Do Air Fryers Make Food Crispy?

Do air fryers make food crispy? Let’s find out!air fryers crispy food


I’m guessing you’re here because, like me, you love fried food. Maybe you’ve heard that these “Air Fryers” can fry food with less fat and fewer calories than deep fryers. That sounds pretty great, right? I mean, who wouldn’t love to eat more of the fried foods that they love best? But does the food actually come out crispy and delish? 

I’ve been cooking with Air Fryers for a few years now, and not just a bag of frozen fries now and then either… I’m talking “throw anything and everything at that thing” kind of cooking. So, I’d be happy to help answer your question! 


Do Air Fryers Make Food Crispy?

I’m not going to waste any of your time here or keep you in suspense any longer…Yes! Air Fryers can definitely cook foods with a crispy crunchy outside layer. Not only that, but the inside is evenly cooked and juicy!

Now, in the rest of this article, we’ll talk about what Air Fryers do best (and what they don’t do so well), and I’ll share some tips on how to find the best Air Fryer for your needs. But, if you’re not much of a reader (no judging!), just let me make a quick recommendation. 

Over the last few years, I’ve really grown to love my Air Fryers, and I’ve used several brands and styles. I can tell you that the Philips Viva Air Fryer is an amazing frying machine! Philips has been making the very best Air Fryers since they started gaining popularity in the states. You’ll be cooking up batches of wings and fries in no time!

Anyway, you’re still here, so let’s dig into what makes these Air Fryers tick, shall we? 

do air fryers make food crispy



      So, what’s the catch?

You may have heard that Air Fryers are magical little machines that fry food without using any oil at all. This is a little misleading, because you will need to use a little oil to get that crispiness in your food that you desperately crave.

The truth is that you will be using up to 80% less oil than you would if you were cooking with a deep fryer…which is still pretty awesome right?

How you choose to apply the oil will be based on the type of food you will be cooking. Typically, you’ll be spraying your oil on breaded food. If you’re cooking foods without any breading at all, you can just drizzle a little cooking oil over the top.

Some foods like bacon (yes, you can cook bacon in an Air Fryer) or hamburgers will not need any oil to cook with at all!

do air fryers make food crispy



   What About the Breading?

The right breading for an Air Fryer can mean the difference between fantastically crispy chicken wings or dried out hockey puck servings of meat! The Air Fryer works best with dry batters. 

Typically, you’ll give your food a quick dip in flour. Then you’ll give it a bath in either egg mixture or milk to help the batter stick. Lastly, you’ll cover your food with a mixture of flour or bread crumbs and spices or a pre-mixed batter. Then you’ll be good to go! 

Here is a video that does a great job of showing you the exact process of cooking some amazing fried chicken in the Air Fryer. The Air Fryer my friend Mrs. Boog uses in the video is an De’Longhi Mulifry and the batter shaker is a Batter Pro. I personally own both of these and they are amazing! 


Now, what Air Fryers are not good with is wet batter (as in beer batter or tempura batter). If you’re thinking about using your Air Fryer for a delicious hot basket of beer battered fish and onion rings, I’m afraid it most likely won’t work out real well for you (trust me, I’ve tried).

The good news is that you can buy pre-battered frozen fish or onion rings (or any kind of frozen battered foods) and those will turn out awesome in the Air Fryer. It’ll take less time to cook them than an oven, and your food will be much healthier than if you used a deep fryer. 


How It Works! 

You don’t need to worry about whether using an Air Fryer is healthy for you and your family! Air Fryers use rapidly circulated hot air to safely cook your food. There are no chemicals or crazy waves of radiation exposed to your food. Here’s exactly how it works!

A stainless steel heating element (like the kind on an electric oven but more powerful) quickly heats up the air inside of the machine. Then a powerful fan rapidly circulates the hot air around the inside of the Air Fryer.

The Air Fryer basket actually has holes all around it so the hot air can get through and completely cover your food.  This is how Air Fryers can create crispy textures on your favorite food. It also means faster cooking times and more evenly cooked food than a normal oven! 

