Use an air fryer to cook healthier alternatives of favorite foods in a short amount of time.
When I received an air fryer for a birthday gift from my sister-in-law, I had no idea what it was.
I politely thanked her and then promptly stuck it away in my pantry alongside my pressure cooker, my waffle iron, and a donut maker. It took me a few months to get up the courage to read the manual and try the air fryer out. Was I ever pleasantly surprised at the results!!
An air fryer uses hot, circulating air to cook all kinds of food. The finished result preserves the taste of deep fried food without the mess or the calories. Food is cooked in a mesh basket that sits above a drip tray. Adjustable temperature and timer knobs help to insure precise cooking. The air fryer only needs to preheat for 3 minutes in order to reach the desired temperature.
The first thing I cooked in my air fryer was frozen French fries. I filled the basket with enough French fries for two servings. Half-way through the cooking time, I took out the basket and shook it to loosen up the fries for even air circulation. They were done cooking in 15 minutes and were perfectly browned and perfectly crispy. After this experiment, I knew I had a winning appliance!!
I cooked a few more batches of French fries before I decided it was time to move on to something else: frozen pizza. Many pre-packaged foods can be cooked in an air fryer. As a guide, you just need to lower the conventional oven temperature by 70 degrees and reduce the cooking time by half. That meant my pizza would be done in just 6 minutes!! Again, it was perfectly browned and perfectly crispy. The only downside was the size of the basket– I could only cook half of a pizza at a time. But since it took just 6 minutes to cook, it really wasn’t too inconvenient.
Next, I decided to be real brave and cook filet mignon in the air fryer. I lightly seasoned the meat before putting it in the basket and cooked it for 14 minutes. The result? A crispy outside with a moist, tender inside absolutely delicious steak. In fact, it was one of the best steaks I have ever cooked at home, rivaling Ruth’s Chris Steak House.
Where can you get recipes to use with the air fryer? Why, on Pinterest, of course. One night, I wanted to use leftover roast for some taquitos. I found a recipe from Toast to Roast and it was perfect. So much better than the greasy version.
Something really unusual that I have made with my air fryer was Everything Bagels using two-ingredient dough, a new Weight Watchers phenomena.
The recipe was posted by my friend, Kelly, a healthy life blogger at “No Thanks to Cake.” Not only were the bagels easy to make, they tasted completely authentic!! Regarding nutrition facts, each bagel has CAL 153; FAT 1g; SAT FAT 0g; CARB 25g; PROT 10g; SUG 2g; FIB 1g. And if you keep track of Weight Watchers points, one bagel is the equivalent of 4 WW Points+ or 3 WW Smart Points.
After using my air fryer for a year now, I can honestly say that I love it!!! Not one thing have I made with it has been a dud. It is so simple to use and so easy to clean up—another plus. What a great invention.