T3's Tower 9 litre Dual Basket Digital Air Fryer review in a sentence: Plenty of capacity thanks to twin drawers and lots of cooking modes makes this monster very family friendly.
If you’ve got lots of mouths to feed, then the best air fryer models might look okay in principle, until you start checking their capacity. With the Tower 9 litre Dual Basket Digital Air Fryer, however, there’s no worries on the capacity front because it comes with not one but two cooking baskets plus a 9-litre total capacity.
Tower makes all manner of air fryers, with many having very similar names, so you might see this model with the name Tower T17100 Vortx Vizion 9L Dual Basket Air Fryer, as it’s listed that way on Amazon. Either way, this is a big and beefy air fryer that has been specifically designed to meet the needs of larger families or those with a need to cook sizeable volumes of food in one go.
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Tower 9 litre Dual Basket Digital Air Fryer review: price & availability
The Tower 9 litre Dual Basket Digital Air Fryer is available now at Tower and from the Tower store within Amazon. It’s currently priced at £157.95, which makes it one of the costlier air fryers you can buy. However, this is obviously down to the fact that you’re getting a machine with a much bigger capacity and a beefier set of features to boot.
Tower 9 litre Dual Basket Digital Air Fryer review: what is it?
To look at it, the Tower 9 litre Dual Basket Digital Air Fryer follows a fairly standard design theme, with the main appliance being made of shiny black plastic with silver flourishes that give it an added touch of class. At the front, there are twin 4.5 litre cooking compartments, complete with clear windows at the front. Both can be pulled out using their respective handles. Above, there is a dazzling array of functions on a touchscreen, along with a digital display that shows which one you’re using, plus heat, time and so on.
Around the back, there’s a mains power cable, which can be wrapped around two plastic pegs when you want to get it out of the way. This is a sizeable appliance too, with dimensions of 36 x 40 x 32 centimetres. The Tower 9 litre Dual Basket Digital Air Fryer also weighs 7 kilograms, so you’ll need a decent amount of countertop space for it and someone willing to haul it out of the very big box it arrives in if you’re not able to do so yourself.
As you’d expect from a pricier model, the Tower 9 litre Dual Basket Digital Air Fryer packs in plenty of functionality, so it’s able to tackle all sorts of mealtime requests. In fact, there are 10 pre-set options, allowing you to air fry, roast, grill, bake and more besides. You can also use the Tower 9 litre Dual Basket Digital Air Fryer to warm up food too, plus it can do all of this using power efficiently and, potentially, more frugally than your existing oven. The capacity makes it ideally suited to larger families or for feeding groups of around eight people in one go.
Tower 9 litre Dual Basket Digital Air Fryer review: is it any good?
The Tower 9 litre Dual Basket Digital Air Fryer has 2400 Watts of power, so it’s more than capable, which is going to be good news for anyone cooking larger volumes of food. Better still, the twin baskets can be controlled independently, so you can use compartment 1 for, say, chips and basket 2 for meat, or variations on the theme. There’s a Smart Finish option too, which lets you do just this, while a Match Cook option can ensure that both compartments cook exactly the same.
While the icons on the touchscreen are pretty small, they’re very self-explanatory allowing you to air fry chips, roast chicken or bake with little in the way of fuss or bother. Due to the twin basket arrangement, the initial setup can seem a little confusing, but there’s a very good manual supplied that walks you through any necessary steps. You also get the added benefit of clear-fronted baskets and individual lights for them, which can be switch on and off in order to get a look at cooking progress. This means you don’t need to pull out the compartment thereby losing precious heat.
One slight thing you need to watch for is just how easy it is to stop cooking by accident. During my first couple of runs, I inadvertently tapped the power button on the front, rather than the pause option on the other side of the touchscreen control pad. This stopped the mode and also cancelled it, meaning I had to try and remember the progress and reprogram. That’s more my fault than anything to do with the machine, mind.
You also need to be careful when you’re pulling the drawers out. Just like other models with the slide in/out front drawers, you need to have something to rest them on as you do it, or remove and place on, say a chopping board, to avoid them falling out and on to the floor. Again, this is down to getting familiar with the appliance rather than being any real design flaw.
Tower 9 litre Dual Basket Digital Air Fryer review: performance
My first run using the Tower 9 litre Dual Basket Digital Air Fryer was to cook thick potato wedges with frozen salmon fishcakes. I started by chopping the potatoes into chunks and put one half in basket number one and the other half in basket number two. I then chose the Match Cook option, which maintains the same temperature in each cooking compartment, with a 200 degree heat setting for 18 minutes. The individual light for each compartment proves handy, as does the see through front of each drawer, allowing easy checks on progress.
After the 18 minutes had passed, I transferred all of the potato wedges into one container, making sure they were moved around. I then added the two salmon fishcakes into basket two, this time opting for the Smart Finish mode, which lets you specify different heat temperatures for the two compartments. Seeing as my potatoes had a head start, but needed more work, I did 200 degrees for basket one and 160 degrees for basket two.
This dual cooking routine is commonly seen on air fryers with twin baskets and, in the case of the Tower 9 litre Dual Basket Digital Air Fryer, it works very well indeed. Being able to take a peek into the cooking chamber without opening the tray makes a big difference too, so you don’t lose any heat. I’ve found that these containers are also good for keeping food in for a short time if I’m still waiting for people to arrive at the dinner table.
Tower 9 litre Dual Basket Digital Air Fryer review: verdict
I’ve found the Tower 9 litre Dual Basket Digital Air Fryer to be a hugely versatile appliance, which can handle everything you throw its way in terms of capacity. The range of modes covers all bases and the twin baskets offers freedom to cook more than one thing at the same time. The way this can be tweaked to cook items individually with different heat and time settings makes it a real blessing if you’ve got several people at the dinner table who all have their own mealtime eating foibles. If you’ve got a family like that, then this may well be the appliance for you.