Best Air Fryers: Cheap vs. Expensive video     – CNET

Best Air Fryers: Cheap vs. Expensive video – CNET

220630 yt cheap vs expensive air fryer 2

Small Appliances

Speaker 1: Air fryers. They’re the hottest things in home appliances. Since you know, microwaves. Hello, I’m Lexi, your budget friendly, buddy, always looking out for you and your wallet. This is more or less the show where we compare gadgets to work out, which one is truly worth your cash. And today we are comparing air Frys. We are gonna look at some of the three top models on the market at lots of different price ranges. We have the hundred and $50 Phillips in the middle. [00:00:30] We have the $90 ninja and the baby of the bunch under $40 is the chef. Man. I’m gonna put them through a series of challenges, cook an entire meal in each and we are gonna see which one is the best bang for your buck. Let’s get started.

Speaker 1: Now, these are all basket style air fryers. Let’s meet the contenders, starting off with the least expensive. [00:01:00] This is the chef man, two quart turbo fry, very simple, just two dials, one for temperature and one for the timer. And that’s it. In the middle. We have the ninja AF 1 0 1. It has a series of buttons on the front for all the controls you’ll need as well as a couple of extra settings, like a dehydrate feature, fancy and we have the Phillips HD 9 2 5, 2 can’t [00:01:30] remember model names to save my life. This one is a little bit more sophisticated in terms of the controls. There is a touch panel on the front. It has seven different preset slots for different types of food that you’re cooking. And did you know fun fact Phillips was the company that first invented the air fryer back in 2010. Can’t say you didn’t learn anything from the internet today. Can you I’ve put latest pricing and availability for each of these models in the description. But before [00:02:00] we get started, I really wanna hear your vote. Which one do you think is gonna offer the best value? Pause the video right now. Drop me a comment down below. Keep watching to the end and we’ll see who wins.

Speaker 1: Test number one, frozen French fries, probably the food that you associate most with air fryers. It’s kind of a baseline test to see how well they both crisp the fries and how evenly they cook them. So [00:02:30] I’m gonna divide this bag up amongst the three, even though the capacities are kind of different, gonna keep the amount in each, roughly the same. And then we are gonna feast. I dunno if you can hear, but it’s really loud with all of these going, but the quietest one is actually the Phillips. It’s so [00:03:00] much more quiet than the other two.

Speaker 2: Oh,

Speaker 1: Um, Michelle man.

Speaker 3: Okay.

Speaker 1: Whoop. my favorite time. The taste test time. So with the ninja, I’m gonna try this one first, [00:03:30] cuz this one actually requires about three minutes of preheating, whereas neither of the other two did. So let’s take a look or this one looks, you know, nice and brown. It’s kind of a good variety. I would say this is more on the well done side than anything else. Alright. Hmm. Good. Crisp, not soggy crunch. Good crunch. But I like crunch. You might not like crunch. [00:04:00] Let’s try one. That’s a little less well done this guy. Okay. So a little bit of Browning on the edges. Not too much on this one, a little dry actually, but not bad. Not bad for people that don’t like them as well done, but I would definitely say colorwise the ninjas look the darkest out of all of the fries.

Speaker 1: I’m so gonna eat it though. Cause fries are good. Okay. [00:04:30] Chef man time now with the chef man, this one was actually 400 degrees, so hotter than the other two. Um, and also you can see it all. Little, little sad guy. um, even though the capacity is smaller than the other two, it actually still said you could put a pound of fries in it did, but I think that might have been to its detriment cuz they’re not definitely not as crisp overall. There are a couple of good ones, but um, let’s, let’s try this soggy guy. There’s not gonna be any crunch here. [00:05:00] Little crunch, a little anemic, not super flavorful because it’s not as cooked as much, but again, I’m still gonna eat it. Let’s try one. That’s a little bit more done. And if you take a look at this one, I think the chef man has the most, I would say uneven cooking profile from the fries. I did toss them all halfway through about 10 minutes. Cook time was almost super crispy. So a little inconsistent [00:05:30] with the results there. And finally the Phillips. Now I would say these ones probably look the most even overall of all of the three contenders here. Uh, let’s try one of these fries. It’s kind of like , it’s like half brown, half, um, half pale, but you know, it’s perfect. First of all, worlds.

Speaker 1: Okay. That that’s good. It’s a good amount of crisp without being too [00:06:00] burnt or too overdone. It’s a good amount of resistance. Even on the lighter part, I’m going to go in for a second opinion and a third I’m four full.

