the twochubbycubs guide to airfryers

airfryers

If there’s one thing that we know it’s that there’s a LOT of confusion about Airfryers. With so many different types, different models, different prices it’s easy to get confused. Actifry, Airfryers, Halos, Halogen ovens… all called Airfryers interchangeably but they all work in very different ways.

The right airfryer will be one of the best things you’ll ever buy. You can make loads more than chips in them (even though, lets be honest, it’s what we’re all gonna make most of all, eh?). Curries, tagines, bologneses, stews, chicken nuggets, sausages, onion rings, spring rolls, baked potatoes…these are all things that can be done in one type or Airfryer or another and that’s not even the start of it. The important thing is to know the difference between them all, and decide which one is best for you. We’ve pulled together this guide to help you decide. At the end of each list we’ve included a link to Amazon. If you buy one through us, you’ll send a few pennies in commission our way and help towards the cost of running the site 🙂


Tefal Actifry

£££

This is the one – the daddy of all airfryers. In fact, given its shapely sides, long, round shaft and predilection for leaving you satisfied, this appliance is a stone-cold DILF. You’ll have all heard about the Actifry, and in our opinion, it’s by far the best. It has a non-stick pan with a rotating paddle that swings through the food, gently turning it so that it cooks evenly under a stream of hot air. That’s all there is to it!

GOOD FOR: Chips, curries, tagines, sausages, bologneses

NOT GOOD FOR: Soups

TIPS: Remove the paddle for delicate food like feta cheese, or fish

PROS:

  • Food cooks evenly and quickly
  • Easy to clean
  • Dishwasher safe
  • Tonnes of recipes out there for it
  • Can be used with or without the paddle
  • Big capacity – up to 1.7kg
  • Various capacities available
  • Timer

CONS:

  • The most expensive of the lot
  • Has been some problems with the paddle (newer versions are much stronger)
  • The paddle can sometimes break apart some softer foods
  • Excess oil can’t drain away
  • Fixed temperature setting

Start having decent chips and get one here


Breville Halo

££

The Halo is also a good choice. The Halo uses a halogen lamp instead of a draught of hot air to cook the food. It’s also able to cook the food more evenly like the Actifry because the unit tilts and pan rotates so the food is gently tumbled.

GOOD FOR: Chips, curries, tagines, sausages, bologneses

NOT GOOD FOR: Soups, general aesthetics, unless you have a Tron-style kitchen

TIPS: Don’t use the tilt/rotate function for delicate food like feta cheese, or fish

PROS:

  • Cheaper than the Actifry
  • Food cooks evenly and quickly
  • Dual heat source
  • Easy to clean
  • Dishwasher safe
  • Can be used with or without rotation
  • Timer

CONS:

  • Let’s be honest, it looks a bit shit
  • The ’tilt’ action can break apart softer foods
  • Excess oil can’t drain away

Polish your halo right here


Airfryer

£-££

These typeof airfryers come in all different varieties – Philips Airfryer, Tower, even Wilko’s have their own version, but they all work in the same way and all look similar to the photo above – hot air is blown over food which sits in a basket. These things do foods such as sausages, spring rolls, chicken nuggets, etc really well, but chips are often hit and miss. The food isn’t stirred or rotated so if the basket is full you have to manually shake the food now and again. This is okay for most things, but for chips it can become a hassle. We had the Philips Airfryer for a while and chips were often burnt on the top and raw at the bottom and from what we’ve heard it’s a common complaint for airfryers of this type.

The good news however is that as the food sits in a basket any excess oil drips away which doesn’t happen in the other versions. This is great if you’re cooking sausages or other meats. Breaded stuff cooks really well in this too, and the variable temperature setting means you can cook a lot more things in it.

BEST FOR: Sausages, jacket potatoes, breaded/battered stuff

NOT GREAT FOR: Anything liquid – it’ll just dribble through the basket

TIPS: This is a great bit of kit for draining away excess fat, like fatty sausages, making them just a bit healthier

PROS:

  • Cheap
  • Some models have variable temperature settings
  • Dishwasher safe
  • Fairly compact
  • Excess oil can drain away

CONS:

  • Food often doesn’t cook evenly and can dry out
  • Quite noisy
  • Not able to see the food as it’s cooking
  • Have to get up and shake the basket, and frankly, none of us got this fat by getting up

Shake it, sh-shake it, shake it like a polaroid picture


Halogen oven

£-££

These have been around for years, but recently it seems that some sellers are jumping on the bandwagon and branding them as ‘airfryers’ which they’re not. Halogen ovens use a halogen lamp as a heat source. They are essentially ovens – they won’t do anything additional or anything different to what your current oven does. But, because they’re smaller, more compact and easy to clean people often use them instead of their oven for convenience!

BEST FOR: Roasting, baking

NOT GOOD FOR: Chips can be hit and miss. They won’t be as nice as those done in an Actifry or a Halo.

TIPS: Use the different attachments and accessories to get the best use out of it

PROS:

  • Cheapest of the lot
  • Versatile
  • Variable temperature and time settings
  • Easy to clean
  • Big glass bowl means you can see the food easily
  • Economical
  • Handy for caravans, camping and small kitchens

CONS:

  • It does exactly the same thing as an oven, no more, no less.

could you find room in your heart for a Poundland Darth Vader?


Number 5

£££££££££££££££

PROS:

  • Adorable

CONS:

  • Shit at making chips (and pancakes)

come and follow meeeee


There are, of course, a myriad of other airfryers out there. Generally, the more they look like a prop from 70s Doctor Who, the worse they will be. Use some common sense and get the best one you can afford – buy cheap, buy twice! Oh and YES we know you can buy an Actilie from Aldi for tuppence-hapenny, we know. Good. Go for it!

J