Air Fryer Vs Instant Pot

Choosing between an air fryer and an Instant Pot depends on your cooking preferences, the types of dishes you frequently prepare, and the convenience you seek in kitchen appliances. Both offer unique advantages and can complement each other well in a home cooking environment.

Air Fryer

How It Works: An air fryer circulates hot air around food to cook it quickly and create a crispy outer layer, mimicking the effects of deep-frying but with significantly less oil.


  • Healthier Cooking: Provides a lower-fat alternative to deep-frying, reducing calorie intake without sacrificing texture.
  • Crispy Results: Excellent for achieving a crunchy exterior on foods like chicken wings, fries, and vegetables.
  • Quick Cooking: Preheats and cooks food faster than traditional ovens, ideal for busy lifestyles.


  • Limited Capacity: Smaller cooking space may not be suitable for larger families or meal prepping in bulk.
  • Learning Curve: Finding the right cooking times and temperatures for different foods might require some experimentation.

Instant Pot

How It Works: An Instant Pot is a multifunctional pressure cooker that can also slow cook, sauté, steam, and, in some models, even air fry. It cooks food quickly under pressure, locking in flavors and nutrients.


  • Versatility: Can replace several kitchen appliances, making it a valuable all-in-one tool for various cooking methods.
  • Efficient Meal Prep: Ideal for soups, stews, beans, grains, and large cuts of meat, cooking them in a fraction of the time it would take using traditional methods.
  • Ease of Use: Many models come with pre-set programs for one-touch cooking of certain dishes.


  • Size: Generally takes up more counter space than an air fryer.
  • Learning Curve: Understanding how to properly use all the functions and settings can take some time.

Key Differences

  • Cooking Method: The air fryer uses rapid air circulation to fry foods with less oil, while the Instant Pot relies on pressure cooking (among other functions) to prepare meals quickly and efficiently.
  • Health Focus: Both devices offer health benefits; air fryers reduce fat content in fried foods, and Instant Pots preserve nutrients through pressure cooking.
  • Versatility: The Instant Pot offers more cooking functions, potentially replacing several appliances, whereas the air fryer specializes in mimicking frying techniques.


If your goal is to enjoy fried foods with fewer calories and fat, an air fryer is a great choice. However, if you’re looking for an appliance that can handle a wide range of cooking tasks and simplify meal preparation, an Instant Pot might be more suitable. Depending on your cooking habits and space, having both can provide the flexibility to prepare a wide variety of dishes.

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Bubbly Chef author