Steam rising from the tray of an air fryer.

Testing a New Kitchen Appliance: The Air Fryer

Last Christmas, my partner's grandma gifted us an air fryer. Both of us love to cook and experiment in the kitchen, so it was a very thoughtful gift to give us. I always just use the oven to bake and roast, but this tiny little appliance promised it could do this and so much more.

If you are managing a chronic illness like type 2 diabetes, certain kitchen appliances can make healthy eating easier. Healthy eating is an important part of managing your diabetes, but sometimes it can be a real struggle and there truly does not feel like there is enough time in the day to commit to this. I wanted to test out and see if the air fryer would save time in the kitchen and make it easier to eat healthily.

Can the air fryer help with healthy eating for type 2 diabetes?

After I got over my suspicions of this new appliance, I started to experiment with it. The air fryer I have has many settings, including air fry, roast, bake, dehydrate, and reheat. I most often use the air fry or roast setting for tofu and veggies. I am excited to try baking cookies on the bake setting and testing the other settings out. The air fryer allows you to use considerably less oil to cook food, and claims you only really need 1 teaspoon of oil on the food you put in the air fryer. Besides tofu and veggies, you can cook any frozen foods, certain meats, and baked goods.

Pros for healthy eating

I'll start out by saying there are a lot of positives about the air fryer! I love roasting veggies, but it often takes 25-45 minutes to finish in the oven. With the air fryer, it normally takes 5-12 minutes. Therefore, I have been able to have way more roasted veggies throughout the week since it is so quick to make them in the air fryer.

As previously mentioned, you need much less oil to get a crispy texture on whatever food you are cooking. This is great if you are trying to lower your fat or oil intake due to high cholesterol levels. It's awesome to make crispy foods without having to fry them and make them unhealthy.

The air fryer fits on the counter, so this is great if you have a small kitchen, don't already have an oven, or live in a dorm. It doesn't take up too much space, and it is easy to store in a pantry or cupboard. Because it is so small, it is also quite easy to clean.

Although I received mine as a gift, air fryers are affordable. The cheapest ones I found were $20, and the most expensive one I saw was $180. It seems that you could get a high-quality one somewhere in the middle of that price range.

Air fryer cons

The air fryer we have fits two trays. The downside to filling up both two trays is that the air fryer will not cook each tray evenly. I find that it works best if you only use one tray at a time so you don't have to continuously monitor if each tray is being cooked evenly. If you have a large family, you may feel as if some of the air fryers are too small. However, you could always do multiple batches of foods, or just create appetizers and side dishes. If you already have an oven and many other kitchen appliances, it might feel like the air fryer is unnecessary.

Takeaway

I am really grateful I was gifted this kitchen appliance, and it has become a regular part of my cooking routine. It is an affordable device that can help you roast, bake, and air fry healthy foods. I would recommend it to anyone that doesn't have a lot of space in their kitchen or have a busy schedule with minimal time to cook. Personally, it is not necessary for my kitchen setup, but it is something that I enjoy using and that I find convenient.

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