How An Air Fryer Has Changed My Life & Some of my Favorite Air-Fried Foods

A couple of weeks ago I shared a new addition to my kitchen, my Air Fryer. Adding an air fryer to my kitchen has been one of the most transformative experiences in how I cook. The only thing I can’t think of that comes close to being as life-changing would be the invention of the microwave. Seriously, if right now you said I had to give up either my microwave or my air fryer, I’d say, “Bye-bye Microwave!”

I realized the other day that since I’ve had my air fryer, I’ve only used my microwave once in the past two weeks. Everything tastes better coming out of my air fryer. Everything!

Best Air Fryer with 2 Baskets

 

Here’s where it has come to live in my kitchen. Many years ago, back when I had cable TV, this is where the TV sat. I mainly had a TV in my kitchen because I really dislike cooking. TV was a way to distract from the drudgery of cooking. I love that I can pop things into my air fryer, set it, and walk away.

My air fryer fits so nicely in this corner. I think it may vent out the back and this gives it plenty of room to do that. Also, I have a spotlight overhead so if I need extra light, I can flip it on. It’s as if this corner of my kitchen has been waiting for this baby to show up!

Love My Air Fryer

 

A few weeks back when I shared this new addition to my kitchen, I had just tried cooking my first food, a couple of chicken breasts. It’s virtually impossible to screw anything up when cooking in an air fryer, at least that’s been my experience. I guess it’s possible to over-cook something, but if you just check on whatever you’re cooking about halfway through, you shouldn’t have that problem.

Air Frying Chicken

 

You can use frozen chicken breasts or fresh chicken. For the chicken below, I marinated fresh chicken breast in Hidden Valley Ranch Dressing overnight, then dredged the breasts in bread crumbs as I’ve seen my daughter-in-law do, then placed them in the fryer baskets. They came out delicious!

 

This is a recent meal that was all cooked in the air fryer. I air-fried the chicken and the sweet potato fries in one basket and roasted the Brussel sprouts in the other basket.

 

One of my favorite things to make for breakfast is a couple or three of these veggie pancakes. I buy these at Publix and they only take about 10 minutes in the air fryer.

Zucchini & Vegetable Pancakes, Air Fryer Cooking Recipes

 

They are soooo good! They come out crispy/crunchy around the edges with warm, chewy centers. I’ll even pop a couple into the air fryer during the day for a snack sometimes.

Zucchini and Vegetable Pancakes Cooked in Air Fryer

 

I decided to try cooking sausage and an egg together one morning. I thought it turned out really well. I cooked them in the same air fryer pan together.

 

You may remember from my previous post, the air fryer I purchased has two separate bins so you can have two different (or the same) things cooking at the same time at different temperatures. That way, the food will all come out done at the same time, instead of having to batch cook where one food ends up getting cold while the second one is cooking.

Or, you can have something air frying in one bin while roasting or warming something up in the other one. Love this air fryer so much! I purchased mine here: Air Fryer with Two Pans for Dual Cooking It looks like it’s also available here: Air Fryer.

 

Chicken wings are amazing! Most meats cook in about 20 minutes. I always pause my air fryer about halfway through just to check on the progress.

Chicken Wings Cooked in Air Fryer

 

I love popcorn shrimp cooked up in my air fryer! I have this thing going so much, sometimes I don’t even take time to wash it between fryings because I’m frying one thing after the other. When I’m cooking something from scratch, I’ll mist it with a little avocado oil, but if it’s something frozen, I just dump it right in and it comes out great like this popcorn shrimp.

Popcorn Shrimp Cooked in Air Fryer

 

One of my favorite snacks is sweet potato fries with a few pecans on the side. There’s just something about that combination of flavors!

Sweet Potato Fries Cooked in Air Fryer

 

If you purchase an air fryer, I recommend buying a set of silicone-coated tongs. They are great for reaching in and removing food from the air fryer bins without risking scratching the interior of the bins. I don’t know why, but nothing seems to stick to the sides of my air fryer bins–maybe they are Teflon-coated. Anyway, these tongs work great. I bought this set here: Kitchen Tongs.

Hope you enjoyed this follow-up post on how I’m using my air fryer. It truly has been life-changing. In fact, I practically never eat out anymore because I like what I can fix at home so much better! It has definitely been one of the best purchases I’ve made in years!

I purchased mine here: Air Fryer, but they are also available here: Air Fryer.

