Air fryers reviews

The 6 best air fryers in 2023: Instant Pot, Ninja, and more

The basket and crisper plate are dishwasher-safe, though the basket with its jutting-out handle will take up significant space in your dishwasher. Hand-washing is an effortless alternative thanks to the nonstick coating.

The Best Air Fryers, According To Rigorous Testing By A Pro Chef

In recent years, air fryers have become a must-have appliance offering a quick, easy way to make crispy foods at home without taking up a lot of counter space. I thoroughly tested eight leading models—in the form of cooking chicken wings, frying french fries and baking cookies—and found that the Ninja Air Fryer Max XL stood out as the best air fryer of the bunch. For an option that uses pre-set settings to do the cooking for you, I also recommend the investment-worthy Breville Joule Oven Air Fryer Pro. And if you’re an air fryer novice, the Instant Vortex 6-Quart Air Fryer is straightforward, affordable and does its job well.

As a professional chef, I tested the best air fryers on the market and the Ninja Air Fryer Max XL . [+] stood out from the rest.


My months-long testing yielded three clear winners that were general workhorses and performed well throughout. However, I also found that there were four others worth considering for different use cases, so if you need more options, I included them as honorable mentions below.

The Best Air Fryers

  • Best Air Fryer Overall:Ninja Air Fryer Max XL
  • Best Smart Air Fryer Oven:Breville Joule Oven Air Fryer Pro
  • Best Air Fryer For Beginners:Instant Vortex 6-Quart Air Fryer

Other Air Fryers To Consider

  • For Small Kitchens:Ninja Foodi 8-In-1 Digital Air Fry Oven
  • For Big Families:Philips Air Fryer XXL
  • For Bakers:Cuisinart Air Fryer Toaster Oven
  • For A Compact Option:DASH Tasti-Crisp
  • (PAID PLACEMENT) You May Also Like:Emeril Lagasse Power Air Fryer 360

As a chef and a mom with a 1-year-old at home, I know that counter space is prime real estate in busy kitchens that don’t need yet another small-scale appliance. I’m a firm believer that if you’re going to add another gadget to the mix, it should be functional, efficient and versatile—and these are the air fryers that fit the bill.

Best Air Fryer Overall

Efficient, Simple And Expertly Crisps Foods

Ninja Air Fryer Max XL

Style: Basket | Dimensions: 11 x 14 x 14.75 inches | Capacity: 5.5 quarts | Maximum Temperature: 450 degrees | Warranty: 1 year | Cooking Functions: 7

Best for:

  • Cooks who want a variety of cooking settings
  • Quick, even frying
  • Achieving a deep-fried texture without oil

Skip if:

According to Damon Daye, executive chef and co-owner of 29 Markle Ct. in Bridgeport, Connecticut, the single most important aspect of an air fryer is to circulate air quickly to turn out crispy, crunchy foods. The Ninja Air Fryer Max XL, my top pick, did that with ease. The key? It heats up quickly and circulates air efficiently so that my food was uniformly fried or crisped every time. During my hands-on testing, I made tender yet crunchy chicken wings, golden and crispy fries and perfectly soft chocolate chip cookies. The wider temperature range—and the ability to reach 450 degrees—helps this product yield supremely crispy foods with more precision, compared to other air fryers. I’ve used this machine weekly for six months—it still provides the same consistently crispy results that it did when I first took it out of the box.

The Ninja Air Fryer Max XL produced crispy, consistent results when testing foods like fries, wings . [+] and cookies.

This air fryer can cook several batches of food, even though it’s smaller than some fryers I tested. The body of the cooker can hold 5.5 quarts, which translates to about 3 pounds of french fries or chicken wings. The Ninja is great for everyday uses like roasting vegetables, heating up leftovers or revitalizing soggy takeout, but it’s just as good for whipping up game-day snacks or appetizers for special occasions. After months of testing, I found myself relying on it to transform my soggy leftovers into flavorful, crispy second-day dinners.

The Ninja’s design made it easier to use and clean compared with other air fryers I tested. The basket intuitively pulls out, and it comes with a perforated rack that helps airflow underneath food. I love that the Ninja’s basket is dishwasher-safe, but it is very easy to clean by hand, too, thanks to fryer’s nonstick coating. Simply wipe any grease or drippings out with a paper towel, or wash with soap and water. Remember to avoid metal utensils—silicone is best for maintaining nonstick cookware.

At nearly 15 inches high, the Ninja is a bit taller than some of the other air fryers I tested, so be mindful if you have low-lying cabinets. I didn’t mind leaving this out on my countertop throughout my six-month testing period, and I’ve started using it to cook things I would normally rely on my standard oven for, like chicken thighs or roasted broccoli. (To learn more about my testing, read my full review of the Ninja Air Fryer Max XL.)

