After some serious digging, we found that the Philips Avance Collection Air Fryer XXL is the best air fryer Australia based consumers can buy in 2020. Not only is the device suitable for all families – whether large or small – it can cook a host of items ranging from chicken, fish, chips, or muffins! While the AU$549 price tag is on the higher side of the spectrum, it’s worth the investment considering the capacity and durability.
Resisting a heaped pile of fried chicken wings, golden fries, fried onion rings or crunchy vegetables isn’t easy. Although most of us love these foods, they are quite unhealthy due to the thick layers of fat and grease and lots of unwanted calories.
But an air fryer will let you satisfy all your fried food cravings without the guilt.
How? Well, this appliance doesn’t actually fry the food.
Air fryers are small convection ovens that circulate hot air around the food to “fry” it. So even when you don’t add any oil, you’ll still get that oh-so-satisfying crispiness and delicious taste – and in less time than you would with a regular oven. Air frying reduces the risks associated with fried foods as well.
Keep reading to discover the best air fryers to enjoy your favourite fried food, sans the pinch of guilt.
Our Shortlist: The Best Air Fryer Australia, 2020
Before talking about the air fryers in detail, here’s a list of our top six picks:
- Philips Avance Collection Air Fryer XXL
- Kmart 5.3 Litre Air Fryer
- Sunbeam Multi Function Oven + Air Fryer
- Philips HD9621 Viva Collection Air Fryer
- Maxkon Air Fryer
- Cuisinart Compact Air Fryer Toaster Oven
What to look for
Air fryers – just like other kitchen appliances – are available in different shapes, designs, and purpose. This is why you need to consider specific factors, cooking functions and features when deciding on the best air fryer for your kitchen.
Read on as we discuss this in more detail below:
Air fryers have a basket for cooking food that can be either a pull-out drawer or top lid. Irrespective of the basket style, it’s the size that you need to consider since it‘ll determine the quantity of food your air fryer will cook.
Generally, the capacity of these baskets ranges from 1.5-2.7 L. The catch here is that sometimes the manufacturers purposely exaggerate the total amount of food that can be stored in these baskets.
Our tip would be to look for the cooking or working capacity, and if you don’t find one, visit a store to physically check the size of the air fryer you want. This can be especially useful if you have a larger family to avoid ending up with the wrong model.
Size can also refer to the whole appliance. You should choose a model depending on your storage space. If you have a smaller kitchen, a more compact model would be a smarter choice. If not, you can, of course, opt for a bigger one.
When we talk about cooking performance, we mean the speed of cooking of food.
A good air fryer should be fast, which will only be possible if it’s got an efficient hot air cooking technology. It should be noted that a deep fryer is quicker to an air fryer simply because oil cooks food faster than air.
An air fryer can be as quick as 30 minutes or take as long as two hours, so you need to consider the heating power (wattage) to understand how fast the appliance is. Try to adjust your cooking time expectations accordingly.
Ease of Cleaning
If you buy an air fryer that isn’t easy to clean and operate, you will eventually stop using it. To avoid this, we would recommend you carefully go through the instructions and cleaning processes suggested by the manufacturer. This will give you an idea of whether it’ll be convenient for you or not.
It would be best to opt for a model with dishwasher-friendly and nonstick parts. Additionally, instructions should be clear and precise, giving you full information on how to clean every nook and cranny of the appliance.
It’s necessary to thoroughly clean air fryers as otherwise a layer of grease will get accumulated on it. Not only is this bad for hygiene reasons as you may suffer from stomach problems, but it’ll also be unpleasant to see.
We would also suggest you consider your kitchen’s ventilation system. Proper ventilation will significantly reduce the total smoke discharge in your kitchen in case your air fryer smokes.
All air fryers make noise – some are quiet, some are almost silent. The maximum noise produced by the appliance shouldn’t be more than an air-conditioner. After all, you wouldn’t want to torture your ears every time you feel like having something crispy and golden.
Availability of Controls
One of the best things about an air fryer is that they come with preset cooking functions and features.
For instance, you can find models with a timer dial, a temperature dial, or maybe both. These digital controls let you enjoy complete control over the cooking process by adjusting the temperatures in the frying basket and the overall duration.
