With deep fryers you can prepare fried foods like french fries right in your own kitchen that have restaurant-quality taste. The main feature you should look for in the best deep fryer is the ability to heat the oil up to the proper temperature quickly, usually 375 degrees, and be able to recover to that temperature once food is added. This will ensure properly cooked food that is healthier and less greasy in a timely manner. Some other important features you should look for include the capacity, adjustable temperature, oil filtration or drainage system, baskets, and a lid to prevent splattering.
We looked at dozens of models comparing their features and performance and found the lowest price for each to narrow down our list. Below we review the top 10 best deep fryers.
We picked the $130 Breville BDF500XL Smart Fryer as the best deep fryer due to its superior performance. This 1800 watt unit will heat the oil to the proper higher temperatures needed for foods like french fries, which many others have trouble doing, and was also the highest rated model on Amazon with a 4.5 overall rating. It has a 4 quart oil capacity which can cook up 2.5 lbs of food at once. It includes a stainless steel cooking bowl and basket which are both dishwasher safe. There are preset cooking options plus a custom setting which lets you adjust the timer and temperature to whatever you need.
One of the negatives of the BDF500XL is the price since there are cheaper options available, however if you want a reliable high-performance fryer than we highly recommend this Breville model.
Coming in second on our list is the Waring Pro DF280 at about $90. This is the highest rated model on cooking.com and also scored a solid 4.2 star average from users on Amazon. This brushed stainless steel unit has a 1800 watt heating element with a 2.3 pound food capacity. It also comes with a 1 gallon enamel coated oil container with pouring spot and one large and two small mesh baskets. On the outside you will find a 60 minute timer, temperature adjustment, and a lid with a viewing window.
Overall it is a quality appliance that we would not hesitate to recommend to anyone, but it does struggle to get up to the highest temperature setting.
The Waring Pro DF250B, $76, is very similar to the newer DF280 deep fryer. The specs are nearly the same with the main difference being the DF250B has a dial timer and temperature setting instead of digital controls. It also has one mesh basket, instead of multiple. Again the only real slight negative is that it has a hard time getting to the max temperature of 375 degrees. So if you want a Waring Pro model and do not mind a slightly older version you can pick this one up for almost $15 cheaper than the DF280.
The T-fal FR7008002 has the most food capacity of any on our list at 2.65 lbs and is available for about $98. It has a 1700 watt immersed heating element with adjustable thermostat, dishwasher safe parts, food basket, and a lid with viewing window. One of the impressive features on this model not found on others is the oil filtration system which drains and filters the good oil into a separate container to be used again later.
Overall this is a solid fryer with no real weakness that we would recommend for all users although you should keep in mind there are cheaper ones available.
If you want healthier fried foods, especially french fries, then you should consider the T-fal ActiFry Low-Fat Multi-Cooker for around $195. It reduces the fat in your food by using dramatically less oil per serving. To use it you simply add your food, fries for example, then add a tablespoon of oil and set the timer. The unit then uses a stirring paddle and pulse heat system to evenly distribute the oil and cook the food evenly.
This T-fal appliance is not exactly a deep fryer – we would describe it more like a cross between a fryer, oven, slow-cooker, and skillet with an automatic stirrer. For that reason the ActiFry will not work well for many typical fried foods especially those with a batter.
We would recommend this for anyone who wants a unique cooking device and especially wants to make healthier fries.
The $50 Presto 05466 provides a large 12 cup food capacity in a budget price. It scored a very solid 4.4 stars from users on Amazon. This 1800 watt unit will let you cook two different items at a time through the use of the two oblong baskets. It has an adjustable thermostat, but we found that it is not the most accurate and it takes a little bit of experimenting to get temp you want.
While this is a pretty solid appliance it does not really compare with the larger ‘professional’ models. We recommend this Presto model for those who need to prepare above average amounts of fried food, but want to spend as little as possible.
Our selection for the best medium sized deep fryer is the $54 Presto 05462. This 1800 watt model will hold up to a gallon of oil and cook 9 cups of food at a time in its oblong basket. It has digital controls, an adjustable thermostat, and a lid. The biggest weakness on this model is how long it takes to heat up the oil to the proper temperature – a full 15 minutes or more – or reheat the oil after adding the raw food.
The best small capacity deep fryer and the best selling model on Amazon is the $45 Presto 05422 CoolDaddy. It can hold 64 oz of oil with a food capacity of 6 cups. It also has an adjustable thermostat, wire basket, and lockable cover. One nice safety feature that is unique to this model is that it is cool to the touch and thus is much less of a fire hazard and safer to use.
The biggest problem with this unit is that the oil just does not heat up to the full proper temperature like it should. With that said if you stick to smaller amounts of food to prevent the oil from being to cold to properly fry your food, you can help prevent getting soggy, greasy food.
The Waring Pro DF55 Mini Deep Fryer can be found for sale for less than $42. This 1500 watt unit has a small capacity of 2 quarts of oil and 1.29 pounds of food. The main thing we like about this model is that it seems to be able to reach a true high temperature pretty quickly and can recover to that temperature after raw food is added as well, although some users complained that they never got it to heat up to a full 375 degrees.
The cheapest fryer on our list if the Presto 05420 FryDaddy available for less than $35. This is a bare bones unit that is basically just a container and a 1500 watt heating element. There is no adjustable temperature instead it is just preset. There is also no basket or lid to prevent splatter. It does heat up pretty quickly to between 350-375 degrees and has a capacity for 4 cups of oil. Users can also use lard with this model if they prefer, while most other fryers require the use of cooking oil.
We recommend the Presto 05420 FryDaddy for those of you who want a cheap model that can still get decent results. Just remember it is small so you will not be able to cook for lots of people at once.