Ninja offers additional accessories that are sold separately, like a multi-layer insert that lets you dehydrate two layers of food at once. And if you’re only cooking for one or you’re working with a very tight space, Ninja offers a 4-quart version (which happens to be discounted right now).

Best Smart Air Fryer Oven

A Versatile Pick To Replace Several Small Appliances

Breville Joule Oven Air Fryer Pro

Style: Oven | Dimensions: 12.8 x 21.5 x 17.3 inches | Capacity: About 1 cubic feet | Maximum Temperature: 480 degrees | Warranty: 2 years | Functions: 13

Best for:

  • Automated cooking via the Joule app
  • Replacing multiple countertop gadgets
  • Making crispy pizza (thanks to the higher temperature range)

Skip if:

Thanks to the Joule Oven Pro, Breville’s completely automated oven, you have the option to put dinner on autopilot. This toaster oven-style air fryer sets itself apart from the rest with 13 pre-set cooking functions, all of which can be controlled by the Breville Joule app. Depending on which recipe you choose, once you press start, the oven will seamlessly navigate the different cooking times, temperatures and functions to cook your meal. So far I’ve tried at least 10 of Breville’s recipes, and they’re all easy to understand and simple to whip up. Throughout my six months of testing, I’ve begun to rely on the automated cooking feature as a way to create perfectly cooked dinners without standing over an oven.

The Breville Joule Oven Air Fryer Pro is the largest and most versatile oven we tested.

This oven performed well in my tests: Chicken and fries came out golden and crispy, and chocolate chip cookies baked just like they would have in a regular oven. However, because this isn’t a dedicated air fryer, I noticed that foods fried in this oven didn’t achieve the same ultra-crunchy texture as the best overall winner. I also found that I needed to use the included sheet trays for any foods that may drip.

That said, this appliance does more than just air fry. It’s a great option for someone looking for a pizza oven, air fryer, convection oven and food dehydrator all in one smart gadget. At 21.5 inches wide and 17.3 inches deep, it’s also the biggest oven I’ve tested, which means it can accommodate a 9 x 13-inch sheet tray, a 12-cup muffin tin or a 14-pound turkey. Though I don’t love the amount of space it takes up on the counter, I do love how versatile and functional it is, which means I’m happy to sacrifice space to have such a fantastically well-equipped tool in my kitchen. For more on this gadget, read my full Breville Joule Oven Air Fryer Pro review.

Best Air Fryer For Beginners

A High Performer That’s Simple To Use And Affordable

Instant Vortex 6-Quart Air Fryer

Style: Basket | Dimensions: 12.8 x 14.9 x 12.4 inches | Capacity: 6 quarts | Maximum temperature: 400 degrees | Warranty: 1 year | Functions: 4

Best for:

  • Simple frying projects
  • Cooking an entire chicken
  • Crisping up soggy leftovers

Skip if:

  • You want a multifunctional gadget with lots of extra features

If you’re looking for a large, efficient air fryer that produces well-cooked results at an affordable price, the Instant Vortex 6-Quart Air Fryer is the best choice. The Air Fry function yielded crispy chicken and fries, and the bake function delivered soft, chewy cookies. The basket actually accommodates more food than the Ninja: At 12.36 inches wide, it can hold up to 6 quarts of food, compared with the Ninja’s 5.5-quart capacity. Plus, it has a few handy features that made it stand out: It beeps to alert you when it’s finished preheating and again at a midway point so you can turn, shake or shuffle foods for more even cooking. The basket lights up so you can conveniently see what’s happening inside the oven without opening the door—a feature I was missing in my other gadgets. I have started relying on it as a quick, easy way to check the status of my cooking project.

Unlike other machines I tested that have a few redundant presets most home cooks won’t need, the Instant Vortex focuses on only four essential functions: bake, air fry, reheat, and roast. In fact, I found myself using those four functions on all machines most often anyway, so I love that this machine keeps it simple. It features a more straightforward control panel than some of the competitors, thanks to a digital screen with easy-to-read push buttons for each function and a dial to manually increase time or temperature.

The Instant Vortex 6-Quart Air Fryer yielded crispy, crunchy foods in our tests.

This is a great option for home cooks, but if you’re looking to have more precise control over temperature in order to achieve super-crispy foods, having a machine with a higher temperature range might be helpful. Throughout my testing I haven’t found a project that the machine can’t handle, and the 400-degree temperature limit is suitable for my home cooking projects. Replacement parts or accessories, like a wire rack and pizza pan set, can be purchased separately. For more on this air fryer, read my full Instant Vortex 6-Quart Air Fryer review.