Speaker 1: So what did we learn? Well, I think the Phillips actually took this round because they were the most evenly cooked, a good distribution of kind of like CRISPR ones and less crisp ones. [00:06:30] And overall the texture was probably my favorite out of all three, the chef man was a little bit underdone and then there were some that were way too done. You saw that poor little limp guy. wasn’t so good looking. And then the ninja I think is a little bit over for my tastes, even though I love crispy and well done, but I think maybe if you were using the ninja, I would probably scale back the cook time a little bit from the recommended and maybe that preheat also had something [00:07:00] to do with the kind of slight over doneness of them. But overall fries, fries. I’m just gonna keep eating fries down.

Speaker 1: Test number two is the old standby chicken wings. So here’s something I prepared earlier marinated for about four hours in a very simple blend of paprika, onion powder, garlic powder, salt and pepper, a classic combo. We’re gonna put them in the [00:07:30] air fryers for the same amount of time. Now sea nets test regimen for chicken wings is 400 degrees Fahrenheit for 30 minutes turning every 10 minutes. So I’m gonna replicate that for this test to be as consistent as possible. I’m gonna put the chicken wings in the baskets with no overlap and no stacking for the most consistent cook. So let’s see what happens.

Speaker 3: [00:08:00] Woo.

Speaker 1: 10 minute point. Oh, smells amazing.

Speaker 3: Okay.

Speaker 4: Oh, that looks [00:08:30] epic shit, man. And you’re difficult to open door, but they look good sizzle. Oh

Speaker 1: Yeah. They’re cooked. They’re done. And we have have chicken wings. So as you saw, they actually took a little less than 30 minutes. What [00:09:00] I did was I inspected and turned up to every 10 and then after about like 20, 22 minutes, I put the thermometer in and they were actually all cooked and they look all really amazing, but I don’t get to touch them just yet because we’re gonna do a little blindfolded taste test. So we are actually gonna see without any bias, which one tastes the best.

Speaker 2: Okay.

Speaker 1: All right. I’m ready for my wings. Can’t see anything.

Speaker 2: Okay.

Speaker 1: [00:09:30] It feels nice and crispiness and firm on the outside. Okay. Let’s give it a bite.

Speaker 5: Mm

Speaker 1: It’s really good. It’s nice. It’s really crispy. It’s not as moist on the inside as I was expecting. It’s still really good. I

Speaker 5: Mm, mm

Speaker 1: Man. They good wings. Okay. [00:10:00] This, it feels really, really, probably a little crispy than the last one.

Speaker 5: Hmm.

Speaker 1: Almost again. Really good. Okay. It can be a tiny bit more moist than the last one. I would say. I think I like the first one more. I think feels good. Nice and warm. [00:10:30] Still there. A little more meat than the other ones. Maybe just one is moister. Mm

Speaker 5: Mm-hmm mm-hmm

Speaker 1: A hundred percent. It’s a perfect balance of the crunchy exterior and moist soft flesh. Mm.

Speaker 5: Flesh.

Speaker 1: I say two words. People hate moist and flesh in the same sentence. Hmm.

Speaker 6: So which one’s number

Speaker 1: One? I’d [00:11:00] say that was the ninja number two, I think was the chef man. And this is I think the Phillips.

Speaker 5: All right.

Speaker 6: So one out of three is for

Speaker 2:

Speaker 1: Damn

Speaker 6: Number one was the chef man. Okay. Number two was the ninja. Okay. And then the one that you’re still eating is the phys.

Speaker 5: Oh

Speaker 1: No, no. Oh God. I’ve got it right. It was really good. I try. I mean, they’re all, don’t get me wrong. So what a shocker, I chose the most expensive one as my favorite, but I didn’t actually know was [00:11:30] a true blind taste test. I really like the Philips because it was the moist and the crispy outside. And also it stayed the warmest the longest, because we actually took a couple minutes to set up this whole setup before we started filming. So it stayed super warm and hot and crispy. The chef men and the ninja were actually really, really close. And I think they I’d like the chef man a tiny bit more, I would say. But overall I like visually the ninja [00:12:00] absolutely wins this round for me. And if I was eating with my eyes, I would choose the ninja full stop. And for our last course of the day, we are going to cook dessert. You might be wondering Lexi, why would you cook dessert in an air fryer? Number one, why not? And number two, because it’s gonna show you how delicately these machines can cook something that needs a gentle touch. Not just any old cake [00:12:30] I present to you. Mals chocolate love a cake.

Speaker 1: So our ramens are buttered and filled, ready to cook inside the air fryers. Now the recipe [00:13:00] says 370 degrees for eight to 10 minutes, but none of these actually can do three 70 on the dot. The chef man is actually probably the closest because the dial can be adjusted, but the Philips and the ninja are like increments of 3 50, 360 3, 75 and so on. So I’m gonna do them in 3 75 on these all and then check them at about seven minutes just to see. Okay, well let’s go.

