We all know that fried foods aren’t good for us, but you simply can’t beat the taste of deep-fried chips. The results from a deep fat fryer far exceed the taste of oven chips, which tend to be dry, and even the new-fangled air fryers, which are nice in theory but never quite achieve the same delicious, fluffy, crunchy goodness (although we do admit that they are pretty close, which is why you can look here for some options).
In this list we will look at ten of the best deep fat fryers you can find on the market and provide some useful information to let you decide which fryer is the best for you.
De'Longhi IdealFry FH2133: The best fryer for your money
The FH2113 is a large capacity fryer that combines a lower heating element with a fan and upper heating element to cook food evenly while using 80% less oil than conventional deep fryers. While it may cost more than some of its alternatives, it is also feature-rich and easy to clean. It can even act as a grill or an oven for your cakes and biscuits!
Removable lid and pan – The windowed lid and main pan are removable, making checking on your food and cleaning easy as can be.
Dual heating element – This device does not require preheating and you can decide which heating element(s) to use. This allows for both radiant and convective heat and frying to be 20% faster.
Cooking – The adjustable temperature, auto shutoff and timer gives you unparalleled control of the cooking process.
200 recipe book included
Also functional as a multi-cooker
Height of the unit may make it difficult to store
Tefal Oleoclean Pro: An inventive fryer for those who hate mess
The Oleoclean Pro is unique in that it automatically filters oil once it is cooled, storing the used oil in a separate storage area for reuse (Tefal recommends oil replacement after 10-12 uses). The design is professional, yet stylish and nearly every part of this fryer can be dismantled and stuck in the dishwasher, making cleaning a breeze.
Oleoclean – The patented thermostatic oil filtration system automatically drains, cleans and stores your oil for you. Stored oil can be reused or replaced easily.
Dishwasher safe – Every part of the Oleoclean Pro can be dismantled and washed in a dishwasher (aside from the heating element) so you no longer have to get your hands dirty when cleaning the bowl, lid, storage box or frying basket.
Immersed heating element – The heating element is in direct contact with the oil, heating it more quickly. Cool zone technology prevents crumbs from being burnt in the fryer.
Dishwasher safe components
The advanced oil filtration system
Clean oil reservoir
Foldable basket handle
Timer completion doesn’t stop cooking
Some complaints of leakage over time
Breville Easy Clean: A practical fryer that (you guessed it) is easy to clean
The Easy Clean has been designed to be easy to use and even easier to clean, containing features such as a removable bowl, gloss white finish and permanent filter. Practicality is a big plus too as there are other little features like a safety lock lid, viewing window and lift out basket which makes cooking a doddle.
Rise and fall basket – The clever design of the rise and fall basket allows you to lift the basket free from the oil along with the lid, draining excess oil from your food easily and safely.
Cool-touch body –Your hands are safe from prolonged use as the cool touch body and lockable lid insulates you form the heat of the fryer.
Permanent filter – The built-in filter is durable and does not need to be changed. You can rest safe in the knowledge that your fryer will always remove odours.
Coolwall technology – Carrying handles and the fryer’s highly insulated body means your Filtra One always safe to touch and easy to move around your kitchen.
Filtering mesh – Each time you cook, the oil passes through a metallic filtering mesh to remove residue and keep your oil clean. Additionally, the filtering mesh, basket and lid are removable and dishwasher safe.
Versatile cooking – Helpful indicators show you which temperatures and cooking durations are suitable for vegetables, fish, onion rings, chicken or chips.
Dishwasher safe components
Cool touch feature
Price could be a little lower
No removable bowl
Domo DO465FR: A simple fryer for the whole family
This is a fryer which you would want when capacity is king. 4L is perfect for cooking for 6-10 people (unless uncle Steve is feeling particularly hungry today) and the no-nonsense design has everything you need, including a thermostat, timer and windowed lid. Unlike some models, the odour filter is removable, a plus for those who don’t trust permanent filters.
3000W – The huge amount of power allows the oil to heat up in no time so you no longer have to wait around to feed your family.
Removable tank – The tank is enamel, ensuring nothing sticks, and removable so washing up doesn’t require you to move the entire unit.
Removable lid – The lid is removable and windowed for your convenience. A built-in odour filter traps bad smells and can be replaced when worn.
