Posts tagged: review

Philips Air Fryer Review

Having opted for the Philips Air Fryer over the  Tefal Actifry myself, I thought I’d give a quick review on the Philips model here. I’m not going to go into how it works as you can find that elsewhere on this site. First off, I’m pretty happy with it!

The single most important thing to a lot of people is whether it actually does cook chips that taste like those from the chip shop. To be brutal, the answer is no, it doesn’t. But what exactly do you expect from something that doesn’t use all that oil?! That said, IMHO the chips it does produce are by far the closest ‘diet’ chips you will get to the real thing and are head and shoulders above low fat oven chips.

If you cut your chips thinly, like french fries, the 800gm basket will cook these in about 15 minutes. If you are using the air fryer to capacity, I would suggest you shake it more often than just once or you may find some anaemic looking chips at the bottom! Thicker chips and wedges take longer but in my experience, there is still no need to par-boil.

I have used the 1/2 tablespoon of oil recommended and also use the one-cal type spray oils with similar results. I have also tried frozen oven chips without additional oil and they are probably crisper but don’t taste as nice as the real chips. Roast potatoes and parsnips work well too without par-boiling, but do remember not to make them too big.

Roasting peppers and other veggies works well but as we are vegetarian, haven’t tried cooking chicken etc. I have tried the brownies out of the recipe book though and they tasted really good although I don’t think they needed as long as suggested. The pan for making these is a welcome addition to the fryer as is the food divider. Both of the these came as standard in my machine. Heck, I’ve even melted chocolate in it by covering a heatproof bowl and switching it on at the lowest setting for a short time. Not such a worry as putting it in a bowl over boiling water or over doing it in the microwave so it’s unusable!

philips air fryer

Jacket potatoes work better than in the microwave as they get the crispy skin you associate with cooking in an oven. Make sure the potatoes aren’t humungous ones and are evenly sized and pricked. Also remember to turn them and they will be ready in about half-an-hour. To see how to give jacket potatoes the air fryer treatment watch the video on this Philips air fryer page.

Yes, the Philips air fryer was a bit more expensive than the Actifry but I decided the pros outweighed that (it is often now a bit cheaper, currently at just £84). The Philips looks nicer and takes up a lot less room (in my kitchen that was a huge bonus). This machine is also very convenient to use; no hot oil making it safer, quick to heat up, easy to clean and versatile.

The cheapest available Philips AirFryer Healthier Oil-Free Fryers are available in white and black and are heavily reduced and worth looking out for!  Just follow the link or click on the picture for more information.

If you are looking for air fryers from the USA, try HERE.

Low Fat Air Fryers Compared

The appearance of the units are quite different and will of course be down to personal preference. However, my money is on the Philips Air Fryer with it’s clean cut lines and pod shape. While everything is hidden away when cooking, this is likely to mean that children will be less inclined to try and watch their tea go round and round. On the opposite side, you have to pull the basket out to check on the contents and shake when cooking some items and the basket can need a good pull to get it out.

The Philips appears to be faster than the Tefal, but both take longer with chips than any other food which maybe fresh or frozen. Given the way these machines work, you are going to get splatter from both of them. With the Tefal this will be on the clear lid (which has been known to discolour and crack), with the Philips this will be mostly on the splash guard below the grill element, but the obvious parts of both machines are dishwasher safe.

As indicated, the Tefal has come in for a battering because of the need for replacement parts. Given the price, one would hope everything would work for longer, but that’s the price you pay for the new technology.  That said,  I think that Tefal have improved the stirring paddle that seems to have been at the root of the problems. The newer FZ7000 series no longer has a clip on paddle that was prone to break, instead it has a click and lock one that is far better. The Philips is far to new to have a history to draw on, so we will have to wait and see.

While both machines will cook chips, french fries, wedges, meat and poultry, there are a couple of differences.  For example, in the Tefal Actifry you can produce stir fries and currys because of the paddle and a hidden heat element. The Philips Air Fryer can’t do stir fries but will make you a nice sausage roll, bake a muffin, cake or quiche cook stuffed vegetables and brown off pre-baked bread. Basically, you need to decide where you tastes lie – do you prefer mostly savoury foods or would you like the convenience of baking in a worktop sized mini oven? If the latter, you may find that the baking tray you require is an additional add-on for some models. I believe it’s around £18 to buy separately.

The other major difference is that the Philips has a smaller capacity than the Tefal of around 20%. So if you are looking for a family sized model go for either the standard Tefal or the larger family sized model.

Taking a quick look at the De’Longhi Roto Fry, you can only cook foods that are suitable for deep fat frying as there are no more options. De’Longhi do have a good reputation though so if you just want it for chips with a bit less fat, go for this one as it’s cheaper.

The price of course is a major concern. The Philips Air Fryer can retail at £85+ . Some wholesale companies can offer a better deal, so try here for the Philips model. However, in monetary terms, the Tefal ActiFry now retailing for a minimum of £95 depending on the model.  There is also the Duronic AF1 /B Healthy Oil Free Jet Fryer Multicooker that is new to the market and can be found similarly priced. If you are interested in the De’Longhi Roto Fry, the cheapest I have found it is around £65, but it is more limited in terms of what you can cook and will use more oil to do so.

