Ninja is a reputed name in the kitchen appliance industry. They are the supplier of top-quality air fryer, coffee maker, pressure cooker, blender, food processor, convection oven, and so on. The air fryers by Ninja are of top class. These are the most popular among the consumers for so many unique values. In this article, I am going to review the Ninja air fryers. After the read, you will know the attributes, features, pros and cons of Ninja air fryer over other brands. It will also help you take proper decision on the specific model of Ninja brand.
Common Attributes of Ninja air fryers
The ninja air fryers have some unique features and attributes that have differentiated from other ordinary air fryers. In this section, I will discuss some of these important features.
Wide Temperature Range – An ordinary air fryer comes with a temperature range of around 180°F to 400°F. Although this temperature is just OK for air frying, it will not give you any added advantage either. Between this temperature range, you will be able to roast, grill, and bake with air frying. With Ninja air fryers, you will get the lower range temperature as low as 105°F. Therefore, you will be able to cook the recipes that need low temperatures for a longer time such as dehydrated apple chips. It does not mean that you will not get this temperature to any other brands other than Ninja. For other brands, you will get this facility for the high-end air fryers only.
Higher wattage – Do you know what should be the proper wattage of an air fryer? The rule of thumb is, more is better. Air fryers with higher wattage come with a powerful heating element. Therefore, it cooks faster than the air fryers with lower wattage. The wattage of Ninja air fryers is higher compared to the average value. Therefore, it is better for faster and uniform cooking.
Food dehydration – All the Ninja air fryers are capable of food dehydration with full range. The lowest temperature that can be achieved with the Ninja air fryers is 105°F. For dehydration of herbs, the required temperature is around 100°F. For meat, the required temperature is higher. Some other brands which claim to have food dehydration function, can not lower the temperature as much as Ninja. Therefore, a full range of food dehydration is not possible with all the ordinary air fryers.
Ceramic coated basket – Unlike ordinary non-stick food basket, Ninja air fryers have a food basket with ceramic coating. The advantage of ceramic is that it is safe. The regular non-stick coating may contain BPA which may not good for your health. A ceramic coated food basket is a safer alternative to the material that contains harmful BPA. Another advantage of Ninja is that it will provide you a crisper plate as a free accessory. This plate will enhance the crispiness of the food.
Multi-layer rack – Not all air fryers come with racks. With a rack, you can make the best utilization of the space of the food basket. Ninja air fryers come with dehydration function. For this cooking method, you need to keep the sliced pieces of food apart. Therefore, it requires a lot of space. The multi-layer rack will help you put more sliced food in a single batch. If you want to cook multiple recipes at a time, you can also do it with this simple accessory.
Best Ninja Air fryer models
Currently, Ninja has two different models of air fryer to serve different kinds of demands of the consumers. I am going to discuss each of the models in brief. The above-mentioned features are common to all these models. The two popular models of air fryer from Ninja are-
- Ninja AF101 4 QT air fryer
- Ninja AF161 Max XL 5.5 QT air fryer
Now let’s find what other features are available with these models.
Ninja AF101 4 QT Air Fryer
- Model no. – Ninja AF101
- Item weight – 9.7 lbs
- Dimension – 13.6 x 11 x 13.3 inches
- Power – 1500 W
- Maximum Temperature – 400°F
- Minimum temperature –105°F
- Food basket size – 4 qt
The AF101 model is suitable for small to medium families. The basket size of this unit is 4 qt. It is always recommended to preheat air fryers for 3 to 5 minutes to get the best results. The weight and dimension of Ninja AF101 are 9.7 lbs and 13.6 x 11 x 13.3 inches respectively. If I compare the equivalent weight and dimension with air fryers from other brands, then I find that this Ninja air fryer is bulkier but a little bit lighter. Therefore, if you like mobility, it will be a better option. But for a small kitchen, there are other good options available in the market.
What about the temperature range? Ninja AF101 air fryer has the highest temperature of 400°F. As I mentioned earlier, this temperature is average if I compare it with other equivalent air fryers. The lowest temperature of 105°F is good for dehydration. It has a simple control panel that has a digital display with four preset cooking modes. If I summarize the advantages and disadvantages of this model, I get the below findings.
- Ceramic coated food basket of AF101 is free from toxicity. It is better for food safety.
- This air fryer comes with a multi-layer rack that maximizes the dehydration capacity.
- It has a user-friendly digital control panel. The control panel has four preset cooking functions.
- The temperature range of this air fryer is better than that of the competitors.
- The popularity of this model is huge. It is among the top 3 popular models in the USA.
- The price of Ninja AF101 is higher compared to other similar brands.
- A burnt plastic smell is a common problem for almost all air fryers. This model is no exception.
In summary, Ninja AF101 is suitable for smaller families. It is also comparatively cheaper. Therefore, the budget concerned persons should select this one.