That being said, you might not find them on every model. Plus, the more advanced your air fryer, the more expensive it will be. So while having more controls is beneficial, it shouldn’t be out of your budget.
Speaking of budget…
You’ve decided to buy an air fryer? Great! The next thing on your to-do list should be determining the budget for it.
In the case of air fryers, the price range can vary a lot. You can have models starting from AU$50 to ones as high as AU$600. The structure, model, features, and extra accessories are the biggest influencers of the price.
You’ll find advanced features such as temperature control and 360-degree rotation system, or a rotisserie spindle in digital models. Even accessories like tongs, lift tray, viewing window, grill pan, and so on come included with models and may inflate the price.
Air fryers, when compared to other kitchen appliances, are not exactly common in use. You won’t find every store stocking all the models.
For instance, you can get several Phillips and De’Longhi models on Harvey Norman and the Big W, but if you want other models like Kmart, Sunbeam, or Tefal, it will be better to try out Kmart, Target, or Amazon.
The air fryer selection at Myer and The Good Guys though wasn’t quite impressive as the options were very limited.
Top Pick: Philips Avance Collection Air Fryer XXL
The Philips Avance Collection Air Fryer XXL is a super-sized yet efficient air fryer that can quickly fry your favourite food, making the whole process healthier and hassle-free. When compared to other, more basic models launched by Philips, the Airfryer XXL is much larger with a quality fit and finish. And then we say it’s large, it’s you-can-fit-a-whole-chicken-inside large!
This appliance is designed to be quick and convenient with healthier eating in mind. And not only that, but the Philips Avance can also enhance the taste of the foods.
Its basket can handle 1.4 kg of food, which is enough for a family of six members, but its minimum capacity is good enough for a couple as well. Using Philips TurboStar Technology and 2225 W of power, it circulates hot air in and around the food for consistent frying.
The air fryer can handle mild temperatures starting from 40°C, and also lets you increase it to 200°C when needed. There are five preset cooking modes on this device: air frying, grilling, roasting, baking, and reheating options.
In addition to this, there are preset icons for fish, meat, and frozen chips.
Since it’s an air fryer, the first thing that people want to know is how well the chips will turn out. If this is a concern for you too, let us tell you that while the Philips can air fry a mean plate of chips, you can also cook a variety of other meals like a roast, chicken wings, and muffins.
If you want some cooking inspiration, you can check out the recipe book that has some delicious recipes, highlighting the device’s versatility to great effect.
The other technologies include Fat Removal Technology and Rapid Air Technology. While the former separates and captures any excess fat, the latter ensures all your snacks and meals are crispy on the outside yet tender on the inside. The Rapid Air Technology also makes the Philips 1.5x faster than a regular oven.
Sitting at the premium side of the air frying product spectrum, the Philips Air Fryer XXL comes with a price tag to match the same. It costs AU$549, which is understandable considering the large capacity, durable construction, and modern design.
We would have preferred for the package to include a pair of handy tongs for working the food mid-frying and a slightly less bulky structure. Nevertheless, the Philips Avance Collection Air Fryer XXL does leave a lasting and positive impression. Storage may be an issue if you‘re short on space, but in case you’re looking for cooking flexibility and volume, this might be your best option.
We have to warn you that it can be a nightmare figuring out the correct model number for Philips air fryers. So make sure to look for the Airfryer XXL HD9651/91.
Runner Up: Kmart 5.3 Litre Air Fryer
The Kmart 5.3 Litre Air Fryer enjoys a 4.8-star rating on ProductReview.com.au despite being a new entry in the air fryer market. It has a 5.3 L capacity that makes it suitable for people living alone, those on a tight budget like students, or a small family.
We liked how this appliance is very functional with its removable frying basket and a convenient 30-minute timer setting. So not only is cleaning this air fryer easier, but you can also adjust the cooking settings according to your schedule.
The device has a handle on the basket release, reducing the chances of any accidental spills. You can also adjust the temperature up to 200°C depending on the recipe.
It is very easy to operate, but in case you do face any difficulty, you can refer to the user manual that has clear and easy to understand instructions. Moreover, the device has been tested and found to comply with applicable Australian electrical safety standards.