Love My Air Fryer

 

Happy Air-Frying! See you tomorrow for Metamorphosis Monday!

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Comments

  1. After your first post about the air fryer, we ordered one. It hasn’t arrived yet but I am looking forward to it. One of the reasons I had not bought one was I couldn’t find one with two bins. I’m not one who is big on gadgets but I think this one will be well worth the money! Thanks for sharing.

  2. do you just dump the chicken breast in the fryer or do you coat them with flour? thanks …really am thinking of getting one. rls

    • I’ve done it both ways. When I buy Tyson frozen breaded chicken, I just dump those in…don’t do anything else. Recently, I took a few pieces of raw chicken beast and marinated them overnight in Hidden Valley Ranch Dressing, which is something I’ve seen my daughter-in-law do. The next day, I dipped the chicken in bread crumbs. My dil uses Panko, but I bought the store brand since they didn’t have Panko. Then I placed those into the bins with nothing else. They cooked up great! So you can do it either way.

    • Robin, I just realized I took pictures of that meal to post about it. Hold on a sec and upload a photo to this comment of the chicken I cooked from scratch.

    • Okay, here’s how the chicken breasts I marinated in Ranch Dressing, dredged in bread crumbs, then air fried came out. They were delicious!
       
      Air Fried Chicken

  3. Wow – it just fries up like that without any (or much) oil? That’s amazing! I could totally see how that could change your life! Thanks for the update – it’s so nice to know how things really work! Happy Sunday!

  4. Cyndi Raines says

    Oh Susan, all of your food looks so good. I am very tempted, but hate to put one more thing on my counter, ha. When our microwave died I didn’t replace it because it seemed like we only used it to heat up vegetables and popcorn, plus I used my toaster oven a lot. So now I buy Skinny Pop popcorn and really don’t miss it. My cupboards are full with 3 different sizes of crock pots, 2 electric frying pans, a George Forman Grill and honestly, they do all get used pretty frequently. With that said, this still loks like a useful item to have especially since it has two comparments to use at the same time. I have put it on my Amazon wishmlist and maybe by christmas I will convince myself to get it. Lol

  5. Looks interesting. I don’t like cooking breakfast or lunch so I need to do something besides toast and a sandwich. How do you clean the bins? Do any other parts need cleaning?

    • They clean up with dishwashing detergent and virtually no scrubbing. I have a gentle sponge I use and nothing seems to really stick to them. The little inserts that fit in the bottom can go in the dishwasher, per the instructions that came with them, but I don’t ever do that. They wash up very easily with just a gentle scrub sponge.

  6. So this air fryer must have different pans? I could never fry an egg with mine because it has vents in the bottom! Even though ours is small I make frozen hash browns, hot dogs, fish, steak, frozen snacks. Haven’t tried vegetables yet. It won’t replace the microwave because we use it a lot to heat water.

  7. Deb Herfindal says

    I will add the Air Fryer to my Christmas wish list. Thanks for all the info on it

  8. Dorrie McKoy says

    Hi Susan,
    Thanks for sharing about your air fryer. I bought one this spring when you mentioned it. We have loved it.
    What kind of wings did your purchase to air fry? They look wonderful. Keep the recipes coming! 🙂

    • I bought the Kroger brand that my daughter-in-law sometimes buys, but they didn’t have the exact “flavor” that we liked when I was in Ohio, so I chose something that sounded kinda like it. It was too salty for me so I think the next time I make them, I’m going to buy fresh ones from the meat department. If you find a frozen brand that you like, I would love to know what brand it is.

  9. Everything looks delicious…I love our air fryer, but yours is fantastic! May have to upgrade. And….LOVE your Blue Willow! To me, Blue Willow always says “home”!

  10. This is a great follow up post. I hope readers add more ideas to it too. Curious about how you did the egg; is there a round dish you can use in the fryer?

  11. Okay, I have an air fryer a friend gave me (she didn’t want to take the time to learn how to use it). I have had it for two years and have yet to use it. Now I have to give it a try. Wish me luck!

  12. Jon Anne Winstead says

    I’ve had an air fryer over a year and never used it! Love reading what you’re cooking/enjoying! Keep up with the tips!!

