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What Size Air Fryer Do You Really Need? [Buyer’s Guide]

Cooking skinless chicken breast with spices in an air fryer

Disclaimer | This article may contain affiliate links, this means that at no cost to you, we may receive a small commission for qualifying purchases.

We have all heard of the timeless adage, “if the food tastes good, it is probably bad for you.” Well, an air fryer would beg to differ!

With it, the possibility of eating fried food the healthy way isn’t far-fetched at all – however contradictory it may sound. An air fryer is the meeting point of all your food-loving tendencies and fitness vows. Now, freely eat crispy French fries or succulent chicken wings, or the most delicious chocolate cake, without feeling guilty about it.

There are many models on the market, and each of them promises an extraordinary cooking experience, but the most crucial factor is the size of the unit. You can cook conveniently for the entire family with the right size and make sure that dinners are never dull.

We are here to tell you all about the perfect air fryer size and the top picks in each category.

So, without any further ado, let’s get started.

Different Sizes Of Air Fryers Reviewed

Document
IMAGEPRODUCTDETAILS
Small BestSmall Besthstcstbl-table__imageDASH Tasti Crisp Electric Air Fryer
  • Auto-shutdown function
  • Dishwasher-safe
  • Heat-proof handle
VIEW LATEST PRICE →
hstcstbl-table__imageChefman TurboFry Air Fryer
  • Rapid air technology
  • Flat basket design
  • Adjustable timer and auto-off function
VIEW LATEST PRICE →
Mid-sized BestMid-sized Besthstcstbl-table__imageNinja AF101 Air Fryer
  • 4 different cooking functions
  • Ceramic-coated plate and basket
  • Temperature varies from 105℉ to 400℉
VIEW LATEST PRICE →
hstcstbl-table__imageSecura Air Fryer
  • Variable temperature from 180℉ to 390℉
  • 4-liter capacity
  • 360° circulating air
VIEW LATEST PRICE →
Large BestLarge Besthstcstbl-table__imageCOSORI CS158-AF
  • Works with Alexa and Google Assistant
  • 11 in-built cooking options
  • Cool-touch handle
VIEW LATEST PRICE →
hstcstbl-table__imageGoWISE USA Digital Air Fryer
  • 8 cooking presets
  • Power on/off button
  • Button guard prevents accidental detachment
VIEW LATEST PRICE →
Extra-Large BestExtra-Large Besthstcstbl-table__imageChefman Digital Air Fryer
  • Digital temperature control
  • 8 different cooking options
  • Comes with food divider racks
VIEW LATEST PRICE →
hstcstbl-table__imageInstant Vortex 10 Plus Air Fryer
  • EvenCrisp technology
  • 7 cooking options
  • Overheat protection
VIEW LATEST PRICE →

Asian wife made Oilless Air Fryer machine for cooking a fried chicken for today diner, this image can use for food, kitchen and technology concept.

Small Air Fryers

  1. DASH Tasti Crisp Electric Air Fryer

One of our top picks for small air fryers is the Dash Tasti Crisp Air Fryer. With its different color options, you’ll be spoiled for choice. It will satisfy all your midnight cravings. So, if you live alone and want to experiment with food or have a guest over for a quick snack, this is the way to go!

Dash DCAF200GBBK02 Tasti Crisp Electric Air Fryer Oven...
  • HEALTHIER FRIED FOOD: Dash tasti crisp air fryer uses...
  • QUICK + EASY: short on time? Simply load the 2 qt Capacity...
  • SAFER: The auto-shut off function prevents overcooking, and...
  • VERSATILE: this is the perfect appliance for picky eaters,...

Why Did We Like It?

The Tasti Crisp Air Fryer from Dash can be placed conveniently on the countertop, and its compact size makes it easy to store anywhere in the kitchen. Not just that, it cooks food using the AirCrisp technology, which doesn’t leave behind any greasy mess and is less fattening by up to 75%.