Heats up quickly
Effective (removable) odour filter
No on and off switch
No cold zone
DeLonghi FS6055 FS: A stylish, but flawed fryer
A competent fryer for the design-conscious
This is the deep fat fryer you choose if you value design over everything else. There are many useful features such as the dishwasher safe parts, easy clean system and windowed lid but the fryer is priced higher than you’d expect and is missing the removable tank we’ve come to expect from high-end fryers.
Non-stick interior – The 2.4L interior of the fryer is completely non-stick, preventing food or oil from sticking on.
Easy clean system – Oil is drained quickly and easily without tipping or lifting the machine with DeLonghi’s patented system.
Dishwasher safe – The anti-odour filter can be removed and washed, as can the lid and basket. The basket also has a rise function for superior, hassle-free drainage.
Sleek, modern design
Oil removal system
Large lid window
Pricey for the features
No removable tank
Tower Easy Clean: An easy cleaning contender
This is the second fryer on our list which calls itself easy clean and, like the Breville, the device lives up to its name. There is no locking lid this time but all the parts you’d want are detachable and, again, there is a multifunction handle that allows you to raise the basket with the lid. Although the features and name are similar to the Breville, reviews of the Tower concern us in regard to its build quality (particularly of the basket).
Multi-function handle – You can lift the basket out of the oil without removing the lid with the multi-function handle, making frying safer and easier than ever.
Mechanical timer – A traditional 30-minute timer is integrated into the fryer to remind you when your cooking is done. A useful light indicator is also included.
Removable oil pan – The removable enamel oil pan is non-stick, preventing crumbs and other food debris from adhering to the sides.
Carbon odour filter
Can raise basket with lid
Short power cord
Potentially iffy build quality
Venga! VG FT 3012 BS: A great fryer with thoughtful design
We appreciate the name of this company much like we appreciate the fryer. Venga! Produces a classically styled fryer than can filter your oil and is full of design choices which make this fryer simple to use. Oil heats quickly, parts are removable and there are insulated carry handles for easy movement and storage. There’s even space to stow away the power cord! The VG FT 3012 is a solid deep fat fryer for any occasion.
Oil filter – An innovative filtration system cleans the oil after use, letting you reuse it afterwards without an unpleasant taste.
Reservoir – Captured oil is stored safely and securely with a lockable 3L storage reservoir.
Immersed heating element – The powerful 2000W element is immersed in the oil to speed up heating and get you frying in no time.
Oil storage (and lock)
No on and off switch
Basket is small for the size of the fryer
VonShef Deep Fat Fryer: All the essentials, for half the price
VonShef have created a 3L fryer that can do all that you need on a budget. The pan is non-stick and removable, the lid has a window, the device is easy to use but the fryer is missing a few features like a timer and odour filter. Also missing are some safety features like a locking lid and a cool touch body. If you don’t mind these omissions and want to save some cash, this fryer will serve you well.
Housing – Stainless-steel housing gives you confidence that the fryer will last and the built-in handles allow easy movement. Non-slip feet are included for safety.
Thermostat – The integrated thermostat allows manual regulation of temperature from 130 to 190 degrees Celsius.
Detachable handle – The cool-touch handle can be removed for easy storing and cleaning.
Fiddly detachable handle
Potentially problematic vent placement
Swan: SD6040N: A basic fryer that does what it says on the tin
The Swan 3L is the cheapest fryer in our roundup. Like our other budget option from VonShef, all the necessary features are included but the Swan does not include a removable pan which makes cleaning more difficult. If you just want a machine that can deep fry your onion rings, then you could do worse than the Swan SD6040N. Just don’t expect any extras.
Adjustable thermostat – Seven temperature functions are included from 130 to 190 degrees Celsius.
Compact dimensions – Despite the large 3L oil and 1KG food capacity, the Swan SD6040N is small enough to fit wherever you need it to.
2-year warranty – A generous 2-year warranty makes sure that you know you will be supported if you buy this fryer.
Easy to use
No odour filter
No cool touch body (apart from handles)
When taking everything into consideration, our top pick would have to be the De'Longhi FH2133. It’s expensive but the fryer wins out due to its large capacity and innovative dual heating system, which allow for faster frying and less oil usage (while still retaining that deep-fried taste). The machine cooks healthier food and is just more versatile than our other picks as it can act as a multi-cooker as well as a fryer.
How does a deep fat fryer work?
