12 Best Budget Air Fryers: Cheaper Air Fryers That Perform

Indulging in fried food items such as french fries, fried chicken, and bacon can leave us feeling guilty due to the health risks associated with the grease and fat that come with them.

Nevertheless, a single small kitchen gadget aims to revolutionize this by providing people with a way to enjoy their preferred fried dishes without utilizing oil, pan-frying, or taking up too much space in the kitchen.

The Philips Electronic air fryer, which hit the market in Q3 2010, was the pioneer of its kind, enabling people to cook meals with less fat. However, it wasn’t until 2017 that they gained widespread popularity.

In this 2019 buying guide, we will explore the concept of miniature convection ovens, their functionality, versatility in cooking, and affordability. As there are numerous options available in the market, we will also highlight the most affordable and budget-friendly air fryers.

What Is An Air Fryer and How Does It Work?

An affordable air fryer is a small convection oven that can be placed on your kitchen counter, and despite its name suggesting frying, it actually replicates the process using hot air.

The air fryer has a built-in fan that circulates hot air to cook your food quickly, and while some recipes may still require oil, you’ll only need a small amount of one or two tablespoons instead of the cups typically used in traditional recipes.

Aside from utilizing air, the convection oven reflects air off the base of the air fryer and circulates it through the food, resulting in quick and thorough cooking that jumpstarts the Maillard reaction, which is responsible for creating crispy edges that you adore, all without requiring oil.

Although air fryers are often associated with replacing deep-fried foods, they have the capability to cook a variety of dishes beyond just french fries, such as grilling steak, baking pizza, and making desserts like cake.

Continue reading to discover additional tasty meal options!

What Type of Foods Can You Make With It?

The variety of food you can prepare in an air fryer is virtually limitless and depends solely on your level of culinary creativity.

There are a variety of dishes that can be prepared using budget air fryers, such as garlic chicken parmesan, fried pickles, turkey, hamburgers, hot dogs, cinnamon rolls, jalapeno poppers, taco crunch wraps, pork taquitos, garlic potatoes, sweet potato tots, doughnuts, banana bread, funnel cake, meatballs, Brussel sprouts, roasted salmon and salad.

If you can cook it on a baking sheet or from frozen, chances are there’s a recipe for it. With that in mind, let’s explore the top affordable air fryers available today.

Top 12 of the Best Inexpensive Air Fryers Currently Available

Here are 12 choices that provide the most value for your money.

COSORI Air Fryer.

The COSORI air fryer has received an impressive rating of 4.7 stars from 720 customers, making it one of the best budget air fryers available. This flagship product from COSORI is an 11-in-1 appliance that takes up minimal counter space and includes more than 100 unique recipes.

The budget air fryer is equipped with an integrated digital touchscreen interface featuring eleven presets that allow you to adjust the temperature and time. You can choose between Fahrenheit and Celsius degrees, and the temperature range is from 170-400F. Additionally, you have access to a variety of video tutorials and recipes.

The air fryer is equipped with safety features such as ETL/FDA certification, automatic shut-off protection, a cool touch handle/button system, and is also BPA-free.

The COSORI air fryer, which has a capacity of 5.8 quarts and can cook an entire chicken, has been awarded the Amazon Best Seller badge for its performance, versatility, and space-saving design.

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Specifications:

  • 1700 Watt Power
  • 5.8 Quarts
  • Two year warranty

GoWise USA Programmable Air Fryer With 8 Cook Presets.

With a rating of four stars and 865 reviews on Amazon, the GoWise USA air fryer is an electric-powered appliance that offers eight programmable presets for cooking food, including warm, fish, pork, shrimp, steak, chicken, fries/chips, and cake.

The budget air fryer is equipped with user-friendly digital LCD controls that enable you to adjust the temperature between 180F and 400F for a duration of one to sixty minutes. Additionally, it features an indicator that notifies you when your preferred cooking time has been achieved, and it emits a few beeps upon completion.

One added benefit is that it includes a cookbook containing fifty various choices for breakfast, lunch, dinner, and dessert.

Specifications:

  • 1400 Watt Power.
  • 3.7 Quarts.
  • Red in color.

Ninja AF100

With a 4.7 rating and 552 reviews on Amazon, the Ninja air fryer is highly rated, and although it was not initially budget-friendly, its recent price drop makes it an excellent choice for those looking for a 4-quart fryer on a budget.

