Choosing Between An Air Fryer vs Toaster Oven
Kitchen appliances make life and cooking convenient for all people alike. Given the wide array of choices available today, there is a great deal of diversification and confusion in choosing among these gadgets.
A toaster oven is a cooking essential found in most kitchens for many years. Air Fryers have emerged as a new and exciting hot air device that has come to dislocate the age-old Toaster ovens from the shelf. Invented 100 years apart, both the appliances use heat for cooking delicious food.
Before sifting through the differences between a Toaster oven and Air Fryer, let’s dig into what each of these means and how they function.
What exactly is an Air Fryer?
All of us are familiar with the tussle between our taste buds and health. It is difficult enough to say no to tasty fried snacks straight out of a deep fryer. But what if you can cook/eat your favorite hush puppies, French fries, and chicken wings without thinking twice about the oil that gets in.
An air fryer does the work for you, it is a small countertop appliance that fries your food with nothing more than hot air currents. It is one multitasker and can bake cookies, roast vegetables, and grill a sandwich too! It works its charm on the to-be-deep fried frozen foods, mozzarella sticks, chicken nuggets, bacon, equally well.
Its popularity is fast-growing over recent years. The trendy appliance has topped the list of hottest must-haves for most homes. Its apparent convenience and innovative recipes have taken the internet by storm.
How Does it Work?
Not surprisingly air fryer cooks food quickly using hot air and a circulating fan. The top half of the air fryer has the heating system/elements and fan. You keep the food in the bottom basket, and hot air rapidly circulates around the food when you switch it on. The flowing air cooks it from all sides and angles and gives it a crispy fried texture, with little or no oil. You may need to shake the basket to flip the food from one side to another for even cooking.
- Crispier food
- Cooks quickly
- Can multitask- fry, roast, bake, grill
- Convenient for frozen food
- Easy to store
- Limited capacity, batch cooking
- Takes considerable counter space
- Comparatively pricey
- Loud or noisy
The Good Old Toaster Oven
A toaster oven is a compact version of the regular oven and serves just like it. You can use it to warm cooked meals, toast, bake and broil. It is one of the firsts when it comes to kitchen essentials. They come with doors that can be opened downwards or sideways to place and remove food.
How it works
A toaster oven has heating elements both on the top and the bottom, which cooks your food by warming up the air inside the appliance. Additionally, a convection toaster oven uses powerful fans to circulate the air inside and makes the food crispier.
- Can cook a larger quantity of food
- See-through screen
- Easy to maintain
- Not as crispy
- It takes more time to cook
- Bulkier to store
- Not fit for frozen foods
Comparison between Air Fryer and Toaster Oven
Key differences between air fryers and toaster ovens.
Being countertop appliances, air fryers heat quickly and blows the hot air directly at the food, while full-sized and toaster ovens cook food comparatively slowly by heating their entire volume. Owing to its size and powerful fan, an air fryer can cook in roughly half the time taken by a toaster oven.
The heat flows only from the top in an air fryer and is then circulated throughout, making it necessary to flip stacked food for even cooking. While in a toaster oven, heating plates are usually present at both the top and bottom.
Fan placement, size, and speed
The fan is placed in the upper half of an air fryer, near the heating system. Whereas it is located in the center, back, or side in the case of a toaster oven. Air fryer fans are bigger and more powerful than convection toaster oven fans. An ordinary toaster oven lacks a fan.
Air fryers come with many accessories that facilitate faster, crispier cooking. These include frying baskets, trays, racks, skewers, and spits. A toaster oven, on the other hand, doesn’t come with many accessories, except a simple tray.
A toaster oven can be used for grilling, roasting, baking and also act as a rotisserie. On the other hand, an Air Fryer can do all that, plus dehydrate and mimic deep frying.
Care and cleaning
Air fryers are made up of easy to clean materials. Owing to their small size and oil-less cooking, they are really easy to clean. Toaster ovens, too, are simple to clean, but you’d need a sponge, detergent, and scrubbing to get rid of the stubborn oil stains.
When you compare the cooking space offered by an air fryer and toaster oven, the toaster oven takes the lead. Standard air fryers have a small basket to place food and often require meals to be cooked in batches.
Due to their powerful fans and heating elements, air fryers(1600W) consume more energy than a standard toaster oven(1400W). That being said, air fryer brings additional insulation advantage with it.
The Burning issue – what to choose between Air Fryer and Toaster Oven?
Well, Air fryers are the best alternative to toss some healthy and crispy fast food-like meals at home. You can cook restaurant-style food, with a restaurant like speed, using an air fryer. They are the go-to gadget for cooking frozen foods, raw vegetables, and meat. It will be an ideal choice for you if you are looking for versatility while trying to cut back on your oil intake.
For those who prefer toasted food at a budget-friendly coast, a toaster oven meets the cut. It is the time-tested appliance to cook your Grandma’s cherished recipes.
Maybe the easiest answer is buying a combination such as the COSORI CO130-AO Air Fryer Toaster Oven Combo 12-in-1 Countertop Rotisserie & Dehydrator? That’s one option in the debate between air fryer vs toaster oven products.
Wrapping Up Air Fryer vs Toaster Oven Overviews
There’s no clear-cut way to find out which appliance fits best for you. In the end, it all boils down to your cooking requirements and needs. Both the products have their pros and cons, and you need to weigh them down depending upon your priorities. Either way, you can be sure to treat yourself to some mouth-watering delicacies!