Cooking in an Air Fryer: How Healthy Is It?
We now see air fryers in many kitchens because we want to eat as simply and healthily as possible without compromising taste. But how healthy are air fryers?
Mass production has replaced the deep fryer with a hot air fryer to cook your favorite snacks in a healthier way. Sounds like a great idea, don’t you think? But is cooking with a hot air fryer as healthy as we think?
Why Are Hot Air Fryers Healthier?
First, you should know exactly what an air fryer can do. To explain, it is an appliance that cooks food by blowing hot air like an oven. You can add a small amount of oil to the food, but a hot air fryer allows you to fry the food crispy without using oil.
A large amount of fat is always used in frying. While consuming a lot of fat is not necessarily bad, healthy fats are best obtained from products such as olive oil, avocados, and nuts, not from fried snacks. The taste of food made in an air fryer is, of course, dependent on the products you put in this convection oven. Unfortunately, meatballs made in an air fryer are still unhealthy.
1) Less Acrylamide
Do you like to fry chips in an air fryer? Then the golden yellow ones are the healthiest. When frying potato products, large amounts of acrylamide are produced. This is a substance that can be harmful if consumed in large quantities. This substance is produced when food turns brown. It happens as soon as the starch in potatoes is heated above 120°C. Therefore, try to avoid black edges as much as possible and ensure that your fries do not turn too brown. Air fryers produce less acrylamide because they cook at lower temperatures than deep frying.
2) Preserves Vitamins
What about vitamin preservation? It is essential to know that vitamins are constantly lost during food cooking. When potatoes are cooked, more vitamins (especially folic acid and vitamin C) are lost than in dry heat cooking, such as air frying and oven frying.
In a study conducted, it was found that vitamin C preservation was slightly higher when foods were cooked in an air fryer than when cooked in a pan. However, further research is needed before general conclusions can be drawn. Again, it is essential to determine which products are cooked in an air fryer.
Tips for Healthy Fried Foods
Of course, there’s nothing wrong with the occasional potato chip, but the beauty of the air fryer is that you can cook more than just fried snacks in this kitchen appliance. How about healthier variations of vegetables, meats, lasagna, quiche, and more? Here are some tips for even healthier fried foods.
Make your own fresh french fries:
- Cut one (sweet potato) into thin strips, quickly blanch.
- Brush with olive oil.
- Sprinkle with rosemary.
- Healthier and tastier!
Limit added sugar and salt: Do you opt for ready-made potato products? Then make sure they do not contain salt, sugar, or other unnecessary additives.
Crispy vegetables: cooking vegetables in a convection oven often makes them a little crispier and tastier. This is an essential tip if you want to make healthy fries!
Air frying under a fume hood: Using an air fryer releases particles. Therefore, it is advisable to place it under a fume hood when using it.
Use healthy cooking oils and fats: Choose liquid products such as olive oil for cooking and roasting.
Limit acrylamide: set the convection oven temperature to a maximum of 180°C. Do you cook products with high starch content, such as potatoes? Pre-soak them in blanch or water to reduce the sugar content on the outside of the product. This way, less acrylamide is produced during cooking. Also, ensure that the product’s edges do not darken and become too brown.