4 Of The Best Air Fryers Under $100 – Get The Best For Your Money!

Ready for great food of your own, too? In this post, I’ll show you 4 of the best air fryers under $100 for your money.

I’ll share with you the details, pros & cons, and what to know before buying. There’s also some helpful info if you’re just getting started with air fryers.

Infographic – Air fryer basics to know

Air fryer basics infographic guide

What is an air fryer and how does it work?

How an air fryer works illustrated diagram

Illustrated diagram showing how an air fryer works and the main sections inside. Air fryers share a lot in common with traditional ovens which have a convection baking design. Food in an air fryer’s cooking basket is exposed to hot air forced onto it using a fan.

Air fryers don’t actually “fry” food. Hot air is forced onto the food in a way much like a convection oven.

Because they can cook food well and also crisp the outside similar to how a grease or shortening fryer works, they were given the name. It’s also because they’re more appealing if they’re seen as a healthy alternative to oil fryers. 

How they work

Airy fryer illustrated parts diagram & images

Air fryers come in a variety of styles but all have the same basic design: A heating element creates very hot air which is blown across the food using an electric fan.

Additionally, much like a traditional oven, you may have used before they also have a cooking time control and temperature control.

An air fryer has several basic sections which may vary slightly depending on the brand or model:

  • A food container (also called a basket) in which food is placed. These normally have a nonstick coating and a slotted bottom (or a slotted tray that fits inside) to allow fat and other residues to fall to the bottom & away from food.
  • A drip tray or basket bottom section where melted fat, water, crumbs, and other residue collects. After cooking this is easy to separate from the food section for easy cleaning. These have a nonstick surface also.
  • Electric heating element (electric eye). These are usually small version similar to those you see in a standard oven.
  • Electric fan. Place over or below the heating element, these force hot cooking air over the food.
  • Temperature and cooking time controls. Standard (dial) models are electromechanical. Digital models offer push button controls and presets – these use more complicated electronics than more basic models.

Is an air fryer the same as a convection oven?

Air fryer vs convection oven efficiency comparison graph

In this comparison graph, a typical air fryer and a typical convection oven are compared. Air fryers use much less electricity and also have a faster preheat time (about 3 to 5 minutes). Additionally, they use a lower maximum temperature than ovens. There’s much less air to heat since they’re smaller, making them great for saving energy & hassle.

An air fryer is very similar to a convection oven, with a few differences. 

For example:

  • Convection ovens have a higher maximum temperature (450-500°F). Air fryers use a lower maximum temperature (typically 400°F).
  • You’ll normally cook food in an air fryer with a lower temperature than in an oven ( 350°F-370°F for example).
  • Air fryers, thanks to their size & cooking efficiency, use less electricity. Average models use about 1,000 to 1,300 watts. Ovens, however, often have a power rating of 2,500-3,000 watts.
  • It takes roughly half the time (or less) for an air fryer to reach its full preheat temperature. Convection ovens/traditional ovens often take around 10 minutes and have a great deal more air volume to heat.
  • Air fryers include a cooking container (food basket) which ovens don’t.
  • Food cooked in an air fryer is cooked by much more intense heat as the heating element is very close to the food.

Not only that, but air fryers with digital control features also provide preset buttons which make cooking common foods much easier than an oven.

On the other hand, more basic models are a much more economical way to get the same kind of food as you can cook in an oven. They’re a great choice if you’re usually only cooking food for yourself or a few people (like a small family).

Is an air fryer bad for your health?

Are air fryers healthy vs ovens and grease fryers comparison image

Are air fryers healthy to use? Indeed they are! In fact, they offer the same quality oil-free cooking as a traditional convection oven but with reduced cost & hassle.

Because they cook air including crisping the surface of food using hot air, air fryers are a very healthy way to cook food.

You might not be aware of it but many fast food (and other) restaurants reuse dirty cooking oil for several days! That’s correct – when foods are fried you could be eating food contaminated with several days’ worth of food fat residue and other matter.

That’s one reason fried foods often have a dull, somewhat odd flavor. Fried foods with fresher shortening or oil are better in flavor but still aren’t as healthy.

Fried foods may be crispy and crunchy, but they’re saturated with oil inside and out! Unfortunately because of that, you’ll be eating a lot of fats or grease that just aren’t good for you and can also cause you to put on the pounds.