You May Also Like

An All-In-One Device That Does More Than Air Fy

Emeril Lagasse Power Air Fryer 360

Style: Basket | Dimensions: 10.4 x 19.3 x 15.1 inches | Capacity: 16 quarts | Maximum Temperature: 450 degrees | Warranty: 60 days | Cooking Functions: 12

The Emeril Lagasse Power Air Fryer 360 does what the name implies and also claims to replace up to nine kitchen appliances. Included accessories and preprogrammed functions let you rotisserie roast a whole chicken, fry a batch of french fries and bake a pizza all in the same appliance—at different times, of course. The stainless steel frame contributes to its higher-end counter presence, and at 19.3 inches wide this oven-style appliance is larger than a normal air fryer.

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Other Air Fryers To Consider

Honorable Mention For Small Kitchens

Ninja Foodi 8-In-1 Digital Air Fry Oven

You can’t beat the portability and convenience of this toaster oven that flips away when not in use. I was thrilled to see that cookies baked perfectly, but it didn’t match the performance of the other air fryers when I tried frying things like wings or fries. I noticed both crisped up nicely on top, but were a bit soggy on the bottom. Therefore, I wouldn’t recommend it as a dedicated frying option.

Honorable Mention For Big Families

Philips Premium Airfryer XXL

This is a fantastic fryer that turned out crispy chicken wings, golden fries and perfectly baked cookies. Plus, this model is truly an “XXL” given its 7-quart (3-pound) capacity. All that said, it narrowly missed being listed in the top three because it ultimately is not as convenient as some of the other fryers. It takes up much more countertop space and the control panel isn’t as simple or straightforward.

Editor’s note: This model is currently discontinued as per the Phillips website, but you can still purchase it through Amazon.

Honorable Mention For Baking

Cuisinart Air Fryer Toaster Oven With Grill

Though this oven wowed me with its baking abilities, it didn’t stand up to the rest of my tests as a dedicated air fryer. It’s a versatile and functional toaster oven, and has other capabilities such as broiling. I wouldn’t recommend it, however, if you’re looking for an air cooker that can achieve the same crispy, crunchy results as a deep fryer.

Honorable Mention For Compactness And Ease Of Use

Dash Tasti-Crisp Air Fryer

I loved how simple and straightforward this product is. It easily fried wings and fries, but it couldn’t bake cookies without burning them around the edges. I left it off of our list due to its lack of versatility and petite size (it has a 2.6-quart capacity). That said, if you want something affordable that air fries well and you’re only cooking for one or two, consider this option. Plus, it comes in a handful of trendy colors so you won’t mind leaving it out on your countertop.

One Tested Air Fryer I Don’t Recommend

Cosori Pro II Air Fryer ($130): This oven yielded great results, but it isn’t as easy to use as some of the others. It was loud when running and I found the button on the drawer to be cumbersome and confusing. Chicken and fries came out perfectly cooked, but the cookies were burned and blackened on the outside. Given its average price point and capacity, there are better, comparable options on this list, like the Ninja Air Fryer Max XL and the Instant Vortex 6-Quart Air Fryer.

How I Tested The Best Air Fryers

As is the case with any kitchen gadget, the best air fryer should be convenient, simple to use and easy to store. Before testing any of these products, I assessed aesthetic factors like how much space each product takes up on the countertop, how easy they are to store and how complicated they are to set up. I examined the control panel and took note of how intuitive or complicated the controls are for a beginner to use.

To assess each air fryer’s basic functionality, I performed the following tests:

  • To testair frying abilitywith dry food: I fried frozen french fries with just a bit of cooking spray.
  • To testair frying ability with greasy, fatty foods: I fried chicken wings to see how each appliance handled dripping juices and whether they created any smoke.
  • To testbaking ability: I baked chocolate chip cookies and brownies and observed how evenly the desserts were baked throughout, while making sure they didn’t get too crispy or blackened on the outside.

To ensure consistency in my cooking tests, I used the same temperature settings and timeframes to . [+] make chicken wings, french fries and chocolate chip cookies.

For each individual recipe, I utilized the same temperature and cooking time with each product to maintain consistency across the board, then evaluated the finished products. I looked for french fries and chicken wings that were consistently golden and crispy throughout the basket, with tender, moist insides. I observed the color and texture of each food at the end of the cooking process. Lastly, I evaluated how easy each basket or tray was to clean in a standard sink.

I tested each of these products weekly over the course of six months to determine how they stood up to the test of time. I’m pleased to say that each machine in my top three is still functioning just as well as it did when I first took them out of the box; this furthers my confidence in each product’s capability as a functional, efficient cooking gadget worthy of your space and investment.

How To Pick An Air Fryer

Air fryers work almost the same way that convection ovens do. Air is rapidly circulated around the oven through a fan system, which helps food achieve the crispy, crunchy texture that fryers are known for. That’s why both Bruce Weinstein and Mark Scarborough, food authors and kitchen gadget experts, tell me that “an air fryer is not really a fryer. It’s a hot-air dehydrator. It uses very hot air currents to dry out coatings until they’re impossibly crunchy without much added oil (or sometimes none at all).”

