Ninja DZ401 Foodi 6-in-1 XL 2-Basket Air Fryer review: Double the fun of a regular fryer

A do-it-all appliance with maximum cooking capacity that’s perfect for large air fryer-loving households

T3 Platinum Award
Ninja Foodi XL Air Fryer
(Image credit: Ninja)
T3 Verdict

This extra-large air fryer is an efficient solution for crisping up multiple meals or a large batch of your favorite food at once. The perfect appliance for large families.

Reasons to buy
  • +

    Plenty of space for large households

  • +

    Cook two distinct foods at once

  • +

    Dehydrates in addition to air frying and roasting

Reasons to avoid
  • -

    Can be difficult to store

  • -

    Pricier than other air fryers

The Ninja Foodi 6-in-1 2-Basket XL Air Fryer is the largest in the brand’s impressive line of multi-cooking appliances. This 10-quart air fryer is equipped with two pull-out baskets and the technology to perfectly air fry, bake or dehydrate two separate dishes at once – and finish simultaneously. 

Home cooks who love the convenience of air frying but need to feed a crowd will appreciate the substantial room this new model from Ninja offers.

Air frying takes the technology of a convection oven, to circulate hot air around a product for maximum crispness, and reduces it to a compact size. As a result, air fryers cook food faster than a traditional oven and with less oil than deep-frying. However, this machine goes beyond air frying. The appliance’s six functions include dehydrating, baking, roasting, air broiling and reheating. Before you know it, this one countertop machine could replace all of your kitchen appliances.

Ninja Foodi XL Air Fryer review: price and availability

The Ninja DZ401Foodi 10-quart XL 2-Basket air fryer costs $219 and is US only. The slightly smaller 8-quart / 7.6-liter model, the DZ201 (also known as the AF300UK in the UK) costs $149/£179/AU$449.

Ninja Foodi XL Air Fryer

(Image credit: Lizzy Briskin)

Ninja Foodi XL Air Fryer

(Image credit: Lizzy Briskin)

Ninja Foodi XL Air Fryer review: design

While no one’s going to call this air fryer petite or diminutive, it’s also not unattractive. The appliance is large, but that’s to be expected from a dual-sided air fryer with two 5-quart cooking baskets. Given the cooking space and functionality, the machine is smartly designed and efficient.

The appliance cooks food in one of two baskets, which slide easily in and out of the housing. And despite the air fryer’s many functions, it’s surprisingly easy to learn and use. The digital touch screen is clearly labeled and intuitive.

For cleaning, both air fryer baskets and the crisper plates are dishwasher safe. The rest of the machine can be wiped down with a damp cloth. It has a stainless-steel finish that’s easy to keep clean.

Ninja Foodi XL Air Fryer

(Image credit: Lizzy Briskin)

Ninja Foodi XL Air Fryer review: Functionality

When it comes to functionality, the Ninja Foodi really can’t be beat. It has DualZone technology that allows cooks to prepare two entirely separate meals, or separate components of the same meal. And best of all, you can program the machine to finish both baskets at the same time.

That means you can roast an entire chicken in one basket and air-fry crisp asparagus or frozen french fries in the other. Look up the times in the included recipe booklet, quickly program the device, and the appliance will make sure that both sides finish at the same time. Not only can you walk away from the kitchen and let your air fryer do the work, but you can also rest assured that a hot meal will come together like magic.

On the other hand, if you’re filling both baskets with the same ingredients, you can program one side of the machine and use the Match Cook button to sync them to the same cooking schedule.

Here are the functions you can enjoy with this two-basket air fryer:

-       Air frying, which surrounds the food with hot air to efficiently crisp up frozen and fresh food faster than a conventional oven

-       Baking, which gently cooks baked goods with a golden and crisp exterior

-       Roasting, which applies heat from below to cook whole cuts of meat and poultry

-       Air broiling, which heats food from above and is ideal for melting cheese and adding a crisp crust to dishes.

-       Dehydrating, to slowly remove moisture from fresh produce and meat for homemade vegetable chips and jerky

-       Reheating, to gently rewarm leftovers without drying them out

Ninja Foodi XL Air Fryer

(Image credit: Lizzy Briskin)

Ninja Foodi XL Air Fryer review: Performance

I tested the air frying abilities of this appliance, including its ability to cook two separate dishes at once. Taking inspiration from the recipe booklet that comes with the unit, I prepared crab cakes in one basket and filled the second with broccoli florets.

The recipe instructions said that broccoli cooked on its own takes 10 to 13 minutes. With the second basket in use, it takes 24 to 28 minutes. Four 6- to 8-ounce crab cakes take 8 to 12 minutes in a single zone and 10 to 13 minutes with both baskets in use.

I followed the recommended seasoning instructions and tossed the broccoli with a tablespoon of olive oil and brushed the crab cakes with oil. I set the first zone to cook the crab cakes on air fry and the second for the broccoli, then pressed “Smart Finish” to make sure both sides would be done at the same time. The broccoli zone took off cooking, while the crab cake basket waited on “hold” until the broccoli had 10 minutes left in the cook time.

Halfway through, it was easy to pause one basket at a time to shake the broccoli and flip the crab cakes for even cooking. When the timer was done, right on cue, I opened the baskets to reveal very nicely cooked crab cakes with a beautifully crispy exterior and some very crispy broccoli. Next time, I’d cut back on the cooking time for the broccoli, as it was almost too crispy on the thinner ends. However, this was a delicious meal that took minimal effort and everything was cooked through as expected.

Ninja Foodi XL Air Fryer review: Verdict

This air fryer is an ideal solution for busy households with many mouths to feed. The 10-quart capacity is substantial and can accommodate not one, but two, whole chickens at a time. Aside from the ample cooking space, the most useful feature on this appliance is the Smart Finish technology that makes sure your entire meal is ready to enjoy at the same time. It truly takes the guesswork and stress out of preparing dinner, and there’s no need to babysit pots on the stove or in the oven.

While this air fryer is pricier than other options, including Ninja’s more compact 4-quart single-drawer air fryer, it’s worth it for the expanded capacity and functionality. Of course, if you have limited counter space or simply don’t need the extra capacity, the 8-quart version is just as functional. There’s truly no other appliance on the market that can match the two-zone cooking ability and range of features on this device.

Ninja Foodi XL Air Fryer review: also consider

If you’re looking for an air fryer with the same range of features at a slightly lower price point and smaller size, Ninja also makes an 8-quart model.

For a more pared-down air fryer that takes up less space in your kitchen, the Instant Vortex Air Fryer also has 6 cooking functions with a single 4-quart basket and costs $90.