First time shopping for an air fryer, I had listed a few factors I was going to consider before making a purchasing decision, basket size, ease-of-use, added features, etc.
Air fryer wattage or even power consumption was not among the factors I considered.
My mind had been engraved into thinking that since air fryers use very little time in food preparation, its wattage or rather impact on my monthly electricity bill was nothing to worry about.
In less than 15 minutes my favorite dish would be ready.
That was not until I got employed in one manufacturing company dealing in kitchenware, and behold!
All fryers with different electrical power outputs we tested gave different results when we cooked a variety of foods.
Here is a comprehensive guide on the best wattage for an air fryer.
But first, let’s get the definition of terms out of the way: “A watt (W) is a unit of power, and power is the rate at which energy is produced or consumed. Think of watts as a measure of electrical flow.”
Typically, air fryers are made in the wattage range of between 800-2100 Watts. That is with an average wattage of 1425W across many manufacturers.
In fact, 1,500 Watts is the standard apart from a few air fryers like Philips Air Fryer XL which has up to 2100 Watts.
Yes, air fryers come with adjustable temperature and time features, which should not cause so much worry in operating an air fryer.
But, not all have adjustable features, and if they do, you can only adjust them to a certain degree.
The performance of an air fryer is also directly attached to its wattage. High temperatures mean high wattage which further translates to faster cooking.
Different sizes with different wattages are best suited for different cooking needs.
Let’s have a look at some of them.
Air frying different kinds of foods as mentioned earlier will depend on the wattage of your air fryer.
For example, frozen food, mutton, meat, chicken, or any other protein-rich food will require higher wattage to air fry, whereas foods like vegetables, omelet, and potatoes cook well in low wattage air fryers.
Below is a comprehensive breakdown of the air fryer wattage range, foods best suited for each, plus the best air fryer at that wattage range.
- 800-900 Watts- This is the lowest range of wattage available for an air fryer and is best suited for broccoli, vegetables, omelet, and even carrots. Basically, all foods require low moisture in preparation.
Editor’s Choice: SFPY 2L 800-Watt Electric Air Fryer
- 900-1000 Watts- In case you are a lover of french fries then an air fryer with this wattage range would be the best for you. The steady low heat also would work best in preparing cheese sticks, frozen food, nuggets, and many more.
Editor’s Choice: Dash Tastic Crisp Electric Air Fryer Oven (1000-Watts)
- 1000-1200 Watts-This wattage range best suits protein-enriched foods such as meat, chicken, and mutton.
Editor’s Choice: NutriChef Air Fryer (1200-Watts)
- 1200-1300 Watts-If you are seeking convenience in roasting nuts, peas, almonds, seeds, then an air fryer of at least this wattage range will do. High temperatures are reached quickly which also makes reheating pretty easy.
Editor’s Choice: Big Boss Oil-Less Air Fryer (1300-Watts)
- 1300-1500 Watts-If you love baking cakes, bread, custard and other comparative recipes, an air fryer with this wattage range does the magic.
Editor’s Choice: Instant Vortex Plus Air Fryer 6 in 1 (1500-Watts)
- 1700 Watts– With little to no preheating time, whip up your family’s dinner in half the time of a without heating up the whole kitchen.
Editor’s Choice: Instant Vortex Air Fryer 4 in 1
Although air fryers might come in different wattage ranges at different costs, acquiring one with the highest watts would be ideal if it has temperature regulating features.
For a bigger family, don’t forget to get an air fryer with a large capacity that can accommodate plenty of food all at once.
Air fryers run for a shorter time during cooking with most cooking sessions not lasting more than 30 minutes.
Cooking time is reduced by up to 25% which in turn makes them energy efficient compared to other cooking appliances like convection ovens.
To better understand how much it will cost you to use an air fryer, we can do a
quick math to determine the cost.
Here, we’ll simply multiply the air fryer wattage (indicated somewhere on your air fryer) by time used in preparing your meal, by electricity cost per kWh depending on where you live.
A quick example would be:
1450 Watts(average air fryer wattage) by 15 minutes (average air fryer cook time) by 13 cents per kWh (electricity cost on the higher end).
Which is equivalent to (1450*0.25*0.0013)=$0.47125.
That’s pretty affordable considering you’ll not entirely depend on air fryers in preparing your meals.
The lower the wattage, the more cook time you’ll need to prepare your meals. Consider acquiring a smaller air fryer if you’ll be using an air fryer with a low wattage for a single person.
With a smaller air fryer, circulating hot air focuses on a smaller area hence a reduced cook time.
Air fryers use an average of 1475 Watts. This is considered a little economical compared to other kitchen cooking appliances like convection ovens and deep fryers.
So far, we’ve been able to see that among the many factors that distinguish air fryers from other cooking appliances is cooking speed.
This is determined by an air fryers’ wattage. The higher the wattage, the lesser the cooking time and power consumption.
Borrowing from my 5 years now working in a kitchenware store, handling and testing different air fryers before being released to the market, I’d recommend you go for an air fryer with the highest wattage if the cost is within your reach.
Whether you are living alone, have a small family, or a big family, a good air fryer is one with higher wattage as long as it has a temperature control feature.
That way, you are able to prepare a variety of recipes without worrying about food being overcooked or undercooked.
Otherwise, consider exploring other features too such as air fryer capacity, ease of use, efficiency among others as per your specific requirements of an air fryer.