Air Fryers are fast becoming a must-have kitchen appliance in Singapore. It is convenient to use and easy to clean. It is also a healthier way to cook with little or less oil than deep oil-frying for increasingly health-conscious population. However, with the many different air fryers available in the market, how do I choose the Best Air Fryer for myself?
With our different requirements, the Best Air Fryer must be the one with design and features that matches your cooking preferences. To simplify the selection, we will explore some key design and features considerations to look out for, in this versatile oil-less cooker. And summarise with other important factors like Aesthetics, Quality and Safety.
Select from Top-Lid, Drawer-Type and conventional Oven-shaped Air Fryers
Top-lid models are generally for large capacity cooking and a plus to cook big portion. It has a variety of cooking methods including the rotisserie (rotating fork) and the cooking container is usually detachable. Its main drawback is safety for young family members as the hot heating elements mounted on lid are exposed when opened.
Oven-shaped models are an extension of conventional oven, fitted with an high-speed fan for the air-fry effect. It is well suited for cooking big food items like whole chicken and food stacking. Since cooking is inside the oven, it is difficult to clean after use. It is also bulky for households with limited counter-top space.
Drawer-type is the most common form factor which complement the Air Fryer as a safe, convenient to use and easy to clean cooker. The detachable cooking basket drawer has a handle which can be safely pulled out for quick food placement or retrieval and for washing.
Mechanical or Digital Control and other features
Broadly speaking, Air Fryers can have with mechanical knobs to adjust cooking temperature and timings or digital control buttons to set incremental temperature and timings. The latter provides for more precise control and therefore slightly more expensive. This digital design also allow for other electronic functions like presets for one-touch cooking for selected food items and pre-heat button to minimize manual adjustments and for the convenience of users.
Big or Small, Square or Round
Depending on frequency of use and cooking portion, size of Air Fryer is a key consideration. A 3.5 litre capacity is ideal for typical small family of 2-3, while 5.5 litre Air Fryer would fit well for family of 4-5. As air is used to cook the food, it is also important note that a square-shape cooking basket will accommodate bigger food pieces and allow for more surface cooking area than a round-shape cooking backet.
Best Air Fryer Selection Matrix
Air Fryer Cooking Preferences
Form-factor / Size of Air Fryer
Top Lid model
I cook regularly for family or gathering of 4 or more persons
I prefer rotisserie function and not to turn food while cooking
I have very limited kitchen countertop space
I prefer to safe transfer of food horizontally not from the top
I prefer easy cleaning and washing after each cooking
Final Consideration: Does product has good design aesthetics, safe to use, quality and has the Singapore Safety Mark?