Air Fryer Vs Deep Fryer: What Is The Difference?

Frying is one of the most popular forms of food preparation, resulting in tasty meals with the perfect crunch. Seeing how popular frying is, it is no surprise that there are several appliances dedicated to this form of meal preparation.

Some of the appliances include the air fryer and deep fryer. Those not conversant with these cookers may get confused trying to know which is which and how they function. If you are in such a situation, we are here to help you by looking at air fryers vs. deep fryers: what is the difference.

What is an Air Fryer?

To understand the difference between the two cookers, we will have to look at their respective definitions. The air fryer is a convection oven that simulates frying without submerging the food in oil.

Many people consider the air fryer to be a healthy way of cooking due to food preparation’s oil-less nature.

What is a Deep Fryer?

The deep fryer is like the opposite of an air fryer. Whereas the air fryer does not need oil for cooking, the deep fryer comes in a design to submerge your food in oil.

It has a reservoir where you put the oil to heat it, and you place your food in a basket, which you dip in the oil.

A look at their respective definitions shows you how the two appliances vary. Let us look at more of their differences.

Differences between Air Fryers and Deep Fryers

  1. Cooking Time

One of the critical areas to look at when it comes to cooking appliances is cooking time. Deep fryer vs. air fryer cooking time will depend on many factors, such as the preferred doneness and the food you are preparing.

In most cases, the deep fryer cooks faster than the air fryer. For example, if you prepare chicken nuggets, using the deep fryer will take you 3 to 5-minutes.

On the other hand, it might take you 10 to 15-minutes if you decide to use the air fryer. If you account for the preheating time in air frying, the time may go up to 20-minutes.

  1. Taste

The deep fryer takes the top spot in terms of taste as it uses oil, which also helps bring a delicious aroma. The air fryer also does its best in food taste, and it brings about crunchiness and browning.

You should also consider that you can use different oils to prepare your food, which adds another dimension to their taste.

  1. Calories

For healthy living, it is advisable to check on the calories you are consuming. Naturally, air fried foods have low calories compared to their deep-fried counterparts as they are oil-less.

An excellent example to consider is French fries prepared by each cooker. Air fried French fries have 226 calories, while the deep-fried variety has 340.

You can see a considerable difference between the calorie intakes for air fried and deep-fried meals. If you want to eat healthily, you should go for air fried foods.

Advantages of the Air Fryer

The air fryer has many advantages, and below are some of them.

  • Healthy Food Preparation

The air fryer does not use oil in meal preparation, making it a darling among those who want to live healthily. Air fried foods are healthy as they do not have oil, translating to low calories.

  • Tasty Foods

The air frying technique ensures your foods have an even and browned crust with a juicy inside, and an excellent aroma. You will notice this in foods like meat, chicken nuggets, and even potato wedges.

  • Economic On Space

The air fryer is small in size, making it economical on space in the cooking area. Its small build also translates to effortless maintenance, mostly when focusing on cleaning. This cooking appliance is light in weight, and can easily be moved from one place to another.

  • Multiple Cooking Functions

The air fryer is one of the most versatile cooking appliances you will encounter, as it supports various cooking modes. You will see cooking options such as dehydration, baking, grilling, reheating, and rotisserie on its control panel.

  • Safety

This cooker is safe to use, considering it has an enclosed design and does not use oil. It does away with incidences of splatters, which is a risk for accidental burns or slips.

Disadvantages of the Air Fryer

While the air fryer has many advantages, it also has some downsides, the most noticeable being its low cooking capacity.

The standard air fryer has a capacity of around 5-6-liters, which is relatively small and can hardly accommodate meals like a full chicken. However, there are larger ones in the market, though they are mostly commercial grade.

Some air fryers can produce too much sound or smoke during operation, which might be a nuisance to users. You may also realize that they have longer cooking times compared to other cookers.

Advantages of the Deep Fryer

  • Fast Cooking

The deep fryer is one of the fastest cooking implements, and this is due to the fast heat transfer rate between the hot oil and food. Most of the time, you will have your food ready and crispy in less than ten minutes.

  • Tasty Food

Deep-fried food has an excellent texture, the right crunchiness, and the right aroma, and it is one of the reasons why fried food is many people’s favorite. You can use different oils to enhance the taste, like lard, sunflower, or olive oil.

  • Easy to Use

The deep fryer is easy to use, involving putting your food in the basket and immersing it in the heated oil. With prolonged use, you will be a pro in using it, and you can even multitask as the cooker runs.

  • Saves Oil

The oil you use for deep frying in one cooking session can still fry food. It is quite economical as you do not have to bring in a new can of oil.

Disadvantages of the Deep Fryer

The deep fryer is not a suitable appliance to use if you are into healthy living and want to regulate your calorie intake, as you use a lot of oil to cook.

There is also the risk of accidental splatters and spills, which can cause burns and accidental falls. However, the new age deep fryers sport designs which help prevent such occurrences.

 Deep Fryer Vs. Air Fryer: Which Is Better?

Which of the two cooking appliances is the best? To get to the bottom of this debate, we will look at various elements.

  • Health

The air fryer is one of the healthiest cookers you will encounter as it does not require oil for cooking. Conversely, the deep fryer uses a lot of oil for submerging your food. The plenty of oil used in deep frying enhances the taste, but it adds many calories to your food.

  • Functionality

Focusing on functionality, the air fryer has an upper edge, seeing that you can use it for various cooking modes. You can use it to air fry, bake, rotisserie, dehydrate and grill. However, the deep fryer will only fry your foods.

The air fryer is also easy to use, where you put your food into the basket, set the temperature and time, and wait for the meal to be ready.

  • Size

A compact size is one of the major selling points of the air fryer. It has a small size, and you can have it on your counter without it taking much space. While there are larger air fryers, they still lean on economizing space.

Deep fryers, on the other hand, seem to be quite big and bulky. Moving them can be challenging; as such, you will find them placed in one area for a long time, unless it has wheels for easy movement.

There are smaller varieties, which might take less space; however, this might compromise their cooking capacity.  Despite taking a lot of space, deep fryers can cook larger meals than the air fryer, like a whole turkey.

  • Food Taste

Deep-fried foods have a better taste than those from the air fryer due to the use of oil. The crispiness and appetizing aroma make deep-fried foods the to-go meal for many people.

When you look at which is the best between the air fryer and the deep fryer, we can say it is a tie, as each of them has a significant element. For example, the deep fryer cooks fast, and the meals are tasty, while the air fryer is an ideal option if you want healthy foods.

Frequently Asked Questions

Does an Air Fryer Taste Like a Deep Fryer?

Air fried food has a slight difference in taste from deep-fried food, as you do not use oil in its preparation. While there may be a slight change in taste, the meal is healthier with low calories.

Can You Use An Air Fryer Instead of a Deep Fryer?

Yes, you can use an air fryer in place of a deep fryer, where you will benefit from oil-less cooking and tasty food. However, if you want your food to cook fast and love the edgier taste provided by cooking oil, you would rather stick to the deep fryer.

Final Thoughts

Deep fryer vs. air fryer, this is one debate that seems to have no end among cooking enthusiasts. Both perform a great job of bringing impressive meals to your table, though they have many differences, as evident from this article.

Pick the best cooking appliance that is compatible with your style and continue making tasty foods with a crunchy consistency.

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