Furthermore, the fryer basket comes with a 2.6-quart capacity, which is ample to cook all your favorite fried dishes. It takes less time than a traditional oven or deep fryer and thereby saves more power. So, you will have the most delicious meals ready in no time, without paying a hefty electricity bill for it.

We’d also like to talk about its auto-shutdown feature, which prevents the food from overcooking and makes the device secure enough for use. Lastly, you can clean the non-stick surface by tossing it in the dishwasher.

What Could’ve Been Better?

We were slightly disappointed by the unit’s design. It comes with a timer and temperature knobs, but after a few uses, the numbering on the knobs fades away, becoming hard to decipher.

Moreover, the stipulated cooking time mentioned in the instruction manual for various dishes is not enough, so we suggest using your discretion.

Pros
  • Compact and easy to store
  • Broad basket for larger cooking surface
  • Adjustable temperature control
  • Crispy and healthy cooking
Cons
  • Numbering on the knobs gets smudged
  1. Chefman TurboFry Air Fryer

Up next, we have the Chefman TurboFry Air Fryer that cooks the most appetizing meals with 80% less oil. This one is compact and is a staple in college dorms and studio apartments. It has a classy black and grey look that will enhance your countertop too.

Chefman TurboFry 2 Quart Air Fryer, Personal Compact Healthy...
  • HEALTHY FRYING: Achieve perfect fried results with little or...
  • SPACE SAVING COMPACT SIZE: The personal size air fryer saves...
  • VERSATILITY: Manual temperature control & 30-minute...
  • EASY CLEAN: The 2-liter fryer basket and tray are removable...

Why Did We Like It?

The air fryer model from Craftsman has a flat basket that can hold 40% more food than a curved basket would allow. Despite having more surface area, it doesn’t take up much space and can be conveniently placed anywhere on your countertop. So, do not be fooled by its compact appearance!

Not just that, it will also be a stylish addition to your kitchen equipment range, owing to its round shape and sleek finish.

Besides, it uses rapid air technology and can cook, fry, and bake various food items, in its 2-liter fry basket, with lesser calories. So, whether you wish to roast chicken wings or fry some French fries or bake some delectable muffins at midnight – this air fryer will do it all.

We’d also like to add that it comes with a 30-minute timer and auto shut-off specifications, and the operator can set the timer and program without any fear of overcooking the food.

What Could’ve Been Better?

This air fryer works efficiently for a single person, so if you want to cook a larger meal, opt for a bigger model. Buyers have often complained about a strong chemical smell that emanates from the device when switched on, but there’s nothing to worry about as it goes away after a few washes.

Pros
  • Dishwasher-safe basket
  • Easy storage
  • Adjustable timer and temperature knobs
  • Stylish look
Cons
  • Strong chemical odor

Medium Air Fryers

  1. Ninja AF101 Air Fryer

The Ninja AF101 Air Fryer is equipped with a 4 quarts capacity and can cook up to 2 lbs of fries in one go. All you’ve to do is pre-heat the device for 3 minutes before loading it. With its 4 different cooking options, it can work efficiently for a house of two people.

Sale
Ninja Air Fryer that Cooks, Crisps and Dehydrates, with 4...
  • Now enjoy guilt free food; Air fry with up to 75 percent...
  • Wide temperature range: 105 degree Fahrenheit to 400 degrees...
  • 4 quart ceramic coated nonstick basket and crisper plate fit...
  • The unit will need time to preheat before coming up to...

Why Did We Like It?

If you’re looking for an air fryer for a house of 2, then the Ninja AF101 will be the best pick. It has a 4 quarts ceramic-coated basket that provides sufficient cooking space and distributes heat evenly.

Furthermore, it comes with a control panel and 4 different cooking options – frying, roasting, dehydrating, and reheating. Thus, although it works with the same efficiency as a microwave oven and has a wide temperature range, it consumes up to 75% less oil. So, you no longer have to google the number of calories in a dish before making it.

Besides, you can adjust the temperature and cook time using the dial on the panel. 

