Cheapest method to cook without using an oven – ‘save 64%’ on energy

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The oven is the most expensive cooking appliance to run, so for anyone looking to save money on their energy bills, Salter’s Buying Director, Saul Davies suggests using an air fryer to make dinner instead. The expert told an average household could save 64 percent on their energy bills by making the swap. 

How do air fryers work? 

Unlike a deep fat fryer, where food is submerged in hot oil, an air fryer uses convection heat. It circulates hot air to cook the food, similar to a fan oven and relies on a chemical process known as the Maillard reaction to crisp up the exterior of food. 

Most air fryers have either perforated trays or baskets that allow hot air to flow around food without restriction. This cooking method requires very little oil but can still achieve crisp, golden-brown results and is one of the reasons air fryers have a reputation for being a healthier way to prepare traditionally high-fat foods.

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How much cheaper is it to use an air fryer vs an oven for single use?

Saul said: “Each model is different, however taking our Salter Dual Air Fryer as an example; when comparing the energy used (kWh) per kg of chicken using the air fryer vs a 1.8 kW electric oven, you can save 64 percent off your energy bills.

“At a time when electricity bills are sky high, we know that switching on the oven for a tray of food, or even two different dishes is just not economically savvy. 

“With an air fryer, there is often no need to preheat, the cooking time is also shorter than using a standard oven, and of course there are health benefits too as you are looking using little or no oil.” 

What foods do air fryers cook best? 

The expert revealed: “Air fryers are for much more than just chips. You can cook almost anything in the air fryer, and there are lots of different cooking hacks and tips you can see on social media and using our recipes online. 

“Due to the reduced cooking times, poultry and fish stay very juicy and succulent in the air fryer, as do larger joints of meat. We also think that air fryers are also a great way to try new foods, especially vegetarian and vegan dishes. 

“With all air-fried food you can still enjoy the delicious, crispy taste of fried food without the guilt.” 

Salter has several air fryers in its collection as Saul explained: “From compact air fryers perfect for one to two people, to dual drawer fryers and XL capacity models, Salter have a wide range of air fryers and aero grills that are suitable for every budget. 

“Our most popular model at the minute is our Dual Air Fryer EK4750BLK, which has a sleek black design that will complement lots of different kitchen styles and is the perfect size for a couple or family.

“It features a sync function which ensures that food in both drawers is ready to serve at the same time, as well as a match function to cook larger portions of the same food.” 

When it comes to cleaning an air fryer, there are a few things to consider. Saul recommends: “removing the cooking basket” and “washing it in warm soapy water” before leaving it to dry and “reinserting back into the model”.

The air fryer should be washed “after every use” to maintain the appliance’s quality and longevity.

Salter also “recommends hand washing” the air fryer components “to retain the integrity of the non-stick coating” rather than putting it in the dishwasher. 

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