Ninja AF161 Max XL 5.5 QT Air Fryer
- Model no. – Ninja AF161
- Item weight – 11 lbs
- Dimension – 14 x 11 x 14.75 inches
- Power – 1750 W
- Maximum Temperature – 450°F
- Minimum temperature –105°F
- Food basket size – 5.5 qt
If you are living in a family consisting of more than 4 members, then AF161 is a better choice. It is an advanced model that improved some of the features of the previous AF101 model. The basket size of 5.5 qt is suitable for cooking in large batches. Therefore, the dimension and weight of this unit are higher. It has a weigh of 11 pounds. Compared to the competitors, the weight of Ninja AF161 Max XL air fryer is lower. Therefore, it will be suitable if you want mobility. The comparative dimension of this unit is slightly higher. Therefore, as like AF101, it is also not suitable if you want to save some space in your kitchen.
If you review the temperature range, AF161 has excellent flexibility in this aspect. The lowest temperature that you can gain is 105°F which is similar to the other model we have mentioned. With this temperature, AF161 has become one of the best choices for the big families that want an air fryer and food dehydrator combo. The highest temperature of his unit is 450°F. With this temperature, you will enjoy the high-temperature cooking functions such as broiling. With the digital control panel, you will get seven preset cooking options such as baking, roasting, reheating, and so on.
- The max crisp technology of AF161 provides a faster temperature rise. It will cook food at least 30% faster than the old models of Ninja.
- The basket is large enough to cook food for a big family.
- The temperature range is quite high. It is very unique to this model that very few other air fryers of the similar range have this flexibility in the temperatures.
- The Ninja Max XL has seven preset cooking modes. Therefore, the maximum of the recipes can be prepared just by touching the touch buttons – for example, air fried broccoli, chicken wings and so on.
- The ceramic coated basket is dishwasher safe and non-stick. Therefore, it will be easy to maintain.
- Because of the brand and the higher value that it has created, the price of this unit is slightly higher than that of other similar size air fryers.
- It is a little bulkier. Therefore, check the overall dimension before making the decision.
In summary, Ninja AF161 is suitable for high-temperature cooking. It is also recommended for larger families and faster cooking.
Before you make your purchase decision, you have to follow some common rules. First of all, I am considering that you are a lover of Ninja and have made your decision to get a Ninja air fryer. Now, you have only two options to choose from – AF101 and AF161.
Family size – If you have a family that has more than 4 members, then I will suggest going for AF161. The basket size of this air fryer is 5.5 qt that is quite capable of cooking in large batches. AF101 is a smaller size air fryer that will be suitable for families having 3 to 4 members.
High-temperature cooking – Many of you may like to cook foods that need high temperatures. Keep in mind that AF101 can reach up to 400°F. Therefore, even if you are residing in a small family, you still need to get AF161 if you want to get reach a higher temperature. Ninja Max XL has seven preset cooking options that include high-temperature cooking such as broiling.
Rapid cooking – Ninja AF161 Max XL is integrated with ‘Max Crisp Technology’. With this technology, it will cook faster than the other model. The motor power of AF161 is also higher. Therefore, persons who like faster cooking should prefer AF161 over 101.
Price – Price may sometimes a decision-maker. As expected, Ninja AF101 is cheaper than AF161. Therefore, if you have a budget constraint, but still want to get a Ninja air fryer, then I will suggest you go for AF101. There are not many differences between these models. I have already clarified everything. If it fits your needs, then you can get this. Otherwise, if you are OK with spending some extra bucks, then AF161 will be a preferred option.
What are the best Ninja air fryer models?
Currently, Ninja has two models of air fryer both of which are of good quality. The models are AF101 and AF161. A few days back, Ninja had another model named AF100. But his model has been replaced by AF101. Therefore, currently, the two mentioned models are available.
Which model is best for a small or medium family?
For a smaller family, AF101 will be preferred. The basket size of this unit 4 quarts. But if you do not have a budget constraint, AF161 will be a better choice which has a 5.5-quart food basket. But it will be bulkier. Therefore, you should also have sufficient space on your countertop.
Which Ninja model is suitable for a larger family?
For a large family consisting of members more than 4, AF161 will be preferred. However, if you have a budget constraint, then AF101 is also doable. In this case, you will have to cook in multiple batches when it requires more food to serve many people.
Does Ninja air fryers have enough wattage?
Higher wattage is an advantage of Ninja air fryers. For a small and portable air fryer, a wattage of around 1200W is enough. Ninja AF101 has a wattage of 1500W instead. The larger model AF161 has a wattage of 1750W. Therefore, Ninja is far ahead when it comes to the point of wattage.
Are the air fryers from Ninja healthy?
The food basket of Ninja air fryers is coated with ceramic that has made it non-stick. Ceramic is a compound that is free from the chemical reaction. The ordinary non-stick pans may contain compounds that are contaminated with BPA. Therefore, compared to the air fryers of other brands, Ninja is far safer.
Ninja is comparatively pricy for so many good attributes that justify the cost. The values that these air fryers have created accredited by thousands of consumers with positive reviews. It was difficult for me to find the drawbacks of Ninja air fryers during the review. The air fryers by Ninja are comprehensive. Therefore, there are not so many models introduced by the company. Just two models are good enough to represent the needs of the whole consumer base.
I think this review was helpful for you to know more about the renowned Ninja air fryers. If you find it useful, you can share it with others. You can also share your kitchen experiences through the comments. Have a good day.