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Philips Airfryer Avance Collection review: This air fryer isn't worth your money or counter space

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The Good The Philips Airfryer Avance Collection works well when you want to heat frozen convenience foods like mozzarella sticks or pizza rolls. It's also easy to use.

The Bad The air fryer wasn't any better than an oven when it came to cooking fresh foods like homemade french fries or chicken wings. The air fryer costs nearly $300 when it's not on sale, which is way too much money when you consider its limited capabilities and its mediocre performance.

The Bottom Line Skip this air fryer and give a hard side-eye to this entire product category. Your money would be better spent on a toaster oven.

6.0 Overall
  • Performance 6
  • Usability 6
  • Design 6
  • Features 6

Pizza rolls were a substantial part of my diet during my college dorm days. They were easy to pop in a microwave and gave me enough sustenance to stay up all night reading about post-Civil War American history. 

The Philips Airfryer Avance Collection.

Tyler Lizenby/CNET

I would've been in heaven if I'd have access to the $300 Philips Airfryer Avance Collection ($200 at Amazon). Frozen foods like pizza rolls are the air fryer's sweet spot -- during cooking tests, it heated these items evenly, cooked them faster than a full-sized oven and created a crispy exterior that you can't get in the microwave. 

But if you're like me and have matured past pizza rolls (and your metabolism just can't handle the processed cheese like it used to), you're going to be unsatisfied with the Avance. The air fryer can cook fresh, not frozen, foods such as homemade french fries or chicken wings, but the results are barely on par with what you could do in the oven you already have. Plus, it takes just as long to cook fresh food in the Avance as it would in an oven.

The Avance is part of an appliance category that has really good PR and buzz right now. While air fryers are popular, you don't really need one if you have an oven. Want something on your countertop to heat up some snacks? Go with a toaster oven, which has more functions than the Avance or its brethren (air fryers can't even toast bread). 

If you insist on the addition of an air fryer to your kitchen, go with a cheaper option than the Avance, such as the $70 Simple Chef HF-898. The Simple Chef performs just as well as the Avance, but with a few more useful features like a handle with which to carry it and a much better price.

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