We spent over 40 hours researching and testing 12 different brands of turkey fryers and found that ease of use, performance, and ease of cleaning were most important. The Big Easy Tru-Infrared Oilless Turkey Fryer scored high marks in all categories and is our top pick. If you love the taste of fried turkey without the hassle or worry of hot oil, you’ll love this fryer. It will preserve you flavors while at the same time offering a healthier alternative to deep frying. Your foods will be cooked thoroughly without hot or cold spots, flare ups or uneven cooking. You’ll save money by not having to buy oil either.
Turkey Fryer Reviews
The Thanksgiving holiday has made turkey an all American favorite around the dinner table, bringing people together to enjoy a comforting and delicious meal year around. Although turkeys are initially associated with holidays such as thanksgiving or Christmas, people replicate the turkey dinner throughout the year, to bring back memories of family time together.
Turkey comes in many forms, from sandwich meat to whole turkeys which take hours to prepare. Cooking a whole turkey is one of the most common ways to enjoy the bird, yet in today’s fast paced world it is not often that families have several hours to wait on dinner. However, there is another way to enjoy this all American classic that will bring new life to your old turkey cooking methods and give your friends and family a new experience when turkey is on the menu.
Turkey frying has gained popularity over the last several years due to its ease, speed, and retention of flavors. Instead of ending up with a dry turkey that takes hours to cook, you can be enjoying a moist turkey in much less time. Turkey fryers are wonderful appliances to have in your kitchen as they provide a whole new way to cook, eat, and experience turkey. What makes a turkey fryer unique is its size, turkey fryers are generally large enough to fry turkeys whole or other large forms of meat such as whole chickens, hams, or beef. They are not limited to whole cuts of meat and may also be used to cook a variety of meats or foods small and large, as well as any other foods you may like to fry.
The Big Easy Tru-infrared Oilless Turkey Fryer was selected as the top pick for its unique oil less cooking style and high quality performance. The oil less feature of this turkey fryer can be a great option for anyone who enjoys the hardiness of fried turkey without all the calories which typically come from frying. This fryer preserves the flavors while offering a healthy cooking option. In addition to the healthbenefits of an oil less turkey fryer, you will also save money because the fryer does not require oil refilling on a regular basis.
Another fantastic quality you will find in this turkey fryer is its patented infrared cooking technology. The fryer is designed to cook foods thoroughly and evenly avoiding hot and cold spots. This eliminates uneven cooking and prevents flare ups. You are left with delicious tasting healthy meats every time. This turkey fryer also has the ability to hold and thoroughly cook meats up to 16 pounds, in a single cooking time.
Common meats include whole turkeys, chickens, pork loin, and beef, along with a variety of other large or small cuts of meat. Due to the oil less nature you can season meat with both injectable marinades or external rubs. Oil fryers cannot use external rubs that come off in the oil during the cooking process. Lack of oil eliminates spills, splattering, and potential burns that are concerns when hot oil is used. The fryer weighs 30 pounds and is only 24 inches tall and 21 inches around, making it very compact for storage and countertop use. Included with the fryer are the fryer basket, a lifter, a meat thermometer, and a cooking guide. The fryer has an accessory kit and a lid available.
– Sarah Lytle
Best Overall Turkey Fryer – Runner Up
4.8/5 Product Rating
The Cuisinart Electric Turkey Fryer was chosen as the top pick for its high quality performance as well as its high capacity for large cuts of meat. This turkey fryer is crafted of stainless steel exterior which makes it attractive as well as easy to clean and maintain. The inside features a porcelain coated inner pot with your safety in mind. This fryer is designed to be used indoors with the highest safety features to prevent spills and fires. This is a traditional oil based fryer, however, it uses 33% less oil than traditional deep fryers.
It features a thermostat which allows you to select and maintain the desired temperature throughout the entire cooking process for flawless results. The fryer goes up to 375 degrees and has an auto shut off to prevent burning the oil. There is a convenient drain plug when the oil must be changed, providing easy clean up. The fryer comes in a standard size, a large and an extra large unit. If you do not need a 20 pound capacity you can choose a smaller unit with the same high quality construction.
The Cuisinart Electric Turkey Fryer has one of the largest capacities available and can fry up to a 20 pound turkey with efficiency. The standard size can cook up to a 14 pound turkey safely. Its large capacity is perfect for holder large cuts of meat. This fryer is not limited to turkey but can also cook a variety of meats as well as having the ability to boil foods like making a seafood boil. Convert it into a steamer and steam fish, seafood or vegetables. The drain plug, which makes it easy to take the oil out, significantly increases the versatility of this unit. Make soups and stews, fry foods, steam, broil or boil all with one appliance. The unit weighs less than 25 pounds and is only 20.18 x 15.96 x 16.44 inches, taking up minimal space on your counter and easy to store in cabinets when not in use.
The King Kooker Outdoor Cooker With Dual Frying Basket was selected as a top pick for its fantastic ability to cook outdoors as well as its ability to fry multiple foods simultaneously. This fryer is a one of a kind and uses portable propane gas to fry perfect turkeys and large cuts of meat.
The cooker sits on a welded frame which is high enough to allow the person cooking easy access to the food without the need to bend over or stand in uncomfortable positions. The high stand also keeps the food away from the ground, preventing accidents and keeping the food safe. The fryer includes a 16 inch base with two cooking baskets. The base is made from aluminum and the dual fryers allow you to cook different foods with different time requirements simultaneously.
