Last summer we were getting ready to go to Morocco for a family reunion, with side trips to Rome and Spain. I spent a lot of time, last spring and early summer, online, shopping. I don’t often have a good excuse to update my wardrobe, but spending 2 – 3 weeks traveling with family, sightseeing and going out to dinner was an excellent one.
This summer, since extensive travel is not really an option and I don’t need new shoes to do my twice-monthly grocery shopping, my attention has turned to kitchen gadgets.
I used to, back when I was more ambitious, fry foods. I made fried chicken for summer picnics, made proper fried pork for Sweet & Sour Pork, and, of course, fries. I did it in a deep skillet, and would take the oil ‘out back’ and toss it in the woods when I was done…. Yes, I really did that.
I lost interest in it….. Not the food – the work and the hot oil.
I’ve been intrigued by Air Fryers (can they really make crispy fried food?) but have not bothered to do the research.
Someone was kind enough to do it for me…. Read on:
Why You Should Use Air Fryers
Deep frying foods is one of the most popular ways to cook across the world. From French fries in North America, Schnitzel in Germany and even fried chicken called chicken karaage in Japan, fried food is everywhere! As delicious as fried food is, we all know it is not good for our health as fried foods are high in trans fats. So, if you love fried foods but are trying to eat healthier, using an air fryer is the solution for you!
An air fryer is a type of convection oven that can fry foods without using oil. Instead, an air fryer uses hot air circulating at a high sped to cook the food. Let’s look at five reasons you should be using an air fryer.
- Air fryers don’t need oil
Unlike frying food normally, most air fryer recipes do not require any oil and if they do, it’s very little. This is one of the biggest benefits of using an air fryer as oil is high in fat and calories. One tablespoon alone of oil has around 120 calories. Frying with a normal deep fryer takes around 4 to 6 cups of oil and although you’re not ingesting all of this oil, a lot of it will go into your food to be ingested.
If you do need oil in your air fryer recipe to crisp or brown the food, your food will still have around 80-85% less fat compared to traditional deep frying. Thus, air frying is a significantly healthier way of frying your food.
- You can put your food in and leave it
If you have ever had to deep fry food in an open pot or pan, you have likely had scalding hot oil splash at you as you drop your food in. If you use an air fryer, you don’t need to be afraid while putting your food in. Instead, all you need to do is put your food into the air fryer basket, set the time and temperature, then leave it alone until it’s finished.
This is one of the easiest ways to fry your food as you don’t need to constantly monitor it or turn it over to ensure all sides are being cooked evenly. The air fryer will even shut off by itself at the end of your chosen time (given that it has an auto-shutoff). Frying food has never been easier!
- Easy clean up
If you typically use a deep fryer to fry your food, you know how quickly the oil can get dirty and thus require changing. Emptying out oil from your deep fryer or pot is challenging and can result in messy oil spills.
With an air fryer, you can simply take out the basket and clean it as you would any dish with soap and water. This makes clean up extremely easy and quick!
- Air fryers cook food quickly
Another great benefit of using an air fryer is how quickly it can cook your food. Air fryers can reach high temperatures in just a few minutes whereas a convection oven would need at least 10 to 15 minutes to preheat and deep fryers can take as long as 25 to 30 minutes to heat up. As air fryers circulate hot air quickly, your air fryer could have finished cooking your food in the same time it takes your other appliances to simply warm up. Since many people have a limited amount of time to cook during the day, using an air fryer to cook your food quickly is a great option!
- There are plenty of air fryer recipes
As air fryers are growing in popularity, many delicious recipes have been coming out as well. There are even plenty of air fryer specific cookbooks that include a variety of recipes that you can cook in your air fryer.
Air fryers can not only be used to cook lunch or dinner, but also dessert! Some air fryers have baking attachments or accessories that you can use to make delicious desserts such as cookies, cakes, muffins and even pies!
Ultimately, using an air fryer is great for your health, safety, time management, and stomach!