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Air Fryer vs Oven vs Both: What’s Best For Me?

Published by: Chef Matty Riedel • Updated: December 29, 2023

If you don’t currently own an air fryer, and you’re one of the many planning to get one soon, you’re probably asking yourself one or all of these questions;

  1. Is it as healthy as they all say?
  2. Do I need one?
  3. Is it worth the money?
  4. Do I have the space?
  5. Will it make my cooking easier?
  6. What are the benefits compared to other cooking methods?
  7. What features should I look for?
  8. Click here for more air fryer questions and answers.

1. Is It As Healthy?

Air fryers use hot air for cooking food, giving it a crispy texture without needing a lot of oil. You can enjoy crisp and crunchy foods like French fries, chicken wings, and even roasted vegetables with significantly less fat and calories.

crispy fried chicken and lettuce  on a square white plate, arranged around a small white bowl of aioli

Air frying doesn’t mean avoiding oil; you use small amounts in most air fryer recipes.

Some experts have suggested that the high heat used in air fryers can cause the formation of harmful compounds like acrylamide, which can form when you cook starchy foods at high temperatures. 

Air fryers can be a healthier cooking option when used correctly and in moderation. 

2. Do I Need An Air Fryer?

No 🙂

Seriously! Before the invention of the air fryer, cooks did quite nicely without one. 

The real question is, “Do I want one?” 

Yes, you do, or you wouldn’t be reading this article!

There are all sorts of reasons why you want one;

  • Everyone else has one
  • They look sexy on the bench
  • They are healthier (see above)
  • You like fried food without the calories
  • They are faster than your old oven
  • etc

3. Are Air Fryers Worth The Money?

Only you can answer that question. Do you have the budget for the best air fryer, or do you want to start your journey with a cheaper model that gets the job done just as well?

We’ll give you the answer to both questions at the end.

4. Bench Space

Modern cooking appliances, such as air fryers, multi-cookers, pressure cookers and the like, occupy a chunk of space on your kitchen bench. 

modern white kitchen with a pot plant on a timber look bench

If you are blessed with a ton of kitchen bench space and have the budget, you should go for the best.

If your bench space is limited, buy a multi-cooker with an air fryer.

5. Will It Make Cooking Easier?

Air fryers come with a learning curve. Just start to use your new machine right away. 

Experiment with times and temperatures. 

This guide will give you a great start.

Once you have mastered the art of the air fryer, a whole new world of cooking awaits!

6. What Are The Benefits Compared To Other Cooking Methods?

Air frying your favourite foods will be much faster and healthier than other cooking methods, including the oven and your old deep-fat fryer.

fried halloumi and broccoli on a white and blue oval shaped plate

7. What Features Should I Look For?

When looking for an air fryer, there are several features to consider. Here are some of the most important ones:


Consider the size of the air fryer and ensure it can hold enough food for your needs. Air fryer capacities typically range from 2 to 6 litres.


Look for an air fryer with at least 800-1500 watts. With this wattage, the air fryer will reach high temperatures quickly and efficiently.

Temperature Range

Ensure the air fryer has a wide temperature range, ideally between 30°C to 230°C, so that you can use it for various cooking tasks.

Cooking Presets

Some air fryers have preset chicken, fish, or vegetable cooking functions. These presets can be helpful for beginners or those who want to simplify the cooking process.


Look for air fryers with accessories like baking pans, cooking racks, or skewers. These accessories can expand the versatility of your air fryer and allow you to cook a wider variety of foods.

5 cooked muffins in a muffin tin

Ease Of Use

Consider how easy the air fryer is to use and clean. Look for features like a non-stick coating, dishwasher-safe parts, and simple controls.


Air fryers range in price from around £50 to over £250. So consider your budget and choose an air fryer with features that fit your needs.

Stick With Your Oven Or Buy An Air Fryer?

If you’re the type of home cook who loves innovation, you love to cook a variety of dishes, and you love (healthier) fried food, an air fryer is an intelligent choice. You’ll likely use both the oven and your new air fryer frequently.

Choosing the best air fryer model is down to space and budget.

The absolute top of the range is the Ninja FlexDrawer 10.4 Litres [AF500UK]

You can read our Ninja Air Fryer Brand Review to discover why we think it’s the bee’s knees of air fryers.

If budget is a factor right now, our favourite air fryer (only half the price of the Ninja, and it gets the job done) is the Tower 5-In-1 Air Fryer Oven. You can read our review here. Buy the Tower 5-in-1 Air fryer at this link here.

Ninja Foodi FlexDrawer Air Fryer 10.4L

  • Energy-efficient, using up to 45% less energy than an oven.
  • FlexDrawer feature allows for versatile cooking in 2 independent zones.
  • Generous 10.4L MegaZone can fit large cuts of meat and more.

Buy Now From Amazon Buy Now From Ninja Kitchen

Chef and Restaurant Owner Matty Riedel
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