The base pan is filled with oil and can be used to fry one large cut of meat like a large turkey, or use the baskets for smaller portions. The King Kooker Outdoor Cooker includes a thermometer that will help you monitor the cooking temperature throughout the cooking process to produce perfectly cooked food. The cooker produces 54,000 BTUs and is compact at 14.5 by 18 X 16.5 inches in size. It will fit next to an outdoor grill to add to your outdoor cooking prowess. The frame is made from steel and only weighs 16 pounds.
– Sarah Lytle
Summary of Our Top Picks
Turkey Fryers have provided a new dynamic to cooking turkey and large cuts of meat. They give families the ability to cook food faster with more flavor than the long traditional baking process provides. This is a new way to enjoy your favorite foods. Our top picks are more than capable of cooking meals for groups small and large.
Each of our top choices provide a safe and effective way to fry turkey, as well as an array of other foods, giving you delicious results. Yet they are all distinctly different. The Big Easy and the Cuisinart are both electric indoor fryers that can be used safely on your countertop. The Big Easy offers infrared technology to “fry” foods as a heathier oil less option to enjoy your favorite fried foods. This makes it the healthiest option of the three. It weighs 230 pounds and can cook up to 16 pounds of meat. The Cuisinart has the largest capacity at 20 pounds and is a traditional home fryer. It does however use 33% less oil than traditional fryers and has a drain plug to change the oil. This ease of cleaning also increases its versatility for other uses such as boiling or steaming foods, making it the most versatile of the three top picks.
The King Kooker uses propane gas, like a gas grill and is the only one of our top selections that is designed specifically for outdoor cooking. It also has a unique design that uses two baskets for frying multiple items or the base for a large turkey or cut of meat.
Each of our top picks also has the ability to cook and fry whole turkeys or meats.No matter which turkey fryer you choose, you are sure to find they are safe, functional, and versatile for all your frying needs.
Before choosing the best turkey fryer for you or your family consider how the fryer will be used and what your families long term needs are.
Do you intend to cook indoors or outdoors? Outdoor cookingads a sense of adventure and can work with a grill or smoker to provide amazing meals. The limitations with outdoor options are weather dependency and seasons. Those living in the south may use it year around, but those up north will have more limited use. Indoor cooking can be enjoyed year around regardless of weather conditions. They are also compact and use electricity rather than gas. If you are someone who enjoys cooking out doors or grilling often, an outdoor turkey fryer may be the best choice. However, if the majority of your cooking takes places inside, then the indoor fryer will likely get more use.
How Many People Do You Intend To Cook For? The capacity of the fryer will determine the size of meats you are able to cook. Some fryers can cook up to 10 pounds of meat safely where others go up to 20 pounds. It is not advisable to go over the maximum capacity of the unit because it could lead to oil spilling over or uneven cooking because the meat does not have the room needed to cook effectively. Identifying how many people you need to serve will ensure you buy a unit with enough capacity. They all cook smaller portions, but have a maximum limit which determines how large of meat you can cook at one time.
How Much Space do you Have? Appliances require both counter space when in use and cupboard space when it is stored. The size of the fryer will determine how and where the item it stored. Outdoor units may be requiring more space, which is a consideration if it will be stored in a garage or stage shed when not in use. The space also impacts capacity because the size of the basket determines the size turkeys or large pieces of you are able to cook.
Features to Consider
There are many features to choose from when it comes to turkey fryers ranging anywhere from the color of the turkey fryer, the construction materials and how and where it can be used. Here are a few features to consider.
Oil or Oil Less: Traditional fryers use oil to fry or cook the food. With today’s health conscious consumers, some companies have created oil less fryers that give you the flavor of fried foods without the unhealthy oil. These newer models frying the turkey using heating elements rather than oil. This can be a healthy choice for preparing food as your food will contain less calories and grease than you would normally find.
Indoor versus Outdoor: The indoor/outdoor feature you’ll see in turkey fryers determine where you can cook and often the type of fuel used to operate the fryer. Some turkey fryers are built to be used indoors with electrical plugs. They can also be used outdoors but are equipped with covers and safety protections to ensure safe cooking inside. Outdoor cookers tend to use alternative fuels like propane making them portable. You can take it to the tail gate, camping trip, or used in the backyard. They will have more durable frames but may not come with covers and enclosed cooking surfaces, found with indoor units.
Portable: Most fryers are compact enough to carry with you but those dependent on an outlet have limited portability. Outdoor turkey fryers using gas or propane can be used anywhere and they are easy to transport. Some outdoor units may be equipped with wheels, fold compactly, or have other features making them easy to move from place to place.
Single or Dual Baskets: When it comes to frying any sort of food, most have baskets that make it easy to put food in and take food out of the oil. Multiple baskets allow you to cook multiple food simultaneously, but may limit the size of food that can be cooked. A single basket may have a larger capacity, where two smaller baskets may be more versatile.
Drain Valve: Anyone who has changed the oil in a fryer knows it can be a lot of work. A drain valve makes this job easy because the oil drains out of the bottom of the unit. This makes cleaning much easier.
Turkey fryers can be a new and exciting way to cook turkey or other types of fried meat. The turkey fryer is large enough to fry or cook up a variety of other foods you would normally fry such as vegetables, seafood, rice, tempura, or other popular fried foods. They reduce cooking time without cutting down on flavors or the quality of food you are cooking. Fryers add a healthy option when using an oilless fryer.
Sarah's passion for cooking and eating healthy is what drives her to research and educate others. Sarah is our expert researcher who manages the Home and Kitchen category. When she's not writing you'll find her listening to Paleo Diet podcasts and educating people on how to live and eat primally.
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