The Best Air Fryers of 2022

Enjoy crispy, delicious foods without loads of fat thanks to a quality air fryer that fits your kitchen, tastes, and budget.

By Erica Reagle and Savannah Sher | Updated May 13, 2022 12:46 PM

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The Best Air Fryer Option

Photo: amazon.com

Looking for a quick way to make crispy, tasty, golden-brown food without too much fat? An air fryer could be just the ticket. Similar to the way convection ovens work, these modern kitchen appliances circulate hot air to cook and crisp a variety of foods from french fries to Brussels sprouts to a whole butterflied chicken. Air fryers do more than fry, however, and different models offer various features.

To choose the right one for you, read on, and learn what to look for and why the following are considered among the best air fryers you can buy.

  1. BEST OVERALL: Instant Vortex Plus Air Fryer 6-in-1
  2. BEST BANG FOR THE BUCK: GoWISE USA 1700-Watt 5.8-QT 8-in-1 Digital Air Fryer
  3. BEST AIR FRYER OVEN: Breville BOV900BSS The Smart Oven Air Fryer
  4. BEST LARGE AIR FRYER: Paula Deen 9.5 QT (1700 Watt) Family-Sized Air Fryer
  5. BEST WITH TOASTER OVEN: Cuisinart Airfryer Toaster Oven
  6. BEST SMART AIR FRYER: Cosori Smart Air Fryer Toaster Oven
  7. MOST VERSATILE: SharkNinja Pressure Cookers & Canners, 6.5 qt, Black
The Best Air Fryer Option

Photo: amazon.com

What to Consider When Choosing the Best Air Fryer

To find the top air fryer for your kitchen, think about important factors and features such as size, power, temperature, and functionality.

Size and Capacity

Air fryer sizes and capacities vary to accommodate a range of kitchen sizes and food quantities. Air fryer capacity typically ranges from 2 quarts to 7 quarts, but larger models do exist. The smallest air fryer can generally cook enough to feed one or two people, while larger models can feed six or seven people. A family-size air fryer will have a capacity of at least 4 quarts. The best compact air fryer has dimensions of approximately 9.75 by 9.75 by 12.5 inches, while larger-capacity air fryers and those with convection oven or toaster oven capabilities may run 18.5 by 26 by 17 inches. Consider a more compact air fryer if your kitchen is small or your counter space is limited. The best air fryer for two people only requires a capacity of about 2 quarts.

Power

Air fryers plug into outlets and are powered by electricity. The power of an air fryer is measured in watts, which can range from 800 to 2,000, with most models using between 1,400 and 1,700 watts of electricity. Air fryers with larger cooking capacities require more power. No matter which type of air fryer you choose, make sure your outlet can support the power consumption.

Temperature Control

Most but not all air fryers have the option to select different temperatures and can go all the way up to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. Temperature control is an important feature to look for, as it allows you to set the precise temperature recipes call for so foods are cooked just right.

Functionality

Similar to multi-cookers, many air fryers can handle a variety of cooking functions in addition to air frying, including baking, broiling, toasting, and convection baking. Such functionality makes the appliance highly versatile. In fact, some fans of air fryers may use them more than they do a traditional range with an oven and stovetop.

Presets

Preset cooking programs are a convenient feature of most air fryers and let you prepare a variety of dishes, such as chicken, vegetables, and cake, with the click of a button. The temperature and time settings automatically adjust for each preset program.

Additional Features

To maximize the use of an air fryer, look for one with extra features and functionality. For example, some models have the option to pause cooking so you can store or flip your food without resetting the time or temperature. Some air fryers also double as toaster ovens and rotisserie cookers. A double-basket air fryer utilizes two baskets to cook two dishes at the same time. Extra features typically mean extra cost, so think about whether you’ll actually use the bells and whistles before paying for them.

Safety

An air fryer is considered to be safer than a deep fryer because it does not involve a large container of hot oil that might spatter. However, there are some safety guidelines to follow when using an air fryer, so be sure to read the manual that comes with the appliance. Position it on your countertop with enough space on all sides to ventilate it properly, and use an oven mitt or silicone trivet to prevent accidental burns. Monitor your food while it’s in the air fryer, and use a timer so you remember when to flip food. Always unplug your air fryer when it’s not in use.

