More and more households nowadays have an airfryer in their kitchen. You can compare an air fryer with a healthy kind of deep fryer. For this reason many people only use the airfryer to prepare fries and snacks, but you can prepare many more dishes in it.
All of those airfryer dishes are cooked by air. Little or no butter or oil is needed. As a result, these dishes are a lot less fatty and that makes them healthier. The dishes from an airfryer therefore fit well when you are looking for lean recipes.
And because you use less or no oil, you’ll also suffer less from unpleasant odors in your home.
What is an air fryer?
In an airfryer, a dish is cooked using hot air of a maximum of 200 ºC that is blown through the device. So it is actually a kind of convection oven or convection fryer. As with most appliances, the preparation time and the temperature of this hot air can be set. During the preparation you can sprinkle a tablespoon of oil over the product or dish, but you can also prepare it without oil.
Is food from the airfryer really healthier?
Whether the food from the airfryer is healthier depends on a number of things. For example: what product or dish do you put in it? A croquette from an airfryer is still not a healthy product. But the airfryer can be a healthier alternative to deep-frying because it contains less fat when prepared correctly.
Which automatically leads to a lower calorie intake than with deep-frying. Pieces of potato prepared in the airfryer also contain less acrylamide.
What about fat?
When preparing food in the airfryer, you can choose whether to add (a little bit of) oil or not. When deep frying you always add a lot of fat. Then the product that you fry absorbs part of that fat and therefore contains a lot of calories.
Food from the airfryer however contains less fat and fewer calories. But only if you use no more than a tablespoon of oil to prepare the product or dish.
The preservation of vitamins?
Vitamins will always be lost during the preparation of food. But cooking potatoes loses more vitamins (particularly folic acid and vitamin C) than preparing them with dry heat (such as in an airfryer or oven), or even in fat (such as deep-frying).
Unfortunately little research has been done up to now into the difference in preserving vitamins between the airfryer and deep-frying. But the research that has been done shows indications that slightly more vitamin C is retained when preparing food in the airfryer compared to deep-frying.
Does food from an airfryer taste better?
Whether you like the food from an airfryer more than from a deep fryer or from an oven is of course very personal. One of the main reasons why people like food from a deep fryer is that deep-frying gives it a crispy crust.
This is why a layer of sugar is sometimes added to special airfryer products, so that they are also a bit crispier after preparation. Adding sugars in turn causes the number of calories to increase somewhat.
Does an airfryer use less energy?
The energy consumption of an airfryer and a deep fryer are about the same. The heating time of a deep fryer might be a bit longer, but the total baking time is comparable to the airfryer. The energy consumption is therefore approximately the same per preparation.
What can I do to eat as healthy as possible from an airfryer?
You can control a number of things that determine how healthy food from the airfryer is. Just keep the following tips in mind:
Choose products from the ‘Wheel of Five’. And remember: you can do much more with an airfryer than just preparing french fries.
Choose potato products without added salt or sugar, lean meat, (fatty) fish and vegetables. Snacks, such as a croquette, is not a healthy choice, whether you prepare them in an airfryer or deep fryer.
Add a little liquid or soft cooking fat, such as olive or sunflower oil. Or alternatively a liquid baking and roasting product.
Limit the amount of acrylamide. You can do this by setting the temperature to a maximum of 180 ºC. And make sure your product comes out golden yellow, not dark or brown. Do you see black edges or crusts? Just cut this away.
If you do want to make fries yourself, you can blanch the potato pieces (boil them briefly) or pre-soak them in water. This lowers the amount of sugars on the outside. As a result, you’ll get less browning. And therefore less acrylamide is being produced during the preparation.
What can I do to eat as healthy as possible from an airfryer conclusion
An airfryer is not as unhealthy as many people think. That starts, of course, with the way of cooking. In an airfryer, food cooks with the help of hot air that is blown through the device. Baking with hot air is very healthy, because no substances like oil or butter are added to the food.
But does that make eating from an airfryer healthier than deep-frying? That depends, for example, on which product or dish you prepare in the airfryer.
Some healthy airfryer recipes include Mexican sweet potato from the airfryer or healthy chocolate muffins. In addition to the fact that an airfryer is ideal for baking your own fries and for preparing healthy airfryer recipes, you can also boil an egg or bake bread in it.
The airfryer is ideal for preparing vegetables too. Tasty airfryer recipes with vegetables include Greek dishes and vegetarian spring rolls. In addition, the airfryer is useful for preparing savory pies, such as a savory pie with pumpkin and feta.
You can also vary a bit with the kind of fries you want to prepare. For example, make nacho fries instead of regular fries. It should be clear by now: air fryers are very healthy. You hardly need to use oil, so your food contains much less fat.
Airfryers are therefore not bad for your health and therefore a very good buy and fits well with many diets!