There are a lot of air fryer models out there, and most promise the same thing: super-crispy food that tastes and looks deep-fried, but isn’t. Nutribullet, best known for its beloved personal blenders, has recently joined the air fryer space with a retro-designed magic bullet air fryer.
I had to put the Magic Bullet appliance to the test to assess its performance, design and functionality for the average home cook. Here’s how my tests went, and what you need to know about this air fryer to decide if it’s right for you.
Magic Bullet Air Fryer review: Price and Availability
The Magic Bullet Air Fryer was released in April 2021 and costs $59 in the US. While it’s not currently available in the UK, it is in Australia, costing AUS$130.
Magic Bullet Air Fryer Review: Design
While many air fryers can be clunky and boxy-looking, the Magic Bullet model is one of the more sleekly designed appliances. It has a very moderate footprint, measuring just 9x8 inches on the base and weighing seven pounds.
It has a 2.5-quart cooking basket, which is a good amount of space for a small household, but may not be quite enough for families of four or more. The basket can hold a small head of cauliflower, a pound of frozen fries or 12 chicken wings at a time.
The appliance has a classic retro look, thanks to the egg-style kitchen timer on the front, which counts down while you cook. On top, the machine has a simple manual dial to select your cooking temperature. The round dial slides smoothly from 180°F to 400°F and every degree in between.
The air fryer also has a handy set of reference information on top. Six icons show the proper time and temperature to air fry vegetables, fries, chicken wings, frozen chicken wings, fish and poultry (though it doesn't say which cuts of poultry).
Magic Bullet Air Fryer Review: Functionality
The Magic Bullet’s design is far more pared-down than other feature-rich air fryers. For example, the Vortex Plus Air Fryer offers multiple cooking options beyond your standard air frying, including baking, roasting, reheating and dehydrating.
Magic Bullet is keeping things simple, which is one of the reasons that this affordable appliance is a great choice for beginners. There’s no need to choose between multiple largely similar cooking functions. Simply add your food to the basket, choose your time and temperature, and let the Bullet do the work.
It’s worth noting that this air fryer also has a more limited temperature range than competitors. It tops out at 400°F. The Dreo Air Fryer reaches 450°F, which is a good temperature for quickly melting cheese on top of lasagna or browning homemade croutons. However, for most air fryer recipes, you won’t need to exceed 400°F.
Likewise, the base temperature of 180°F doesn’t allow for longer, slower cooking styles like dehydrating.
Safety-wise, this is one of the safer air fryers. It automatically shuts off when the timer ends, and the fan will also stop blowing if you remove the basket during cooking to shake or flip your food.
Magic Bullet Air Fryer review: Performance
Despite not packing quite the same range of features as some other air fryers on the market, the Magic Bullet does not disappoint when it comes time to cook. I tested the air fryer to see how well it could deliver crispy and tasty tofu nuggets, which is no easy task.
I started by prepping my tofu. I drained the extra-firm tofu, wrapped it in a dish towel and pressed out as much moisture as I could by placing a heavy skillet on top for about half an hour. I then diced and coated the tofu cubes in teriyaki sauce.
Before air-frying, I followed Magic Bullet’s recommendations and sprayed the basket and interior tray with a coating of nonstick spray. I added a layer of tofu cubes, leaving plenty of space between the cubes for airflow, and set the temperature to 375°F for 10 minutes. As soon as you set the timer, the air fryer fan starts to blow. Two lights turn on: one that indicates the fan and the other to indicate pre-heating. Once the oven reaches temperature, the preheating light turns off, but the timer will be counting down the entire time during preheating, which could affect your cooking time.
This air fryer does not give you a nudge to flip or shake your food. So it’s best to set the timer for just half of the cooking time so you don’t forget to shake things up.
After 10 minutes, my tofu cubes were looking nice and golden. I gave them a good shake and continued to air fry for another five minutes to make sure they were heated all the way through and crisp on all edges. The result was a surprisingly satisfying and crunchy snack. The tofu cubes turned into dense, crispy little nuggets with toasted golden color all over.
The basket and rack stayed pretty clean during my tests, and are fully dishwasher safe. One of the benefits of not having a touch screen, like many other air fryers, is that the shiny plastic exterior of the machine stays fingerprint-free.
Magic Bullet Air Fryer review: Verdict
This air fryer is a simple and easy-to-learn appliance perfect for first-timers. It’s an affordable price and a modest size, which makes this a great option for small kitchens. However, you do seem to be paying a premium for the name. Air fryers of a similar price range offer larger capacities and more features.
Magic Bullet Air Fryer review: Also Consider
If you’re looking for more of a feature-rich air frying appliance, you may want to check out the Instant Vortex Plus, which is a six-in-one machine, or the extra-large Ninja Foodi Two-Basket Air Fryer, the do-it-all mother of all countertop ovens.