After the air has circulated throughout the machine, it enters an exhaust chamber where it is cooled and filtered. Then the cooled and odorless air is pushed out from the back of the machine. No worries,  because of the filter, cooking with an Air Fryer won’t stink up your house.

do air fryers make food crispy


Easy to Use and Safe

Air Fryers are extremely simple to use! Many Air Fryers feature digital controls with one-touch presets for many of your favorite foods like chicken, fish, burgers, and fries. Just push a button and forget it until it’s done! 

Even the Air Fryers with analogue dials are easy to use. All you have to do is simply turn the temperature dial to your desired temp, and turn the timer dial to set the cooking time…and it’s off! Most Air Fryers automatically turn off after the dial has expired, so you don’t have to worry about burning down the house if you have a little lapse of memory (we all do from time to time). 

Since you are only cooking with hot air, you don’t have to worry about grease fires or gas explosions or anything insanely frightening of the sort. The hot air that is used in the Air Fryer is cooled to a safe temperature before it exits the back. All you have to do is remember to leave a good distance between the wall and the Air Fryer so that the air can have plenty of room to escape. 

More Than Just A Fryerair fried cookies

An Air Fryer is much more diverse than a deep fryer, because you can do so much more than frying with it. You can actually bake with an Air Fryer. With separate baking dishes, you can make cookies, cakes, and pizzas with your Air Fryer.

I like to make up a bunch of cookie dough logs and freeze it. I can just slice off a few cookies and cook them up in the Air Fryer whenever I want!

The Air Fryer also does a great job of cooking raw meat. With the grill accessory, you can grill chicken and steaks. If you cover the grill with tinfoil you can broil things like salmon or tuna. Pretty fancy, huh? 

All Things Considered

I hope I helped answer your question concerning Air Fryers and if they can make crispy food, and I thank you for staying with me until the end here. Maybe you stumbled across this guide looking for an answer to this one question, but there are a lot of resources here at The Air Fryer Guide to help you answer any questions you might have about Air Fryers and how they work

I’ve used my Air Fryers at least 3 times a week since I bought them over 2 years ago. They’re still going strong! The things I make most are boneless wings and fries, and let me tell you, for these two items at least…you can’t go wrong with an Air Fryer. 

If you are thinking about purchasing an Air Fryer, I’d love to be able to help you find just the right one for you and your needs. You can check out a new guide to the Best Air Fryers for 2018 or read Air Fryer Reviews  to help you shop and compare Air Fryers. And you can always contact me if you have a specific question. I’d be happy to hear from you! 

Thanks again for stopping by. If you have a question or comment, please leave one below, and I’ll get right back to you! 

do air fryers make food crispy


Recommended Air Fryers: 


12 comments on “Do Air Fryers Make Food Crispy?”

  1. Cathy Reply

    I saw a recipe on the food channel that I’d love to make but I’m not sure if an air fryer would work. I’d like to make stuffed mozerella balls that are coated with egg and bread crumbs (2X) then deep fried and another dry battered ball of veggies. Will the balls stay as balls and have a crunchy outside.

    • Jacob H Reply

      Hi Cathy! I have made something very similar to that (jalapeno cream cheese poppers) in my air fryer and they turned out delish! I had to add a little olive oil to my bread crumbs to make them stick together a little better though. I think it’s definitely worth a shot. My air frying friend on youtube also did something very similar:

  2. Julie Reply

    My airfryer turns the food while cooking. So how would you make things like hamburgers and stuff.

    • Jacob H Reply

      Hi julie, do you by chance have the T FAL? Unless I am mistaken, the paddle that turns your food is not removable, which is sad because you won’t be able to make a wide variety of foods. If you love what your Air Fryer can do, but want to do more with it, I would suggest checking out the De’Longhi FH1363 MultiFry Extra, air fryer and Multi Cooker, Black“>DeLonghi Multifry. It has a paddle also but it is removable, so you can still make burgers or pizzas..anything really! Thanks for stopping by Julie!