Air fryers completely avoid all of this.

Buying an air fryer: Is it worth it?

Are air fryers worth it list of reasons why

That’s a good question – and my respect for asking the right question and being smart with your money!

Air fryers have both pros and cons vs other appliances like microwaves, for example:

  • Microwaves can cook food much faster (for heating) but can be terrible for foods that should be crunchy or crisp
  • Convection ovens can hold much more food like large frozen turkeys or trays of cookies or bread vs air fryers
  • Steamers are great for vegetables, but again can’t cook crisp foods

Overall, the pros far outweigh the cons vs other kinds of appliances in general.

Reasons why an air fryer is worth it
  • Air fryers are a great way to save money and can pay for themselves vs the cost of a traditional oven or dining out
  • Food cooked in an air fryer tastes great. In fact, some of the best foods like tater tots I’ve ever had I cooked in an air fryer!
  • They’re affordable. Some of the best models are less than $100 in fact.
  • You can choose one based on how many (or how few) features you need. Dial (non-digital) models vs those with digital controls.
  • They’re much better for warmed food quality than a microwave and crisp the outside of food. You can also use the warming feature to keep your lunch or dinner fresh until you’re able to eat.
  • Easy clean-up. Because fat, crumbs, and water drain into the lower basket section, everything’s easy to wash right out. The nonstick coating means it’s only a few minutes of washing with water, a sponge, and a few drops of soap and you’re done!
  • Healthy food without grease or oil. As I mentioned earlier, you can get nearly the same crispy & crunchy taste with your favorite foods without having to worry about nasty & unhealthy grease, oil, or fat.

I own several models and I’ve been really glad I bought them. In fact, I bought one for my mother as they make great gifts, too.

★ 4 of the best air fryers under $100 ★

Our top picks at a glance

Image Product Details
sample-table__image★OUR #1 PICK!★Omorc 6 Qt
  • Excellent all-round value! Cook more food in less time w/ 1800W power.
  • Unique rotary dial & moisture-resistant control panel.
  • Includes recipe book, acessories available. 2 yr warranty
Check at Amazon
sample-table__imageCosori 3.7 Qt
  • A best-selling brand! Features 11 convenient food presets.
  • Moisture-resistant digital control panel wipes clean.
  • Shake reminder built in. Includes recipe book.
Check at Amazon
sample-table__imageGoWise USA 3.7 Qt
  • Spend less, get more. Affordable digital features.
  • 8 preset modes + 1,500W of great cooking power.
  • Easy to use & compact! Includes 50 recipe booklet.
Check at Amazon
sample-table__imageMoney saverDash Compact
  • Great taste for less money! Super easy to use.
  • Compact size needs less counter space.
  • Several color options. Includes recipe book.
Check at Amazon

Reviews, details, and pros & cons

1. Omorc 6 Quart 1800W – Cook more food in less time. Packed with features and a snap to use!

Number one recommended product badge

Omorc 1800W 6 qt air fryer black product image #1

Want the best for your money, but still want to keep the price reasonable? The Omorc 6 quart air fryer with digital controls is our top pick for a long list of reasons.

Once you understand the fantastic features, capacity, and ease of you get it’s easy to see why!

Check out what you’ll get:

  • 6 quart capacity feeds 2-8 people
  • The unique dial control makes cooking super easy
  • 1800W of cooking power for great results
  • Durable nonstick coating in the food & drip basket
  • Water/food resistant touch control panel
  • Clear & easy to understand display
  • Food warming/reheating feature
  • 2 year warranty
  • Available in 3 colors: black, green, and red

Omorc air fryer black green red color choices product image example

Choose from 3 great colors – here’s your chance to enjoy a fun choice for your home or apartment’s kitchen. Note that availability may vary.

Excellent controls

Diagram of Omorc air fryer dial control advantage vs other brands

Unlike the competition, with the Omorc air fryer, the unique dial control makes cooking a lot easier and hassle-free. Instead of having to use slow push buttons to change cooking times & temperatures, just dial it in – it’s a great feature I love.

One thing that really stands out to me is the rotary dial feature that you won’t find with most other brands.