Perhaps its most interesting feature is the multi-layer rack system that allows proper heat circulation. It can also remove moisture from food to make it crispier.

Lastly, all the accessories that come with this unit, including the ceramic basket, are dishwasher-safe, so washing the air fryer requires no extra effort.

What Could’ve Been Better?

The quick-start book that comes with the product is not a good enough guide for setting the different dishes’ temperature and timings. More often than not, you’re likely to end up with burnt or undercooked food, so our suggestion would be to use your discretion.

Pros
  • User-friendly control panel
  • Multi-layer rack enables proper heat circulation
  • Easy to wash and clean
  • Variety of cooking options
Cons
  • Quick-start guide doesn’t have the right cooking instructions
  1. Secura Air Fryer

Our next recommendation is the Secura Air Fryer. With a large capacity of 4 liters, it can make your favorite side snack or even a main dish with less grease and more crispiness. That’s not all there is to it; read on to know why we think this product is worth your consideration.

Secura Air Fryer 4.2Qt / 4.0L 1500-Watt Electric Hot XL Air...
  • The Secura 4.2 quart (4-liter) Electric Hot Air Fryer uses...
  • Extra large 4.2 quart (4-liter) basket, more capacity than...
  • 60 minute cooking timer with auto-shut off when your food is...
  • Accessories included with the Secura Hot Air Fryer for extra...

Why Did We Like It?

Frying your favorite food items has never been as easy as it is with the Secura Air Fryer. Your meals, cooked in this device, will be 85% less fattening than usual. It uses rapid hot air technology and a top grill to circulate heat in all directions, thereby cooking food quickly and uniformly.

We were also impressed with the inclusion of a toaster rack and skewers as accessories. They are fantastic for grilling a wide variety of dishes and add to the device’s versatility.

What’s more, the non-stick basket can be tossed in the dishwasher for cleaning and has a capacity of 4 liters, which is sufficient for a family of two or three.

Also, the unit comes with temperature control, a 60-minute timer, and an auto-shutdown feature. Thus, not only is the food cooked evenly and efficiently, but the air fryer also prevents it from overcooking.

What Could’ve Been Better?

We have two minor gripes with this product. First, the numbering on the temperature and timer knobs are difficult to read, given their small size. Second, the unit gets a little noisy during operation, but it is not different from a microwave’s noise.

Pros
  • 2-year warranty
  • Easy cleaning
  • Non-stick coated surface
  • No lingering smell
Cons
  • Noisy operation

Large Air Fryers

  1. COSORI CS158-AF

When it comes to large air fryers, the CS158-AF model from Cosori is one of our top recommendations. And why not? It has a capacity of 5.8 quarts, which is enough for 4-5 people, and is WiFi-enabled. So, now you can monitor and cook your favorite meals remotely!

COSORI Smart WiFi Air Fryer(100 Recipes), Digital...
  • The COSORI Smart WiFi has arrived on the Kitchen scene! The...
  • Amazon Alexa & Google Assistant-Enabled: Remotely control...
  • Practical Design: The special improved ergonomic angled...
  • Easy to Use: Cook your favorites using 11 built-in,...

Why Did We Like It?

What if we told you that sitting in another room and monitoring the cooking is now possible? Sounds too good to be true, right? Well, not with the Cosori Air Fryer. It works seamlessly with the VeSync app and can also be controlled through Alexa and Google Assistant.

Moreover, the air fryer consumes up to 85% less oil than traditional cooking and works faster but yields the same crispy and delicious taste.

Besides the pre-heat option, it comes with 10 other presets – for steak, frozen food, shrimp, bread, desserts, french fries, and so on. You can either manually control the device or use the app to pick a particular dish, and the unit will adjust itself. There is also an in-built assistant that reminds you to shake the basket as and when needed.

Lastly, the food will be warm until you’re ready to serve it with the ‘keep warm’ option.

What Could’ve Been Better?

