Air frying vs. deep frying: Which method is healthier?

Air fry foods come out crispy and flavorful, and with the right tools, you can cook them in your kitchen. When buying an air fryer, it is important to understand the difference between air frying vs. deep frying.

Let’s figure out which option is right for you and compare the air fryer vs. deep.

Read this guide to learn more about deep frying and air frying to determine which option is right for you.

What is an air fryer?

An air fryer is a convection appliance that uses air fry instead of hot oil. The appliance is powered by a fan that blows hot air around the food. Allows you to cook food without a lot of oil.

The circulating air fry allows the food to become crispy, almost like a deep fryer, but without the oil. This is one of the benefits of choosing an air fryer over a deep fryer.

You can also cook many healthy dishes in the deep fryer, for example, chicken breast without breading and even a whole pumpkin with nuts. You can fry, bake, fry, and dry in a deep fryer.

What is a deep fryer?

A deep fryer is a self-contained cooking appliance that holds a vat of vegetable oil. The appliance heats the oil to the right degree, and you put the food in the fryer to fry it in the oil until it is crispy.

The only function of a deep fryer is to fry food. It can’t bake or fry or do any of the many other things as an air fryer does. Since adding a ton of oil to food is unhealthy, it adds more flavor and is generally tastier than air frying.

Deep fryers usually have an air fryer basket in which the food is placed to help lower the food as well as help lift it out of the oil.

An air fryer vs. a deep fryer. What’s the difference between them?

The main difference between an air fryer and a deep fryer is the amount of oil used to cook the food. The deep fryer heat oil to high temperatures, while an air fry circulates hot air and little or no oil.

8 main differences between an air fryer vs. deep one:


Deep frying causes a browning effect. It is the main source of flavor and aroma. The deep fryer usually wins in flavor and texture. This is due to the favorable flavor compounds obtained from deep-frying.

In addition, deep frying food cooks more evenly, as the food is completely immersed in the hot oil. The hot oil does a great job of evenly cooking food as it is completely submerged in water. However, be careful when reusing oil, as previous products may give off an unsatisfactory oil flavor, and then transfer this flavor to the next batch of products.

Air fryers can cook more evenly and produce a crispier texture, air-cooked food can be more flavorful in some way. This is because air-fried food can be seasoned before cooking, while deep fry is usually seasoned afterward. Pre-seasoning allows food to absorb the flavor more easily.

Air fryers cook food faster on the outer edges, so it’s a good idea to shake or stir the foods halfway through to redistribute them for more even cooking. The food is drier than deep fry because the hot air doesn’t trap moisture inside the food as oil does.

Both air fryers and deep fryers produce a crunchy texture but add flavor in their way. It comes down to personal preference.

Cooking time

A deep fryer can cook very quickly due to the high temperatures. The deep fryer still requires more time than the air fryer. Depending on the product, an air fryer can take twice as long as a deep fryer.

However, the preheating time must be taken into account. Air fryers can preheat in as little as 5 minutes, while a deep fryer can take 10 to 20 minutes or more to heat the oil.

Oil usage

Deep fryers require a lot of oil as the food must be completely immersed in the oil.

On the other hand, air fryers do not require the use of oil. You can still fry foods in oil before air frying, but you don’t need a lot of oil to get a crispy texture.

Health considerations

For those who are more health conscious, an air fryer would be the best choice. Without the use of oil, an air fryer can help reduce calorie intake for those looking to lose weight.

Oils may also be higher in saturated fats and trans fats, which have been linked to heart disease, diabetes, and cancer. Deep fryers transfer these harmful fats into the food during the cooking process.

The right temperature promotes the formation of a crust around the food, which limits the absorption of fat. Do not leave food in the deep fryer longer than necessary. However, deep-frying causes the oil to soak up, so it cannot be completely avoided.

Another problem is the amount of acrylamide formed during deep frying. Acrylamide, a potential human carcinogen, can occur in starch-rich foods that have been cooked.

Interestingly, post-drying reduces the acrylamide content of some foods. An air fryer is a healthier option compared to deep-frying.


Air fryers typically cost between $50 and $200, with most costing around $100. Deep fryers typically cost $40 to $200, with many options available for $50 to $60.

You also need to consider the cost of fryer oil. Since the deep fryer requires a large amount of mast.