While most brands use push buttons that can be slow and kind of annoying to use, with the dial you can quickly & easily dial in the right cooking time & temperature.

It’s a snap to use and becomes like second nature in only moments.

Great cooking capacity & easy-to-handle basket

Omorc air fryer basket features image

The Omorc has one of the better food basket designs I’ve seen. To separate the drain from the basket, just slide the release guard (which helps prevents accidents) and push the button. Voila! The basket lifts right out for easy serving.

There’s no question you get some of the best food capacity & cooking power for your money – a generous 6 quarts!

While other brands in the same range or even higher off a smaller food capacity, the Omorc 6 quart can hold enough food to cook for your whole family. 

A strong 1,800 watts of power makes it one of the most powerful air fryers sold today. It cooks well, cooks faster, and food is nice and tasty, too.

I’ve enjoyed the great results from everything like chicken wings to fries and even hamburgers – they turn out great.

Great features you’ll love

Omorc air fryer control presets feature diagram

If the clear, simple controls and rotary dial weren’t enough, the Omorc’s design makes everyday cooking even easier! Choose from one of 7 presets to preload the correct time & temperature for perfect food every time.

It’s not short on features, either. As easy as the rotary dial is, why should you have to fiddle with the same routine every time you want to enjoy great food? Guess what – you don’t have to!

Choose one of 7 food cooking preset buttons to preload the air fryer with just the right cooking time & temperature for great results every time.

It works great, and I find it to be a real time & hassle-saver. Cooking becomes like second nature and makes the routine so easy you’ll wonder how you ever lived without it.

Want to reheat or keep food warm? Use the warm feature to keep your delicious food fresh.

Omorc air fryer moisture resistant control panel feature image

Sticky fingers? No problem! Don’t worry – the moisture-resistant controls can handle it and make clean up as simple as wiping it away.

The controls are moisture-resistant, too, meaning you won’t have to worry about wet or sticky fingers when using the controls. Clean up is easy, too, as you can just wipe away fingerprints & residue.

Final thoughts

While I’m fond of some other brands I’ve tested (and own!), the Omorc won me over. It’s hands-down one of the best values I’ve come across and the cool rotary dial makes cooking a pleasure every time. 

It’s powerful too – food cooks fast and very well – I was surprised how great chicken, hamburgers, and much more taste. Delicious!

The included recipe book is a nice touch too, although it could be a bit better (needs editing) and some brands offer a better cooking guide.

  • Large 6 qt capacity feeds more
  • Unique rotary dial works great
  • Touch control buttons
  • Clear, simple display
  • Quiet operation
  • 1,800W power
  • Recipes booklet included
  • Heating element guard protects against burns
  • 7 cooking presets
  • Non-stick basket & drip pan
  • Safety basket guard & release button
  • Easy clean up
  • Super easy operation
  • 3 color options
  • 2 yr warranty
  • Uses more counter space vs others
  • Instructions/recipe booklet needs editing
  • Heat released from bottom, not top (beware some surfaces)
  • Larger basket size is harder to shake food
  • Recipe book could be better/suggest more

Hands down it’s one of the best air fryers under $100 I’ve had the pleasure to recommend. It’s powerful, really easy to use, and well-designed. I love it and you will too!

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2. Cosori 3.7 quart 1500W digital – A top-selling, well-made model you’ll love. Good food doesn’t have to be hard!

Cosori 3.7 qt air fryer product image thumbnail

Let me tell you, I own a Cosori 3.7 quart model and I love it! It’s one of today’s best air fryers for healthy, crispy food any time you like. It’s a breeze to use too and includes a great recipe booklet.

In fact, I love mine so much I gave one to dear old mom for Mother’s Day. How’s that for a recommendation?

Check out why it’s one of the best-selling models today:

  • 3.7 quart capacity & 1500W power for great food
  • More food presets than others – 11 to choose from!
  • Moisture/food resistant control panel wipes clean
  • Built-in pause/shake reminder
  • Automatic stop/restart with basket removal
  • Durable nonstick basket coating
  • Easy basket separation and release safety guard
  • Food warming/reheating mode
  • High-quality 100 recipe booklet included
  • Cooking accessory set available
  • Handsome color options (black, white, red)
  • 1 year warranty (option to extend 1 year)

Did I mention? It’s also one of the best-made you’ll find, too. 

