Does your air fryer have a square or a round basket? If you are looking to purchase an air fryer, which style should you choose? Does basket shape even matter?
This helpful guide aims to provide you with clear information so that you can make an air fryer purchase that you will be proud of. We’ll compare round and square fryer baskets in terms of cooking area, accessories, cooking quality, and more. Then, we’ll examine a few of today’s top models so that you can make an informed purchase.
Square vs. Round Baskets
Many consumers are convinced that air fryers with square cooking baskets are superior to those with round cooking baskets. Why?
For starters, the square shape actually allows for a larger cooking area. How? Well, picture a square that is 10 inches in diameter. Now, imagine a circle that is also 10 inches in diameter. The circle fits neatly inside the square, does it not? In fact, it cuts off the square’s edges.
In the same way, a square cooking basket has more volume than a round cooking basket of the same width. Those corners make the difference.
[Suggested image: Square and circle. Originally pictured in “Example 3” on ck12.org.]
Square cooking baskets are also better for baking. The larger area allows for larger baked goods – especially if using a square or rectangular pan. Metal cake pans, stoneware baking dishes, and even disposable aluminum baking pans can be used in a square basket air fryer. This includes both pans meant to be air fryer accessories, as well as those small baking dishes that just happen to fit well.
Square baskets allow for other interesting accessories as well. For example, large wire racks designed specifically for this purpose can be used. Cook your food directly on the rack, or use it to support kebob skewers, small pizza pans, or other baking dishes.
The best part is, square basket air fryers take up about the same amount of counter space as a round basket air fryer.
Recommended Air Fryers
Which square basket air fryer is right for you? We’ll consider four models from the top brands, Philips and NuWave, as well as three additional models that offer a lot of bang for your buck.
Philips Viva Turbo Star Air Fryer
Philips is considered the number one brand in air fryers, and the Viva Turbo Star is no different. This air fryer has a 1.8 pound capacity non-stick, dishwasher safe, square cooking basket, providing ample space for up to four servings of food. The basket is also equipped with Philips’ unique starfish design on the bottom surface, allowing for additional air circulation.
Another unique feature is that this model does not require a preheat setting. This equates to savings in time and energy for you. The “Easy Click” handle is removable to allow fast and easy accessory attachment. This model takes up twenty percent less counter space than previous models, while maintaining the same capacity.
1. Turbo Star convection technology ensures even heating
2. No preheat is needed, so you can start cooking immediately
3. Twenty percent smaller exterior with the same capacity
4. Basket and drawer are dishwasher safe for quick and easy cleanup
5. Your choice of black or white exterior to match any kitchen decor
Philips XL Air Fryer
Like the Philips Viva, the Philips XL sports a patented starfish design on the bottom of the basket, enhancing air flow. The large, brightly illuminated touch screen display makes setting and monitoring your cook time, temperature, and presets a breeze. The square basket can hold 2.65 pounds of food, the equivalent of two bags of frozen French fries. Use the the Philips XL to feed a crowd, or to cook your entire meal.
If you’re looking for an air fryer with an abundance of well-fitting accessories, the Philips XL doesn’t disappoint. Available accessories include a wire rack, skewers, a grilling basket, deep dish baking pans, and more.
1. Digital touch screen controls allow accurate cooking temperatures up to 390 degrees Fahrenheit
2. Sixty minute timer provides double the cooking time of some other models, with an auto shut-off feature to enhance appliance safety
3. Large capacity is double that of most fryers
4. Smart preset button allows you to program the cook settings for the food you prepare most
5. Dishwasher safe basket and accessories make for easy cleanup
NuWave Brio Air Fryer
This 3 quart air fryer is great for small families. The square cooking basket can fit, for example, up to eight bratwurst, a grilled cheese sandwich, two to three servings of French fries, or an entire Cornish hen.
The LED digital screen displays your temperature and cook time in a soothing deep blue color. The appliance’s small size – a footprint of less than one square foot – makes it ideal for areas with limited counter space.
1. Digital LED display enhances cooking accuracy
2. Both the drawer and basket have a non-stick coating and are dishwasher safe for easy cleanup
3. Safety features prevent the appliance from operating when the drawer is detached
4. Auto preheat setting ensures optimal cooking temperatures from the start
NuWave 6 Quart Digital Air Fryer
The NuWave 6 quart air fryer features digital controls with a unique orientation. The display is mounted on top of the appliance rather than on its front face, allowing you to easily look down on the display to set your machine. For those who are uncomfortable with touch screens, this NuWave air fryer comes equipped with actual buttons.
The extra large 6 quart basket can accept a number of accessories, including a central divider. Both cooking and clean-up are easy when your entire meal is prepared in a single air fryer basket – for example, chicken wings on one side and roasted vegetables on the other.
1. Top-mounted digital display with depressable buttons allows for ergonomical use
2. Large capacity basket can be fitted with a divider to cook two types of food at once
Della XL Air Fryer
At around half the price of other large capacity air fryers, the Della XL offers family sized portions on a budget. Manual controls denote the simplicity of design.
An interesting feature of this model is the automatic standby mode. When the cooking time of up to 30 minutes is complete, the device enters standby mode to keep your food table-ready.
1. Available in three vivid colors – black, white, and red – to complement your kitchen decor
2. Automatic standby mode keeps food hot after the cooking cycle is complete
3. Release button cover prevents accidental release of the cook basket when transferring food.
Gourmia 4.5 Quart Air Fryer
If you’d like to find a budget air fryer with a digital display, this is the one for you. The touch screen has customizable and pre-programmed one-touch preset buttons for hands-off cooking, and extended cook times permit you to prepare a variety of dishes.
This air fryer boasts an ETL certification, meaning that it has been independently tested and found to meet established industry standards.
1. Digital display offers ease of control, including one button presets for French fries, seafood, poultry, meat, and custom settings.
2. Uses both radiant and convection heat sources for improved efficiency
3. Sixty minute timer allows for longer cook times than most comparable models
Stove & Brick 3.2 Quart Low Noise Air Fryer
The extra large touch screen display of the Stove & Brick air fryer makes it easy to operate, even without your glasses. The square basket fosters maximum food capacity in this small, compact air fryer. One unique feature is a support bracket that prevents the basket from bending and coming into contact with the drawer, even when stocked with heavy foods. This model is also ETL cetified.
1. Noise reduction technology eliminates distraction from the use of the convection fan
2. Large blue and yellow digital display adds a cheery touch to your kitchen counter
3. Peel resistant non-stick coating is dishwasher safe for ease of cleaning
4. Basket liner bracket supports the weight of heavy foods
Which air fryer is right for you? We hope this guide has helped you to make an informed decision. Overall, the Philips air fryers are outstanding in performance. If you’re feeding a family on a budget, the Della XL air fryer is an excellent option. For small families or individuals, the space saving Stove & Brick air fryer is an ideal choice.
Whichever you choose, your new air fryer is certain to open up a new world of culinary delights, while conserving time and calories. Get yours and start cooking today.