  13. Hi Susan,
    I’m a long-time follower and admirer of yours. I want to thank you for all the wonderful inspirations. I marvel at your energy and creativity.
    I’m about to buy the air fryer for my husband and myself. We’re in our 70s and I find I am not cooking a lot these days, opting for less healthy takeout.
    But this seems so easy and the results look delicious. So, I’m going to try it out. I’m not into appliances generally but your experience and the online reviews really convinced me.
    One question – how did you fry an egg without it dripping thorough the holes? I researched this a bit and did not see a flat surface.
    Thanks again for all the inventive home artistries you provide to your readers.

    • Thanks so much, Gail! I removed the little insert that comes in each of the bins. It’s removal for when you don’t need it. Sometimes I leave it in but for the sausage and egg, I didn’t feel like I needed it. (The inserts can supposedly go in the dishwasher, though I always just wash them in the sink.) Then I just cracked and dropped the egg whole, into the bin. I didn’t break it since I like my eggs cooked that way…is that called Sunny Side Up? lol But you could break it if you want it cooked more done.

  14. thanks for the info on cooking fresh vs. frozen.
    robin

  15. My hubs and I are in our 70’s and do a lot more take out than necessary or the frozen meals from Publix. I’m thinking of going for an air fryer but wonder if I’d actually use it enough to make it worthwhile. Since we both have back issues, it may just be the answer. Thanks for sharing your experience with it.

  16. Brenda s. Lawrence says

    My son and I are loving our air fryer too….until I told him about the double basket one. He was like, “Is it to late to send ours back?” lol We may upgrade to the double one at some point or maybe I will give him the double one for Christmas and I will keep the single one when he moves out. Anyway, we love cooking in ours too. My son loves chicken wings and it does make amazing chicken wings. Love popcorn shrimp in it, sweet potato fries, etc…I do have a question though, how did you make your dippy egg in it? Did you put the egg in a little ramekin bowl or something like that?? Glad you are enjoying your air fryer Susan! It does look like it was made for that spot in your kitchen! Hugs, Brenda

    • I was so surprised to find the one with the double baskets, I don’t think that design has been out very long. No, I didn’t put the egg in anything. I just removed the little grate insert thing in the bottom of one of the bins and dropped the egg “whole” right into the bottom of the bin. I kept watch since I knew it wouldn’t take long to cook. I know, isn’t that crazy. It fits so perfectly in that corner. So far, I find I use it several times a day. I usually cook up the veggie cakes in it for breakfast in the morning, then I had wings for lunch. So it’s getting used every day. I’m obsessed with it! lol

  17. I don’t have the Ninja, I also love my air fryer! Tonight I made bacon wrapped chicken. The kids said it was the best they’ve ever had (we usually do them in the oven). Tomorrow I’m going to try fried chicken.

  18. Referring to the picture, but off topic….I love the plaid lamp on the counter. Can you say where you got it?

  19. Hi, how did you fry the egg?

    • I just removed the little insert that’s in the bottom and cracked the egg right into the bin. It only took a few minutes to cook. I left the yolk whole but you can crack it if you want the center really done.

      • Hi Susan,

        Thank you for responding so quickly. I ordered it after reading your article. My husband loves fried eggs. I just have a few more questions. Do you spray with oil? How long did you cook it for and at what temperature? You put it in the air fry setting? Thank you again. Have a nice weekend.

        • I did spray the bottom with a little avocado oil, olive oil would be great too. I don’t remember now how long I cooked it, but it was just a few minutes. I just paused the air fryer a few times to check on it, but it didn’t take very long. I cooked it at the temp that my air fryer always defaults to which is 390 degrees. Whenever I cook something the first time, I pause the air fryer every few minutes to check on how it’s doing. For example, the zucchini and veggie “pancakes” that I like to fix for breakfast, those only take about 10 minutes in the air fryer at 390 or 400. Meat, like frozen chicken and frozen chicken wings take around 17-20 minutes at 390, but most other items I cook in the air fryer take much less time. Frozen broccoli and other frozen veggies only take around 10 minutes. So just get it cooking, then pause it every few minutes to see how it looks. After a while, you’ll know just how long things take.

          • Thank you! I appreciate it. And you’re right, after looking at the manual that’s comes with it, you really can’t mess anything up. We made frozen fries today and was so happy the house didn’t smell like food. I love reading your blogs. I’m always learning something new. You DIL is very lucky to have a great mother in law.

          • Thank you Susan. We made frozen fries today and they came out great. I was also very happy the house didn’t smell like food. Looking forward to making good use of it. I love your blog because I always learn something new. Your daughter in law is very lucky to have you.

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