If you want crisp, delicious fried food, you’ll need some kind of fryer. Is there a difference between air fryers and deep fryers
The Short Answer:
No, air fryers and deep fryers are not the same thing.
The Long Answer:
Air fryers are the hot new appliance this year. (No pun intended!)
While not a new device, they’ve recently gained a ton of popularity and have been flying off the shelves this holiday season. Air fryers are a great way to fry up some tasty crispy goodness, but they should never be confused with a deep fryer.
We’ve all seen deep fryers in restaurants, food trucks, and fast food restaurants. It’s that deep bubbly well of oil that French fries and chicken fingers are dipped into to become the lovely fried bites that we enjoy so much.
An air fryer creates food that is very similar. You can use them to make fried chicken, breaded fish, onion rings, chicken nuggets, French fries, mozzarella sticks, and much more. But they work in a completely different way than their distant cousin, the deep fryer.
An air fryer cooks by circulating hot air through its cooking chamber using a convection mechanism. The air comes through at high speeds using a mechanical fan. The resulting reaction cooks the food quickly and creates a crispy outer layer and moist interior once only attainable through the use of a deep fryer.
A deep fryer heats a pool of oil to between 325- and 400-degrees Fahrenheit. The food is dipped into the oil and it begins to cook immediately. The sudden heat increase seals in the moisture of the food while it cooks the outer layer. That interior moisture heats up and becomes a vaporous water which cooks the food from the inside. You’ll notice that when you dip food into a deep fryer it starts to bubble immediately. These bubbles are actually the water inside the food becoming a gas and exiting before the heat is sealed inside.
As you can see, deep fryers and air fryers are as different as air and oil. Let’s take a look at some of the major differences between the two.
For starters, deep fryers use infinitely more oil than an air fryer. That makes air fryers more inexpensive than a deep fryer in the long run, as you’re not constantly replacing oil. You can use some oil in your air fryer, but not much is needed at all. The majority of its cooking is done through the use of air.
Air fryers also produce healthier food than a deep fryer. In some cases, the food produced by an air fryer has up to 80% less fat than the same product after deep frying. It should be noted however that while they produce the same foods, deep fried items have more moisture inside.
Air fryers also cook food slower than deep fryers and are far more expensive upfront despite the savings in oil cost down the line. That being said, an air fryer is much safer than a deep fryer because you’re not overly worried about hot oil splattering everywhere, burning skin and starting fires.
Do you prefer an air fryer over a deep fryer? What are some of the differences you’ve noticed in the food they produce? What is your favorite fried food? Sound off below and let us know!