About three years ago, I inherited a Kmart brand air fryer from a friend who upgraded to a more family-friendly one. It was small, but sufficient for cooking hashbrowns, tofu, and spring rolls. Of course, I’d heard an air fryer could do far more, but I had to turn the knob with a set of pliers, and there were only two settings for the air fryer – on or off. So, when Phillips reached out to Lifehacker Australia to review its latest 5000 Series XXL air fryer, I wanted to see if an air fryer really was as good as people say.
The short answer? It really is.
For the good part of two weeks, I’ve made dinner using only the Phillips 5000 Series air fryer. At first, this was somewhat of a challenge, but there really was an endless supply of things I could make. The challenge ended up being not what the Phillips 5000 Series air fryer could do, but how I could fit it on my kitchen bench and also have space to prepare food.
Phillips 5000 Series XXL Connected Air Fryer
The Philips Airfryer 5000 Series XXL Connected promises to be “your everyday cooking companion for creating hassle-free, nutritionally-balanced and great-tasting meals for the whole family, any day of the week”.
For $449, you’ll get 16 different cooking functions, such as fry, bake, grill, roast, dehydrate, toast, defrost, reheat, and ferment. You can also set the temperature that you want your food to cook at.
The ‘XXL’ in the product name alludes to the fact this thing is big. Pitched at families, the Philips 5000 Series XXL Connected air fryer has a 1.4kg capacity basket, as well as a 7.2-litre pan, which, for my household of two, was sufficient for every meal we made.
On Phillips’ website, there’s a picture of the 5000 Series cooking an entire chook – that’s how big we’re talking. Apple for scale.
I mentioned it earlier, but it’s worth elaborating a little: the Philips 5000 Series XXL air fryer, when it sits next to the Breville Barista Touch Impress coffee machine, leaves me with very minimal bench space. It also doesn’t fit in any of my kitchen cupboards, save for the smaller one I use as a pantry. I wouldn’t want the air fryer to be smaller, if I did, just a smidge, so perhaps my gripe is instead with Sydney property developers who don’t seem to understand apartment dwellers need to eat food, too.
While this isn’t something to nitpick at Phillips for, it’s actually the only issue I took with the 5000 Series air fryer the entire time I used it, so I wanted to mention it.
There was one other tiny issue, but it soon became more of a help than a hindrance.
If you’ve caught yourself frustrated lately that you’ve had to download yet another app to do/access something, you’re not alone. After taking the Philips 5000 Series out of its box, and removing the packaging and stickers, I downloaded the air fryer app. I had to set up an account, and I rolled my eyes at connecting Wi-Fi to something I was going to be cooking with. But, the NutriU app is actually quite helpful. If for nothing else but the absolute mountain of air fryer recipes it has.
OK, but it’s not only that. If you select a recipe, and send it to the Philips 5000 Series air fryer, you can monitor the progress of your cooking from your lounge while you watch TV. And for those of you that are tech savvy and/or use Amazon’s Alexa-enabled smart devices, you can control the Phillips 5000 using your voice.
If you’re going to invest in the Phillips 5000 air fryer, I’d recommend bothering with the app – besides, it only took me seven minutes to set everything up.
The proof is in the pudding (or patty)
The 5000 Series air fryer uses something Phillips describes as “Rapid Air Technology, with its unique starfish design, swirls hot air to create delicious foods that are crispy on the outside and tender on the inside, with little to no added oil”. However you describe it, the food came out crunchy or fluffy or gooey – all depending on what I was cooking.
I mentioned earlier that I cooked every meal using the air fryer, except for when porridge was on the breakfast menu. So what did I cook?
Cauliflower bites, refried bean crunchwrap, black bean patties, pizza, vegan chicken parmi, quesadillas, tofu bites, kale chips, roasted veggies, empanadas, toasted cheesies, fries, crumbed halloumi, hashbrowns from a freezer pack, Lauren’s favourite way to make hashbrowns, carrot cake (yep), air fried bananas, and I even dehydrated an apple because I could.
Easy to clean
While I’m embarrassed to admit my last air fryer was putrid, it seems quite hard to make a mess of the Phillips 5000. After the first use, I had to ask my partner if he had already cleaned it because there didn’t seem to be anything for me to clean. He hadn’t, the basket just has a non-stick coating. Adding air fryer sheets to your cooking will also help reduce the stains/stop stuff from sticking. But…. All of the Phillips 5000 Series air fryer parts are dishwasher safe. A godsend.
Phillips 5000 Series XXL Connected Air Fryer: The verdict
If you’ve read this far, you probably know what I’m going to say. The Phillips 5000 Series XXL Connected Air Fryer has genuinely cut my cooking (and cleaning) time right down, made me feel a little more healthy, and, if I’m honest, got me excited about cooking – something I started to dread every night after work. My issues lie solely with the lack of space an inner west Sydney apartment has, and the fact I have to learn to accept that everything, before we know it, will be connected to the internet.
A good air fryer really is as good as people say it is.