Most air fryers have a basket or wire rack that allows food to sit above the base. This allows air to evenly circulate around the bottom, creating a 360-degree flow of heat. Weinstein and Scarborough shared some advice over email for shopping for an air fryer: “Look for a solidly built machine. In general, more metal means more stable, more durable and more long-lasting. A metal air fryer will hold heat better, last longer and work more efficiently. A cheap plastic one—not so much.” Below are the most important factors to consider when you’re shopping for an air fryer.


There are two different styles to choose from: basket-style and toaster oven-style:

  • Basket-style air fryers mimic a deep fryer: Food rests on a rack and air flows from all sides to cook foods. Our overall top pick, the Ninja Air Fryer Max XL, and our best value pick, the Instant Vortex 6-Quart Air Fryer, are two examples of basket-style cookers. These types of fryers have handles, so they’re easy to open with one hand and to shake or flip food around. This style is perfect for frying foods like chicken wings, french fries, crispy Brussels sprouts and homemade tortilla chips. With this style, air circulates rapidly throughout the basket to cook food from all sides. While you can bake in most basket-style air fryers, the results aren’t always as consistent as they are with a toaster oven-style options, which are more multifunctional. Instead, they’re straightforward cookers that efficiently circulate air to achieve crispy, crunchy results.
  • Toaster ovenstyle fryers, such as the smart Breville Joule Oven Air Fryer Pro and the Cuisinart Air Fryer Toaster Oven, one of our honorable mentions, have a variety of different functions to bake, roast, dehydrate, toast and more. Food lays on sheet trays or wire racks that slide horizontally into the oven. Heat comes from the bottom like a traditional oven. These air fryers are a great option for shoppers looking for a versatile product that can perform a lot of different tasks in one appliance.


Some air fryers have multiple functions to bake, roast, dehydrate and toast foods, while others only air fry. While multifunctional cookers can save space and money, they don’t always have the same crisping ability as a dedicated air fryer. Before selecting a product, evaluate what you’ll use it for.

“Figuring out what settings are available on the air fryer will help you make a better decision,” says Daye. “Perhaps the most important matter to decide on is whether you want an air fryer that is just an air fryer or one that also does a lot of other things.”

If you’re looking for a streamlined and simple machine, opt for an air fryer that has a simple control panel and doesn’t perform many other functions, like the Instant Vortex 6-Quart Air Fryer. If you’re looking to tackle a variety of cooking projects with one convenient machine, a multifunctional product like the Breville Joule Oven Air Fryer Pro is your best bet.


When bringing a new gadget into your kitchen, it’s always important to evaluate the product’s size and your available storage space. “Although an air fryer is a small countertop appliance, size is still the most important factor you must consider. It’s a good idea to buy the largest machine you can comfortably handle or store,” say Weinstein and Scarborough. Having a larger machine will allow you to cook different foods at higher quantities. It’s always important not to overcrowd a fryer (whether it’s an air fryer or a deep fryer), so having a larger cooking basket will help space out foods, resulting in more consistent air flow and crispier foods.

Air fryers come in different shapes and sizes, so first evaluate your countertops and cabinet height, to make sure it will fit in the cabinet when not in use. You’ll also need to measure the drawer and any pieces that need to be cleaned to make sure they fit easily inside your sink. You might also want to look at options with unique space-saving features like the Ninja Foodi 8-In-1 Digital Air Fry Oven, which lets you flip it up and place it flush against your wall to give you more space. Lastly, make sure to consider the capacity of the cooking basket and keep in mind how many people you’ll be cooking for on a regular basis. Generally, a 5-quart cooking basket will be a good size for most small families.


Whatever style air fryer you choose, remember that the key to crispy results is air flow. That means you should select an air fryer that comes with the accessories necessary to facilitate air flow from all directions. A wire or mesh air fry basket allows food to stand up off the base so that air can evenly circulate underneath. If you’re working with a toaster oven-style air cooker, make sure the tray comes with a wire or mesh rack that sits on top of it; this is essential for ensuring that food doesn’t sit in its own grease or juices. Before selecting either style of air fryer, make sure it comes with some sort of frying basket to keep foods crispy.

My Expertise

I’m a chef with a degree in Culinary Arts from the Institute of Culinary Education, as well as years of experience working as a professional chef in restaurants, catering kitchens and private homes. That experience carries over into my home kitchen, where I’m always looking for ways to make it run more smoothly—and I aim to help other home cooks do the same. As a freelance food and kitchen product reviewer, I utilize my professional culinary experience to make informed and thorough product recommendations that help home chefs run a more efficient household. There’s no shortage of household gadgets available, so I select products that are functional, versatile and affordable. You can find my work in Food and Wine, Real Simple,, Taste of Home and more.