Ease of Cleaning

Air fryers are simple to clean. Some parts (like the basket, tray, and pan) should be removed and washed with warm water and soap after each use. The interior should also be washed frequently with a damp cloth or sponge and a small amount of dish soap. The exterior needn’t be cleaned as often, but it can be wiped down with a damp cloth. Some air fryers come with dishwasher-safe parts to make cleaning even easier. Always unplug your air fryer before cleaning it, and wipe everything dry before reassembling it.

Our Top Picks

The air fryers you’ll read about below all have a range of convenient features and preset cooking functions and are considered to be the best air fryers on the market.

Best Overall

The Best Air Fryers Option: Instant Vortex Plus Air Fryer 6-in-1
Photo: amazon.com

If speed, versatility, and ease of use are your air fryer priorities, check out this quality model. The 6-quart-capacity Vortex Plus by Instant Pot has six preset programs: air fry, roast, broil, bake, reheat, and dehydrate. EvenCrisp technology gives food a crispy exterior and tender interior while using up to 95 percent less oil than deep frying.

This powerful air fryer features an extra-large air fryer basket and convenient touch control display so you can access your favorite settings with the tap of a button. Best of all, cleanup is a breeze because of the dishwasher-safe fryer basket. It’s also available with a smaller 4-quart capacity for those who have limited kitchen storage space.

Product Specs

  • Capacity: 6 quarts
  • Settings: Air fry, broil, roast, dehydrate, bake, and reheat
  • Adjustable temperature: Yes

Pros

  • Features extra-large basket
  • Includes a user-friendly interface
  • Features 6 presets
  • Dishwasher-safe fryer basket

Cons

  • Some users complain of a plastic smell

Get the Instant Vortex Plus air fryer on Amazon or at Walmart.

Best Bang for the Buck

The Best Air Fryer Option: GoWISE USA 1700-Watt 5.8-QT 8-in-1 Digital Air Fryer
Photo: amazon.com

Our pick for the best affordable air fryer is the GoWISE USA Digital Air Fryer. If you want to lose unnecessary fat without spending a lot, this model may be your best bet. The 5.8-quart air fryer can be used to fry, bake, grill, and roast. It boasts eight preset cooking functions for items such as fries, steak, and pizza. The temperature can be adjusted between 180 and 400 degrees Fahrenheit in 10-degree increments, and the timer can be set for up to 30 minutes.

The detachable frying basket comes with a cool-touch handle for added safety. Convenient features include a start/stop button that allows you to adjust the time and temperature settings during a cook cycle and a built-in alarm that reminds you when to shake your ingredients. The best budget air fryer performs just as well as its pricier counterparts, and this one certainly fits the bill.

Product Specs

  • Capacity: 5.8 quarts
  • Settings: Air fry, bake, grill, and roast
  • Adjustable temperature: Yes

Pros

  • Affordable price
  • Includes food-specific cooking presets
  • Cool-touch handle
  • Adjustable temperature

Cons

  • Not dishwasher-friendly

Get the GoWISE USA air fryer on Amazon or at The Home Depot.

Best Air Fryer Oven

The Best Air Fryer Option: Breville BOV900BSS Smart Air Convection Air Fry Oven
Photo: amazon.com

The more varied the recipes you enjoy, the more versatile you’ll want your countertop cooker to be. This smart Breville model is a solid choice and features both a regular and a super-speed convection fan for greater cooking control; the super-convection setting is designed for air frying, dehydration, and roasting. Breville touts its Element IQ heating technology, which moves the power where it is most needed for precise results. It has 13 preset cooking functions for items such as cookies, bagels, and pizza.

Its 1-cubic-foot interior has room to roast a 14-pound turkey or pop in a 5-quart Dutch oven, providing plenty of versatility. The insulated dual-wall door and glass window ensure everything inside stays warm, while the stay-cool handle acts as a handy safety feature. It comes with 2 wire racks, a dehydrating rack, a broiling pan, a baking pan, and a 13-inch pizza pan.