Deep fryers require more thorough cleaning. Some fryers allow you to store the oil for reuse, but you still have to remove it to clean the fryer. There may also be more spills and splashes to clean up, and oil disposal can be a problem. Never drain oil into the sewer.

For an air fryer, you can usually place the air fryer basket in the dishwasher for easy cleaning. And without oil, it is much easier to clean. Plus, they have a non-stick coating for easy cleaning.

As a general rule, the tray, air fryer basket, and baking sheet should be washed after each use.

Ease of Use

An air fry is a fairly simple process that requires minimal effort. From time to time, you need to stir or shake the contents of the food to make sure everything cooks evenly, as the outer edges cook faster. Otherwise, you can set it and forget it, as an air fryer turn off after the allotted time.

The deep fryer is a more complicated cooking method because you can’t leave it while it’s running. Because deep-frying carries a lot of risks, it’s important to be around. Some deep fryers are equipped with an automatic shut-off, but you need to be there to remove the food immediately when it’s ready, as it can easily overcook.


A deep fryer can only do one thing: deep fry. Deep fryers can cook different types of food in a variety of ways. It can fry, roast, reheat, and even bake food!

The air fryer is a more versatile device. You can air fry vegetables, fry french fries, and breaded foods in a similar way to deep frying.

What is the nutritional difference between an air fryer and a deep fryer?

One of the reasons why air fryer has gained so much popularity is because they have been marketed as a healthier alternative to deep frying that still creates a crispy crisp on the outside and a soft and tender inside.

As mentioned, an air fryer doesn’t get as crispy as a deep fryer, but the difference in calories and fat content is quite large. By some estimates, deep-fried foods contain 70% fewer calories and a greater difference in fat content.

Depending on the food you air fry, it can contain as little as 3% fat, while some deep-fried foods can have up to 24% fat, which is quite a big difference. If you’re trying to keep track of your fat intake, then air frying may be the best choice for you.

Below is the difference in calories between air fryer vs. deep fryer:

Jalapeno Poppers

  • Air Fried: 135
  • Deep Fried: 430

Tater Tots

  • Air Fried: 50
  • Deep Fried: 220

Chicken Wings

  • Air Fried: 270
  • Deep Fried: 530

Fried Chicken

  • Air Fried: 280
  • Deep Fried: 550

French Fries

  • Air Fried: 175
  • Deep Fried: 470

What to cook in a deep fryer?

Almost any food you put in your deep fryer will be delicious, crispy, and full-bodied. If you love deep frying but might want to cut down on the calories a bit, a great option is to fry your food in a thin batter, dry batter, or no batter.

You’ll still get a deliciously crispy crust on the outside, but it won’t be as greasy and heavy as battered foods.

The following are popular deep-frying products:

  1. Chicken wings, thighs, and drumsticks
  2. Vegetarian pakora
  3. Falafel
  4. Brussels sprouts
  5. Mozzarella sticks
  6. French fries and Tater tots
  7. Chicken nuggets
  8. Homemade potato chips
  9. Fish in batter or without

Do you want to know how to reheat fried chicken in an air fryer? Here’s your guide


Is air frying better than deep-fried food?

Of course, an air fryer is better than deep frying. Air frying is much healthier than deep fryers, and most recipes require almost no oil.

Does air-fried food taste as good as deep fried?

Yes, there is a difference between an air fryer vs. deep fryer. The cooking method and flavor you prefer will depend on your taste buds, though when it comes to crispiness, deep-frying really can’t be beaten. Because air fryers don’t transfer heat as well as deep fryers, it can be difficult to get as really good a crunch on the outside as with deep-fried food.

Another difference in taste between an air fryer vs. deep is that deep-fried foods have a fatter, richer flavor.

Is air frying time the same as deep frying?

Air fryers can take an average of 10-15 minutes longer than deep fryers. However, when it comes to the total amount of time spent eating, air fryers have real advantages over deep fryers when it comes to prep, set up, and cleanup time.


Choosing between an air fryer vs. deep fryer for your home is up to you and your family’s food preferences. If you’re looking for the taste of fried foods, air frying might be right for you.

However, if you are spending more time with your family while still cooking delicious food, air frying may be the best choice.

There are many reasons why people prefer air fryers over deep fryers, but everyone’s needs and desires are different. Learn anout 5 best air fryer grill combo in 2023 from a new article

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