Speaker 7: [00:13:30] Oh, woo.

Speaker 1: Oh chef, man. I’m sorry. I broke you. I’m sorry. I broke your chef man.

Speaker 7: Oh, [00:14:00] Ooh.

Speaker 1: Very melty.

Speaker 1: Well, uh, look what we have here. Hmm. Okay. So visually if I didn’t screw up the UN plaing of the shift, man, one, it probably would’ve looked a bit better than that. Visually. I think the ninja actually takes the cake. Sorry. Pardon? The pun. It looks like the most cooked, um, solid on the outside with the kind of, I guess the perfect ratio of readiness [00:14:30] and the Philips is looking okay. Probably not that appetizing if you got that in a restaurant, but could have also upped the cook time maybe to the full eight minutes and see. So should we do a taste? Mmm, that’s really good. It’s good. Cuz the outside is crisp and firm. The inside is really nice and runny. Okay. Chef [00:15:00] man. Oh, I’m sorry. Little guy didn’t do so well on the it’s a bit runny. It was a bit running. It was not bad. I would say if I was gonna do a dessert in this again, I would just increase the cook time after knowing probably at least to nine, 10 minutes on that I reckon maybe would, would’ve been in a better spot. And finally the Philips Ooh kind of feels like gelatinous on [00:15:30] the outside too. Let’s see.

Speaker 1: It’s probably my favorite texture of like the cooked cake, but mm it’s really nice. But I think overall like the perfect balance is actually the ninja this time. Good job ninja. So we have our three course meal, all prepared courtesy or chef Lexi Bon, I would say in terms of the value proposition, all three, I think [00:16:00] actually did a great job for their price. The chef man, I was surprised like it did better than I was expecting a 37 $40 air fryer to do. I think with the fries, obviously a smaller portion probably would’ve helped even though it can fit up to a pound, but it’s really designed for, you know, one to two people. And I think that’s probably the best use case and it’s also smaller than the other two as well. So if you’re low on kitchen space, I would definitely look at this.

Speaker 1: But one thing I would say about the controls and the dials is because it’s really hard to get [00:16:30] more timings because you know, it’s not super exact. You kind of just have to eyeball it and hope that it’s actually on, you know, seven minutes instead of eight minutes. So I would’ve preferred to have had a little bit more control there, but you know, overall you did a decent job. Um, I think the ninja was obviously the middle of the road performer for me. And I really like the ninja because it has so many extra features and functionality. We didn’t test them on camera, but the [00:17:00] fact that you can dehydrate and reheat, like we actually reheated the fries halfway through the shoot when we got hungry, would you believe? And they tasted really good and it was really easy to do that. So I really liked that about the ninja.

Speaker 1: I think it probably is the one I would get if I was a person that really loved their crispy crunchy foods, cuz it tended to sort of err a little bit more on the overcooked, but I love that. So I was pretty happy with that and I think it did probably the most balanced job with the dessert as well. And finally [00:17:30] the Philips now it’s a lot of money. It’s 150 bucks, but I actually think that if you are in the market for an air fry and that’s in your budget, I think you can actually taste the difference between the three in terms of the cook refinement and how well it actually does, you know, a variety of things. The fryers were probably the most balanced. Um, the wings were like a good measure of crispiness and moistness and the dessert I think was, you know, in the middle.

Speaker 1: I think it was still probably really, [00:18:00] really good even though the ninja edged out on the dessert. One thing I would say is this touch panel so confusing. Uh, it’s gonna take a lot of muscle memory to get to learn this, but I think once you’ve nailed it, it’s gonna be perfect. And the other thing is I didn’t really like this basket design having to open it and unsnap. It was not as easy as the other two where you just lift that little tray out. They’re actually all really easy to clean and most of those are removable [00:18:30] components. You can put in the dishwasher if you want. But I would say when you pull these out of the box, be prepared to do some off gassing with them because they kind of smell like plastic the first few times you run them. So don’t do what I did and leave them running in your kitchen, put them, you know, in the garage, outside with supervision obviously. And just try and get that plastic smell out the first few times. But once you’ve done that, they should be good to go. Thanks so much [00:19:00] for watching. I hope you had fun cooking along with me. Love to know what you think about the performance of these air fryers. Did you choose the right one? Did you choose a favorite? Let me know down in the comments or if you have another air fryer that you’d like me to take for a spin, you can also leave your comment down there too. I’ll catch you later.

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Lexy Savvides

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