Product Specs

  • Capacity: 1 cubic foot
  • Settings: Bake, broil, toast, air fry, warm, slow cook, reheat, proof, dehydrate
  • Adjustable temperature: Yes

Pros

  • Features 13 cooking presets
  • Large capacity
  • Includes several useful accessories
  • Utilizes Element IQ heating technology

Cons

  • High price

Get the Breville air fryer oven at Breville or Bed Bath & Beyond.

Best Large Air Fryer

The Best Air Fryers Option: Paula Deen 9.5 QT (1700 Watt) Family-Sized Air Fryer
Photo: amazon.com

The best large-capacity air fryer can feed at least six people. For folks who like to feed a crowd, this 9.5-quart air fryer aims to please with its large capacity. It has a single oversize basket and a rapid circulation system for quickly cooking big portions. Set the timer for up to 60 minutes, and use the simple control knobs to adjust the cooking temperature up to 400 degrees Fahrenheit. In addition to air frying, this countertop appliance can also bake, roast, and reheat.

The user interface is simple and easy to navigate, featuring just a timer and a temperature control knob. As a bonus, 50 of the celebrity chef’s recipes are included. It’s important to note that this model is quite large, measuring 14 by 13 by 15 inches, so it may not be suitable for those with limited kitchen storage space.

Product Specs

  • Capacity: 9.5 quarts
  • Settings: Air fry, bake, roast, reheat
  • Adjustable temperature: Yes

Pros

  • 9.5-quart capacity
  • Features auto-shutoff function
  • Simple user interface

Cons

  • Lacks presets
  • Bulky size

Get the Paula Deen air fryer on Amazon or at The Paula Deen Store.

Best with Toaster Oven

The Best Air Fryer Option: Cuisinart TOA-60BKS Convection Toaster Oven Airfryer
Photo: amazon.com

In some homes, breakfast isn’t breakfast without toast; if that sounds familiar, this may be the air fryer for you. Cuisinart created an air fryer convection toaster oven with seven preset cooking functions including air fry, convection bake, convection broil, bake, broil, warm, and toast. The adjustable thermostat has a 60-minute timer, auto-shutoff function, and even a toast shade selector.

With a 0.6-cubic-foot interior capacity, it’s large enough to fit six slices of bread, air fry 3 pounds of chicken wings, bake a 12-inch pizza, or roast a 4-pound chicken. This versatile countertop appliance comes with an oven rack, baking pan, and air fryer rack/basket to help with a host of cooking duties from everyday meals to special-occasion fare. The nonstick, easy-clean interior makes for easy cleanup when the cooking process is complete.

Product Specs

  • Capacity: 0.6 cubic feet
  • Settings: Air fry, convection bake, convection broil, bake, broil, warm, and toast
  • Adjustable temperature: Yes

Pros

  • Features toast shade selector
  • Includes useful accessories
  • Features auto-shutoff function

Cons

  • High price

Get the Cuisinart toaster oven air fryer at Amazon, The Home Depot, or Walmart.

Best Smart Air Fryer

The Best Air Fryers Option: Cosori Smart Air Fryer Toaster Oven
Photo: amazon.com

Smart homes can now enjoy a WiFi-enabled smart air fryer. Compatible with Alexa and Google Assistant, this countertop appliance from Cosori can be controlled via a smartphone or voice commands so users can remotely monitor the cooking progress. It has a 5.8-quart capacity and 11 preset cooking functions including steak, french fries, and desserts.

Convenient features include a keep-warm setting, shake reminder, and preheat function. The temperature can be adjusted between 170 and 400 degrees Fahrenheit, and the timer can be set between 1 and 60 minutes. Users can manually choose a preset function or select a recipe from the app and the settings will automatically adjust. It even allows users to modify and save recipes so that their favorite presets can be accessed with just a few clicks. The fryer baskets are dishwasher-safe, so cleanup is easy.

