I'M nervous as the buzzer on my air fryer goes off, marking the moment of truth – will my roast dinner taste good?

I’m testing to see how cooking the nation's favourite dish in an air fryer fares, as thousands rush to buy one in a bid to save cash on their energy bills.

Sales of air fryers are rocketing.

Tesco has reported a 200% year-on-year rise in sales, while Iceland’s managing director has tweeted about the appliance being a sell-out product in stores.

They are much cheaper to run, according to experts.

Research from Utilita shows households could save £263.80 a year by swapping their ovens for an air fryer instead.

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It means more families are looking to make the switch to save money on bills, which have soared to £2,500 this winter.

I’ve put one to the test to see whether I can cook my Sunday dinner in one.

Choosing the air fryer

Choosing my air fryer was a mission.

I wanted to get one that wasn’t too pricey and would fit in my small kitchen.

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With so many options to choose from, I was struggling to find the best one for me.

In the end, I opted for the Tower Family Size Air Fryer, which costs £66.99 on Amazon.

It has a capacity of 4.3litres.

The advert for the appliance claimed I could save up to 50% on my energy bill compared to using a conventional oven.

I’m getting worried about how much my energy bill will cost this winter, and I’m already fighting the urge to turn my heating on – so I was very tempted by this saving.

Cooking the roast

I went to the shop, armed with the dimensions of my air fryer pot.

But I couldn’t find a whole chicken small enough to fit in – so I had to get creative and buy a single chicken breast portion instead.

That was fine as I was cooking just for myself – but I would have been in trouble if I was making dinner for a big family.

I’m not the best cook, so I wanted to get an air fryer that looked easy to use – and this one was.

All I had to do was put my food in the air fryer container, and set the temperature and timer.

There was a handy instruction manual explaining how long you should leave your food in the fryer.

For chicken and frozen potatoes, it was 20-25 minutes.

For frozen veg, it was around 10 minutes.

Taste test

I was sceptical about what my roast would taste like.

I thought the chicken would be dry and the Yorkshire puds shrivelled up.

But when I opened up the container, the unmistakable mouthwatering smell of cooked chicken wafted around my kitchen.

I sliced into it, and it was cooked perfectly, piping hot, and surprisingly juicy – I would never have been able to tell it hadn't been cooked in the oven.

My favourite part of a roast is crispy, golden potatoes. 

But my air-fried roast potatoes didn’t quite hit the same spot – they didn’t have that same oven-cooked crunch.

However, I was happy they weren’t as greasy.

My Yorkshire puddings, on the other hand, were crisp and delicious.

The peas tasted great too – they popped in my mouth and weren’t dry at all.

I was surprised at how good it tasted – and the best thing was that there was hardly any washing up to do, and the fryer was quick to clean.

How much it cost on my energy bills

I asked Uswitch to crunch the numbers on how much it cost me to cook my air fryer roast dinner – and I was impressed at the savings I made.

The Tower air fryer has a wattage of 1,500. 

Based on this, and my cooking times, I asked Uswitch to calculate running costs.

It took 25 minutes to cook everything in total, costing me 21p.

If I had cooked it in the oven, it would have taken far longer at around 30 minutes – which Uswitch said would cost 40p.

If I used my air fryer every Sunday to whip up a roast, it would cost me £10.92 over the year – compared to £20.80 using the oven.

Make sure to factor in the additional cost of using gravy.

No roast is complete without gravy, but I couldn’t make that in the air fryer – so boiled my kettle instead and whisked some up.

It costs 9p to boil a kettle for five minutes.

My verdict

I was honestly blown away by my air fryer – it lived up to the hype.

I couldn’t believe it slashed my cooking bill in half.

The quality was fantastic too.

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The only downsize was the size of mine – I would advise getting a super-size air fryer if you want to use it for the whole family, or buy a smaller chicken.

I’ll definitely be swapping my oven for the air fryer while energy bills are soaring.

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