In addition to my six months of hands-on testing to find the best air fryers, I spoke with experts Bruce Weinstein, Mark Scarborough and Damon Daye to find the best air fryers. Weinstein and Scarborough have penned nine books about kitchen gadgets, including The Essential Air Fryer Cookbook and the Instant Air Fryer Bible. Damon Daye is the executive chef of the New York-based food truck The Steak Truck and the Bridgeport, Connecticut-based 29 Markle Ct. He has experience working with air fryers in restaurants, home kitchens and food trucks.

What Size Air Fryer Do I Need?

A 2- to 3-quart air fryer is sufficient for feeding one or two people; for families of three or four, you’ll want to get one that’s 5 to 6 quarts. For even bigger families (and appetites), you can find models that cook 10 quarts of food or more. Also, consider whether you’ll be cooking full meals in your air fryer or if it’ll mostly be used for side dishes—if you’re just looking to crisp up a basket of fries for a few people, you can probably get away with a slightly smaller one.

How Do You Convert A Regular Recipe For Air Frying?

Chef Daye says that because air fryers circulate heat at such a rapid pace, you should adapt a regular recipe by reducing both the cook time and temperature. “Plan on cutting your cooking time by about 20 to 30 minutes and reduce your temperature by about 25 degrees Fahrenheit,” he says. You can also consult recipe blogs or books for additional cooking guidance.

What Are Some Of The Best Foods To Cook In An Air Fryer?

Weinstein and Scarborough say that any frozen food that’s meant to cook in the oven will be considerably better when cooked in an air fryer; the rapid flow of air helps crisp it up, similar to a convection oven. For best results, drop the frozen food in the fryer without letting it defrost.

Air fryers are also particularly good for bringing soggy leftovers back to life. The rapid air movement helps revitalize leftover food with a crispy, crunchy coating while also warming it from the inside. Weinstein and Scarborough note that any food that benefits from caramelization will also do well in an air fryer. “Chicken wings and parsnip fries are a favorite. The machine brings out the sweet, caramelized best in both,” they explain.

Alternatively, Daye says to avoid cooking foods that have a really wet batter. “When placed in an air fryer, batter won’t set and solidify immediately like it does when it is deep fried, therefore making a mess in your air fryer,” he says.

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The 6 best air fryers in 2023: Instant Pot, Ninja, and more

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Five air fryers are lined up on a counter while a hand holds onto an air fryer basket full of french fries.

  • Best overall
  • Best value
  • Best toaster oven
  • Best large-capacity
  • Best small
  • Best multitasking
  • How do air fryers work?
  • What to look for
  • How we tested
  • FAQs

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Fried foods are everyone’s favorite for a reason — there’s something about a crispy, golden-brown exterior that’s undeniably satisfying. But, with the advent of air fryers, you no longer need a deep fryer or a pan full of oil to achieve that comforting crunch. The word “fryer” is a bit of a misnomer in that air fryers use convection technology that allows hot air to hit every nook and cranny of your food, giving you a similarly satisfying crunch. The best air fryers circulate hot air to make crispy treats with minimal oil, but can also be used to quickly cook protein and roast veggies.

We consulted with three experts and tested 40 units for cooking capabilities, ease of cleaning, and user-friendliness to find the best air fryer. Our top pick is the Instant Vortex Plus Air Fryer Oven because it cooks quickly and deliciously and has a window for monitoring your food’s progress. For a value pick, we recommend the Beautiful Touchscreen Air Fryer. It’s about $60 cheaper and made perfect broccoli, but lacks the window and doesn’t cook frozen fries as well.

Our top picks for the best air fryers of 2023

Best overall: Instant Vortex Plus Air Fryer Oven – See at Best Buy

Best value: Beautiful Touchscreen Air Fryer – See at Walmart

Best toaster oven: Oster Digital Air Fryer Oven with RapidCrisp – See at Amazon

Best large-capacity: Ninja Foodi DualZone XL Air Fryer – See at Amazon

Best small: Dreo Aircrisp Pro Air Fryer – See at Amazon

Best multitasking: Instant Pot Duo Crisp + Air Fryer – See at Amazon

Best overall

The Instant Vortex Plus was the best air fryer in our tests and features a window into the basket to monitor your food.

    Check mark icon A check mark. It indicates a confirmation of your intended interaction.


  • Size: 12.8″ x 11.5″ x 14.9″
  • Capacity: 6 quarts
  • Dishwasher-safe parts: Yes
  • Preset modes: Air fry, roast, bake, reheat, broil, and dehydrate
  • Power: 1700 watts

From the makers of the wildly popular Instant Pot, the Instant Vortex Plus Air Fryer Oven with ClearCook combines the best features of an air fryer and a toaster oven. It has a window in the front like a toaster oven, but it cooks quickly like a basket air fryer.

Even factoring in the time it takes to preheat, the Instant Vortex Plus cooked food the fastest in all of our tests, including producing evenly cooked hand-cut fries in just 14 minutes. Best of all, it did a good job of making moist and evenly cooked broccoli and frozen fries.

