Are you looking for the safest air fryer or air fryer ovens without PFAS coatings? Truth be told many of the highly-rated “favorite” air fryers on the market contain potentially toxic proprietary nonstick coatings, and/or Per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS), commonly referred to as “forever chemicals.” But never fret, we looked into all the most popular brands. You’ve trusted Mamavation to bring you topics like best & worst air purifiers, best & worst organic mattresses, & the best water filters, now join us as we share our findings of safest non-toxic Air Fryers and Air Fryer Ovens.
Disclosure: This post was medically reviewed by Sondra Strand, RN, BSN, PHN. This post also contains affiliate links.
Pretty Much All “Non-Stick” Inside Small Kitchen Appliances are Toxic
When it comes to cookware & small kitchen appliances, and other types of appliances on your counter space, there are a plethora of options. (In fact, Mamavation’s investigation on cookware in 2021 is still one of the most popular posts on the site.)
When you hear “non-stick” it’s typically referring to food contact surfaces that have been coated with perfluorinated chemicals or PFAS. These synthetic chemicals appear to give products an edge with the promise of easy cleanup, stain and grease resistance, and a no-mess, no-fuss type of surface tray.
Sounds great until you find out how incredibly toxic to humans and the environment they also are. Some of the more problematic health impacts are below:
- reduction in immunity
- reduced vaccination response
- increased risk of allergies & asthma in young children
- affect the growth, learning, and behavior of infants and older children
- increase cholesterol levels
- metabolic diseases like obesity & diabetes
- cardiovascular disease
- lower a woman’s chance of getting pregnant
- increase the chances of miscarriage
- lowers male fertility through low sperm count
- smaller penis size
- increase the risk of kidney & testicular cancers
- Causes endocrine disruption
- Disrupts normal thyroid function
The danger in PFAS chemicals is an accumulation of exposures over time because it does not leave your body for quite some time. So your daily exposure to PFAS chemicals matters and should be reduced overall.
PFAS Chemicals Are Ubiquitous & Hard to Completely Avoid
You can find PFAS chemicals in a variety of consumer retail products, and other industries where daily exposure is unavoidable. So the purpose here is to lower your exposure, but understand you won’t be able to completely avoid all exposure. Here are some examples:
- Textiles & Fabrics: PFAS chemicals are very commonly found in industries such as textiles & fabrics to create stain-resistance, water-resistance, or “sweat-wicking.” To help you here, Mamavation has tested athletic wear, sports bras, and period underwear. We’ve also conducted other consumer studies on bedding, children’s clothing, infant car seats, & jackets & raincoats.
- Food Packaging: In food packaging, they are used in popcorn bags, pizza boxes, fast food wrappers & canisters, and the flat dish on the bottom of cakes at the grocery store. Mamavation has also tested different parchment paper brands for indications of PFAS.
- Personal Care Products: Makeup has been notoriously guilty of using PFAS to create a waterproof or long-lasting effect in makeup products. So Mamavation tested the most popular green beauty makeup brands for indications of PFAS and we did the same with other categories like dental floss, toilet paper, tampons, sanitary pads & incontinence pads, etc.
- Cookware & Bakeware: Most “non-stick” cookware & bakeware is coated with PFAS “forever chemicals,” including some stainless steel cookware, Check out Mamavation’s investigation on cookware. We also just finished cupcake & muffin pans, waffle makers,
- Small Kitchen Appliances: The aisle of small kitchen appliances is a bit overwhelming in terms of “non-stick” and PFAS coatings on food contact surfaces or inside the interior. We’ve covered air fryers, toasters & toaster ovens, blenders, & water filters to help.
- Carpeting & Flooring: PFAS has also been used in carpeting & flooring. Do you remember StainMaster™ carpet? That was PFAS. However, not all carpet has indications of PFAS. We recently tested one brand you can safely purchase. Mamavation also tested several bamboo flooring brands and found one brand that was free from PFAS.
- Furniture: Watch out for “stain-resistant” treatments on furniture.
- Fire Fighting Foam: PFAS was used in firefighting foams and they have unfortunately been used extensively around military bases and airports. If you live close to a military base or airport, check with your local water district to see if they have tested the water for PFAS.
- Metal Plating, Semiconductors, Lubrications & Coating Additives: Lots of industrial applications of PFAS are used to keep equipment from rusting, getting overheated, or provide water-resistant, or grease-resistant qualities.