The Cosori Air Fryer is an excellent product and works smoothly, so we were left disappointed by the fryer’s burnt plastic smell, which sometimes makes its way into the cooked food. Not just us, several buyers had the same complaint. That’s a letdown, but we’re willing to ignore this minor flaw given the unit’s efficiency.

Pros
  • Correctly angled display panel
  • BPA-free basket
  • Perfect for 3-5 people
  • Dishwasher-safe
Cons
  • Burnt plastic smell from the fryer
  1. GoWISE USA Digital Air Fryer

The GoWISE USA Air Fryer is an affordable and easy-to-use model with a capacity of 5.8 quarts. It can make up to 1.5 lbs of french fries, 1.5 lbs of vegetables, and even a 7-inch round cake with up to 80% less fat.  So, eat to your heart’s content without the fear of compromising on your health.

Sale
GoWISE USA 1700-Watt 5.8-QT 8-in-1 Digital Air Fryer with...
  • Enjoy your favorite food without the extra calories. This...
  • Sleek and modern look with advanced touch screen menu. Take...
  • Featuring a new Start/Stop button to change time and...
  • Comes with non-stick pan and detachable basket equipped with...

Why Did We Like It?

We were impressed with its power on and off feature right off the bat since not many models come with this addition. Also, it comes with 8 in-built presets and an alarm that reminds the operator to shake the basket, at regular intervals, during cooking.

Moving on, it works with rapid air technology and offers a cooking temperature of 180℉ to 400℉. This air fryer is the perfect gift for all cooking enthusiasts. Its wide-ranging temperature options and proper heat circulation system can help them cook numerous dishes evenly. From simple French fries to chicken roasts – you can healthily make them all.

Finally, we’d also like to appreciate the safety features that make it great for a house with kids. Its handle doesn’t get heated, and it comes with a button guard that doesn’t let go of the tray unless the power button is switched off.

What Could’ve Been Better?

The non-stick coating on the inside of the basket peels off after a couple of uses, which was disappointing, given how exceptional the unit’s overall performance and design are. Regular use can make the problem worse. As a result, the air fryer doesn’t look brand new for very long, even though its efficacy remains uncompromised.

Pros
  • Detachable basket
  • Sufficient for a family of 4
  • Touch screen display
  • Even distribution of heat
Cons
  • Non-stick coating peels off

Extra Large Air Fryers

  1. Chefman Digital Air Fryer

Are you thinking of throwing a large house party? The Chefman Digital Air Fryer, with its 6.3 quarts capacity and can do all your frying, roasting, grilling, dehydrating, and baking. So, you can play the generous host while the air fryer cooks up delicious meals not just for your family but also for all the guests.

Sale
Chefman 6.3 Quart Digital Air Fryer+ Rotisserie, Dehydrator,...
  • THE ONLY PRODUCT YOU’LL NEED: This versatile product...
  • THE ONLY PRODUCT YOU’LL NEED: This versatile product...
  • CONVENIENT ACCESSORIES: Interior lighting allows you to...
  • PERFECT FOR FAMILIES: Extra guests, or just extra hungry?...

Why Did We Like It?

The Chefman Air Fryer is a versatile unit, working efficiently as an air fryer, rotisserie oven, and dehydrator. Since it is designed with a large family in mind, it can roast a whole chicken for dinner and make some healthy fries as a side dish too.

Furthermore, it operates with rapid air technology, circulating heat evenly on all sides, and uses minimal oil during cooking. Not just this, the in-built air filter doesn’t let any cooking odor accumulate in the kitchen. With it, you can cook healthy and flavorsome meals in no time and with no lingering smell.

Moving on, we have got the touch screen panel with 8 presets and an interior light that allows you to watch the food being cooked. We particularly liked the number of accessories included – a drip tray, separate racks, rotisserie spit, rotating basket, and retrieval tool. All of these are dishwasher-safe and come with a 1-year warranty.

What Could’ve Been Better?

We experienced some problems trying to clean this product; food debris and grease often get stuck on the edge of the basket, and the mesh trays are difficult to remove. Furthermore, since the air fryer is large, it takes up a lot of space in the kitchen. So, make sure you’ve sufficient room for it.