  3. Diane Reply

    I am eating low carb and try to eliminate breading. Can I make fried wings in the air fryer without the breading?

    • Jacob H Reply

      Hi Diane, thanks for visiting. Absolutely you can! I think you’ll find that Air Fryers do a wonderful job of cooking raw meat thoroughly without drying out. I like to spin my wings in a low calorie sauce like garlic parmesan or a sweet ginger sauce…just to give them a little kick 😉 My friend on youtube has a great channel (booger500us) where she reviews a lot of wing sauces and cooks them up with an Air Fryer. If you do choose to buy an Air Fryer and you enjoy using Amazon, please consider using one of my Amazon links on this page (it doesn’t matter which Air Fryer you choose). Thanks Again!

  4. Bobby Druesedow Reply

    I am totally blind, and currently own a Farber Ware air fryer with analog controls. It is probably about 3.5 quarts. With not being able to see, it is difficult to operate a touch screen on devices. With that being said, can you recommend a larger air fryer with accessories that doesn’t use a touch screen? Thanks. Hh

    • Jacob H Reply

      Hi Bobby, I’ve got a couple options for you to think about. I have included links to Amazon for you. First is the Secura 4.2quart Air Fryer. It is very well reviewed, and comes with a 2 year guarantee. It has only analog controls (a dial for temp and a dial for time). It does come with a bbq grill rack accessory with kabob skewers. The only downfall is that it is a more square shaped air fryer, so finding aftermarket accessories beyond the grill rack might be difficult. If you’re looking to go even bigger, there’s the Simple Living 5.2 liter. It has a ton of power at 1800 watts. This one also has only analog controls, and comes with a grill rack, and a divider for the pan. I’m pretty sure you could use any aftermarket accessories in this one. I hope this gives you a couple options to think about at least. Good luck my friend!

  5. Lindzy Reply

    Hi, I just got the bella air fryer and I’m trying to figure out what temperature to cook things at. I tried cooking frozen chicken wings in it at 350 for about 7 mins. The middle was still a bit cold and it seemed dry. How do I figure out what temperature and time to cook food at?

    • Jacob H Reply

      Hello Lindzy, I would definitely cook frozen chicken at your Air Fryers highest setting. All Air Fryers are a little different, so I would recommend checking your Chicken’s temperature with a meat thermometer and make a note of how long it takes to cook your chicken to 165-170F. After a couple of tries, I’m sure you’ll be making wings like a pro!

  6. Gail Reply

    Hi Jacob! Thanks for all the excellent information on air fryers. After seeing all the delicious foods I can make, I finally gave in and purchased a 5.3 quart Secura on Amazon. Unfortunately, I am a little bit disappointed. Just a little bit though. I have air-fried chicken, fresh French fries, spring rolls, blooming onions. All were excellent when they’re hot — crispy and juicy. However, since I usually have to fry 2+ batches because we’re, well, pretty big eaters (heh!) and because I like having all foods prepared on the table so we can all eat together, the first batch would be cooled down by the time we begin eating. Whereas the last hot batch is delicious, the outer layer of the first batch, now cooled, is chewy and sometimes, hard and tough. It’s great again after reheating, although the food gets dryer each time I reheat. Is the chewy texture a common problem or am I doing something wrong? I do spritz a little oil on all the food before air-frying. Again, I only have problems with food that’s been cooled down, not the hot ones fresh out of the air fryer. Thank you so much for your help!

    • Jacob H Reply

      Hi Gail, yes, i’ve also experienced the pains of trying to cook for more people than 1 air fryer can allow. The only major drawback for the Air Fryer as far as I’m concerned is that you are limited as far as size of portion. Call me crazy, but i have 2 Air Fryers, and I’ve used them in tandem several times. I often cook my main course in one and the side in the other. Maybe you could think of many ways you could utilize 2 Air Fryers as well? Thanks for checking in with us.

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