For us, however, the most appealing feature this air fryer has to be the surprisingly low price tag.
The affordability factor can be especially useful for those who don’t have the kind of money that buying a model from Philips would involve. At just AU$89, you will have a durable and efficient machine that gives you crispy snacks and dishes in just 15 to 20 minutes.
This brings us to the other advantage of the Kmart 5.3 Litre Air Fryer – the reduced cooking time. When compared to cooking fried chicken or chips in the oven, the Kmart is much more efficient. A reviewer noted that if it takes you around 45 minutes to prepare a meal using an oven, it’ll take you just about 15 minutes on this air fryer.
While we really like the affordable price point and ease of use, it does fall short when compared to our top pick, the Philips, in certain aspects.
You don’t have any colour options. It only comes in one colour: black. Also, this device is a little bulky. So you need to ensure you have sufficient storage space to fit the air fryer.
Having said this, we would recommend this air fryer for those who don’t want to splurge but want a reliable machine that’s good at what it does – making delicious, crispy and healthy food.
Don’t forget to oil the pan (this is mostly for the food as the pan has a high-quality nonstick covering) and use the same amount of cooking oil as you would for roasting food items in an oven to prevent the food from drying out.
Sunbeam Multi Function Oven + Air Fryer
If you‘re health-conscious and want little to no oil or fat in your food, you should consider getting the Sunbeam Multi Function Oven + Air Fryer. With its 2-in-1 design that combines an oven and an air fryer, you can fry your favourite snacks as well as bake pizza in the same appliance.
The oven has a 22 L capacity, with two rack positions and accessories such as a mesh air fry basket, wire rack, baking pan, and removable crumb tray. While the air fry basket has a 750 g capacity, the baking pan is big enough to hold a large chicken along with vegetables to prepare a hearty dinner.
You can cook a 30 cm pizza, roast meat and vegetables, grill salmon, toast bread, waffles, and muffins or cake with the Sunbeam Multi Function Oven + Air Fryer. This versatility is one of its biggest pros considering its AU$249 price and that it uses 99.6% less oil when compared to the Sunbeam deep fryer.
It uses Turbo Heat Fan Technology that makes the process faster as well as ensures that the hot air is evenly circulated. You can use the convection setting too that will shorten the cooking duration by up to 30%. Other features include a 60-minute auto-off dial timer and the ability to support temperatures up to 230°C.
You won’t have to preheat the oven when you use the air fry setting. The Warm function has two applications: warming the food and keeping it warm after cooking until you’re ready to serve.
It has a compact size that makes it ideal for households with limited space. Cleaning is super easy as well; you just need a damp cloth to wipe the inside clean. The baking pan, wire rack and mesh fry basket are dishwasher-friendly as well – provided you use the top section.
It’s a clever appliance that is simple to use and maintain. You get a one-year warranty and a selection of recipes for some culinary inspiration too.
We haven’t given this appliance our top pick status as we felt that since it’s an oven + air fryer, the capacity is greatly limited. And while it has a 4.9-star rating on ProductReview.com.au, only 14 customers have reviewed the air fryer. Plus, a few customers have pointed out how the baking tray needs to be turned halfway through as it doesn’t cook evenly on the left and right-hand sides.
Philips HD9621 Viva Collection Air Fryer
The Philips HD9621 Viva Collection Air Fryer is another winner from Phillips that ticks all the right boxes when it comes to cooking and preparing tasty and delicious meals. With its compact size, it’s practically the smaller version of our top pick, the Philips Avance Collection Air Fryer XXL.
This air fryer is a medium-sized air fryer with a capacity of 800 g and a simple control panel. It features two dials: one for the time, and the other for heat control. You’ll also find a removable pull-out basket in the front.
Powered with Philips TurboStar and Rapid Air Technology, the machine uses hot air to add that extra crunch to the food, while keeping the inside soft. Any oil and grease deposits drip through the cooking grille directly into the base of the pan.
You can position the device anywhere that has access to a mains plug. But you have to leave adequate space to make sure there’s optimal ventilation as air fryers can get hot, and hence, need space for the hot air exhaust to dissipate from the back of the device.
It can prepare meals that have 80% less fat; several past customers also vouch for its excellent fat extracting capabilities. Be it chicken wings or chicken legs – you get perfectly crispy items that don’t look or feel oily and greasy.