Pros
  • Integrated air filter
  • Even heat distribution
  • Auto shut-off feature
  • Versatile product
Cons
  • Difficult to clean
  1. Instant Vortex 10 Plus Air Fryer

When it comes to extra-large air fryers, it doesn’t get better than Instant Vortex 10 Plus. With a capacity of 10 quarts, it can make two or more meals at one time, using up to 95% less oil. It comes with a simple control panel and is relatively easy to operate.

Instant Pot Vortex Plus 10 Quart 7-in-1 Multi-Use Air Fryer,...
  • Air fryers give you all the flavor of deep-fried cooking,...
  • Air fryer with 7 built-in smart programs, including: bake,...
  • 1-step EvenCrisp TechnologyTM allows you to achieve a crispy...
  • Get a deep-fried flavor with little to no oil for healthy...

Why Did We Like It?

The Instant Vortex Plus Air Fryer comes with 7 in-built programs with options such as roast, broil, bake, toast, dehydrate, and so on. The EvenCrisp Technology circulates hot air evenly to give you well-cooked food, which is the right amount of crispy and tender. So, you get all the deliciousness of deep-fried food without the grease.

Since it has a capacity of 10 quarts and minimal pre-heating time, it is perfect for large families and can cook a meal in less time than an oven.

Both the air fryer trays can fit at once for multiple meals, and the overheat protection minimizes the risk of burning food. So, in case you want to invite guests for dinner, this air fryer will be the best help you could ask for!

Lastly, the unit has a sleek surface that is easy to wipe, and all accessories like the cooking tray, basket, rotisserie forks, and spits are dishwasher-safe.

What Could’ve Been Better?

Many buyers have complained about a strong chemical smell that lingers in the kitchen after the cooking. It doesn’t impact the taste of the food in any way and eventually fades away after a few uses but can be an inconvenience initially.

Pros
  • Safe and easy to use
  • Uses around 95% less oil
  • Well-lit control panel
  • Space-efficient
Cons
  • Plastic smell lingers for some time

Air Fryer Size Buyer’s Guide

Now you know all about the top products of different air fryer sizes. But making up your mind will still require some more consideration. It would be best if you didn’t rush, given how the appliance is relatively expensive and not all of them have the same elements and functionality.

The air fryers on our list are the market’s favorite choices, but your needs might differ. We want to help you to the best of our capabilities, like always.

So, here’s a buyer’s guide that will list all the essential qualities to keep in mind while purchasing an air fryer.

Read on to know more.

  1. Size Of The Air Fryer

Needless to say, the first factor to consider is the unit’s capacity. Usually, an air fryer has a capacity of 2 to 10 quarts. The type of air fryer you need depends on the number of people you’re cooking for.

A device with a capacity of 2 to 3 quarts will be sufficient for an individual. They are perfect for college students or persons living in small apartments, or even people who’re always on the move but do not want to give up on lip-smacking, crispy snacks.

However, suppose you’re looking to purchase a fryer for two people. In that case, we’d recommend a medium-sized one with a capacity of 4 quarts and can comfortably cook meals for two and even an occasional guest.

Now, if an air fryer is needed for four to six people, the large air fryers would be great, given their capacity of 5 to 6 quarts. They are spacious enough to prepare a whole chicken and bake scrumptious cakes in one go.

If you’re a fitness enthusiast and insist on cooking all the meals in an air fryer, then opt for an extra-large air fryer that has a capacity of 6 to 10 quarts. It is also adequate for large families and can cook multiple meals for frequent house parties.

Besides the number of people you’ll be cooking for, the available worktop space is also a consideration, especially since large air fryers need sufficient space for storage and operation.

  1. Presets

If you plan to use the air fryer extensively, it is best to look for a model with many presets. Appliances that come with pre-programmed settings are easy to operate and save the trouble of adjusting the temperature and timer every time you wish to cook large batches of french fries or chicken wings.

