Burgers
PfeifferV/istockphoto

40 Cheap Air Fryer Recipes to Cut Calories Not Flavor

View Slideshow
Burgers
PfeifferV/istockphoto

Air Fryer Magic

There's nothing more frustrating than buying a new kitchen gadget, tool or appliance to only find that you never use it. Thankfully, that won't be the case for your air fryer, especially once you try some of these highly rated — and creative — recipes. 

Haven't joined the air fryer club yet but would like to? Check out the highly-rated Cosori Air Fryer Max, the popular Ninja 9-in-1 Air Fryer and Pressure Cooker, or if you already have an Instant Pot, you can use the Air Fryer Lid to convert your existing multicooker.

Related: 24 Kitchen Accessories You Didn't Know You Needed

Fried Tortellini
LauriPatterson/istockphoto

Parmesan "Fried" Tortellini

Inexpensive pasta is the heart of this dish billed as "the Italian snack of your dreams."

Recipe: Delish

Fried Chicken
Tatiana Volgutova/istockphoto

Un-Fried Chicken

Fried chicken is a picnic staple, so will Un-Fried Chicken be the next big thing? If you use Trisha Yearwood's recipe, it just might be. One five-star reviewer proclaimed: "One of the best chicken recipes I have ever had."

Recipe: Food Network

Related: 20 Chef Secrets for Crisp, Juicy Fried Chicken

Fries
robynmac/istockphoto

Bob Harper's Air-Fried French Fries

How can you replicate a good French fry? Well, Bob Harper shared his secret with Rachael Ray — and the simplicity will blow you away.

Recipe: Rachael Ray Show

Burgers
PfeifferV/istockphoto

Juicy Air-Fryer Hamburgers

Not only is this a gluten-free recipe, but it also has plenty of enthusiastic tips on preparation, nutrition, and pleasing fussy kids: "I feel like we should drop everything, whip up a batch or two of these juicy burgers and tuck right in. Who's with me?" Um, we are. (Take your burgers a step further with 30 Wild and Wonderful Burger Toppings.)

Recipe: Recipes from a Pantry

Avocado Fries
bhofack2/istockphoto

Crispy Avocado Fries

This air-fried take on traditional fries makes a healthy snack. Even better, these "good-fat" nibbles can be on the table in 15 minutes.

Recipe: Delish

Apple Pies
Fudio/istockphoto

Fried Apple Pies

Food personality Paula Deen notes that, "As a Southerner, I can't help but love fried foods. Of course, I've had to cut back on them over the past few years — until now! I've got a new way to enjoy my beloved fried foods with less fat and oils: air frying." She shares favorites in her air fryer cookbook, featuring a few on her website including this one that has our mouths watering.

Recipe: Paula Deen

Related: 20 Essential Baking Tools That Every Aspiring Pastry Chef Needs

Fried Rice
JianGang Wang/istockphoto
Ratatouille
Yingko/istockphoto
Sweet Potato Hash
jenifoto/istockphoto
Fried Turkey Breast
4kodiak/istockphoto
Breakfast Frittata
LauriPatterson/istockphoto

Breakfast Frittata

Funny how plain old eggs seem special when you give them a fancy name like frittata, right? This version is filled with everyday items you probably already have in your kitchen.

Recipe: Allrecipes

Salmon and Broccoli
stock_colors/istockphoto

5-Ingredient Salmon and Broccoli Stir-Fry

This recipe makes the healthy choice with frozen salmon and reduced-sodium soy sauce. It adds up to a healthy main course at 265 calories and 240mg sodium per serving.

Recipe: Food Network

Mozzarella Sticks
bhofack2/istockphoto

Mozzarella Sticks

The kids will only eat mozzarella sticks from the fast-food counter? They'll change their tune once they taste these — and only you will be in on the healthy secret of their prep.

Recipe: Show Me The Yummy

Chicken Tenders
bhofack2/istockphoto

Crumbled Chicken Tenderloins

Forget greasy chicken nuggets from the drive-through window. This recipe offers a healthy (253 calories per serving) alternative that will please the adults, too.

Recipe: Allrecipes

Falafel Burger
zi3000/istockphoto
Zucchini Parmesan Chips
nata_vkusidey/istockphoto

Zucchini-Parmesan Chips

This recipe by celebrity chef Todd English was shared by hundreds of fans, which is not surprising given how easy it is. The key is to dry the zucchini prior to cooking, and make sure slices don't overlap in the frier.

Recipe: SpaWeekDaily

Bacon
apomares/istockphoto

Air Fryer Bacon

While this might be the tastiest way to make bacon, the real win has nothing to do with flavor. Instead of getting grease all over the inside of your oven or splattered around your stovetop, this method is not only easy but clean up is a snap. (If pigging out on bacon makes you want squeal with delight, you'll want to know about these 26 Amazing Bacon Dishes Across America.)

