Anyone for an air fryer? The popularity of this cooker continues to rise

It’s a brutal reality of life: fried food is fantastic for your taste buds (and nucleus accumbens), but terrible for the rest of you. Sure, you could bake your food instead of frying it, but it’s not the same. The air fryer comes into play. Is it worthwhile to purchase one? That depends, but Prime Day sales could be one point to consider.  You may have kitchen gadget fatigue after being swamped with slow cooker and Instant Pot information from every corner of the internet, but this other wunder-appliance can reportedly bring out all the crispy, crunchy fried dishes you love with significantly less fat. (Despite its many charms and supposedly magical culinary skills, the Instant Pot only recently received a crisping function in the form of an air fryer top attachment, the Duo Crisp, which is presently on sale at Walmart for $99). Also available is a stand-alone Instant Pot air fryer.Visit wireandcutter.com for more info.

What distinguishes air fryers from other cooking methods? “Nothing, really,” might be the response. Air fryers are convection ovens in a bucket, which means they have a heating element like a regular oven and a fan that circulates the hot air, keeping the temperature stable all throughout cooking area like a slightly fancier oven with a convection feature like a slightly fancier oven with a convection feature like a slightly snazzier oven with a fluid flow feature like a slightly fancier oven with an advection function like a slightly snazzier oven with a con Stoves can reduce the cooking time of some dishes by using faster-than-normal-oven heat transfer capabilities from that swiftly circulating air, potentially giving them a crispier exterior that brand-conscious marketeers appear to think akin to fried food.

The air fryer works by rotating very hot air around dishes with only a thin layer of oil (some recipes use no oil at all), which means you’ll be using at least 70 to 80 percent less fat than you would with traditional deep frying. It’s also a lot less frightening than a pot of ragingly heating oil that can spatter, burn, and catch fire, plus you won’t have to deal with disposing of a quart of stinky spent cooking grease once you’re done. Naturally, air fryers, whether freshly cooked or frozen, can handle healthier versions of all the typical suspects, from chicken nuggets and egg rolls to potato chips and french fries. The air fryer, like the Electric Kettle, speeds up the cooking process in general. That’s because air fryers achieve high heats in seconds (unlike many ovens, which can take up to 10-15 minutes simply to preheat), and then circulate the hot air for speedier frying all around. Because practically everyone these days is pressured for time, taking even a few minutes off the terrible waiting-for-dinner limbo is a welcome bonus.

There’s no need to buy an air fryer if you really have a kitchen because air fryers are basically tiny versions of it. Otherwise, some potential drawbacks to consider include the extra counter and chest of drawers space the appliance takes up (ours is larger than I anticipated when ordering it, and we store it on a shelf in the garage when not in use); the fact that since most frameworks can’t cook a large amount of food at once; and the fact that, depending on the product and length you purchase, they can create uneven results.