Are Air Fryers Safer Than Microwaves? (Explained)

Air fryers appear to be a lot healthier than microwaves.

It is a common practice to compare two things of a similar category especially when you shifted to a more recent one. These days, it is not much difficult as you can easily search online for the experiences of different people.

Also, doing this is necessary as in the case of household appliances, so you may get well aware of which one is better regarding health and safety.

This article is all about a comparison of two popular kitchen gadgets, the microwave, and the air fryer.

While adding a little quantity of oil to a microwave may be necessary, air fryers don’t require any oil at all because they are capable of frying, baking, and other tasks that don’t even involve the use of oil.

Because there is less grease in an air fryer compared to frying or baking in the oven, it is thought to be healthier. But why is it so?

The reason lies in microwaves solely possessing a heat-related health risk. The radio waves come from a microwave.

An air fryer doesn’t work on this principle therefore it is considered healthier. I can think of a microwave that uses radiated energy to heat things; both of these have safety precautions to prevent harm.

Thus, today we’ll be talking about microwaves and air fryers with a comparison of what is healthy and what’s not. Also, I’ll discuss the frequently asked ambiguities, to clear up the confusion.

So, let’s get to the point!

Is It Dangerous To Use A Microwave?

In general, microwaves produced by microwave ovens are harmless as long as they are contained by the oven, as they are meant to do.

Hot air ovens and air fryers both heat up quickly, as does everything else in the oven. These ovens are generally safe since they are made to insulate against excessive heat escaping.

However, it is important to handle the hot contents of both ovens with caution. It is more secure than a microwave and healthy.

An air fryer is a recent technology and is considered healthier in many aspects. Although a lot of people out there are still convenient with microwaves but the only thing that makes them outdated is the microwaves it generates which may be harmful.

Is Air Fryer Healthier than Microwave?

An air fryer is better for you than a microwave.

Microwaves emit non-ionizing radiation, which can cause tissue damage in areas of the body where they strike. It has been demonstrated that microwave radiation causes high-frequency oscillations in water molecules.

These oscillations change the electric charges on some of the molecules and cause the molecule’s structure to rotate more slowly. Repeated microwave exposure may cause these changes to accumulate and weaken cell membranes, disrupt cellular metabolism, and weaken the immune system.

Air Fryer vs. Microwave Radiation

For years, people have been debating whether to use air fryers or microwaves. Both appliances promise to cook your food quickly and easily, but there are some key differences between them.

Air fryers cook food evenly on all sides by circulating hot air around them. Microwaves, on the other hand, use radiation to heat the food from the inside out. They are both popular cooking options, but which one is best for you?

Microwave radiation’s effects on human health have been debated for many years. Some people believe that microwave waves can cause cancer, but other studies have shown that they are no more dangerous than other forms of cooking.

Which Is Superior, An Air Fryer Or A Microwave?

There are numerous perspectives on this query.

First of all, a microwave and an air fryer are two entirely distinct machines with quite different functions; you are not comparing like-for-like devices.

Therefore, it is quite impossible to truly compare the two of them. The microwave can quickly reheat or defrost the food. Also, it can be used for some microwave-friendly items, such as microwaveable popcorn packets.

A useful daily fryer is a single-purpose gadget that fries a small amount of food for a considerable amount of time using very little oil. If you frequently fry food, it might be worthwhile. So, in that case, I believe I would just get a standard home fryer.

Fried food doesn’t always have to be greasy and oily when done properly.

An image showing pocket rolls cooked in an air fryer
Pocket rolls

Are Air Fryers Financially Worthwhile?

If you enjoy fried items but don’t want the oil and grease, they are definitely worth the price. I purchased one, and it initially operated flawlessly before it started to trip the circuit breaker.

I have 20 amp breakers, but even after replacing the old one, it continued to pop. So, that one was returned. Two additional models that I tested weren’t as appealing to me as the first one. They were therefore also given back.

Like the previous one, I bought another one, and it has been a marvel in my kitchen. I have a 5.3-quart model with 1700 watts.

It makes excellent fish, fried chicken, fries, and roasts with veggies. If you don’t have either, I would advise purchasing a microwave because it would be far more useful for your daily life cooking than a simple fryer.

