How Does an Air Fryer Work? Your Appliance Explained

Air fryer with baked cookies
Deep-fried foods are undeniably delicious, but high levels of fat and cholesterol can render them an unhealthy option for health-conscious individuals, or anyone who is watching their weight. Although it was once a near-impossible task to mimic the crispy exterior and juicy interior of foods that have been cooked in hot oil, air fryer technology has leveled the playing field—but how does an air fryer work? Mr. Appliance® has the answers you need to understand the science behind this innovative appliance and show you how easy it can be to make healthier versions of your favorite foods.

The History of the Air Fryer

In 2010, the Philips Electronics Company introduced the first air fryer into the marketplace with positive results. Since its inception, other manufacturers have followed suit including Cuisinart, KitchenAid, T-Fal, and more, and the air fryers of today are an improvement over the original with greater capacity and features designed to replace a number of appliances you may already own.

How Does an Air Fryer Work?

Frying has always been associated with some type of cooking oil or fat, but an air fryer uses little or no oil to produce similar results. The technology is based on a scientific principle called the Maillard effect, where high surface temperatures of between 280 and 330 degrees cause a chemical reaction between the amino acids and sugars. This reaction produces the crispy exterior and golden tones associated with food cooked in a deep fryer without the fat and calories, in a shorter amount of time. Rapid air technology further enhances the cooking process as high heat circulates around the food at a high rate of speed, with a heating element towards the bottom of the cooking chamber and a fan at the top.

Benefits of an Air Fryer vs Deep Frying

Now that you know how air fryers work, read on to learn the benefits of adding this small appliance to your kitchen, including:


An air fryer can do more than make crispy french fries or chicken tenders. Over the last ten years, air fryer technology has evolved to increase motor strength and capacity with optional features and accessories. In addition to the standard fare, air fryers can also produce great results when cooking meats, vegetables, or pizza, and work well for baking and reheating leftovers.

Better Health

Most air fryers can be used with just a teaspoon of oil, or none at all, for a healthier alternative to deep-fried, fatty foods.

Less Cooking Time

Air fryers heat up quickly and continuously circulate hot air around the food, for more even cooking in a shorter period of time.

Easy Clean-Up

Deep frying creates a greasy mess that can extend far beyond your deep fryer or stovetop. An air fryer is compact, with non-stick components that are dishwasher safe to make cleaning a breeze. As an added benefit to using less grease in the kitchen, you can help to avoid a clogged or stinky drain. Our Neighborly™ company partner Mr. Rooter Plumbing® has a number of tips to help you clean a stinky drain and restore order to your kitchen.


Deep frying has an added risk of fire or serious burns, while the risk of injury with an air fryer is equivalent to oven use.

No matter what type of appliances you own, be sure to keep them clean as part of your routine maintenance to enjoy a number of surprising benefits. For all your appliance repair needs contact the team of experienced professionals at your local Mr. Appliance, or call to schedule an appointment today!