The Ninja air fryer is equipped with a customizable base that enables you to air fry, roast, reheat, and dehydrate your meals using a temperature range of 105-400F. This feature allows you to effectively eliminate moisture from your food while giving you the ability to regulate the level of crispiness you desire.

The basket of this air fryer is coated with non-stick ceramic material and has a capacity to hold up to two pounds of french fries. Additionally, it includes a multi-layer rack that enables you to dehydrate your food using the low fan speed/low temperature combination option. This air fryer is dishwasher safe and available in black/grey color.

Specifications:

  • 1550 Watt Power.
  • 4 Quarts.
  • Black/grey color.

OMORC Air Fryer XL

With 551 reviews and a high rating of 4.7 stars on Amazon, the OMORC air fryer is an excellent choice for larger families due to its 6-quart capacity, which is considered large for budget air fryers, and it features a multi-functional knob that enables you to adjust the timer, temperature, and your preferred presets.

The budget air fryer also features an attractive and modern touchscreen interface, as well as being dishwasher safe. Additionally, it includes a non-stick frying basket and pot, a handle that remains cool to the touch, and a button guard to prevent accidental detachment. The appliance is constructed with non-toxic materials and has automatic shut-off protection, while also providing a recipe guide for added convenience.

Specifications:

  • 1800 Watt Power.
  • 6 Quarts.
  • 8-15 Presets.
  • Two-year warranty.
  • Black in color.

Dash Compact Air Fryer.

With 588 reviews and a four-star rating on Amazon, the Dash Compact air fryer is smaller than other options on this list with only 1.6 quarts of space, making it an ideal choice for individuals or those who don’t require a large cooking capacity.

The budget air fryer is quick to pre-heat and user-friendly, requiring only the loading of the basket, temperature setting, and timer. Additionally, it includes an automatic shut-off function to prevent overcooking and features cool-touch housing and handles.

The lightweight air fryer is versatile and suitable for use in various settings, including college dorms, campers/RVs, or compact kitchens. Additionally, the dishwasher-safe non-stick fryer basket makes cleaning a breeze, and users can enjoy experimenting with 15 different recipes from the included cookbook.

Specifications:

  • 1000 Watt Power.
  • 1.6 Quarts.
  • The air fryer is available in black, white, red, and aqua shades.

Simple Chef Air Fryer.

The Simple Chef air fryer, which has received 4.2 stars and 799 ratings on Amazon, boasts a “world-class” design that incorporates state-of-the-art components and 100% BPA-free plastic. Like most air fryers, the Simple Chef utilizes air circulation technology, making it extremely user-friendly.

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With this budget air fryer, you can cook a variety of dishes such as spring rolls, drumsticks, pork chops, steak, fries, potatoes, cakes and more without any hassle or mess. Additionally, it is dishwasher safe and comes with a 30-day guarantee with the option for refunds.

Specifications:

  • 3.6 Quarts.
  • 1400 Watt Power.
  • The temperature controls of this air fryer can be adjusted between 180-400F.
  • Additionally, a standby timer of 30 minutes is included.
  • Coloring is black.

Philips Viva Airfryer (Original).

The original Philips Airfryer is a must-have in any list of air fryers. It is available in black and features a patented starfish design that enables quick cooking. Additionally, it comes with a cookbook containing 150 recipes for breakfast, lunch, dinner, and dessert.

The budget air fryer features a single knob that allows you to choose the desired temperature and set the timer, along with an indicator light that keeps you informed about the ongoing process.

By setting the cooking time and temperature, you can easily operate it, and once your food is ready, the automatic shut-off feature will notify you. Additionally, it is dishwasher safe and includes a complimentary mobile app.

Specifications:

  • 2.75 Quarts.
  • 1425 Watt Power.
  • Black in color.

Avalon Bay Air Fryer

The Avalon air fryer has received a high rating of 4.2 stars from 1,220 customers on Amazon and is priced affordably at a low-to-medium level, earning it the label of Amazon’s Choice.

Moreover, it is accompanied by some extras such as a non-stick baking tray, a versatile rack, and a cookbook with 52 pages. As for its characteristics, it has the ability to adjust temperature from 180-400F, is constructed of non-BPA plastic material, has anti-slip feet, and includes a timer that lasts for 30 minutes.

With the detachable basket, transferring food and cleaning becomes effortless.

Specifications:

  • 1400 Watt Power.
  • 3.7 Quart capacity.
  • 90-day return policy.

Black and Decker Purify Air Fryer

The Black + Decker Purify air fryer, which has received a 4.1-star rating on Amazon based on 739 reviews, is equipped with dual convection fans. The air frying basket and basket separator are both dishwasher-safe, and the entire air fryer features non-stick cooking surfaces.