The oven is also easy to use. Select one of the six presets, use the temp/time button to adjust how long and hot the air fryer cooks, and press start. I did find it mildly annoying that the cook time countdown only starts once the unit preheats. You can’t just have it countdown from when you press the start button, but that was a minor nuisance.

The Vortex Plus has an air filter to prevent odors from escaping. While I didn’t systematically test this feature, it did a good job of containing smells. It also has a light to see your food through the window easily.

The basket and crisping plate are both dishwasher-safe. I much preferred cleaning the basket by hand because it takes up a lot of space in the dishwasher, and the nonstick surface makes clean-up effortless.

Best value

The Beautiful 6 Quart Touchscreen Air Fryer from Drew Barrymore’s cookware line costs less than $70 and cooks food quickly and evenly.

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  • Size: 15.1″ x 12.1″ x 13.1″
  • Capacity: 6 quarts
  • Dishwasher-safe parts: Yes
  • Preset modes: Air fry, roast, reheat, dehydrate
  • Power: 1700 watts

We’re always a little skeptical about products sporting a celebrity’s name. However, we’d recommend the Beautiful 6 Quart Touchscreen Air Fryer by Drew Barrymore, even without the endorsement of the “Donnie Darko” star.

The controls are intuitive, with only the relevant buttons illuminated. First, you press the power button, which illuminates the presets. Once you select a preset, you can adjust the time and temp, and the flashing start button begins the cook. The unit is attractive and comes in seven colors: white icing, cornflower blue, black sesame, and more.

The $79 Beautiful air fryer was one of only two units to cook hand-cut fries in 15 minutes, and the results were evenly cooked and delicious. It was also among the fastest at cooking broccoli and frozen fries. The frozen fries were a little dry, but the broccoli was just right.

The basket and crisper plate are dishwasher-safe, though the basket with its jutting-out handle will take up significant space in your dishwasher. Hand-washing is an effortless alternative thanks to the nonstick coating.

Best toaster oven

The Oster Digital Air Fryer Oven with RapidCrisp is the best air fryer toaster oven we’ve tested. It did well in all of our tests, cooking delicious food quickly. Right now, it’s $57 off: not the best deal we’ve seen, but still a good value.

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  • Size: 16.5″ x 15.8″ x 14.5″
  • Capacity: Interior dimensions are 12″ x 12.5″ x 6″
  • Dishwasher-safe parts: Yes
  • Preset modes: Air fry, toast, bake, convection bake, broil, dehydrate, keep warm, defrost, fries
  • Power: 1700 watts

We tested 18 contenders for our guide to the best air fryer toaster ovens. Due to their size and popular uses, air fryer toaster ovens underwent different tests from traditional basket air fryers. You can find more details here.

While none of the air fryer toaster ovens produced perfectly even food, the Oster Digital Air Fryer Oven did the best on average. A juicy, delicious whole chicken only took an hour and seven minutes. The pizza was ready in nine minutes, and crispy, evenly cooked fries came out in 12 minutes. Plus, the oven preheated faster than most. The flavor was terrific in all three tests, though the chicken and pizza could have been cooked more evenly.

Using an oven thermometer, we found the Oster ran hotter than the temperature we set it at, but the temperature stayed consistent, only varying by plus or minus three degrees from its average.

Only the basics are included with the $190 Oster Digital Air Fryer Oven. Yet, there are several useful presets, like baking and dehydration. Cleaning is a snap thanks to the easy-to-remove crumb tray and dishwasher-safe accessories.

Overall, the Oster was the best air fryer toaster oven for cooking food evenly, deliciously, and quickly. It doesn’t have the features or extras of pricier appliances, but it’s a solid workhorse for producing quality food in minimal time.

Best large-capacity

The Ninja Foodi DualZone XL Air Fryer is like having two air fryers in one with two 5-quart baskets that cook independently.

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  • Size: 13.9″ x 17.1″ x 12.8″
  • Capacity: Two 5-quart baskets
  • Dishwasher-safe parts: Yes
  • Preset modes: Air fry, bake, roast, air broil, reheat, dehydrate
  • Power: 1690 watts

The Ninja Foodi DualZone is like having two full-size air fryers in your kitchen. It features two 5-quart air fryer baskets that you can program to heat independently or for the same time and temp. A “smart finish” function ensures both baskets finish cooking simultaneously if you’re cooking two different types of food.

Most importantly, the Ninja Foodi DualZone cooks food evenly without drying out the food. While it was one of the slowest units preparing frozen fries, it quickly produced delicious broccoli and hand-cut fries.

With so many functions, we assumed this $230 air fryer would have a steep learning curve, but the controls are intuitive. We had it up and running without referencing the instructions. Clean-up is also a snap since the baskets and crisper plates are dishwasher-safe. We like that the baskets are smaller than the traditional 6-quart models, so fitting them in the dishwasher is easier.