At AU$239, this air fryer can be a great purchase for those who prefer efficiency and speed. Along with poultry, it can cook vegetables, frozen chips, and French fries within minutes. Additionally, the food basket and pull-out drawer are dishwasher-safe. You can use a wet cloth for wiping the plastic casing.
You have to remember to take out the food items and give them a shake. Otherwise, they might cook unevenly. If you want, you can use some extra spray-on oil to prevent the food from drying out.
What we didn’t like about the Philips HD9621 Viva Collection Air Fryer is that you cannot cancel the timer. Also, a few customers on Amazon have reported that the basket tends to fall out when you shake up the contents or if you put too much in it. The product doesn’t come with any additional accessories as well.
Maxkon Air Fryer
Not many of you might be familiar with the Maxkon brand, but it’s a company that you can trust when it comes to air fryers.
The Maxkon Air Fryer has an impressive 7 L capacity that makes it perfect for larger families. Besides that, the company offers two types of the appliance as well: a manual model and a digital model. The digital model costs AU$30 more than the manual one.
There are seven preset cooking programs with a simple to use and operate LCD. It features the advanced Rapid Air Technology and a 30-minute timer. Not only does it reduce oil usage by as much as 80%, but it can also reduce any greasy smell.
The other features include an auto-off function, and auto/restart function, and an adjustable temperature control ranging from 80-200°C. You also get a 5.5 L fry basket and a “Ready Bell“ that will prompt you once the cooking is done.
Cleaning and maintaining the air fryer is also simple. You don’t have to deal with leftover food debris because of the nonstick coating on the pan. Even your safety remains uncompromised because of the overheat protection cutoff feature.
You can use this multifunctional air fryer for broiling, roasting, baking, grilling, and barbecuing. It can easily handle shrimp, chicken, meat, fries, and cake, retaining the original flavour and taste. A recipe book, recipe stickers, a set of tongs, one metal holder, and a food divider are included with every purchase.
While at AU$129.95, the Maxkon Air Fryer is one of the best affordable air fryers available on the Australian market, it is the inconsistent heating that is a drawback. We would’ve liked the basket to have been more durable too.
That being said, this air fryer does offer several features – ones that you won’t find on higher priced models – that make it worth a shot.
Cuisinart Compact Air Fryer Toaster Oven
The Cuisinart Compact Air Fryer Toaster Oven is the perfect replacement for a toaster or a toaster oven that can give you crisp, air-fried food items.
It’s a relatively simple appliance with uncomplicated heating elements. You won’t find preset cooking programs or the additional keep warm or dehydrate functions. There is no need to preheat the appliance – simply turn on the dial to set the temperature and the cooking time.
Just like the Maxkon model, this air fryer has a multifunctional design. It can perform six functions: Convection Bake, Convection Broil, AirFry, Toast, Bagel, Warm. So whether you want to air fry three pounds of chicken wings, toast six slices of bread, roast a 4-pound chicken, or bake a 12-inch pizza – everything is possible with the Cuisinart Compact Air Fryer Toaster Oven. There’s a toast shade function as well that offers light, medium, and dark settings.
Moreover, the user manual is pretty straight forward and includes delicious, easy to make recipes to help you get started with air frying.
The Cuisinart isn’t shaped like your traditional bulky air fryers that resemble a big egg or a rectangle. Instead, it’s a big stainless steel cube that has a truncated toaster oven look. It can easily fit any countertop or cabinet because of this boxy shape.
Another advantage is that you can spread out the food to get even results without any drying. This is impossible in other air fryer models that force you to pile food one on top of the other, often causing uneven cooking. Cuisinart recommends using an olive oil spray on the frying basket to prevent any seasoning from dripping.
While the entry-door window lets you keep an eye on your meal, the control settings have four knobs: cooking temperature control, cooking time control, cooking function, and another one for choosing the toast shade. You can adjust the cooking temperature between warm to 230°C, and the cooking time has a setting from 0 to 60 minutes.
This air fryer is extremely fast too. You can expect about a 15-minute reduction in cooking time for every batch of sweet potatoes or vegetables you make. Once the cooking is complete, the timer will “ding“ to notify you about the same.
