There's a reason why air fryers are often marketed as 'health fryers': they claim to produce food that tastes deep-fried, but only requires a teaspoonful of oil (or no oil at all) to cook.
This is because air fryers cook by blowing searing hot air around a small cooking zone rather than submerging food in fat. In fact, their method of cooking is identical to that of a fan oven, with differences in results caused by their compactness and the intensity of the circulated air.
Manufacturers' claims about air fryers can sometimes be overblown, but they can be a healthier way to cook chips when compared with other methods.
Any time you add oil to your chips, it will get absorbed during cooking, although there's a limit to how much oil can physically be absorbed.
This means that air fryers are roughly equal to ovens as far as adding fat content to your bowl of chips goes. The fat content depends entirely on how much oil you choose to add.
But because air frying creates a taste that's closer to deep-fried food, cooks who aren't satisfied with their oven-cooked chips might find air frying a healthier option than a chip pan, given the choice between one or the other.
There isn't a one-size-fits-all approach here, but you don't actually have to use any oil at all.
You can simply season your chips and set them to air fry. This is the lowest-calorie version of cooking air-fried chips, but might leave them tasting a little less 'done' than you'd like.
That's because oil promotes a process known as the Maillard reaction, a chemical change that happens when your food is browned, that creates the flavours we love.
For the best tasting dish, one tablespoon or one spray of cooking oil can help create a fried taste without the calorific excess of deep fat frying.
We've tested a lot of air fryers, and we've picked up some tips for any home cook:
We've established that air fryers can be much healthier than fat-frying while achieving delicious browning. But how do they do it?
It's all in the circulation of hot air in the cooking zone - a drawer or a basket. We've found that the best air fryers cook with intense heat and manage to reach every chip by buffeting them with air.
Bonuses, like a self-stirring paddle, help. But there are Best Buy air fryers that achieve crisp, even cooking with sheer power alone.
Outside of cooking performance, there are other aspects too: energy consumption is one. Great air fryers can be energy guzzlers and we mark them down slightly for this.
Ease of use is another aspect. Air fryers should be easy to use, one-touch if possible. And they can get dirtier than ovens because debris gets blown around and left scorched in crevices, so we see how easy they are to clean, too.
We've been reviewing new air fryers all winter and we've just reviewed six more, including three Tower models.
Read our expert reviews of the newest air fryer releases to find out if they dethrone current reigning champions or not.