The Cost Comparison: Air Fryers vs. Microwaves

WriterDaniel Roberts

15 February 2024

The Cost Comparison: Air Fryers vs. Microwaves

Air fryers have become increasingly popular, surpassing the once-beloved microwave. With rising energy costs, many people are looking for ways to save money, especially in the kitchen. Air fryers have captured the attention of Brits with their sleek design and convenience, dominating bestseller lists and viral TikToks showcasing their versatility. However, the microwave has long been considered a cheaper alternative to using the oven.

The Cost of Air Fryers

Air fryers come in a wide range of prices, depending on their size, power usage, and design. They can range from less than £20 to over £300. For example, Argos sells a Cookworks nine-litre dual air fryer for £100, while Amazon offers a Vencier two-litre alternative for £19.99. It's important to note that smaller air fryers may not be suitable for families as they can only cook one meal at a time.

The Cost of Running an Air Fryer

According to Uswitch, cooking with a 2,600-watt air fryer (like the Cookworks one) for 10 minutes would cost 11.8p, which amounts to 71.1p per hour. For a smaller 1,000-watt device (like the Vencier), the cost would be 4.6p for every 10 minutes or 27.4p per hour. So, if you're cooking a jacket potato for 40 minutes at 200C, you could be spending between 18.4p and 47.2p, depending on the power of your air fryer.

The Cost of Microwaves

Microwaves also vary in price, ranging from £40 to over £100, depending on their size, power usage, and design. For example, Asda sells a 17-litre microwave with six power settings and a defrost option for £47.

The Cost of Running a Microwave

According to Uswitch, a 700W microwave (like the Asda one) would cost 3.2p for every 10 minutes, or 19.1p per hour. Microwaves cook food much faster than air fryers or conventional ovens since they don't need to preheat. This makes them more cost-effective for foods like jacket potatoes, mug cakes, ready meals, and reheating leftovers. However, if you're cooking larger and more complex meals or for a large group, microwaves may not be as economical.

The Verdict

In terms of cost, microwaves are generally cheaper to run than air fryers. They are more efficient for quick cooking and reheating, making them ideal for certain foods. However, air fryers offer greater versatility and can cook larger quantities of food at once. Ultimately, the choice between an air fryer and a microwave depends on your cooking needs and preferences. If you're looking to save money, consider using a microwave for faster cooking and then using the air fryer to add crispiness. For larger meals or cooking for a group, an oven may be the most cost-effective option.

Remember, it's important to consider not only the cost of the appliance but also the cost of running it over time. Make an informed decision based on your cooking habits and budget.

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Daniel Roberts
Daniel Roberts
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Daniel Roberts is a prominent Air Fryer Tech Expert and Reviewer, celebrated for his insightful and comprehensive reviews. With an eye for innovation and a taste for culinary excellence, Daniel's articles offer more than just reviews; they provide a guide to healthier, tastier, and more efficient cooking methods.

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