Thank goodness you are here! I have to give you the lowdown on my new air fryer that I received from the hubs for Mother’s Day! On Sunday night I came home to a brand new air fryer from Nuwave. My husband said he purchased this baby from Khol’s on sale over the last weekend ($100, Reg. $119). I have the Nuwave Brio 3 quart air fryer with digital programming – digital is a MUST IMO to make it easier on you (the chef). I have been air frying everything over the past 4 days to make sure I could give an honest review and feelings of how it compares to other appliances.
First let’s talk about the pro’s and con’s:
- Digital programming makes it easy to use/figure out.
- Pre-heat and Re-heat features.
- Adjustable temp/time to customize your meals.
- No oil needed to get food crispy and crunchy, although a little spritz of olive oil or coconut oil will help with things like kale chips and fries.
- Cooks and preheats fairly quickly, depending on what you are cooking.
- 3 qt. cooking capacity is convenient for cooking small batches of food without heating an entire oven.
- Pause feature! So you can check on your food and flip/rotate if needed.
- After one batch of food has been cooked, there is no need to wait for the machine to pre-heat again.
- I have the 3 qt. which is a pretty small cooking capacity. Although I can’t see the 5 qt. making a HUGE difference.
- This machine is NOT small and will take up a decent amount of space on your countertops and storage. Hence, why I stuck to the 3 qt.
- Overfilling the cooking basket will result in raw or uncooked food. This is pretty easy to avoid though.
- In order to avoid over cooking and undercooking your food, it’s helpful to use the pause feature to check on how your food is coming along. For meals like the meatballs, I should’ve flipped the meatballs and cooked for another 5 minutes. Same with the grilled cheese. It was crispier on one side after 4 minutes and the cheese hadn’t melted on the other side. I think this just takes some trial and error.
- Overfilling the cooking basket can lead to uncooked or raw food. It’s helpful to do a few pieces of food at a time or barely covering the bottom of the cooking basket with food. For instance, I made sure to cover the cooking basket with just enough Kale to ensure it would all cook evenly.
- For most food items I used the non-frozen french fry setting…360 degrees F for 14-15 mins.
- Kale chips took about 2-3 mins at 390 F. I sprayed them with avocado oil and seasoned with salt and pepper. They were so good and crunchy!
- The chicken wings (3-4) were cooked at 400 F for 20-25 mins (I followed a recipe in that came with the machine).
- The meatballs were cooked at 400 F for 8-10 minutes, flipped and then cooked for another 2-3 mins.
Overall, I’m really happy with this purchase and appliance addition to my kitchen! The pros outweigh the cons and this adds another way to cook your food than just sticking to your oven. This is a great way to roast your veggies FAST and with less oil! I do think a little oil helps give veggies, meats, etc. that “fried” crunch/crisp.
Some heart healthy frying (high heat) oils include: coconut, avocado and sunflower. Olive oil is not recommended for frying because it becomes “trans” (trans fat) and rigid under high temperatures.
How does this compare to the Instant Pot (IP)? You guys know I love my IP and I can’t say that these really compare because they cook in two VERY different ways. One cooks with pressure + steam and the food will not come out crispy or crunchy lol, however meats + beans will come out tender. The IP will reduce cooking times on stews, soups, meats, legumes, grains, etc. The air fryer holds less, even comparing a 5 qt. air fryer to my 6 qt. IP. I could honestly also say that these two appliances are the same in size (3 qt vs. 6 qt). However, an air fryer doesn’t require any liquid to cook whereas the IP does.
Was this helpful?? I hope so! So are you going to get one??!