The best air fryers are marketed on their ability to produce an air fried texture to the outside of food that mimics that of deep fried food. While it can definitely get pretty close, there is a specific taste and texture to deep fried food that’s impossible to replicate just with rapid air circulation. It isn’t an extremely distinct difference, but your air fryer food will definitely have a different feeling to it.
While buying yet another gadget for your kitchen might sound like a bit much, if it’s something that can make everything from breakfast potatoes to burgers to blueberry crumble, we’re thinking this is one hot trend to look into. Plus, it saves time, is healthier, and makes for easier cleanup. What’s not to love? These 25 air-fryer recipes show you how to faux-fry your way to healthier eats, from breakfast to dessert.
We wanted to see if our finalists could cook our favorite fried foods: french fries (fresh and frozen), chicken strips, and healthier options like zucchini and broccoli. In addition to being commonly fried fare, these foods allowed us to see how the air fryers handled different textures, densities, and tastes. Since french fries are supposed to be the easiest food for an air fryer to handle, we tested fresh and frozen fries across all models, seeing which ones got closest to that deep-fried crunch. Three of our air fryers couldn't even give us decent french fries, so we knocked them out of testing. We took the four top performers through additional testing to see which could cook the crispiest chicken strips (two of our models) and the juiciest grilled veggies (none of the models).
Thanks to Philips’ patented Starfish technology, all food is exposed to constant, circulating heat allowing you to cook your favorite foods with a tablespoon or less of oil. The result is evenly fried food – with no turning needed - even when food is piled up. In addition to the heated air flow, powerful direct heat from above quickly crisps the food for delicious, golden-brown results while draining excess fat.
Of course you can cook this oil free, but you’ll get a much better result if you lightly spray with a bit of oil. This is the oil sprayer I use. Basically it’s easy to clean and it was highly rated. I have Mistos but I really don’t like them since they are hard to clean and remember any oil residue will get rancid…YUK. One or two quick sprays on both sides is all you’ll need.
Tristar held an A+ rating with the Better Business Bureau, based on 17 reviews (100 percent of which were negative) and nearly 750 closed complaints, as of 10/30/17. Where details were available, most of these appeared to revolve around lower quality than expected and customer service difficulties. In each instance, a company representative responded with a proposed solution.
This fryer performed very well while it was working. I received it as a Christmas gift and used it up until Monday of this week, when it suddenly shut off. The warranty is only good for 60 days, so knowing I would probably not get any help from their customer service, which I sadly found to be true, I looked up the problem in the manual. Under "Troubleshooting" in the manual it said the fryer probably overheated, to unplug it and let it cool off a while. I did exactly as it said and left it unplugged overnight. The next morning I plugged it back into the outlet and turned it on. It blinked like it was going to work, then it shut off and never started again. It seems that the whole idea of this oven is a great idea, but the company does a very poor job of making it. I think anyone that buys it should be aware of the 60 day warranty, and understand if anything happens after that time,the company will not stand by its product!