Counter space is a hot commodity in almost every kitchen. Even when you have a lot of it, it’s easy to clutter and fill with the latest cooking appliances. An air fryer, however, is one you’ll want to make room for.
An air fryer is similar to an oven in the sense that it bakes and roasts, but the difference is its heating elements are only located on top and are accompanied by a large, powerful fan, resulting in food that's super crispy in no time — and, most notably, with less oil than deep-fried counterparts. Air fryers typically heat up very quickly and they cook food quickly and evenly, thanks to the combination of a concentrated heat source and the size and placement of the fan.
What's the difference between an air fryer and deep fryer?
Air fryers bake food at a high temperature with a high-powered fan, while deep fryers cook food in a vat of oil that has been heated up to a specific temperature. Both cook food quickly, but an air fryer requires practically zero preheat time while a deep fryer can take upwards of 10 minutes. Air fryers also require little to no oil and deep fryers require a lot that absorb into the food. Food comes out crispy and juicy in both appliances, but don't taste the same, usually because deep fried foods are coated in batter that cook differently in an air fryer vs a deep fryer. Battered foods needs to be sprayed with oil before cooking in an air fryer to help them color and get crispy, while the hot oil soaks into the batter in a deep fryer. Flour-based batters and wet batters don't cook well in an air fryer, but they come out very well in a deep fryer.
Is air fried food healthy?
The taste and texture of air fried food is comparable to the results of a deep fryer: Crispy on the outside, juicy on the inside. However, you only need to use a tiny amount of oil, if any at all (depending on what you're cooking).
So yes, compared to deep-frying, air frying is "definitely a healthier alternative if you commit to using just 1-2 tablespoons of a plant-based oil with seasoning, and you stick to air-frying veggies more than anything else," says Good Housekeeping’s Nutrition Director Jaclyn London, MS, RD, CDN. "Any appliance that helps you and your family up your veggie game is key to weight management, reduced risk of chronic disease, and improved long-term health as we age."
Original Blog Reference: https://www.goodhousekeeping.com/appliances/a28436830/what-is-an-air-fryer/