An average household juggles multiple appliances in the kitchen, from blenders to hoods and oven simultaneously.
While this is often necessary, skyrocketing energy prices prompt concerns about power costs of using these kitchen appliances.
What’s the solution?
Using your appliances less frequently to reduce energy bills?
Is there any better way?
Yes; Opting for more energy-efficient appliances.
These days many are turning to air fryers as they gain popularity as energy-efficient alternatives.
Yes, air fryers are energy efficient when compared with the energy cost of larger ovens (gas or electric) and deep fryers in the house. According to the recent estimates of Utilita — a UK-based electricity and gas supplier, air fryers don’t consume much electricity, typically featuring power ratings between 1000 and 1800 watts.
But do air fryers live up to their energy efficient claims? We are about to explore this in detail.
What Does It Mean To Be Energy Efficient?
According to experts at Energy Star, energy efficiency means a certain appliance requires less electricity to perform the same functions than a less power-efficient unit.
The goal of an energy-efficient appliance is to provide you with the maximum output using the least amount of power and to reduce electricity costs.
In some cases, wastage and inefficiencies can cause household appliances to draw more electricity than they need.
In those situations, these appliances cannot be considered highly efficient.
How To Check The Energy Efficiency Of An Air Fryer
You can check the energy efficiency by doing simple math involving a few steps.
Start with checking your appliance's wattage; let’s say it is 1400W. Multiply the wattage by the number of hours it is used per day.
Finally, divide the result by 1000.
These calculations yield the per-day kWh of your air fryer.
Energy Consumption (kWh) = (Wattage × Hours Used)/1000
Now, multiply the kWh by the rate at which you acquire electricity from your supplier:
Cost = Energy Consumption (kWh) × Electricity Rate
Factors Making Air Fryers Energy-Efficient
Many factors make using an air fryer more energy-efficient than an oven. We have listed some of them below.
An Air Fryer Cooks Faster
The average cooking time of an air fryer is no more than 30 minutes because of the small cooking space, which heats up pretty fast.
On the contrary, a standard oven has an average capacity of 60 to 70 liters, whereas a gas oven often has more than 100 liters. Therefore, their cooking time is at least 30 minutes or more than an air fryer.
As a result, gas and electric ovens run much longer to cook the same thing an air fryer does much more quickly, leading to higher energy consumption and costs.
Here is a quick overview of the cooking time of an air fryer vs. an oven when making various dishes
|Oven (including preheating)
|French fries (from scratch)
|French fries (frozen)
Source: Taste of Home for air fryer recipes and Food Network for oven recipes
Air Fryers Don't Need Preheating
Most air fryers start cooking when you plug them into an electric socket. In cases when preheating air fryer is necessary, an average 3-4 QT air fryer only needs 2-3 minutes to preheat and start cooking.
Conversely, preheating is a must for electric or gas ovens.
An average oven takes around 15-20 minutes to preheat, extending its overall operational time.
Doing the math tells you that using an air fryer is not only a time saver but an energy-efficient choice.
Air Fryers Don’t Waste Heat
Air fryers, unlike ovens, don’t dissipate heat through their body. Hence, heat remains concentrated within the cooking chamber, contributing to faster cooking and less energy consumption.
Air Fryer Vs Electric Oven Vs Gas Electricity Usage And Cost
The electricity usage and cost comparison among an air fryer, electric oven, and gas oven may not be as simple as it might look.
Several factors can influence the costs, such as the electricity costs in your area, the unit's power rating, the appliance's size, etc.
For this reason, we have used averages and estimates to make the comparison practical and acceptable.
Calculating Air Fryer Cost
An air fryer’s power rating can vary depending on its size. Typically, a smaller air fryer consumes less energy than a large dual basket air fryer.
Now, let’s take the example of a standard 4-QT air fryer consuming about 1500 watts of power,
Using the method of calculating the cost of electricity usage mentioned earlier in the article, here is what we get:
The Cost of Running an Air Fryer for One Hour in the US
1500 watts*1/1000 = 1.5kWh
1.5kWh*23 cents = 34 cents
The Cost of Running an Air Fryer for One Hour in the UK
1500 watts*1/1000 = 1.5kWh
1.5kWh* 34p = 51 pence
Considering this calculation, if you use your air fryer for one hour daily for a year, your energy cost would be $124 in the US and around £186 in the UK.
Electrical Oven Cost
Electric ovens need around 3000 watts of power for their operations, which is half the average power rating of an air fryer.
The exact wattage of your oven can be found on the appliance tag of your oven or instruction booklet.
Using the same calculation as mentioned above.
The Cost of Running an Electric Oven for One Hour in the US
3000 watts*1/1000 = 3kWh
3kWh*23 cents = 69 cents
The Cost of Running an Electric Oven for One Hour in the UK
3000 watts*1/1000 = 3kWh
3kWh*34p = 102 pence
If you use your oven for one hour daily for a year, you will have to pay roughly £379 in the UK and $250 in the US. These costs are approximately double that of using an air fryer for the same duration.