The interior is made of nonstick stainless steel, making cleaning easy. The appliance also houses a motor fan and heater, which is responsible for the air frying mechanism. In addition to the baking pan, you also get a frying basket and drip pan.
While all this at AU$217 certainly sounds great, the biggest problem with the Cuisinart Compact Air Fryer Toaster Oven is its availability.
Most of the big Aussie stores don’t stock the appliance, limiting your options to Amazon and eBay. You may need to put in more effort when it comes to cleaning as well since the stainless steel basket and drip pan are neither dishwasher-friendly nor are they nonstick.
This air fryer will take some trial and error to get things right, but overall it is an excellent choice to consider if you have a small kitchen or don’t want to pay an exorbitant sum of money.
How Does An Air Fryer Work?
As mentioned before, an air fryer has the same purpose as a deep fryer. The only difference is the technology used and the varied outcomes.
An air fryer uses very little oil (nearly 80% less) for grilling, baking, and of course, frying food items, especially when compared to a traditional deep fryer.
The appliance is basically a convection oven that circulates hot air around foods kept in an attached basket. You can use as little as only half a tablespoon of oil and you’ll still get that golden brown and crispy texture.
It can cook all types of food – be it chicken wings, French fries, or chicken breast – without any pre-heating or cooking odours.
Just How Much Healthier Is an Air Fryer?
Air fryer manufacturers claim that the appliance is the best way to enjoy your favourite fried food. While it’s great that air fryers can help lower the overall fat content of food items like chicken wings and fish sticks, is it enough to truly make a difference?
We decided to investigate to see just how healthier cooking with an air fryer is.
Let’s take a look:
Cuts Down the Overall Fat Content
It was found that deep-fried chicken breast has nearly 30% more fat than the same portion of roasted chicken. On the contrary, when you use an air fryer, the overall fat content reduces by up to 75%.
You see, air fryers use only one tablespoon or 15 mL of oil as opposed to the 750 mL requirement of deep fryers. The oil usage is nearly 50 times less which, in turn, can be useful in reducing risks of inflammation and heart diseases.
Even experts have found out that air fried French fries had considerably less fat – despite a similar colour and moisture content – when compared to its deep-fried counterpart. For other foods, the number of calories consumed is reduced by nearly 70-80% on average.
There are several air fryer recipes that you can try that require only two tablespoons of oil. For example, 225g shrimp skewers when air-fried have only 59 kcal while cooking six regular-sized salmon patties will have only 104 kcal.
Reduced Formation of Harmful Compounds
Frying foods has two direct consequences: a higher fat and calorie intake, and the creation of potentially dangerous compounds like acrylamide.
For those who aren’t aware, acrylamide is a compound formed when carbohydrate-rich foods are subjected to high heat cooking methods like frying. It’s also classified as a “probable carcinogen“ that might cause cancer.
Air frying, on the other hand, will lower the acrylamide content of your fried foods by nearly 90%. But yes, there is still a chance that other harmful compounds might form during the process of air frying.
We require more research to understand the formation of other potentially dangerous chemicals through the air frying process in greater detail.
A Possible Aid to Control Weight
Deep-fried food items are drenched in calories; a direct consequence of which is a possible weight gain. So when you swap your deep-fried food with air fried food, not only will you lower your calorie intake, but you can promote weight loss as well.
The Bottom Line: Which Air Fryer is Worth It?
We considered multiple features, went through several customer reviews and studied the pros and cons of various models to narrow down our best picks.
Either of our two top picks, Philips Avance Collection Air Fryer XXL and Kmart 5.3 Litre Air Fryer, would be an excellent addition to your kitchen. For us, these two are definitely the first and second-best options for the best air fryer Australia has on the market as of 2020.
- Best Overall Air Fryer: Philips Avance Collection Air Fryer XXL
- Best Air Fryer for Value: Kmart 5.3 Litre Air Fryer
- Best Air Fryer for Versatility: Sunbeam Multi Function Oven + Air Fryer
- Best Air Fryer for Small Kitchens: Philips HD9621 Viva Collection Air Fryer
- Best Multifunctional Air Fryer: Cuisinart Compact Air Fryer Toaster Oven