First, we prepared a batch of frozen french fries and timed how long they took to cook. We evaluated each batch to see whether the fries turned evenly golden brown and crispy or whether any pieces ended up under- or overcooked. After our initial round of testing, we prepared hand-cut fries in the finalists. We also cooked pork chops in each of the fryers to test how well they browned raw meat. And we “air-fried” frozen breaded chicken tenders and fish sticks.

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!
Ultimately, I was really pleased with the results from the air fryer. The chicken was beautifully browned, with crispy edges, but still very moist inside. And it was ready for the table before the oven batch (which took around 35 to 40 minutes). When I pulled the chicken from the oven, it was a little less crispy, but was still quite moist on the inside. I tossed both of the batches in a sweet peach barbecue sauce to finish. For me, the takeaway pro of the air fryer in this round of “frying” was that it technically cooked the chicken faster; the big con is that I could only fit half the amount of chicken as compared to using the oven.
When it comes to the “latest and greatest” kitchen gadgets, I’ll be the first to admit I have some baggage. A few years ago, my brother nearly ruined Christmas dinner by using an “As Seen On TV” infrared oven (a gimmicky predecessor to the air fryer) to “re-fry” my mom’s Vietnamese imperial rolls. Not only did it take forever, but the rice paper wrappers emerged from the “miracle machine” with an extremely unappetizing plastic-like texture. It was a grim meal that my mother has never let him forget.
One other drawback is the Brio is pretty loud. There were a couple others that were louder, but this one was noticeably noisy. It is not something you would think of right away when preparing to purchase an air fryer, especially since deep-fat fryers are loud too, but it is somewhat annoying to have to talk over the Brio. If you prefer an air fryer that generates less noise, consider the Power Fryer XL.
There are many advantages to using an air fryer over an oven. For example, the oil is extracted and usually kept under the basket when in an air fryer. In an oven, all the simmering oil gets splattered around, and even though the food may turn out delicious, there’s a bit of a mess left afterward. Also, when deep frying food in an oven, the heat might be too harsh and can leave you with an under-cooked meal that looks nice and crispy on the outside, but raw on the inside. The hot air circulation in most air fryers is designed to evenly cook food. ( safety – our first priority)
Apart from the calories which cause us to become overweight and thus lead to the development of some mild to severe chronic illnesses and conditions, deep fried foods also contain Trans fats. These are a result of the hydrogenation which manufacturers add to the deep fried products in order to increase their stability and shelf life. This process changes the structure of fats and makes it much more difficult for our bodies to break it down properly.
Next up is the Power Air Fryer XL, which boasts a 3.4 quart basket with a non-stick coating -- so your food should be easy to remove after cooking. This fryer features 7 preset programs, including a roast preset, bake preset, steam preset, and more. On top of that, the fryer heats up to 400 degrees, which should be perfect for the vast majority of uses.
CR’s take: The most expensive of the group, the Philips TurboStar HD9641/96 has a capacity of 3.1 quarts, which puts it in the middle of the pack in terms of size. The electronic controls are fairly easy to use and read, and there’s a handy knob to set the cooking time and temperature. Preprogrammed settings for commonly cooked foods eliminate a step. Cleaning the nooks of the basket can be a chore, although the rest of the fryer cleans up easily, earning this air fryer a Good rating in our cleaning tests. The warranty is one year.
The Big Boss 16Qt. 1300 watt high speed The Big Boss 16Qt. 1300 watt high speed low energy oil-less fryer is traditional cooking reinvented. This energy efficient tabletop cooker combines halogen heat convection and infrared technology leaving food moist on the inside and browned and crispy on the outside without the use of added fats or oils. Three ...  More + Product Details Close

- Whole Chicken (6lbs) - I just cooked this last night, and OMH!!! I rinsed the whole chicken and patted dry and then rubbed with a tiny bit of oil and seasoned with Johnny's Seasoning Salt (Google it, you'll be glad you did!) and black pepper. Then place in AirFryer basket breast-side down and cook at 370 for 35 minutes. Then I flipped it over to breast-side up and cooked an additional 30 minutes. When I saw the skin was to my desired crispiness, I covered it with foil and cooked it for another 10 minutes, and then removed the foil and cooked another 5 minutes more. The result was the tastiest and juicy chicken! My kids actually wanted to eat the skin. Note: If the liquid comes up above the fry basket holes, then carefully dump out some of the juice and continue cooking. Also, you'll want to use the silicone trivets under the fry basket to keep it from making contact with the bottom basket.
Air frying is much more similar to baking in an oven than deep frying. And although most air fryers say you can cook without any oil at all, we found the best results with a tablespoon of vegetable oil. Even then, our top picks produced food that tasted closer to baked fries and chicken than deep-fried food. Instead of the comforting crunch of a fry, we were met with a tough, sometimes chewy exterior. We found the air-fried insides were thicker and more substantial than the almost puffy, creamy texture one gets from a traditional fryer. The chicken strips most closely imitated the deep-fried, crispy texture we were looking for. For a more detailed breakdown, check out our article comparing deep fryers vs. air fryers.
BEST FRYING EXPERIENCE – FAMILY SIZE: In the Power Air Fryer Oven , Food cooks surrounded in a whirlwind of superheated hot air— no oil, butter, or lard required. You get even cooking and an all-over crisp with less fat and up to 80% fewer calories. Fried food gets the same golden fried taste and texture and roasts cook to succulent, juicy perfection in minutes. Easy and fun-to-use kitchen appliance lets you make an entire mouthwatering meal – all in one unit.
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