As homeowners look for more convenient and efficient ways to prepare meals at home, products like air fryers and halogen ovens are becoming increasingly popular. These space-saving and versatile devices provide families with a great way to cook food in a short time. However, you may be asking yourself: halogen oven or air fryer – which is better for your home?
With both appliances, you can reduce your cooking time, potentially cut the fat and oil content in your meals, and experiment with a wide range of dishes. The challenge is figuring out which tool is best suited to your needs.
An air fryer is one of the most popular kitchen accessories on the market today. They are essentially enhanced versions of countertop convection ovens, with a few small differences between the two products. Both have heating elements and fans designed to cook food with minimal oil and fat. An affordable air fryer can push hot air around a small space rapidly for fast and even cooking with limited heat loss.
Air fryers distribute heat in a circular manner, which is great for creating crispy crusts on foods. These low-fat fryers are versatile enough to make large meals and small snacks like French fries. Plus, they come with a range of pre-set options to choose from. Air fryers generate heat quickly and deliver a convenient cooking process for people who want to make their food healthier than usual.
- Healthy food: Unlike traditional frying, air fryers use little to no oil while still creating crispy textures and delicious flavours.
- Easy to clean: Compared to standard ovens and fryers, air fryers are relatively easy to clean and maintain and produce minimal smells.
- Uniform cooking: The air circulation inside an air fryer means the food will be cooked evenly and uniformly.
- Energy efficiency: Air fryers heat up fast and cook food rapidly, meaning they use a lot less energy than a traditional oven.
- Compact: Most air fryers can only cook a small amount of food at a time, which could mean you need to use them multiple times to prepare a full meal.
- Noise: Some models can be quite noisy and disruptive
A halogen oven is a simple alternative to a traditional electric oven. One main thing that separates halogen ovens from air fryers is that they cook food using infrared light rather than a fan and heating element. Once you turn your appliance on, a halogen light bulb will distribute infrared radiation into the bowl, rapidly cooking food.
Halogen ovens also use fans to ensure your food is cooked evenly. Unlike standard methods that require convection and conduction technologies for heat transfer, halogen ovens benefit from virtually no heat loss. The infrared energy passes through your food, causing molecules to vibrate and generate heat naturally.
Typically, this means you can cook a meal a lot faster with a halogen oven than you’d be able to with a traditional oven product. Plus, halogen ovens come with a glass bowl, making it easier to track the progress of your meal without constantly opening the door. Some products also come with their own cooking rack and other accessories to help prepare different meals.
- Easy-to-clean: Like air fryers, most halogen ovens are easy to clean. The glass bowl is usually removable and dishwasher safe, and some models have a self-clean function.
- Time-saving: Because halogen ovens use a special method to cook food, they can produce meals a lot quicker than the average oven.
- Versatility: Many halogen ovens come with air fryer attachments and other tools that let you create a range of meals with a single appliance.
- Healthy cooking: Halogen ovens typically use very little or no oil, so you can enjoy meals with less fat.
- Energy: Halogen ovens can use a lot more electricity than traditional ovens
- Maintenance: Replacing halogen bulbs and bowls can be complicated
Which Is Better, Air Fryer or Oven?
Halogen ovens and air fryers have a lot in common. Both appliances are excellent for making cooking more efficient and preparing healthier meals without needing extra skills.
While there’s no one-size-fits-all strategy for deciding whether a halogen oven or air fryer is right for you, there are a few points to consider when making your decision:
- Pricing: While some halogen oven models can be more expensive than air fryers, the latter are becoming increasingly difficult to get hold of, and some are available for an extremely high price. The exact cost for each model will depend on the features you’re looking for and the size of the product.
- Volume: An air fryer is usually more undersized than a halogen oven, so it’s intended for smaller meals and families. Alternatively, a halogen oven can have a capacity of 17 litres or more, meaning you can use it just like a mini oven.
- Versatility: While air fryers can cook a lot of different types of foods, they generally deliver the same textures and results all the time. These products are intended to prepare what you would otherwise fry in a deep-fat fryer. A halogen oven can roast, bake, and fry foods quickly, giving you more options in the kitchen.
- Default programs: Both halogen ovens and air fryers include a wide range of programs you can use for various meals. However, halogen ovens tend to have a few more options available because they’re generally more flexible than air fryers. When choosing between air fryers and halogen ovens, it’s worth noting that the latter can offer more customisation options for your meals too.
- Ease of use: Most halogen ovens are extremely easy to use and come with a see-through glass bowl to track your meals’ progress. While air fryers are still relatively easy to use, monitoring your food is hard.
- Design: While halogen ovens are still a little larger and more space-consuming than air fryers, they’re also much more compact than traditional ovens. If you have a small kitchen, a halogen oven will allow you to perform a broader range of cooking tasks with a single appliance.
Is a Halogen Oven Cheaper to Run Than an Air Fryer?
When it comes to deciding if a halogen oven is better than an air fryer or vice versa, one of the main things many consumers will consider is how much each product will cost to run. Notably, while a halogen oven might cost a little more than an air fryer to purchase initially, it will usually be much cheaper and more energy efficient overall.
Studies show air fryers are about 50% less expensive than traditional ovens. Using an air fryer could cost around £55.91 per year for most families, while a standard gas cooker costs £121 per year, and an electric one costs £335,57 per year.
Alternatively, halogen ovens can save you around 75% on your energy bills, depending on how you use your device. They make it easier and faster to roast, steam, toast, bake, defrost, and cook meals however you like. This means you can avoid using multiple devices.
Can You Air Fry in a Halogen Oven?
One of the main reasons many people choose a halogen oven over an air fryer is that it can give you the best of both worlds. Halogen ovens can produce heat quickly for a range of different cooking methods. The halogen bulb makes it a versatile product, so you don’t have to use other devices for boiling, steaming, and roasting various types of food.
Many halogen ovens come with air frying accessories which you can use to leverage all the benefits of air frying technology within your existing appliance. Therefore, if you already have a halogen oven, you may not need an air frying machine.
The Verdict: Which Is Better?
So, halogen oven or air fryer: which is better? Simply put, it all depends on you. Both will allow you to reduce your cook time in the kitchen and replace a bunch of common, energy-consuming devices.
If you don’t want two appliances occupying your countertop, a halogen oven might be the ideal way to get the most out of your kitchen space while reducing energy consumption. An air fryer, instead, could be your best bet if you’re simply looking for an alternative to unhealthy deep-frying appliances.
Overall, however, the halogen oven is the clear winner in terms of versatility, cooking performance, and energy efficiency.