Cosori 3.7 quart air fryer black white and red color options product image

Choose your favorite of the 3 colors available for a wonderful complement to your kitchen & home.

Great features & controls

Cosori 3.7 qt air fryer control panel features diagram

Controls are simple and straightforward – just use one of the 11 convenient presets or set the cooking time & temperature as recommended in the owner’s manual. Want to reheat last night’s dinner or keep food ready & fresh? Use the Keep Warm button and it’s a snap! During cooking the shake reminder tells you when to shake the food for best cooking.

It’s not lacking in features, that’s for sure! Controls are easy to understand and straightforward: use the cooking time & temperature buttons to adjust up to 400°F temperature and up to an hour (60 minutes) of cooking time.

Another great feature is the Keep Warm button. I’ve found it really helpful for warming refrigerated leftovers from the night before or keeping cooked food warm and fresh. It’s as easy as pushing a button!

Cosori air fryer 11 preset feature diagram

No muss, no fuss! For some of the most common foods you love, just push a button and you’re off! The Cosori air fryer will load the correct cooking time & temperature for great results every time.

One thing that’s really helpful vs competitors is the number of cooking presets you get: 11 in total. While most offer a maximum of 7 or so at the most, that’s a nice advantage.

Power, cooking capacity, & basket features

With 1,500W of power it’s a very capable model and I’ve gotten great results every time.

In my honest opinion, the 3.7 qt capacity is pretty good and it’s enough for 2-4 people or so depending on your cooking needs.

For larger foods and bigger families, it might be worth spending the extra $20 or so to get the larger model (the larger 5.8 qt model Cosori Max XL offers 1700W).

Regardless, frozen foods cook very well in 25 minutes or so. Meats, fish, and popular sides like tater tots or french fries are amazing and delicious! I love how good my food tastes.

Cosori air fryer basket vs other brands comparison

Unlike some other brands, Cosori’s cooking basket design is not only easier to deal with but safer, too. Removing the basket is easy & you won’t have to worry about accidents with hot food. There’s a push button release and a safety guard, too, to avoid mistakes.

The basket’s especially easy to deal with. Unlike some other models I’ve used, there’s a pretty cool design that’s unusual in that’s not just easier but safer too:

  • Avoid spilling hot foods: A sliding cover prevents accidentally pushing the basket release
  • Easy in, easy out: Just push the basket release button to unlock the basket. Unlike other brands the basket comes out easily with the handle.

Clean up is a breeze thanks to both the nonstick coating and easy access to the drip pan. It takes only a moment to wash with warm water and a drop or two of soap and you’re done.

Final thoughts

It’s a great buy for the money – no doubt about it. I really like the instructions & especially the recipe booklet, too, which has 100 detailed recipes for great food. It’s easy to use, reliable, and really clean up is a breeze.

It’s not as quiet as some others while it’s working, though, so be aware of that. Also, when not using one of the presets the shake reminder doesn’t work, so you’ll need to keep track of that yourself.

  • Great food results w/ 1,500W power
  • Clear, moisture-resistant touch panel
  • Good build quality
  • Clear & easy controls
  • Built-in shake reminder
  • 11 food cooking presets
  • Basket separates easily with button
  • Easy clean up
  • Food warming/reheating mode
  • 3.7 qt capacity can cook several servings
  • Includes 100 recipe booklet
  • Accessory set available
  • 3 color options
  • Option to extend warranty by 1 yr
  • Somewhat louder while cooking
  • 1 yr warranty included vs 2 yrs of others
  • No shake reminder when using manual cook settings
  • Pricier than some competitors
  • No memory feature for storing custom settings

The Cosori air fryer is a smart choice that works well and delivers hot, delicious food you’ll love just like I do. If you’re shopping not just based on price but instead for quality, it’s a great one you shouldn’t pass up!

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Cosori air fryer CP158-AF 5.8 qt model product imageNeed a bigger one? Check out it’s big brother, No products found.

3. GoWise USA 3.7 quart 1,400W – An affordable value that’s hard to beat!

GoWise USA 3.7 qt air fryer product imageNeed a more affordable option but don’t want to give up features? The GoWise USA 3.7 quart air fryer is a great compromise between price, features, and performance!