Best small

The Dreo Aircrisp Pro Air Fryer is the best compact air fryer we tested, making it perfect for single servings of wings and fries.

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  • Size: 13″ x 9.4″ x 11.6″
  • Capacity: 3.6 quarts
  • Dishwasher-safe parts: Yes
  • Preset modes: French fries, steak, chicken, fish, bread, vegetable, dehydrate, and reheat
  • Power: 1500 watts

We considered 11 compact air fryers for our guide to the best small air fryers. Due to size constraints, we used different tests from the full-size units. We used half as much fries and broccoli and added a chicken wings test. You can read more about our testing here.

No matter the test, the Dreo Aircrisp Pro Air Fryer was among the best in quality and speed. While broccoli is a challenge for air fryers, the Dreo did the best at balancing tender stems and crispy-yet-not-burnt florets. The fries and wings were evenly cooked and perfectly crispy.

Lights illuminate the buttons for time and temperature adjustments. However, the presets are confusing as they rely on ambiguous symbols, like an orange representing the dehydration mode. Still, we were happy to see a dehydration function since most air fryers don’t have one.

You can wash the tray and basket in a dishwasher. If you wash them by hand, the debris slides right off. However, the rubber feet that hold the tray in place and protect the nonstick basket from scratching kept falling off during washing.

The $88 Dreo Aircrisp Pro used space efficiently. It had the best exterior-size-to-food-capacity ratio of the small basket air fryers I tested. The air fryer is flat on top, so you could store items on top of it, though you’ll need to remove the items to use it. Its 3.6-quart capacity makes it ideal for two people.

Best multitasking

The Instant Pot Duo Crisp is a pressure cooker, slow cooker, and air fryer all in one, making it one of the most useful and economical small appliances we tested.

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  • Size: 15″ x 15″ x 13.5″
  • Capacity: 8 quarts
  • Dishwasher-safe parts: Yes
  • Preset modes: Pressure cook, saute, slow cook, steam, sous vide, air fry, roast, bake, broil, dehydrate
  • Power: 1500 watts

Air fryers often get a bad rap for being uni-taskers, but Instant Pot has bucked the trend by adding air fryer functionality to its already quite versatile multicookers. The Duo Crisp comes with two separate lids — a traditional Instant Pot lid you’ll use for all your pressure and slow cooking and another equipped with an electric heating coil and fan that you’ll use for air frying, broiling, dehydrating, and more.

If you’ve used an Instant Pot, you’re already familiar with the Duo Crisp’s pressure cooking. We rated it the best multitasking unit in our guides to the best pressure cookers and best sous vide cookers.

The $185 air fryer function excelled in my tests, producing tender broccoli and crisp frozen fries, though the tall cylindrical basket presented some small downsides. The basket allows you to stack two layers of food to compensate for the lack of horizontal space, but because the heat comes from above, the food on the bottom layer is often less crisp than the top. The air fryer basket also lacks a handle, which makes agitating the food difficult.

The lid’s heating coil is exposed when you remove it, which is a burn hazard. The unit has a special plate for safely setting the lid down on your counter, but you must still be careful. If you own an Instant Pot, you can purchase an air fryer lid separately for a 6-quart model.

The Ninja Speedi Rapid Cooker and Air Fryer was also one of the best air fryers for multitasking, which does sous vide and slow cooking. However, it doesn’t pressure cook and costs more than the Duo Crisp.

How do air fryers work?

Air fryers work like convection ovens, using a fan to circulate hot air. This browns the food and makes it crispy, similar to deep frying food. Air fried food’s texture and taste won’t be exactly the same as something deep fried, but it’s as close as you can get without a tub of oil. Some of the benefits of using the best air fryers are that you don’t have to monitor food too closely or cook it for that long. To learn more, check out our article on how air fryers work.

What to look for in an air fryer

Size: Choose a 4- to 6-quart unit you’re only cooking for yourself or another person, says Laurie Fleming, the author of one of the best air fryer cookbooks in our guide and creator of Fork to Spoon. For larger families, use air fryers that are 6 quarts and up. She recommends larger air fryers when possible because they give you more flexibility in what you can make.

Type: There are two main types of air fryers: traditional basket units and air fryer toaster ovens. Air fryer toaster ovens are more versatile, performing several tasks, including non-convection baking. basket air fryers are usually smaller and cook food faster but have limited functionality.

Price: The air fryers in our guide range from $50 to $400. Higher prices generally equate to more functions and a larger capacity. If you don’t need fancy functions and only cook for one or two people, you can save a few dollars with a cheaper model.

