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Buying an air fryer this Black Friday? Read this first

An air fryer basket containing breaded chicken
(Image credit: Shutterstock)

Black Friday is nearly here and many of us will already have plans to buy new tech or kitchen appliances. The best air fryers will feature high on many lists, as people search for Black Friday deals on these countertop appliances which allow you to air fry everything from French fries to chicken wings to Brussels sprouts. If you're a fan of all things Ninja, you might be searching for the best Ninja Foodi Black Friday deals.

And if you opt to buy one of the best toaster ovens, meanwhile, you can do much more than air fry — including baking, toasting and even roasting. But, before you grab the first Black Friday air fryer deal you find, there’s something very important you should consider.   

Size is everything 

Breville Smart Oven Air Fryer Pro review

(Image credit: Breville)

As someone who’s tested air fryers of all shapes and sizes over the years, I can tell you that the most important factor is size. Whatever you do, don’t grab the biggest air fryer you can find just to save the most money. 

Toaster ovens will likely be reduced the most, as they are naturally more expensive. However this larger, more versatile offering won’t be for everyone. Here are the pros and cons for buying a toaster oven:

Pros of a toaster oven:

  • More versatile: A toaster oven can do much more than an air fryer, including baking, toasting and roasting. This makes them more versatile, but only if you plan to use the additional functions.  
  • Bigger capacity: Toaster ovens have a larger capacity than most standard air fryers, which makes them better suited to larger families. 
  • More attractive: This depends on the model in question, but toaster ovens tend to look more impressive on display than standard air fryers. Some have a stainless steel finish, which appears much more premium than plastic.

Cons of a toaster oven:

  • They’re big: Toaster ovens are generally the size of a microwave oven, and they’re heavy, too — so if you buy one, it’s likely to remain on your countertop. Be sure to measure the space so you know how much room you have available before buying. Remember, you also need space around it for venting — plus they'll usually come with more accessories, which you will need to store somewhere.     
  • They’re expensive: Toaster ovens usually cost more than regular air fryers because of the size difference and the extra functionality. 
  • The extra features aren’t always worth it: This isn’t the case for every toaster oven, but for some we have found that they struggle to deliver on the additional functions during testing. Baking results, in particular, aren’t always as good as you expect. Check out our best toaster ovens to be sure of the performance before you invest. 
  • More difficult to clean: Again, this is model specific, but most air fryers come with dishwasher-safe components, which leaves little to question when you ask how to clean an air fryer. Quite a few toaster ovens come with hand-wash-only components, which take more time and effort to clean.  

Dash Compact Air Fryer

(Image credit: Dash)

Depending on your circumstances, a toaster oven might suit your needs. But, if you feel an air fryer would be sufficient, don’t get ahead of yourself and buy a toaster oven based solely on its price in the sales. Instead, stick to your guns and wait for your ideal size of air fryer. 

The same advice on size applies to air fryers, too. You can buy compact models such as the Dash Compact Air Fryer, which will suit 1-2 people, whereas larger models such as the Philips Premium Airfryer XXL will cater for a large family. Only buy the size you need, otherwise you'll end up storing a larger appliance, which takes longer to clean. 

Hopefully you will find your ideal air fryer or toaster oven in one of the many Black Friday deals; you can then use it to make some of the best Thanksgiving air fryer recipes. Below are some of the best deals we've spotted so far:

Ninja 4qt Air Fryer: was $119 now $89 @ Amazon

Ninja 4qt Air Fryer: was $119 now $89 @ Amazon
This Ninja air fryer lets you fry and dehydrate foods to create quick snacks. The 4qt air fryer may not have a huge capacity, but it's extremely powerful. It's currently on sale at Amazon.

CHEFMAN Air Fryer Toaster Oven XL 20L: was $199 now $124 @ Amazon

CHEFMAN Air Fryer Toaster Oven XL 20L: was $199 now $124 @ Amazon
This toaster oven from Chefman comes with nine cooking functions including: bake, air fry, toast, convection bake, slow cook, bagel, broil, warm and dehydrate — so the recipe possibilities are endless! You can set the temperature yourself from 200-450°F and the large 20 liter capacity can fit a whole roast chicken, so it’s great for family dinners.  

Bella Pro Series 8qt Digital Air Fryer: was $129, now $89 @ Best Buy

Bella Pro Series 8qt Digital Air Fryer: was $129, now $89 @ Best Buy
Save a whopping $40 on this air fryer with a built-in touchscreen that allows for fast and intuitive use. The stainless steel construction is highly durable, while the powerful heating system boasts 1700w.

Katie Mortram

Katie looks after everything homes-related, from kitchen appliances to gardening tools. She also covers smart home products too, so is the best point of contact for any household advice! She has tested and reviewed kitchen appliances for over 6 years, so she knows what to look for when finding the best. Her favorite thing to test has to be stand mixers as she loves to bake in her spare time.