What Should I Buy Among A Microwave, Convection Oven, And An Air Fryer?

To answer this question, I’d like to give you a tour of my usage of microwaves and convection ovens.

I use my microwave several times a day. For melting the cheese on my food, for heating a pizza, or melting my chocolate I use.

Cook veggies and reheat previously cooked dishes. For anything that fits, I use the little (microwave) oven because it heats more quickly and, in my opinion, consumes less energy.

For big family dinners, I use it as my second oven. My normal oven operates in convection mode more than 95% of the time. Every Christmas, I make around 40 dozens of ten different kinds of cookies.

When I bought my first convection oven, the quality increased by one or possibly two levels. Simply put convection air circulation ovens out for baking and roasting.

In my opinion, buying a microwave is better, if you use it more often. But, you’d most likely get a microwave if you don’t have a convection oven. If I talk about air fryer, although it’s great to use you can only prepare limited foods in it.

In case you find a convection oven that is out of your price range, it seems like it would merely take up counter space, therefore you’d go for a microwave. I take it that you mean “in contrast to a microwave oven.” Although microwaves can be harmful, ovens are sufficiently protected.

To summarize, I prefer using a microwave as I don’t own an oven, but it’s your choice either to spend your money on an oven, or air fryer or use a microwave that is not spacious and leaves space on your countertop.

An image showing a person taking out cooked dish from microwave
Finger-licking dish taken out of an oven

Have a look at the video given below to know further about the comparison between a convection oven and an air fryer;

Convection oven vs. air fryer

Air Fryer Vs. Microwave; The Cooking Principle

Let’s have a look at the details of the principles on which they both work.

In an air fryer, an ingredient for a dish is placed inside a closed space, and then extremely hot air is circulated all around it. The heat causes the ingredient’s outside surface to become crispy and dry while maintaining the interior soft and wet. The fat content of the air-fried food is relatively minimal.

Whereas, the microwave operates by piercing food with electromagnetic radiation.

Molecules that are exposed to electromagnetic radiation become polarized and rotate in tandem with the alternating microwave field.

As a result, the food becomes heated as they bump into one another. This heat evenly cooks the food from the inside out. For those who prefer the oil flavor in their food, the air fryer may not be acceptable from a taste perspective (deep fry).

Regarding crispiness, the air fryer might edge out the microwave. In comparison to a microwave, an air fryer uses more energy and cooks food more slowly.

Microwave Vs. Air Fryer

SpecificationMicrowaveAir Fryer
Power ConsumptionUp to 1500w and Up to 1400w
Cooking TimeQuicker cookingAn air fryer cooks food more quickly than a microwave.
TasteFoods that are crispy and crunchy taste good when cooked in an air fryer.Using a microwave enhances the flavor of boiled and gravy foods.
Air Fryer Vs. Microwave

Why Is Microwaved Food Not Unhealthy?

An image showing a woman setting microwave timer

It is because there is no justification for expecting it to be. Microwaves are simply a longer wavelength version of the infrared wavelengths used in ordinary cooking, so what they do isn’t all that different from what normal oven baking does.

If anything, the differences make it safer because they never rise above the boiling point of water, which prevents high-temperature chemical reactions from occurring (in general).

There may be risks associated with the “containers,” such as melting plastic, but those risks are no different from those associated with traditional cooking.


In conclusion, I’d like to say that,

  • A microwave is considered less healthy than an air fryer. This is due to their difference in cooking mechanisms.
  • There are many schools of thought regarding what is healthy and what is not.
  • Microwave cooking is quick because it heats food from the inside out. It heats the water content of the food.
  • An air fryer is a small version of a standard convection oven. Inside the cooking chamber, convection is used to move the hot air to provide heating.
  • Food that doesn’t require external browning can be cooked in the microwave without issue.
  • The meals that can be cooked in a Microwave oven and an Air Fryer cannot be prepared together. You cannot fry food in a microwave oven, and you rarely cook moist foods in an air fryer.
  • The amount and duration of cooking influence power consumption (less quantity cooks faster).

All in all, people are still using microwaves much more than air fryers, and the rate of well-being is quite the same.

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