We Tested the Best Air Fryers You Can Buy in 2023—Here Are Our Favorites
If you've got the counter space, an air fryer can completely replace your oven. See what our editors had to say about the top air fryer models.
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The best air fryers on the market
The air fryer craze that began in the mid 2010s is still going strong, and for good reason. From how air fryers work to the best foods to air fry, the awe surrounding this kitchen gadget doesn’t only have to do with its ability to consistently produce to-die-for crispy food. These countertop convection ovens also save energy, keep your kitchen from heating up (especially important during those sweltering summer months) and are easy to use with materials like aluminum foil and parchment paper.
But with so many options now available, the question remains: Which is the best air fryer? Our editors set out to find the answer, testing five of the top-rated models on Amazon and beyond. We looked at standard components such as size, capacity, and cook settings, as well as special features such as transparent windows and timer sounds. Here’s what we found.
- Best overall: Breville Smart Oven Air Fryer Pro
- Best multifunction: Cuisinart TOA-60W Convection Toaster Oven Air Fryer
- Best value: COSORI Air Fryer Max XL
- Best large capacity: Instant Pot Instant Vortex
- Best for small portions: Ninja AF101 Air Fryer
Breville Smart Oven Air Fryer Pro
As an avid cook whose evening plans usually involve throwing protein and veggies together for a sheet-pan dinner, I was skeptical about adopting an air fryer. Could a countertop appliance—even the best air fryer—really be worth all the hype? Let me tell you, the Breville Smart Oven Air Fryer Pro is totally worth it. After two months of testing the air fryer functionality of this countertop oven, my cooking style has changed completely, similarly to this home chef who used their air fryer every day for two weeks.
Breville’s smart oven comes with a 13-by-9-inch air fryer basket that made big-batch air frying a reality. The air fryer worked great for crisping seasoned potatoes, reheating fast-food leftovers, cooking up frozen pizza, and even roasting a whole chicken (just make sure to avoid cooking any of these things in your air fryer!). I haven’t had to use my oven since we brought this home! While the Breville Smart Oven Air Fryer Pro has all the standard features you’d get with a high-powered air fryer, like temperature control up to 480 degrees F and simple turn-knob time controls, the appliance also comes with intelligent features like a “rotate remind” timer that sounds mid-way through cooking when it’s time to turn over your food.
Breville gets it right with the small details too. I was delighted to find that the door itself was magnetic, which helps eject the air fryer basket as you open the door for easy handling. What’s more, the unit can fit up to four air fryer baskets at once! I plan to purchase another basket or two for my next big party. —Nicole Doster, Content Director, Performance Content
- Extra-large capacity, comparable to a standard oven
- Quick pre-heat time with helpful alerts
- Easy to use, with simple presets and adjustable time and temperature settings
- Luxe stainless-steel material that complements any kitchen style
- Has more features than just air frying—great for someone looking for a multi-cooker
- Takes up more counter space than the average air fryer
- More expensive than most air fryers
- Very loud timer defaults, though they can be adjusted
Cuisinart TOA-60W Convection Toaster Oven Air Fryer
I was excited to try out the Cuisinart Air Fryer because I’m already an air fryer fan. I love that I can make air-fried potatoes or heat up extra-crispy chicken nuggets for my kids. I have an older air fryer from a different brand that isn’t quite big enough for my family of four.
The Cuisinart appealed to me because of its size and multifunctionality—in addition to an air fryer, it also works as a toaster, oven, and convection oven. (Here’s the difference between baking and air frying, by the way.) I especially like that it has a tray for air frying—so my veggies (or whatever else I’m cooking) can be spread out vs. a bucket-style fryer like my old one, where everything was piled on top of itself. The larger surface area allows for more even cooking. I particularly like cooking bacon on the air fryer setting—it cooks up extra crisp, and I don’t need to keep too close an eye on it while it’s baking.
A few tips:
- The first few times I used my air fryer, I burned my food even though I was following the cooking recommendations listed in the accompanying booklet. I had better results when I lowered the heat setting by 25 degrees and cut the time by about 25 percent.
- My French fries and nuggets came out better when I flipped them over halfway through the cooking time. It helps ensure both sides are more evenly cooked.
