, and dehydrate, and it comes with a multi-level air fryer basket as well as a broiling tray. Thousands of reviewers snapped it up when it was quietly released in late 2019, and it now has thousands of corresponding five-star ratings.
To buy: $90; amazon.com