This might seem like a misleading topic, because if you believe the advertising hype, an air fryer could be the solution to your thickening waistline and clogging arteries. After all, aren’t they the magic appliances that allow you to indulge in fried delights, but with none of the oil-related deep-frying health risks?
Well, yes and no.
Isn’t Everything From An Air Fryer Healthy?
Unless you’ve been living under a rock, you probably know that one of the main reasons for buying an air fryer is that they are supposed to be a healthier way of cooking. And if this is true, isn’t everything that comes out of an air fryer good for you? Let’s take a quick look at these ideas and try to separate fact from fiction.
Less Oil = Health Benefits
Firstly, it’s true that the technology in air fryers means you can cook a huge variety of popular foods using (comparatively) very little oil or fat. An air fryer is basically a small convection oven that cooks by heating air to a really high temperature and then circulating that hot air around the food.
This is particularly good news if you have a soft spot for fried foods. With traditional cooking methods, many favourites like hot chips and chicken wings only reach crispy, golden perfection if they’ve been cooked in a bubbling pan of boiling oil – totally delicious, but not great for your arteries!
Being able to get a similar flavour and texture using only a fraction of the oil (if any at all) is a great selling point for air fryers as there are obvious health benefits to ditching the fats, but keeping the taste.
If you’d like to know more about the current thinking on oils and which ones are considered bad for us, you can read more here.
Are You a Fried Food Fan?
Of course, one of the problems with this is that you have to be a big fan of fried food in the first place to want to eat food cooked this way. And for a lot of people, a healthy lifestyle and fried food simply don’t go together.
But if you are getting that great fried flavour and crunch, without the high fat content, why wouldn’t you want to expand your meal choices and add something new to your list of meals – even if you’ve always thought of french fries as evil?!
If reading this is making you hungry and you are starting to get the munchies for some delicious sweet potato fries, you can read more here.
Multi-function Means Lots of Choice
Also, don’t forget that air fryers aren’t solely frying machines. The models on the market these days can bake, grill, roast, saute and often dehydrate as well. This means you are getting a versatile benchtop kitchen appliance that can churn out snacks and meals in a variety of ways – all using a minimum of fat.
In fact, you can buy an air fryer and never even use it to cook fried food. If you’d rather have a protein-packed, veggie and halloumi cheese frittata for breakfast than a full English breakfast, you can whip that up in your air fryer using the ‘bake’ function. And that has to be a major bonus for both the health conscious and those who like value for money.
And then there is the convenience. You can make so many things in the one appliance and all without producing loads of mess and washing up.
There’s no more getting half a dozen gadgets out. You can bake a chicken and leek pie and then make sweet potato fries to go on the side, all in the same machine. You can even follow it with cinnamon doughnut bites and roasted peaches, if you feel like it.
A healthy dinner and all from one device? Now that’s a great idea! And it’s even better when you only have one appliance to clean afterwards.