The budget air fryer has a temperature control that can be adjusted between 175-400F and is equipped with two indicator lights, one to indicate when the unit is turned on and the other to signal when the preheat temperature has been reached.

Specifications:

  • 2 Quartz (8 cups)
  • The budget air fryer has the capability to cook two different types of food simultaneously without blending their flavors.
  • The color scheme available for this air fryer is black and stainless steel.

GoWise USA 7-in-1 Programmable Air Fryer

One of the newest models in GoWise USA’s line-up is the 7-in-1 programmable air fryer, which includes seven pre-installed intelligent programs for cooking chips, meat, chicken, shrimp, fish, and steak.

Like other GoWise models, this air fryer includes an automatic standby function, a 30-minute timer, and a standby mode that activates when cooking is finished.

The budget air fryer is equipped with a removable basket, has a sleek black appearance, and features user-friendly touchscreen capabilities.

Specifications:

  • 1400 Watt Power.
  • 3.7 Quarts.
  • Includes recipe book.

NutriChef Electric Hot Airy Fryer Oven.

The NutriChef Electric Hot air fryer, which has a 4.1 star rating and 135 reviews on Amazon, features an LCD digital display and is regarded as a portable multi-cooker with touch button controls that offer various programmable options.

The budget air fryer has a 30-minute timer, various cooking modes, and a power button for on/off/cancel. It can reach temperatures between 170-400F and includes a cooking pan and basket with stainless Teflon coating.

The basket and pan are removable from the unit for easy cleaning either by hand or in the dishwasher.

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Specifications:

  • 1400 Watt Power.
  • 3.4 Quarts.
  • The color scheme of the air fryer is a combination of black and stainless steel.
  • The budget air fryer includes a small collection of recipes for baking, grilling, and barbecuing.

FrenchMay Air Fryer.

The FrenchMay air fryer has received a high rating of 4.6 stars and has been reviewed by 112 customers on Amazon. This air fryer is versatile as it can cook various types of food such as french fries, steak, roasted potatoes, vegetables, and onion rings. Additionally, it can also be used for baking purposes and is known for its no oil smell, no splatter, and no mess feature.

The air fryer is equipped with dynamic airflow technology that quickly circulates hot air throughout the device, ensuring even cooking. It features a touchscreen control panel, a 60-minute timer, and a digital temperature range of up to 400F. The timer will automatically turn off after 60 minutes.

The air fryer offers 7 presets for cooking various foods such as meat, shrimp, steak, fish, chicken, cake, and fries/chips. Its unique features include a dishwasher-safe design, built-in cool-to-the-touch housing, and removable parts.

Specifications:

  • 1500 Watt Power.
  • 3.7 Quarts.
  • This air fryer is black and includes a warranty of 60 days.

Are Cheap Air Fryers Any Good?

The low price tag of a product often leads to skepticism and scrutiny as we tend to search for faults to justify its affordability, which is a common occurrence with air fryers.

However, the cost of an air fryer does not necessarily reflect its performance. The price may be influenced by the brand’s reputation, and some lesser-known brands may offer affordable options that perform just as well as their expensive counterparts.

Although budget air fryers may have fewer presets and be smaller in size than their more expensive counterparts, they can still deliver deliciously crispy food. Ultimately, the quality of an air fryer depends on your specific needs. The options listed above are all high-performing models with reasonable price tags.

The best budget air fryer for you is the one that meets your specific requirements.

Conclusion: A Few Tips When Using Your New Air Fryer

After selecting your preferred budget air fryer, it is important to keep in mind that it is a kitchen appliance and there are certain guidelines that should be adhered to. Remember to follow these basic rules:

It is important to pre-heat the air fryer before cooking, even if it claims not to require pre-heating, as doing so will yield superior outcomes. Pre-heating for one to three minutes beforehand is sufficient.

Avoid overcrowding the basket or pan as it can lead to subpar results such as soggy or unevenly cooked food and may also prolong the cooking time.

For optimal frying results, it is important to remember to flip your food during the cooking process, especially if you have breaded items beforehand.

It is important to clean your air fryer after every use. Food debris can accumulate and cause damage to the appliance if left unwashed. Wait for the fryer to cool down and refer to the manual for appropriate cleaning instructions.

Overall, any budget air fryer you select should be a good choice, as long as you consider the size (in quarts) and features that best fit your cooking preferences.

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