Functionality: Manufacturers continually introduce new functions. Some common ones are dehydration, dual-zone cooking, and WiFi connectivity. Other appliances also offer air fryer cooking, including air fryer toaster ovens and some pressure cookers, like the Instant Pot Duo Crisp. However, more functions usually lead to a higher price tag.

How we test air fryers

The main factors we considered when testing air fryers were cooking capabilities, ease of use, and ease of cleaning.

Cooking: We discovered early in our testing that even the best air fryers varied wildly in cook times. One unit charred broccoli to an undesirable crisp in 6 minutes, while another took 13 minutes to reach al dente. So we cooked three recipes in each machine and evaluated how quickly and evenly they cooked.

To choose the best air fryers, here are the cooking tests we put each unit through:

Food Testing Process Result
Broccoli We cooked a basket of broccoli in each unit, assessing for doneness and even cooking. Each batch was air fried for 8 minutes at 375 degrees after being sprayed with olive oil and seasoned with salt and pepper. Additional cooking time was added if necessary. The air fryers struggled with fresh vegetables, but a few units produced tender broccoli with crisp florets. More often, the result was incredibly dry.
Frozen french fries We cooked a basket full of Ore-Ida Extra Crispy Fast Food French Fries in each unit, assessing for doneness and even cooking. We cooked them for 8 minutes at 400 degrees, jostling them halfway through, per the air fryer-specific instructions on the french fry bag. Additional cooking time was added if necessary. This was by far the most successful test. We didn’t get a single bad batch of frozen fries. You should buy an air fryer if you eat many frozen finger foods.
Fresh-cut french fries We cooked a basket of hand-cut french fries in each unit, assessing for doneness and even cooking. We soaked the cut fries in cold water for 30 minutes before cooking, patted them dry, sprayed them with olive oil, and seasoned them with salt. We cooked them for 15 minutes at 375 degrees, adding additional time when necessary. Overall, the air fryers had trouble getting fresh potatoes crispy, and a few units created leathery exteriors on the fries by the time they were cooked in the middle. But most units produced a satisfying baked-style fry.

Ease of use: We tried to set up and use each unit without referring to the user manual. Each air fryer was easy to set up and featured intuitive controls, especially if you have air fryer experience. If you are new to air fryers, get acclimated by reading the user manual.

Cleaning: We tracked how many parts there were to disassemble and clean. A unit with dishwasher-safe accessories got big bonus points in our test for best air fryer.

Air fryer FAQs

Are air fryers worth it?

An air fryer is worth it for its versatility and efficiency in roasting and baking if you have the counter space, but it won’t trick anyone into believing your food is deep-fried. The best air fryers take very little time to preheat, saving time and electricity.

An air fryer is one of the quickest-cooking appliances besides a microwave, making it a real time-saver, especially for weeknight meals. Plus, it’s more versatile and produces crisper results than a microwave. Air fryers cook almost anything you’d typically roast in an oven: vegetables, fish, whole chicken, and more.

What can you make in an air fryer?

Since they rely on the same technology, air fryers can make anything a convection oven can make, including baking, convection baking, air frying, roasting, and toasting items. Some models can also broil and dehydrate your food. Consider purchasing air fryer egg molds to make a quick and easy breakfast.

What cannot be cooked in an air fryer?

Liquid foods, including soups and wet batters, should not go in an air fryer. Fresh greens and other loose items should not go in an air fryer as they will fly around and potentially catch fire on the heating element.

What’s the best way to clean an air fryer?

It depends on your air fryer model, so consult the user manual. Generally, you should clean the fryer basket and grease catcher with hot, soapy water and a soft sponge after each use. You can simplify cleanup by air frying your food on aluminum foil or parchment paper.

For more details, check out our article on how to clean an air fryer. Look at the best silicone air fryer liners if you want easy cleaning and grease-free cooking.

How much does an air fryer cost?

The cheapest air fryer we recommend in our best small air fryer guide costs $50, but they can cost up to $700. Expect to spend between $130 and $160 for the best air fryers. However, during Black Friday and other big sales events, they’re deeply discounted.

What are the different types of air fryers?

The two main air fryer types are basket and toaster oven. Basket air fryers feature a drawer in the bottom half for the food; the controls are on top, and an internal fan blows hot air down onto the food to cook it. The best air fryer toaster ovens look just like traditional toaster ovens with a transparent door that you open to insert your food. Air fryer toaster ovens have a fan on the side or top that blows hot air to “air fry” your food.

A third type is the pressure-cooking air fryer. These appliances look like Instant Pot pressure cookers, but have air frying functionality. Check out our Instant Pot vs. Ninja Foodi article for more on these units.

What size air fryer do you need?

Laurie Fleming, the creator of Fork To Spoon, recommends buying the biggest air fryer you can afford and have space for because it gives you flexibility in what you can make. She advises against anything smaller than four quarts, even if you just cook for yourself. Big families might consider air fryer toaster ovens, which have more capacity than basket air fryers.