Fried food has an amazing flavor and a crispy texture that couldn’t be beat a few years ago. The downside to these delicious treats is that they are cooked in a vat of oil that makes them as unhealthy as they are tasty. Rather than risking your health by eating such a high-fat diet, there is a budget-friendly solution to this issue, namely getting the best air fryer under $100 for your kitchen.
Air fryers have a deceptive name since they don’t fry food in the same fashion as a deep fryer would. Instead, they are more like a convection oven, using circulated air to cook the food with little or no oil needed to create the crispy outer edges and perfectly cooked insides of anything you put in their basket. They can be used for all the traditional deep-fryer foods, including fries, chicken fingers, and mozzarella sticks, but they are great for almost anything you would cook in a conventional oven as well. This makes air fryers one of the most versatile appliances in your kitchen and one of the easiest ones to use.
Best of all, you don’t need to spend a fortune to get a fantastic air fryer. There are several cheaper options available with varying features and sizes to choose from, so getting the best air fryer under $100 is a simple task. If you’re unsure of what to look for, we’ve taken the time to find the top five models on the market to get you started.
Best Budget Air Fryer Under $100
Those on a budget may find that even $100 is a bit out of their price range. Luckily, some air fryer models cost about half of that, like the Secure TXG-DS12A Air Fryer. This model has a great low price but still offers the same quality features as a high-end model.
This model is extremely easy to use, with only two dials to deal with on the front of the machine. These are for the temperature and the timer, so you can set them to whatever you like, depending on the tasty treats you’re cooking. It also has an auto-shutoff, so you don’t need to worry about overcooking your meals if you can’t rush to the machine as soon as the timer goes off.
The Secura model has several other great features, like the food chart that gives you times and temperatures for the most popular meals, a 2-liter basket that can fit all your favorite foods, and a few extra accessories, like the BBQ rack and 4 handy skewers.
- Great low price
- Simple controls
- Easy cleanup
- Only good for 1-2 people
- Basket may be hard to remove
Best Compact Air Fryer Under $100
Those who have limited counter space in their kitchens likely need a smaller air fryer that fits this tiny area. If you are living alone or with one other person, you also won’t need a huge machine to cook those smaller meals. The Elite Gourmet EAF2612D Air Fryer is a great option for both of these situations, due to its compact size and small 2-quart non-stick basket that holds up to 1.5 pounds of food, which is more than enough to feed 1-2 people.
As well as being a small model, this air fryer is extremely easy to use, even for those trying a machine like this for the first time. It has a simple dial on the front of the unit that includes a digital readout for the time and temperature you’ve set for the food you’re cooking.
This model allows you to fry, grill, bake, and roast using just one machine, plus it includes other great features, like the cool-touch handle, high-powered convection fan, auto-shutoff, and an integrated air filtration system that reduces odors in your kitchen, even while you’re cooking.
- Compact size
- Air filtration system
- Cool-touch handle
- Lightweight machine may shift when basket is removed
Best Multifunction Air Fryer Under $100
Air fryers are designed to do the job of a deep fryer but without all that excess oil. The Rozmoz HF-8055TS model goes above and beyond the call of duty, adding several other functions to the mix. These include baking, roasting, grilling, toasting, and dehydrating, plus there are 8 preset options for cooking specific foods for added convenience. This versatility allows you to use this air fryer in place of almost all your other kitchen appliances for meals, snacks, and even desserts.
This model is easy to use, thanks to the smart LCD one-touch display that allows you to choose the presets or set custom temperature and timer options for anything you plan to cook. The 360-degree rapid heat circulation technology used by this machine cooks all of your favorite meals in record time. The basket is large enough to accommodate enough food for up to 4 people, making this machine a fantastic choice for small families as well as singles. The stylish look of the Rozmoz air fryer also fits well in any kitchen.
- Stylish look
- 6 functions
- Digital control panel
- No off button for timer
Best Large-Capacity Air Fryer Under $100
Cooking for large groups with an air fryer isn’t the easiest task unless you choose a large-capacity machine like the Chefman TurboFry Air Fryer. This model has a huge 8-quart basket that lets you cook enough food for several people all at once instead of forcing you to cook small batches to feed only 1 or 2 people at a time.
As well as the large cooking capacity, this machine has a sleek, modern look that fits in well with your other kitchen décor. Part of this stylish appeal is the digital control panel, which includes touch controls that are easy to use. It includes 4 presets, plus allows you to adjust the temperature and time for anything you put in the basket. There is even a unique “Shake” function that alerts you at the right time to shake the contents of the basket for more even cooking.
This model is easy to clean, thanks to the dishwasher-friendly non-stick basket and tray. This makes eating healthy even simpler, no matter what you’re cooking in this Chefman air fryer.
- Huge 8-quart basket
- Digital control panel
- Non-stick basket and tray
- Instruction manual doesn’t match the model
Best Overall Air Fryer Under $100
Though the Milin Air Fryer takes up a fair bit of counter space, its large size and 5.8-quart square basket make it easy to cook a decent-sized meal for several people all at once instead of forcing you to cook several smaller batches. It also doesn’t need to be preheated before you can start adding food to the basket, speeding up your cooking time more than with some other models or your regular oven.
The Milin Air Fryer has LED touch controls on the top of the machine, so they are easy to access whenever you need to set one of the 7 presets or adjust the time or temperature before or during cooking. It even includes a unique pause function that you can turn on manually, plus it pauses automatically when you pull the basket from the machine.
This model is versatile, allowing you to fry roast, bake, or cook almost anything you like, plus it has a decent capacity that can handle a variety of foods, including an entire small chicken. If you’re unsure what to make, there is a 100-recipe cookbook included with this model, giving you enough options to keep your family fed for months without repeating meals unless you want to.
- LED touch controls
- Square basket
- Detailed recipe book included
- Decent capacity
- Quite large
Though relatively new to the cooking world, air fryers have become one of the most popular appliances for your meal-making needs. They allow you to make delicious meals while using a fraction of the oil of a deep-fryer, plus they speed up cooking time and don’t heat your home the way an oven would. There are a variety of models to choose from, with several sizes and functions available, making it easy for you to get the perfect model for the size of your kitchen and the number of people you need to feed every day. The best air fryer under $100 gives you all of these features without destroying your budget for an even more convenient addition to your kitchen.
Technically, no, you do not need to use oil in an air fryer since the circulated hot air cooks the food for you. Many people do use a small amount of oil in their air fryers to add some crispiness and a tasty flavor to their meals or to prevent sticking.
You can cook almost anything in an air fryer, including meat, vegetables, frozen foods, and even baked goods. If the model you choose has dividers in the basket, you can even cook more than one food at a time.
No, you can’t cook battered food in an air fryer. These machines use a basket to hold the food as it cooks so any batter used would drip through the perforated bottom of this piece.
Yes, you can use foil, as well as parchment paper, in your air fryer without damaging the machine. Air fryers do rely on circulated air to cook the foods, so be sure that the foil is positioned so it does not obstruct the natural airflow.