Few foods elicit satisfaction like those that are deep-fried. Too bad it's such a fat-soaked process. That's why these cookers caught our attention. Each claims to yield state-fair-ready foods using 80 percent less oil than standard models. Just fill the basket and set the temperature, and a system of swirling air and radiative heat takes care of the frying. They roast, grill, and steam, too. "I was amazed how well these worked," says chef Doug Psaltis, who tested each at his Chicago restaurant Bub City. "Only a few teaspoons of oil went a long way." No, they aren't a free pass to eating fried; they're just a smarter way to indulge.
"Were there an industrial-size version, I'd use it all the time," said Psaltis about the Airfryer, which uses circulated air and infrared tech to fry, grill, bake, or roast. With just two teaspoons of oil, every piece of fish Psaltis placed in the 28-ounce basket emerged golden and crispy. It also roasted vegetables expertly and grilled a tender steak. "It's simple, well-designed, and cooks very well," he says. [$280; amazon.com]