Air fryers are one of the hottest kitchen gadgets on the market today. You don’t have to be a scientist to figure out why. Instead of oil, air fryers circulate air that’s heated to high temperatures to create a crispy outside layer on your favorite foods. We’re talking about delicious and healthy dinner recipes and snack ideas like air fryer tortilla chips, air fryer chicken legs and even air fryer cauliflower tots. Air fryers are a blessing to dieters and anyone looking for help with weight loss. They give you the freedom to enjoy your favorite fried foods without all the guilt, loads of calories and, of course, fat.
Did we get your attention yet? Air fryers have the ability to make our favorite foods even more delicious without destroying our healthy diet plans. They eliminate unnecessary grease that packs unhealthy calories into your recipes. So, why not whip up your go-to “fried” recipe without, well, frying it?! It’s possible thanks to this handy kitchen tool and we’re here to give you all of the insight on how air fryers can really help weight loss.
Check out six ways an air fryer can help your weight loss:
1. You’ll use less fat.
You just don’t need it! The heated air gives you all the pleasures of fried food—crispy outside, juicy inside—with no or little oil. A 2015 study, published in the Journal of Food Science, found that potatoes prepared in an air fryer had the same crispy texture and similar internal moistness as those cooked in oil. However, there was “substantially less” fat content. That’s right—we are talking about fries here, people! You can enjoy crispy fries in all of their golden glory while on a weight loss diet. Are we dreaming?!
2. You’ll eat fewer calories.
People who use air fryers can cut 70 to 80% of their calories, according to the Cleveland Clinic. This statistic alone is enough to have us hooked on the new trendy tool. The number of delicious air fryer recipes are endless for every meal—think crispy bacon and potatoes for breakfast, chicken fingers and fries for lunch and air fried Mexican pizza for dinner. Are you hooked yet?
3. There’s less temptation to snack while your meal cooks.
The reason? Air frying typically takes less time (about 20% less) than conventional ovens, says CNET. This means that you won’t be spending as much time hungry while you wait for your meal to be ready. This kitchen appliance is also the perfect investment for those on-the-go schedules where cooking healthy sometimes seems impossible due to time constraints and lack of energy. Say hello to your new best friend in the kitchen!
4. Breading is a thing of the past.
When you deep fry something like breaded chicken, the oil tends to nestle right into the porous surface. Order a breaded chicken breast at a popular fried chicken franchise and it clocks in at around 360 calories. However, that same chicken breast is only 160 calories when you remove the breading, according to FastFoodNutrition.org. Air frying gives you a similar crispy outer texture without all that breading and fat—which is exactly why this kitchen tool is a weight loss diet win.
5. Air frying cuts down on cancer-causing chemicals.
Acrylamide, which has been shown in studies to cause cancer in animals when consumed at high doses, is produced mostly in plant-based foods cooked at high temperatures (think French fries), says the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Air frying reduces the formation of this potentially deadly chemical by as much as 90%, according to a 2015 study, published in the Journal of Food Science.
6. It could make you a veggie lover.
Like roasting, air frying can bring out the sweetness of any vegetable, says VeryWellFit.com. This might get you to try—and even love—the less-than-likeable veggies such as Brussels sprouts and broccoli. These can often become bitter when cooked conventionally. Imagine the diet benefits when your favorite snack is a plate of air fried vegetables. Don’t laugh—it can happen!
To help you fall even more in love with the concept of air frying your food for a weight loss win, we’ve rounded up a list of a few of our very own air fryer recipes that we absolutely adore.
Get inspired by these five healthier recipes that are air-fried to perfection:
1. Air Fryer Mini Baked Potatoes >
This simple recipe is so delicious, you’ll want to make it over and over again. Counting as one SmartCarb and two Extras on your Nutrisystem meal plan, you can enjoy these Air Fryer Mini Baked Potatoes as a snack or addition to any delicious meal. Get the recipe here! >
2. Air Fryer Honey Mustard Chicken Bites >
Who doesn’t love crispy, golden fried chicken? We know we sure do! This lightened up Honey Mustard Chicken Bites recipe is a must-try for your weight loss menu. Get the recipe here! >
3. Air Fried Eggplant Parm Poppers >
A bite-sized “fried” snack that won’t pack on the calories? Count us in! Whip up these poppable Eggplant Parm bites for a delicious and crunchy “fried” snack or side dish. Get the recipe here! >
4. Air Fried Mozzarella Sticks >
Let’s face it—these are usually a go-to pick from the appetizer menu at your favorite restaurant. However, these cheesy sticks are typically loaded with calories and breading that can derail your healthy diet. Not these Mozz sticks, though! These Air Fried Mozzarella Sticks are filled with melty cheese and coated with a golden crunch. You CAN enjoy your mozzarella sticks and lose weight, too. Get the recipe here! >
5. Air Fryer Mexican Pizza >
Fried food and cheesy pizza—the duo that no dieter wants to hear about (except when The Leaf Weight Loss Blog provides you with healthier versions of your favorite foods!). This Mexican Pizza bring the crispiness of fried food and pairs it with the cheesiness of delicious pizza. What more could you ask for on your weight loss journey? Get the recipe here! >
Want to lose weight enjoying healthier versions of your favorite meals and snacks? Get started with Nutrisystem today! >