The most common misconception about air fryers is that their sole purpose is to churn out healthier, oil-free versions of junk-food favorites like French fries and chicken wings. Though this is partially true, these nifty countertop appliances are capable of so much more. Depending on the model, an air fryer can also roast meat, imbuing chicken, sausage, and steak with a delectably crispy exterior. It can function as both broiler and grill, should you need to crisp the tops of, say, BBQ ribs or cheese toast. Heck, the right air fryer can even bake breads, brownies, and cakes. All this to say: These fast-cooking marvels are a blessed addition to any kitchen, especially during warmer months when you don’t want to turn on your oven or stove.
Ideal for beginners who want to dip their toes into the wonderful waters of air frying, this easy-to-use model boasts a straightforward design, with one removable nonstick frying basket (which also happens to be dishwasher-safe) and two buttons, for temperature and time. The Ultrean—available in black, red, white, and teal—and can fry, grill, roast, and bake, making it a great, multi-purpose machine.
For a more advanced, and elegant, option, consider the handsome COSORI air fryer. It comes with 11 cooking presets, including steak, chicken, seafood, bacon, vegetables, French fries, dessert, and bread. Among our favorite features: a fingerprint-resistant surface, a “shake” reminder (that tells you to turn food for even cooking), and a “keep warm” function (for, you know, keeping food warm). Choose between two colors: black and red.
The makers of Instant Pot created this 7-in-1 beauty, which, in addition to air-frying, can bake, roast, toast, broil, rotisserie, and even dehydrate foods. The Cadillac of air fryers, it comes with a drip pan, cooking trays, and everything you’d expect in a rotisserie: basket, spit, and forks (all dishwasher safe, by the way).