Check out what you’ll get for under $75:

  • Great 1,400W power for 170-400°F cooking
  • 3.7 qt size hold enough for 1-2 meals
  • 1-30 minutes cooking time
  • Durable nonstick basket coating make cleanup easy
  • Clear, easy controls & display
  • 8 cooking presets including warm/reheat mode
  • 4 color options (where available)
  • 50 recipe booklet included
  • Compact size
  • 1 year warranty

GoWise air fryer product colors example image

Choose from several great colors to suit your fancy. Even a nice Plum (purple) for something that matches your personality.

Features & controls

GoWise air fryer controls diagram

Controls are simple, clear, and easy to use. Use of 7 food presets to bring up the perfect cooking settings for your favorite foods. Push the warm button to reheat or keep food fresh & delicious until you’re ready to eat.

One of my favorite things about the GoWise is that it’s really easy to use:

  • Controls are very clear and well-labeled
  • Pick one of 7 food presets (or warm/reheat) for the perfect settings
  • Alternatively, adjust the temperature & time using the “-” & “+” buttons

You’ll see the fan indicator show you when it’s cooking and a 5-beep reminder will let you know when the cooking is done. 

You won’t get as many presets as with more expensive models, but it’s a compromise that comes with a more compact & less expensive model like this. Unlike the touch type of buttons some bigger models offer, the GoWise uses raised push buttons but in my experience, it works pretty well.

Not to worry if you get food on the controls while handling your meal: just wipe off the front with a moist towel and it’s clean.

Cooking basket, power, and more

GoWise air fryer basket product feature example image

No muss, no fuss! A great basket design means it’s a snap to handle food, serve it, and clean up later, too. Thanks to a smart design the food basket locks into place in the drip pan and separates 

With a 3.7 quart capacity I had plenty of room for 12 wings (my favorite!), a medium-sized bag of french fries, and even two chicken breasts. It’s not enough for a full family but plenty enough for 1-2 or even a few more people.

(Note: A larger capacity 5.8 qt GoWise air fryer is available, too)

The basket design is pretty good, too. Like other better brands I’ve tried, there’s a nice locking feature that allows securing or removing the food basket from the drip pan.

Not only that, but it’s also really easy to serve foods like crispy fries or my favorite: tater tots. Just tilt the basket and pour.

The cooking power (1,400W) is higher than many competitors in its price range which surprised me. 

It cooks really well, in fact – and there aren’t any undercooked food problems like you’ll get with the unknown brand air fryers you see in stores.

Final thoughts

It’s affordable, has good features, and it’s pretty compact too meaning it’ll take less counter space than others. Overall, it’s a good choice with only a few minor complaints.

Pure touch button controls & more food presets would be nice. Unlike other products like from Cosori, you’re limited to 30 minutes of cooking maximum vs 60. There’s also no built-in shake reminder offered either.

Regardless, those are pretty small gripes and don’t change my opinion: it’s a good value and a good performer worth checking out.

  • Cooks well w/ 1,400W power
  • Great value for the money
  • Clear, moisture-resistant touch panel
  • Compact size (11.5 x 12.25 x 14 in.)
  • Simple & easy controls
  • Comfortable basket handle
  • 7 food presets + warm mode
  • Basket separates easily with button
  • Easy clean up
  • 3.7 qt capacity can cook several servings
  • Includes 50 recipe booklet
  • 4 color options
  • 30 minute max. cook time
  • More limited 1 year warranty
  • No shake reminder feature
  • Push button controls vs touch controls of others

For less than $65-75, it’s a good one! It’s compact, powerful, easy to use, and more importantly, the food turns out nice & tasty! Want the best of both worlds – features and affordability? With the GoWise you can have it.

Don’t just take my word for it. Find out today why it's one of the most popular and best rated affordable air fryers at Amazon.

4. Dash Compact 1.6 qt (1.2L) 1000W – Affordable & reliable healthy cooking you can count on.

Dash Compact 1.2L air fryer red product image

How about a choice that’s super simple, reliable, and saves money? The Dash Compact air fryer is all of these and more for around $50 or less.

It’s a great little choice for people who want to spend less and don’t need the bells and whistles that more expensive models offer. If you don’t need to cook meals for a family, it’s just right!