Recipe: A Pinch of Healthy

Steak-Lover's Meatloaf
epantha/istockphoto
Fried Pickles
va103/istockphoto

Air-Fryer Pickles

Your waistline won't get into a pickle with this snack. This Test Kitchen-approved recipe is a clever at-home alternative to the popular restaurant (and state fair) splurge.

Recipe: Taste of Home

Pork Chops
MCCAIG/istockphoto

Pork Chops & Broccoli

Numerous readers have shared this recipe on social media, so it must be pretty tasty. Remember, it's a dish just "cooked all at once for juicy pork chops and toasty roasted broccoli."

Recipe: That Low Carb Life

Rotissiere Chicken
GMVozd/istockphoto
Fried Tofu
Mizina/istockphoto

Tofu Rancheros With Veggies

Pump up the Mexican flavors with this spin on tofu. Cumin and chili powder give the tofu a kick, and salsa adds even more heat.

Recipe: Healthy Slow Cooking

Fried Catfish
4kodiak/istockphoto

Southern Style Catfish With Green Beans

Wondering if an air fryer can turn out crispy fish? This recipe makes a strong case — and you can have fish with a side of green beans on the table in less than half an hour.

Recipe: Cooking Light 

Related: 45 Comfort Foods for a Cozy Fall Meal

Party Meatballs
LauriPatterson/istockphoto

Party Meatballs

Surprise your next gathering's guests with this fun and thrifty take on the meatball. Inexpensive ground beef's at the heart of the recipe, but it gets a jolt of flavor from a surprise ingredient – gingersnaps.

Recipe: Recipe This

French Toast Sticks
bhofack2/istockphoto
Eggplant Parmesan
GANCINO/istockphoto

Crispy Air Fryer Eggplant Parmesan

Forget deep-frying then baking your eggplant. This air-fryer version of the restaurant favorite also uses whole wheat flour and breadcrumbs for an even healthier turn.

Recipe: Watch What U Eat

Steak Bites
bm4221/istockphoto

Steak Bites and Garlic Mushrooms

Steak cubes, mushrooms, butter… what's not to love? If you cook this popular recipe, remember you have to let the steak rest a few minutes before digging in.

Recipe: Best Recipe Box

Fried Shrimp
LauriPatterson/istockphoto

Bang Bang Panko Breaded Fried Shrimp

This version of the dish was inspired by a take on bang bang shrimp served at Bonefish Grill, but this keeps things lighter. The spicy chili sauce is served on the side, and the air fryer reduces oil for only 1 gram of fat per serving.

Recipe: Stay Snatched

Egg Rolls
bhofack2/istockphoto

New York Style Egg Rolls (Shrimp & Pork)

Forget the oil leaking through the paper on the way home from the local restaurant. Here's a homemade version of the restaurant favorite has been shared by more than 18,000 Chinese food fans.

Recipe: This Old Gal

Related: 21 Takeout Meals Made Cheaper at Home

Banana Bread
anamaria63/istockphoto

Banana Bread

Who knew that the air fryer would work for desserts? Try the old-fashioned charm of this crowd-pleasing dish from Food Network Kitchen, with wheat germ or whole-wheat flour adding a healthy kick.

Recipe: Food Network

Churros
Bartosz Luczak/istockphoto

Churros With Chocolate Sauce

A lighter version of the classic churro, this treat features a cinnamon-sugar mixture that delivers the classic crunch. This recipe might take a bit of effort, but results are said to be well worth it. Dieters can skip the chocolate sauce. (If this recipe sounds good, check out The Best Fried Foods Around the World.)

Recipe: Cooking Light

Air Fried Vegetables
bhofack2/istockphoto

Air Fried Vegetables

This is a one-size-fits-all recipe for vegetables in the air fryer. It's incredibly straightforward — choose the veggie you prefer, from Brussels sprouts to carrots, cauliflower to broccoli.

Recipe: CookSmarts

Fried Artichoke Hearts
JackF/istockphoto

Crispy Artichoke Hearts With Horseradish Sauce

This appetizer or side dish dubbed "seriously delicious" uses frozen artichoke hearts, an easy and inexpensive ingredient that is both readily available and easy to find.

Recipe: Health Starts In The Kitchen

Sugar Donuts
LauriPatterson/istockphoto
Personal Pizzas
Elet1/istockphoto
Hot Dogs
svariophoto/istockphoto
Snack Mix
pamela_d_mcadams/istockphoto

Sweet and Salty Snack Mix

You're never going to say you made those Cheez Doodles yourself — but you can impress the afterschool crowd or those at your next cocktail party with this easy snack recipe.

Recipe: Blue Jean Chef

Fried Chickpeas
ToscaWhi/istockphoto
Apple Chips
vm2002/istockphoto
Grilled Pineapple
simarik/istockphoto

Brazilian Grilled Pineapple

Yes, this dessert contains brown sugar and butter, but its main ingredient is healthy, naturally-sweet pineapple. This grill-free dish is said to be "melt-in-your-mouth delicious" by fans, and pineapple is a sweet ending to any meal.

Recipe: Two Sleevers