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- What’s better, an Air Fryer or a Toaster Oven?
- Which One Should You Choose?
- Frequently Asked Questions
Through this article we aim to bring out the difference between two very popular kitchen appliances- an air fryer vs Toaster oven (including a convection toaster). Both these appliances make life easy in the kitchen, though an Air fryer cooks faster than a toaster oven and requires no oil.
What’s better, an Air Fryer or a Toaster Oven?
Source of heat
An air fryer has its heating element on the top along with a big fan located under it. Thus the source of heat is from the top in an air fryer. A toaster oven has the heating element both at the bottom and top. This leads to concentrated heat and faster cooking. A convection oven in addition has a fan at the back which maybe on the side or center.
A toaster oven allows for only grilling, roasting and baking. An air fryer is more flexible as you can do much more than only baking ,roasting and grilling. It allows for cooking without oil to get a crispy product. It is definitely a good option for people looking for healthy food choices.
Cooking is faster in an air fryer due to the close proximity of the fan to the food and concentration of heat. A fryer can cook food in half the time as compared to a convection oven. The problem arises when you have to resort to cooking in batches for get togethers.
See also: Air Fryer vs. Oven
Normally a toaster oven has more space as compared to an air fryer that is bucket style. Due to advancement in technology it has become possible to buy an air fryer that has same cooking capacity as a toaster oven . But you need to pay more for the latest air fryers.
The process of cooking is identical in an air fryer and oven toaster thus giving the same cooking outcome. The main difference is you can cook smaller quantities in an air fryer as compared to toaster ovens. But, the market now has air fryers that are quite big which come at a cost. Otherwise you will have to cook smaller portions of food over a longer period .In a toaster oven you can cook bigger pieces of food and save time.
Toaster ovens are really not known for their insulation properties and the outside body heats up quickly. In fact it is always advised that any inflammable object or plastic should not be kept close to the gadget when in use to avoid fire situations. Also it is advisable to keep oven toasters in ventilated spaces. An air fryer has a bucket in a nicely insulated body that does not heat up on use.
See more: Philips Air Fryer vs. Nuwave
A toaster oven consumes about 1400 watts of energy as compared to an air fryer that consumes about 1600 watts of energy. The difference between the two is not very big and probably you might not even notice a big difference in your electric bill at month end. When you compare the insulation properties and energy efficiency of an air fryer to an oven toaster you might want to ignore the little difference of energy consumption between the two.
Any regular toaster oven that you buy could help you cook using the method of roasting, baking and grilling (and also use the oven as a rotisserie). Air Fryer will let you perform all these functions and also allow you to dehydrate and air fry food. It allows for air frying foods which are traditionally fried in oil and still have a delicious flavor. You can make your favorite sweet potato or French fries, chicken wings, onion rings zucchini fries and so on without using unhealthy method of deep frying in oil. In any case certain breaded foods like mozzarella sticks and chicken nuggets taste better when air fried.
An air fryer and an oven toaster require different methods of cleaning. Air fryer is quick to clean since you are not using oil in cooking .The drip pan has non stick coating and can be just wiped to clean. The interior and exterior of an air fryer are made of materials that are easy to clean. Also because of its small size, cleaning is quick. Compared to an air fryer cleaning a toaster oven is a little more strenuous. You will be required to use a sponge and detergent to wipe clean the oil used in cooking. In addition you have to be careful not to touch the heating elements. Thus it seems people who hate to spend too much time cleaning up after cooking would prefer an air fryer.
Read also: Top 24 Best Air Fryers Review of 2021
Which One Should You Choose?
Both the air fryer and toaster oven have their own unique features. Which one to choose will be easy if you understand their functions first and then decide what suits your cooking goals. If your kitchen counter has limited space and you are looking for a gadget that is versatile then opt for an air fryer. People who want to reduce their intake of fat should definitely opt for an air fryer. For people who enjoy toasted foods more and have a budget to consider can go for an oven toaster as it is cheaper than an air fryer.
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Frequently Asked Questions
What is the best air fryer toaster oven?
Before buying any one of the following, consider the size that will be suitable for your cooking. Also, decide whether you want digital or mechanical control and the type of accessories with the gadget. The best air fryers toaster ovens you can consider to buy are:
- Best Compact Air Fryer Toaster Oven: Crux Digital 6 Slice Air Fryer Toaster Oven 14805
- Best Overall Air Fryer Toaster Oven: Cuisinart TOA-65 Digital Convection Oven
- Best Value Air Fryer Toaster Oven: Hamilton Beach Air Fry Sure-Crisp Toaster Oven
- Best Air Fryer Toaster Oven for Easy Storage: Ninja Digital Air Fry Oven
- Most Versatile Air Fryer Toaster Oven: Cosori CO130-AO 12-in-1 Air Fryer Toaster Oven Combo
- Best Large Capacity Air Fryer Toaster Oven: Breville Smart Oven Air
Is an air fryer the same as a small convection oven?
Both convection ovens and air fryers allow for faster cooking than a traditional oven. The technology is same in both that with the help of a fan hot air is circulated to cook the food. No actual frying happens in an air fryer and it is more like a smaller version of a convection oven. Due to the size and placement of the fan air fryer cooks faster than a convection oven.
Convection ovens use a fan to blow hot air around the food. This makes the food more crisp than an ordinary oven because more heat is transferred to the food surface due to the force of the air. Thus we might say that air fryers are convection ovens but still they are not exactly identical. Air fryers are more like portable smaller convection ovens. They are shaped like coffeemakers and are taller. They have a bucket with a handle that is removable. A small basket fits inside this bucket that is also removable. Food is placed inside the bucket and the gadget is switched on to cook the food. As the food is placed closer to the fan the food cooks faster in an air fryer as compared to a convection oven.
Who should buy an air fryer and why?
People looking to move towards a healthier lifestyle can consider purchasing an air fryer for their kitchen. Those who are overweight, have cardiac or fatty liver problems may under this category.
Since air is used by air fryers for heating food, they do not require any oil, and hence you can save on the additional calories added to your food. Despite the absence of oil, there is no compromise in the texture and taste of the food. Your French fries would come out as crisp and delicious from an air fryer as they would if you actually fried them. Also, you’re saved from consuming any unhealthy additives when you use an air fryer. It is said that an air fryer may reduce almost 80% of fat from foods that are usually cooked in oil.
Air fryers are also recommended for those who wish to cook their food faster. An air fryer is a highly efficient machine because it can heat very quickly, sometimes under three minutes. We think that’s pretty awesome since you don’t have to spend hours in the kitchen.