—Anne Fritz, Senior Editor
- It’s so easy to clean—after using it, I pop the tray(s) right into the dishwasher
- The white color is attractive and matches my backsplash and other small appliances
- I can cook a lot at one time
- At 22 by 17 by 16 inches, it does require sizeable real estate on my kitchen counter
- The tray can be a little tricky to get in and out, which is problematic when you’re in the middle of cooking
- The temperature settings run hot
This air fryer tends to sell out quickly on Amazon, but you can also find it at Walmart.
COSORI Air Fryer Max XL
Plugging in my Cosori Air Fryer was the culmination of a yearslong battle between me and my husband. He said that, for an air fryer with almost 100,000 reviews and a nearly perfect Amazon rating, we’d be instantly obsessed. I said we’d have zero space to store it. In the end, we were both right.
As a fan of roasted veggies, I appreciated the ability to whip up cooked vegetables in less time—and without heating the kitchen, a boon for summer cooking. The device is easy to use, and the touchscreen is a cinch to program. Admittedly, even the best air fryer takes some air frying trial and error to get the cook time just right. Following the included recipe booklet led to nearly burnt fries the first time, but simply using the preset settings helped me air fry a batch that was perfectly golden on all sides. Three cheers for the beep that lets you know when to shake the basket! It’s convenient for those of us who might forget to tend to our food, and it ensures even cooking.
Of course, size still matters. Though not the largest air fryer on the market, this one still takes up more counter space than I can spare. And while the ability to toss it in the dishwasher is a plus, you won’t fit it all in if you’re also washing a dinner’s worth of dishes. Still, if you have the space, it’s a super convenient way to cook pretty much any meal imaginable. —Tracey Neithercott, Editor
- Easy to use
- Recipe book included
- Basket holds plenty of food for two people
- Dishwasher must be mostly empty to fit all the air fryer parts
- Needs a good amount of storage or counter space
Best large capacity
Instant Pot Instant Vortex
I’ve been a fan of air frying for several years already, so I didn’t think there was anything a new air fryer could do that would really impress me. Boy, was I wrong! The Instant Vortex has a far larger capacity than my former small countertop air fryer and even boasts a transparent window that allows you to peer in as your food cooks to check its progress. It’s a genius addition because you don’t have to worry about under- or overcooking food, or letting the precious hot air escape by opening the pull-drawer to take a look. I also love the all-digital display of this machine, which gives it a distinctly Space Age feeling that appeals to just about everyone who loves tech gifts and gadgets.
Beyond just clever design, the Instant Vortex has enough space to cook a meal for a family. In the past, I’d have to use an air fryer for small loads or dinner for one at the most, but this machine easily cooks the veggie burger, vegan sausage, and large home-grown zucchini my husband and I have a habit of sharing with a salad on warm summer nights. Plus, there’s room for plenty more! I’d definitely recommend this model to anyone looking to cook larger portions. —Bryce Gruber, Home Editor
- Large enough capacity for a family
- Transparent window to keep tabs on your food
- Not ideal for small kitchens or tight spaces, as this air fryer takes up significant counter space
Best for small portions
Ninja AF101 Air Fryer (4 Quart)
I’ve been an air fryer enthusiast for several years—this is actually the third model I own! For my first use of the Ninja AF101, I decided to create a head-to-head battle of air-fried chicken, putting half the batch of thighs in my trusty Cosori and the other half in the Ninja. I was initially disappointed that there wasn’t a “preheat” button on the Ninja, a one-button option I rely on with my Cosori, but it only took a few seconds to manually create a preheat session for five minutes. The Ninja chicken thighs came out quite a bit crispier than the Cosori batch, which I assume was due to the addition of a crisper plate. My fiancé also found the Ninja easier to clean than our other air fryers.
The next day, I tried out a dish we air fry in the Cosori at least once a week because it’s so easy and tasty: salmon filets. The Ninja version came out perfectly cooked with a crisp coating on top of the spices and a moist and flakey interior. We were blown away. We’ll never cook salmon in anything but this Ninja ever again. Speaking of, here’s what it looks like to use your air fryer every day. —Jill Schildhouse, Health Editor
P.S. If you’re shopping during the Amazon Prime Early Access Sale, you can get a whopping $50 discount!
- Easier to clean than other air fryer models
- Food turns out even crispier than with other air fryers
- At four quarts, the capacity is on the smaller side (best for singles or couples)
- Power cord is a bit short
- No preset buttons as in other models
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