Product Specs

  • Capacity: 5.8 quarts
  • Settings: Air fry, plus food-specific presets
  • Adjustable temperature: Yes

Pros

  • WiFi-enabled for mobile control
  • Includes preprogrammed in-app recipes
  • Features a shake reminder

Cons

  • Limited cooking functionality

Get the Cosori air fryer oven combo on Amazon.

Most Versatile

The Best Air Fryer Option: Ninja Foodi 9-in-1 Air Fryer with 6.5 Quart Capacity
Photo: amazon.com

Folks who like the convenience and versatility of a pressure cooker but want to add air fryer capabilities may appreciate this large-capacity air fryer from Ninja. This multifunctional 6.5-quart appliance is a pressure cooker that crisps, so you can use it to air fry, bake, roast, and broil quickly. Start by pressure cooking your food to lock in juices, and then use the crisping lid to add a crispy finishing touch. It even allows for frozen food to defrost and results in crispy, delicious meats and vegetables.

The Ninja Foodi comes with a reversible rack for steaming or broiling; a nonstick, ceramic-coated cook and crisp basket; and 14 built-in safety features. It’s important to note that while the pot has a capacity of 6.5 quarts, the fryer basket has a smaller 4-quart capacity, which is best for feeding a smaller group.

Product Specs

  • Capacity: 6.5 quarts
  • Settings: Air fry, bake, roast, pressure cook, steam, air crisp, sear, can, and broil
  • Adjustable temperature: Yes

Pros

  • WiFi-enabled for mobile control
  • Includes preprogrammed in-app recipes
  • Features a shake reminder

Cons

  • Small fryer basket

Get the SharkNinja pressure cooker/air fryer at Amazon, The Home Depot, or Ninja.

Our Verdict

After reviewing this guide, you now know more about shopping for an air fryer. We recommend the Instant Vortex Plus air fryer as our top pick because of its affordable price and extensive functionality. Those on a budget may appreciate the GoWISE USA digital air fryer, which offers great performance at an affordable price.

How We Chose the Best Air Fryers

Years of experience covering home care and appliances as well as extensive product research went into creating this guide. We explored more than 40 options to come up with our choice for the best air fryer on the market and weighed a number of practical considerations before making our recommendations.

When choosing which models to include, we considered a variety of user preferences. We aimed to provide recommendations for both large and small households along with options for both beginner and experienced air fryers. We chose air fryers with simple functionality for those looking for a single-use appliance and more varied performance for those in need of something more multifunctional.

FAQs 

Having reviewed some of the best air fryers for the kitchen, you may still want more info. Take a look at the answers to these frequently asked questions.

Q: How does an air fryer work?

Rather than frying food in a tub of oil, air fryers operate similarly to a convection oven but on a much smaller, more powerful scale. Food is placed into a perforated basket and hot air circulates around it to create crispy-on-the-outside, moist-on-the-inside fare.

Q: How do you use an air fryer?

Air fryers are relatively simple to use. Plug in the appliance, turn it on, and place food (ideally sprayed with a tiny amount of oil or cooking spray to prevent sticking) in the basket. Then set the timer and choose the temperature. For best results, leave plenty of space for the air to circulate, and rotate food every few minutes.

Q: How do you preheat an air fryer?

Some air fryers come with built-in preheat functions that make it easy to preheat with the push of a button. If not, you can set the timer and then select the highest temperature setting after plugging in and turning on your air fryer. Preheating typically takes about 3 to 5 minutes.

Q: What is the best oil for air fryer use?

The top-rated air fryer oil is one with a high smoke point. Consider peanut oil, canola oil, or avocado oil.

Q: How do you clean an air fryer?

Some air fryers come with dishwasher-safe parts. Otherwise, remove and wash the basket, tray, and pan with soap and warm water after each use. Clean the inside with a damp cloth or sponge and a small amount of dish soap. Wipe everything dry before reassembling your air fryer. The exterior needn’t be cleaned as often but can be wiped down with a damp cloth.

Q: How long does an air fryer last?

Air fryers can last from 6 months to 3 years depending on how often they are used. A good air fryer should last for at least a couple of years. You can prolong the life of your air fryer by keeping it clean and following the manufacturer’s user guide.