You might be wondering how a deep fat fryer works. The TLDR version of it is that food is placed in a basket and submerged into a bowl of heated oil until it is cooked. However, that isn’t the full picture, the fryer goes through a series of steps:
The fryer is filled and the oil is heated to between 160 and 200 degrees Celsius.
Dry (!) food is placed inside the fryer and any moisture inside the food starts boiling and steaming out. This causes the food to heat/fry and is why you see bubbles.
When the food is running out of moisture, the bubbles stop and it is no longer protected from the oil. This is when you should remove the basket or you risk oil soaking into the food or the food burning.
Finally, the food is removed and drained, either drying in the basket or on a plate covered in kitchen towel to remove excess oil.
The fryer is switched off and cleaned if needed.
Should I get an air fryer instead?
While air fryers they are great in some ways, such as only needing a tablespoon of oil, they are bad in others. They tend to be more expensive than deep fat fryers and don’t quite achieve the same results. The health benefits of air frying are definitely something to consider but when eating fried foods in moderation, there shouldn’t be a problem.
Which features should I look out for:
To help you decide what’s important in a fryer, we’ve come up with a few key features which are important:
Price –Deep fat fryers can range in price from under £20 to almost £200. More expensive doesn’t always mean better, good fryers can be found in every price range and mid-priced models can contain plenty of useful features for cooking and cleaning.
Easy drainage – Some models contain traps or automated ways to drain oil so you don’t have to lift/tip the whole machine.
Detachable lids – Detachable lids allow you to change filters more easily and clean oil from them separately. In some cases, they may be lockable which is great if you have children.
Foldable basket handles – Look for fryers which have foldable/removable basket handles. Being able to stow away the handle means that you can store your fryer much more easily.
What oil should I use?
It is crucial that you use the right kind of oil when deep fat frying. Some options you could use include:
Vegetable oil – This is a popular option as it’s cheap and doesn’t have a strong flavour. Since vegetable oils are blended, you need to make sure to check their levels of saturated fat.
Coconut oil – Research has shown that since this oil is so stable, it can be reused multiple times. Unfortunately, the oil is only suitable for low-temperature frying (up to 175 Celsius). Coconut oil is likely to impart a strong nutty taste.
Sunflower oil – Some say this is the best oil to use for deep frying. It is high is unsaturated fats and has a very high smoke point. Sunflower oil may impart a delicate flavour to food, this taste strengthens when lower temperatures are used.
Peanut oil – This oil is a healthy, high smoke point option which imparts little taste. Care needs to be taken when using peanut oil as unrefined options do not have a high smoke point and can trigger allergies.
That was not an exhaustive list of oils you can use when deep frying, there are other options such as palm or avocado. You should always avoid extra virgin olive oil for deep frying.
What size should I get?
Deep fat fryers come in a range of sizes, determined by the amount of oil they can hold (or by mass of food they can cook). They can be made in compact 1-1.5L sizes, useful if you have a smaller kitchen, to industrial 19L monsters. Which size you choose depends on your needs but if you intend to use your fryer to regularly cook for a larger family, we suggest against a compact model. They are easy to store, being around the size of a double slot toaster, but they can only cook 350g of food - so you’d have to do multiple rounds of cooking so as not to overload the fryer. In this situation, you’d probably need a standard 2-3L model.
What about safety?
Deep fryers are safer than chip pans due to a thermostat controlling the temperature (and preventing ignition) but cooking with boiling oil is still dangerous. It is therefore important to check for safety features when buying a deep fat fryer. Insulated walls are a common one, preventing you from being burnt if you touch the fryer. Other features to look out for are lockable lids to prevent oil splashes, viewing windows so you don’t have to open the lid to keep an eye on your food and overheat protection that cuts the power if anything goes wrong.
Don’t overfill the fryer (it is usually suggested never be more than 2/3 full)
Don’t leave the fryer unattended.
Never pour water in or over the fryer, this will spread the flames.
Always turn the fryer off when not in use.
To see what the government says about safely using fryers, HSE guidelines can be found here.
What kind of maintenance does a deep fat fryer need?
Since deep fat fryers need to be cleaned fairly regularly, it’s better to buy one that is easy to clean with features such as removable lids or stainless steel/enamelled bowls. Thankfully, many modern fryers make sure that components such as baskets and lids are dishwasher safe. When cleaning the main compartments, remember never to use steel wool (tempting as it is) as they can damage the fryers. Plenty of hot water, washing up liquid and elbow grease are your friends in cleaning a fryer.
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