Gas Oven Cost
To calculate the cost of using a gas oven, you need the energy ratings of your gas oven in Btu and the per therm cost of natural gas in your area.
The Cost Of Running A Gas Oven For One Hour In The UK
$2.3*0.18=$0.41 or 41 cents
The Cost Of Running A Gas Oven For One Hour In The UK
If you use your gas oven for one hour daily for a year, you will have to pay $149 in the US and £88 in the UK.
From the above comparison, air fryers emerge as the most energy-efficient cooking appliance, with the lowest operational costs.
Whereas, electric and gas ovens have higher associated costs. In the case of a gas oven, since you have to run it for much longer than an air fryer, using it becomes more expensive.
List of 3 Most Energy-Efficient Air Fryers in the UK and the USA
3 Most Energy-Efficient Air Fryers in the UK
- Ninja Air Fryer AF100UK (1,550 Watts)
- Tefal ActiFry Air Fryer (1400 watt)
- Tower T17023 Air Fryer (1000 watt)
3 Most Energy-Efficient Air Fryers in the US
- Ninja AF101 Air Fryer (1550 watts)
- Ultrean Air Fryer, 4.2 Quart air fryer (1500 watt)
- Magic Bullet MBA50100 Air Fryer (1300 watt)
How Much Electricity Does An Air Fryer Use
The electricity usage of an air fryer can vary according to the size and model. Typically, air fryers consume between 800 and 2000 watts of power.
Air fryers with less capacity generally require less energy than large air fryers.
A small air fryer with 1 to 2 Quart capacity can draw 800 to 1000 watts of electricity. A medium 3 to 6 QT air fryer can consume from 1200 to 1500 watts.
While a large air fryer with more than 7 QT capacity may require 1600-1800 watts of power.
Factors Impacting Electricity Usage Of An Air Fryer
Here are some factors that can alter the power requirement of an air fryer. Have a look.
Size Impacts Electricity Use
The size of the air fryer is one of the primary variables that estimate the electricity requirement of an air fryer.
For instance, Ninja AF101, with a capacity of 4 quarts, operates at 1550 watts, while Ninja AF161, with 5.5 quarts, requires 1750 watts of power for its operations.
So, as the capacity of a unit increases, so do its electricity requirements.
Air Fryer Functionality/Settings Impact Electricity Use
Unlike the past, today, air fryers come with smart features such as:
- Wi-Fi integration
- Shake reminder
- Multiple cook settings (toast, broil, dehydrate)
- Large displays that always stays ON
These value-added features also increase the power requirements of an air fryer.
If the display on an air fryer is always ON and the interior light does not turn off until the food is cooked, this appliance generally consumes more electricity.
Hence, buying a multi-functional air fryer might cost you more than a basic air frying unit.
Various Food-Related Factors Impact Electricity Use
These two food-related factors can impact electricity consumption.
- The amount of food
- The cooking duration
All of these aspects are interlinked with each other.
Cooking two pounds of fries will take less time than cooking three.
Cooking one chicken breast in an air fryer may take fifteen minutes. In comparison, the cooking time may increase to twenty minutes when you cook two chicken breasts.
The longer the cooking time, the higher the electricity usage.
Air Fryer Brand/Model Affect The Electricity Use
Sometimes, air fryers of the same size, cooking settings, etc., have different power requirements.
Kitcook and Ultrean air fryers have the same capacity, but their power requirements differ.
The former requires 1300 watts of power, while the latter operates at 1500 watts.
It means that power consumption also comes down to the manufacturer and the brand of the air fryer.
Power Consumption Chart Of Kitchen Appliances
Please note that the power consumption values provided are approximate and can vary depending on the specific model, size, and usage.
|Power Consumption Range (Watts)
You may also like to check out:
Does the Ninja Foodi use a lot of electricity?
Ninja Foodi air fryers vary in size, functionality, and wattage requirements. Therefore, their electricity consumption also varies. A large air fryer for a family of 5 with more functions and settings will use more electricity than a smaller unit. However, compared to other cooking appliances, it is quite an energy-efficient kitchen appliance.
Is it cheaper to use an air fryer or oven?
Yes, it is! An average in-home oven consumes more electricity than an air fryer because of its higher wattage requirement. Air fryers are much smaller, heat quickly, and cook faster than an oven. Therefore, air fryers are more energy efficient and much cheaper.
Are Air Fryers Worth It In The UK?
Yes, buying an air fryer in the UK is a good decision for cutting electricity costs and reducing calorie intake.
While you can spend hundreds of dollars on an air fryer, a more economical unit, which might cost you even less than $100, can easily be found in the UK.
If you use your air fryer every day instead of your oven, you can break even within a few months of its purchase.
An air fryer is more energy efficient as they cook in less time without requiring preheating. They might not be perfect for a big Sunday roast or a Thanksgiving turkey dinner, but they are ideal for routine use. Even if your air fryer’s wattage is around 2000 watts, remember, it will still be most economical to run it for everyday use compared to other cooking appliances.