Usually, air fryers come with presets for french fries, chicken, frozen food, steak, vegetables, desserts, and so on. All you need to do is press the button, and the fryer automatically adjusts itself. You need to shake the basket occasionally to flip the contents, but otherwise, just sit back and relax while the device prepares the meal.

  1. Adjustable Temperature Control

The variable temperature control option helps cook various food items and is excellent if you want more control over the meal you plan to cook. Furthermore, if you wish to prepare a meal that isn’t there on the preset button, simply adjust the temperature as per the requirements.

Usually, air fryers have a wide temperature range from 105℉ to 400℉.

  1. Ease Of Use

The purpose of an air fryer is to make cooking easy and healthy. To make things simpler, you can opt for a model with dishwasher-safe parts for effective and quick cleaning. We also suggest cleaning the mesh tray or skewers manually from time to time since a dishwasher might not be effective in removing food debris entirely.

Moreover, the unit can also have several additional features that make it safe and easy to use for the buyer. These include an auto shut-off feature, cool-touch handle, button guard that doesn’t let the basket fall when pulled out, and so on.

While we are talking of ease of use, the markings on the fryer should be visible and the one-touch panel correctly angled for eliminating any confusion and making setting timers easier.

  1. Additional Features

Air fryer models have different features and additional accessories that improve their functionality and make them a more versatile inclusion to your kitchen. These include:

    • Dehydrator

Some air fryer models come with a dehydrator that removes the excess moisture from meals, making them perfect for consumption – crispy outside and supple on the inside.

    • Grill Option

If you are craving grilled chicken or fish, the units come with a ‘grill’ option. They can replicate the taste of charred or grilled meat and will be healthier than a traditional griller.

    • Drip Tray

The drip tray collects all the extra oil while cooking and can then be removed and cleaned separately. The tray does not let the grease drip down to the basket, making cleaning the device a breeze.

    • Multi-Layer Cooking Rack

Air fryers with large or extra-large capacity come with two cooking racks, which allows you to prepare two meals simultaneously in the fryer without the fear of mixing them. So, cook french fries and chicken wings simultaneously for the game night or bake a dessert along with shrimps for dinner – the multi-layer rack has got your back!

  1. Type Of Timers

All air fryers have timers that can operate either with manual or digital control. In manual dials, you turn a knob to set the time, and once the time is up the unit dings. Digital timers are more precise and come with different settings for separate food items.

Usually, the timers are for up to 30 minutes, but if you wish to cook for longer, there are models with 60-minute timers.

  1. Cooking Ability

The air fryer must cook evenly, and you shouldn’t end up with undercooked or overcooked food. Though many models come with a recipe book, the user needs to tweak the temperature and time to get the perfect vegetables, chicken pieces, and fries.

Usually, air fryers operate with manual rotation, in which you will have to shake the basket to flip the food contents. The method ensures uniform distribution of heat, and some models have in-built ‘shake’ reminders.

However, some units do not require any assistance to flip the food. They do it themselves, using a paddle.

Although both these methods are excellent, we found the first one to be more efficient, as it gives the user greater control and guarantees better results.

Unrecognizable man hand cooking skinless chicken breast with spices in an air fryer

 

Verdict

With that, we come to the end of our guide. We reviewed the top air fryer brands, and though each of them has excellent features, they differ in cooking capacity.

The size of the air fryer you need ultimately depends on personal preference. If you’re looking at the air fryer to replace the oven, rotisserie, griller, and fry pan in the house, we’d suggest the extra-large size for convenience and faster cooking. However, if you just need to make some French fries occasionally, a small air fryer would suffice.

Before we go, we’ll quickly recap our favorites. The Ninja AF101 Air Fryer is the best budget-buy and consistently yields excellent results. If you’re willing to splurge, the Instant Vortex 10 Plus Air Fryer will be the ideal pick with its numerous features and 10 quarts capacity.

Do let us know your final pick in the comments below. Till then, happy cooking!

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