There’s a reason everyone loves fried foods – they’re crispy and delicious! However, deep fried foods can result in diabetes, heart disease, weight gain and other adverse health effects. Using an air fryer is a healthy alternative that allows you to get the flavour and texture of deep fried foods without all the risks. We’ve rounded up 50 healthy air fryer recipes you can work into your meal plan for healthy fried food that’s just as delicious as the real thing!
What Is An Air Fryer?
An air fryer is a kitchen appliance that fry foods by circulating hot air around the food to produce a crunchy, crispy exterior. It’s essentially a countertop convection oven that makes cooking faster, easier and more delicious.
Air fryers fry foods with considerably less oil than traditional deep fryers (one teaspoon versus three or more cups), while still delivering the same taste and texture. You can use an air fryer to pretty much replicate any deep fried food you can think of, such as French fries, chicken fingers and crispy vegetables.
Are Air Fryers Healthy?
Air fried foods are a healthy alternative to deep fried foods, since they have a lower fat content and calorie count. With an air fryer, all you need is a teaspoon of oil, compared to completely submerging food in up to 3 to 6 cups of oil like you would with a deep fryer. Using an air fryer can cut the fat content of fried foods up to 75 percent and also decrease calories that lead to weight gain.
Air fryers can also decrease the formation of harmful compounds such as acrylamide. Acrylamide is a compound formed in carbohydrate-rich foods during high-heat cooking like deep frying and is classified as a “probable carcinogen”.
Although air fried foods are healthier than deep fried foods, we should note that non-fried foods are healthiest. Air fried foods can be part of your overall diet as a treat, but they shouldn’t be eaten daily.
Frequently eating any type of fried foods can lead to numerous health effects such as type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure, heart disease and cancer. While it’s totally fine to use an air fryer every now and again, limiting your intake of all fried foods will help improve your overall health. Limit using an air fryer to once a week to make sure you don’t go overboard.
5 Best Foods to Cook in an Air Fryer
There are plenty of ways to use an air fryer to cook chicken. Whether you’re in the mood for chicken wings, chicken nuggets, or chicken breast with vegetables, an air fryer is the perfect way to get your chicken nice and crisp!
From breakfast potatoes to homemade potato chips to French fries, potatoes are one of the most popular foods to make in an air fryer. It will give your potatoes the nice crisp you’re looking for, adding a delicious side to your meal! Side note: You can also make other types of chips like kale chips in an air fryer!
3. Vegetables You’d Roast or Grill
Think about vegetables you’d typically roast or grill such as asparagus, squash, cauliflower, broccoli and Brussels sprouts. Imagine how good these would taste with an extra crunchy layer! Pop them into the air fryer for a delicious, healthy treat!
4. Hard Boiled Eggs
Did you know you can make hard boiled eggs in an air fryer? You don’t even need water to make them- you just put them in the air fryer, peel them and they’re ready to eat. It’s ideal for busy mornings!
Crispy chickpeas are delicious and there may be no better way to make them than with an air fryer. You can eat crispy chickpeas as a snack, put them in a salad, or top your Buddha bowls with them.
50 Healthy Air Fryer Recipes We Love
1. Honey Mustard Salmon | Fabulously Frugal
2. Healthy Chicken and Veggies | Gimme Delicious
3. Zucchini Corn Fritters | Watch What U Eat
4. Beef and Vegetable Stir Fry | Fab Food 4 All
5. Corn on the Cob | Vegetarian Mamma
6. Sweet Potato Tots | Cooking Light
7. Brussels Sprouts with Bacon | Fabulously Frugal
8. Zucchini Enchiladas | Awe Filled Homemaker
9. Avocado Fries | Cooking Light
10. Chicken and Broccoli | Eat Better Recipes
11. Salmon with Maple Soy Glaze | Skinnytaste
12. Cheesy Beef Empanadas | Delish
13. Italian Style Meatballs | Cooking Light
14. Air Fryer Chicken Breasts | Diethood
15. Roasted Asian Broccoli | Food Faith Fitness
16. Tex Mex Cauliflower Rice | Easy Cheesy Vegetarian
17. Crispy Avocado Tacos | Live, Eat, Learn
18. Tofu and Potato Scramble | Glue and Glitter
19. Crispy Cauliflower Buffalo Wings | Cook Republic
20. Pork Chops with Brussels Sprouts | Cooking Light
21. Whole Wheat Chicken Nuggets | SkinnyTaste
22. Baked Sweet Potato | Courtney’s Sweets
23. Madagascan Bean Stew | Easy Cheesy Vegetarian
24. Crispy Kale Chips | Simple and Savory
25. Peach Hand Pies | Cooking Light
26. Spicy Chicken Taquitos | Delish
27. Cajun Breakfast Sausage | Cotter Crunch
28. Cheesy Spinach Wontons | Kleinworth & Co.
29. Falafel Burger | Recipe This
30. Garlic Fries with Rosemary | Foodie Crush
31. BBQ Lentil Meatballs | Vegan Yack Attack
32. Breaded Cauliflower Tacos | Karissa’s Vegan Kitchen
33. Sweet Potato Toast | Balanced Life Leslie
34. Tandoori Paneer Naan Pizza | Piping Pot Curry
35. Steak and Asparagus Bundles | Bellalimento
36. Ham and Egg Toast Cups | The New Chew
37. Healthy Fish Finger Sandwich | My Fussy Eater
38. Cajun Salmon | Budget Pantry
39. Apple Cinnamon Dessert Empanadas | Stay Snatched
40. Low Carb Tandoori Chicken | Piping Hot Curry
41. Egg Cups | Eazy Peazy Mealz
42. Potato Tacos | Vegan Hugs
43. Veggie Packed Meatballs | Predominantly Paleo
44. Air Fryer Taco Twists | Taste of Home
45. Greek Turkey Burgers | Eating Well
46. Crispy Air Fryed Tofu | Live Eat Learn
47. Stuffed Mushrooms | Food Network
48. Easy Pork Dumplings | Real Simple
49. Veggie Pizza Calzones | Eat This, Not That
50. Easy Chicken Curry | Taming Twins
These air fryer recipes are going to make a great addition to your meal plan round up! Add them in for a healthy, delicious and crispy addition to your meals!