For me, I’m still unsure. I like the look of the Philips, the size and it’s versatility, the price of the De’Longhi is the best but not the fact it only cooks deep fried food albeit in less oil than normal. The Tefal Actifry is more tried and tested, but comes with a questionable reliability record for some of the parts, namely the paddle and lid. No doubt these components have improved in the later models and you can purchase these parts separately should they break outside the guarantee period.

If you are searching for air fryers from the USA, please try here as most of the links on this site are for the UK.

For And Against Buying A Low Fat Air Fryer (v. long!)

Perhaps you have been thinking about the idea of giving a low fat air fryer a try, but you are just not convinced if it is for you. If you keep coming back to the idea, then here are some thoughts for you to consider.

Common Thoughts Against Buying Air Fryers

It is often wise if you are unsure to look at some negative points of doing something and some people hesitate to try these air fryers for many reasons including the following.

1. Container isn’t large enough for their family
2. What you can do in the low fat air fryer you can easily do in the oven or on the stove
3. Can’t be bothered to work out how to use one
4. Don’t have the space for another gadget.
5. Too expensive and it’s a lot of money just to cook chips!
6. They break!

Well, all the above reasons for not investing in a low fat air fryer are valid ones, so let’s look at them one-by-one.

The usefulness of the container size depends on what you are cooking and the size of your family. Most people buy these fryers to make low fat chips or fries and you can get one kilo of chips in the Tefal, so you could get away with enough for two adults and two children. If you have a larger family, Tefal do a larger machine. Generally, you are looking at a capacity that is suited to between two and four people.

Of course you can prepare the same foods in the oven or on the stove. Then again, we could boil a pan of water to make coffee on the stove, but there are few households that don’t own an electric kettle! That said, looking at our example of chips. To produce a low fat edible version there is much faffing around, par-boiling potatoes and shaking them up in the pan before you spray them with oil and put in the oven for half an hour turning half-way through. With the air fryers, you just chip your potatoes, add up to a tablespoon of oil and switch on. Some models require a shake half way through but that’s it. The timer pings and out come your chips while you’ve been doing something else.

Space can certainly be an issue as the Tefal model is certainly quite large. The Philips has a much smaller footprint but is higher, so you may also have an issue getting it in a cupboard! Indeed if you have a small kitchen, then you should think carefully about getting a low fat air fryer and possible storage issues. The Tefal in particular is a little large to leave out on the work top.

It’s a myth that you can only cook chips in a low fat air fryer. What else you can do depends on the model but this may include stir fries, roast potatoes, sausages, chicken and other meats, curries, reheating of part-baked bread, muffins, stuffed peppers and more. A little thought and many other recipes can be adapted. Yes, they are not cheap but there are always bargains to be found. On this site, we try and keep up with the current cheapest options so you can save time by following our links to reputable online shops.  As of today, you can get both makes for just £99!

As for worrying how to use a fryer, they are much simpler to use than a traditional oil fryer. Basically, switch it on and set the timer. When you’ve finished, pop the parts in the dishwasher and that’s it. There are numerous videos on the Internet to show you the simplicity of these machines and their versatility so don’t worry.

As for breaking…. Everything does at some point. If you are worried about parts breaking as you have read the reviews, please keep in mind that these are related to an older version of the Tefal. The Philips Air Fryer does not have the moving parts that have had bad reports of breaking but is really too new a machine to have had that many bad reports. With the Tefal, if you get a newer model you should be safe as they have adapted the design to improve on past issues. Always remember though that you have your 12 month warranty to fall back on and parts for the Tefal are readily available.

To go straight to the cheapest deal for the Philips CLICK HERE, for the Tefal CLICK HERE.

Reasons For Buying Air Fryers

1. Health concerns
2. Weight loss benefits
3. Safety
4. Ease of cleaning
5. Independent and versatile cooking
6. Easily transportable

One of the main benefits of owning a hot air fryer is for health reasons. Basically, if you are not using as much oil or fat in your cooking then it has to be better for you. If you are trying to lose weight, then using much less oil has an obvious advantage. Many people buy these machines to make very low fat chips and believe me, this is the closest you will get to the deep fried variety we all know and love! If you are diabetic or have problems with gall stones for example, then you need to cut down on your fats or suffer the consequences. This method of cooking will be ideal for you.

Safety is another great benefit for air fryers. With traditional fryers there is always the danger of hot oil spillage. If you have young children or weak wrists for example, you would need to be particularly careful. With these fryers, there is no heavy pan of boiling oil to contend with – although care should still be taken with small children around the kitchen as the outside of the appliance will get quite hot.

Other benefits include being able to cook foods without putting on your main oven which is particularly useful in the warmer months. They are easier to clean than your oven or a traditional oil fryer. If you own holiday property, rent self-catering property or a caravan, they are also easily transportable to use there. I have my doubts you would have room in a caravan, but that’s for you to determine.

As you may see, owning an air fryer is worth thinking about. Now that you have considered all these reasons for and against, I suggest you re-evaluate whether you still really want one and if you do, what are you waiting for? Check out the Philips Air Fryer and the Tefal Actifry on this site to help you make your decision which would be best for you.

To go straight to the cheapest deal for the Philips CLICK HERE, for the Tefal CLICK HERE.