T3's Karaca Air Pro Cook review in a sentence: A neat variation on the air fryer theme, thanks to a brilliant slow cook function.
Adding an air fryer to your arsenal of kitchen appliances makes a lot of sense right now. At the budget end of the spectrum, they’re cheap, cheerful and are great for fries, wings and what not. Spend a little bit more and the best air fryer models on the market are usually a little more versatile, offering features and functions not found on those lesser models.
Although it’s not very expensive to buy at just £129.95, the Karaca Air Pro Cook could be placed at the higher-end of the air fryer spectrum, mainly because of its slow cook capabilities. If you’ve often looked at an air fryer and wondered just how much value and use you’d get out of it, having a model with slow cook functionality can make a whole world of difference.
I’m already a big fan of my Tefal Actifry Genius XL, which can slow cook liquidy meals, like a tasty curry for example. It’s a bit like having one of the best Instant Pot all-in-one appliances, but you can still cook great chips and suchlike when you want to. I’ve got a variation on the theme in the shape of the Sage Fast Slow Go. It’s a brilliant, combined solution, which is where the Karaca Air Pro Cook comes in, only for less money.
- A big alternative with more modes: Tefal Actifry Genius XL 2in1 review
Karaca Air Pro Cook review: price & availability
The Karaca Air Pro Cook is on sale in the UK and has a competitive RRP of £129.95, with an initial launch price that was just £99.95. The appliance was originally available in Black or Ruby, but Karaca has also added a cream-coloured model to the range now too, so there’s a shade to compliment most kitchens. Lookout for it on Amazon, or direct from Karaca.
Karaca Air Pro Cook review: what is it?
I hadn’t come across the Karaca name before but it’s a Turkish homeware brand, complete with a physical store that has recently opened in London’s Islington Square. I know a lot of people tend to stick with tried and tested brands here in the UK, like Tower, which is the leading seller of air fryers in the country. Fair enough, as they’ve got a lot of great appliances, like the Tower Family Size Air Fryer as an example. However, the Karaca Air Pro Cook looks good and ticks all of the boxes.
This is a 4-litre machine, so it’s not the biggest and would be well suited to solo eaters, couples, smaller families or simply those trying to cut down on their meal sizes. Meanwhile, it has physical dimensions of 40.4 x 37.2 x 31.6 cm so sits nicely on a countertop without fuss. The Karaca Air Pro Cook is versatile too, with a host of cool functions that are accessed via a button pad on the front of the unit.
There’s Slow Cooking, Oven Grill, Reheat, Yoghurt, Air Fry and a Vegetable/Fruit Drying option too, so there’s plenty of functionality in such a low-priced machine. The main difference between the Karaca Air Pro Cook and many of its standard-fare air fryer counterparts is the fact that you can slow cook with it. For me, that’s a real boon, which adds a big plus point to the appliance.
There’s a main cooking area, which is effectively the slide-out drawer part of the design with the handle on. Inside that, there’s another smaller pot that can be taken out if you don’t need it and these can also be washed easily. The rest of the unit is smooth enough to be easily wiped over with a hot dishcloth to remove any greasy residue.
Karaca Air Pro Cook review: is it any good?
Getting the Karaca Air Pro Cook ready for its first run is easy enough. I pulled it out of the box, took off the protective film, removed any packaging inside around the non-stick parts and plugged it in. There’s a power button on the bottom left of the control panel and a start/stop one on the right. Above that are temperature and time controls, which let you add or subtract heat and minutes as you press up or down. Finally, above that, there are the core function buttons.
Instead of going for my usual go-to test option of cooking chips, I decided to go in a slightly different direction and try a couple of jacket potatoes. Much as a love these things, they can take time, which is why with current energy prices being what they are, I tend to soften the potato in the microwave first.
That way, most of the legwork is done and you can use an air fryer to add the crispiness factor to the skins, which are the best bit, I think. Chips, done later on at a fairly standard 200 degrees came out just fine too and in around 15 minutes, though this does depend on just how well done or crispy you like ‘em.
Karaca Air Pro Cook review: performance
The Karaca Air Pro Cook comes with 1500 Watts of power, which is more than enough to take on most tasks including the slow cooking part of the equation that I like so much. It uses what Karaca calls Circulation Air Tech, which is in essence the same heated element and fan-driven system employed by other air fryer models.
The format works great, however, and the ability to adjust temperature using the up/down arrows on the front of the machine lets you tweak heat on the go from between 60 and 210 degrees. I’ve found this, along with regular visual checks of the food you're cooking to be the best way to ensure perfectly crispy, rather than cremated chips, wings and all the rest of it. The Karaca Air Pro Cook excelled at this.
Better still, for me, is the slow cook option. I tried a basic vegetable stew, which involved throwing a bunch of items in the pot with some stock and seeing what happened. If you’ve got time, this turns out to be a great route to take. You can adjust the timer from between 1 minute and a sizeable 12 hours, so if you’re after extreme slow-cooked goodness the longer the time and lower the heat the better – especially if you’ve got chunks of meat in there too. I’ve found putting it on at lunchtime works well, with casseroles just about right by dinnertime. Again though, this relies on frequent visual checks to avoid vegetables turning to mush, with potatoes being particularly susceptible to this.
Another plus with the Karaca Air Pro Cook is the way the non-stick dish and drip tray can be cleaned, which reduces the hassle factor come clean up time. I’ve yet to get to grips with the yoghurt-making capabilities of this appliance, but as it stands, I think this is a deceptively potent all-rounder. It’s even pretty natty at dehydrating my favourite fruity snacks.
Karaca Air Pro Cook review: verdict
Given its overall versatility I think the Karaca Air Pro Cook will definitely fit the bill for anyone who doesn’t need mountains of food. The multiple functions makes it a good bet for vegetarians and vegans too, with plenty of options for meal-making, especially when it comes to slow cooking. The circular container might prove a little challenging if you’re trying to squeeze a whole chicken in for roasting, but generally speaking, the 4-litre capacity seems more than adequate for most things you’ll cook in the Karaca Air Pro Cook.