What really makes me happy about the Dash Compact (besides that it’s also pretty darn nice looking) is that it’s so darn easy to use!  It’s also about 1/2 the size of many of its competitors too.

Just add your food, set the temperature dial, adjust the timer dial, and you’re done!

While it’s good a classic, simple design, the features are pretty good for the money:

  • 1,000W power gives great-tasting & crispy meals
  • Better value per dollar vs other brands
  • Reliable dial controls don’t need electronics
  • Takes up less space (only 10.2 × 8.1 × 11.4 in)
  • Auto-off timer prevents overcooking
  • Cool touch handle prevents burns
  • Durable nonstick finish in basket & drip pan
  • Power-on & cooking indicators
  • Available in 5 classic & sleek colors
  • Includes clear instructions & 15+ recipe booklet

Simple, reliable controls

Dash Compact air fryer controls closeup image

It doesn’t get any easier than this! Just rotate the temperature & timer dials and you’ll have hot, delicious, and crispy food in a handful of minutes. With no electronic controls to worry about, you’ll get years of reliable use.

Let me be honest: while I do love electronics (who doesn’t?), there’s something to be said for non-digital electromechanical controls like the Dash compact offers.

They’re ultra-reliable, with years of foolproof reliability. They’re also so easy that a child can do it! The Dash offers not just affordability but also ultra-simple and super-reliable operation that’s as easy as rotating the dials. That’s it! 

Select from 170 to 400°F temperature range and 1-30 minutes of cooking time.

Power & cooking quality

Dash Compact air fryer cooked food examples

While you might think that 1,000W vs the higher power of more expensive models is a drawback, it’s not. Since it’s a more compact air fryer the power is plenty and the food turns out great!

I’ve gotten great results with wings, shrimp, cheese sticks, and much more. Food is hot, fresh, and crispy – delicious!

With a maximum of 30 minutes with the cooking timer, once the timer runs out the unit shuts off automatically so there’s no danger of overcooking or an accident.

With the 1.6 qt capacity, 12 wings or 1/2 bag of potatoes are no problem.

Basket features and easy cleanup

Dash Compact air fryer basket use example

Example of how fats & grease are caught in the drip pan after use. To clean up, you’ll remove the basket (food) tray from the pan and wash it with warm soap & water.

Clean up is easy once you’re done, although unlike some other models, unfortunately, there’s no easy release design that pulls a food basket from the drip pan with the handle. Instead, the food “basket” is a tray you remove by hand.

While not quite as convenient, it’s not hard and clean up is easy. Before removing the tray it’s easy to pour foods like french fries & wings directly onto a plate using the handle.

Clean up is easy! Just wash using a cloth or soft sponge and warm water with soap.

Final thoughts

It’s a great little affordable air fryer – perfect for 1-2 people, whether at work, home, or your college dorm. Food turns out very nicely and is tasty & crispy just like you love.

While fancier features are nice, what makes the Dash Compact great is the simple & reliable dial controls that won’t let you down. It’s amazingly easy to use, too.

The one downside is the basket design as there’s no quick-release button like with other models. However, in practice, it’s not a big drawback and doesn’t take away from a very nice little air fryer I’ve enjoyed using.

  • Cooks well w/ 1,000W power
  • Affordable & well-made
  • Ultra-simple use
  • Compact size (10 x 8.1 x 11.4 in.)
  • Lightweight design
  • Shuts off automatically
  • Handle stays cool
  • Power & cooking indicators
  • Simple basket design
  • Easy clean up
  • Good for 1-2 people
  • Includes 15+ recipe booklet
  • 5 color options
  • 1 year warranty
  • 30 minute max. cook time
  • More limited 1 year warranty
  • No shake reminder feature
  • Recipe booklet has fewer cooking ideas

I’ve grown to love the simplicity and small size of the Dash Compact. It’s a great little air fryer & perfect for work and people with smaller cooking needs.

At around $50 or so, it’s a good buy, too. You’ll love it as much as I have!

Take a second to see the amazing buyer reviews and current low price at Amazon now.

Grant Williams

About the author

Grant is a professional engineer by trade and has experience with both maintenance and do-it-yourself home projects. He enjoys sharing his expertise & ideas with others to help them improve their comfort and quality of life. Read more »

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