- Drinking Water: Sadly, there are lots of places around the United States and all over the world that have drinking water contaminated with PFAS. Most of these areas are by military bases, airports, and other industrial parks that used PFAS for firefighting or other such uses. Luckily, Mamavation has done an investigation of the best water filters to remove PFAS.
- Car Wax, Ski Wax, & Surfboard Wax: Yes, you guessed it. PFAS is used here for its grease & water-resistant qualities.
- Some Processed Food: Mamavation has found indications of PFAS inside pasta & tomato sauces, cooking oils, and ketchup. We are presently working on other food categories right now to help.
Teflon & The Shady Past of Cookware Set Us Up For a Shady Small Kitchen Appliance Aisle
It seems that most people are aware of the toxicity associated with Teflon. Teflon is the brand name for a chemical also known as polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE), which originated by using the surfactant perfluorooctanoic acid (PFOA, aka “C8”).
PFOA falls into the class of chemicals known as PFAS (Per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances). These chemicals are raising concern from not only the public but also scientists, medical researchers, and regulatory groups.
Just like with many other legacy chemicals, regrettable substitutions afloat. In terms of PFAS, long-chain PFOA and PFOS were phased out under pressure from the Environmental Protection Agency. Companies went scrambling for alternatives and found other chemicals within the same PFAS chemical category that were slightly different. However, studies are finding these new short-chain fluorotelomers could actually be MORE problematic.
- Short-chain chemicals build up in lab animals just as much as the long chains do
- Lower doses stayed in the body for longer periods of time than the large doses typically used in short-term toxicity studies
Most Air Fryer Brands Evaded Transparency on Non-Stick Coatings
So where are all the safest air fryers without PFAS coatings? What we learned during this investigation is that companies who are still using nonstick coatings are not always willing to provide the exact materials used in their products, which is a concern for us.
- Some of them did respond with a generic response that the nonstick coating used is proprietary and cannot be disclosed.
- Others responded with a misleading reply that boasted being “PFOA-free” or even just letting us know that all of their products are FDA approved and “very safe.” This may change as the beginning of 2023 has ushed in new California laws that will force them to be clearer in their marketing around PFAS chemicals.
- Some brands did not use PFAS on food contact surfaces but instead used them on the side of the inside walls instead. PFAS can aerosolize and drop down on your food, so that’s also a problem. If you don’t ask them, they won’t volunteer that information.
- We’ve also gotten conflicting accounts from these brands over the two years that we’ve been monitoring them. We are unsure if that’s because things have changed or because they didn’t give us the correct information before. Some brands have had emails & phone call contacts just to keep things straight because answers were conflicting.
- We also found that sometimes different products in a line are made by different manufacturers and thus you can’t make too many assumptions about other products in a line. We’ve found this to be quite common with small kitchen appliances, cookware, dishes, flatware, etc. You have to ask them directly about a product to be sure about that product.
- Products sold by a company to Europe may be different than products sold to the United States in a similar product line.
- Bottom line: it’s very challenging for the consumer to navigate.
We want to provide you with a thorough assessment of the options out there but please know we could only do so much with the information we have been provided. Transparency is huge for Mamavation, and Air Fryers somehow bring out the least transparent of information to the table. As brands change, we update this post.
General Tips For Avoiding PFAS “Forever Chemicals” Inside Your Home
Mamavation has been keeping you in the know about PFAS continually so we can guide you to safer products. We tried our best to get the scoop from Air Fryer brands on if their products contained PFAS chemicals. It was not an easy task, and we are still waiting and wondering about many of the companies we contacted based on either a lack of response or intentional avoidance of the direct question.
Here are some tips for keeping PFAS out of your home:
- Swap your Non-stick cookware to these healthier brands
- Find better small kitchen appliances without PFAS-coated surfaces
- Try to find alternatives to non-stick products whenever possible (especially if you have any small pets or immune-compromised family members. Birds are especially vulnerable as well).
- Avoid processed foods with packaging. Grease-proof food packaging (pizza boxes, cake cardboard bottoms, & french fry wrappers. Click here for a list of which grocery store chains are serving PFAS-free packing)
- Avoid fast food as much as possible. (Did you know we tested In-N-Out Burger wrappers the other day? Yikes.)
- Look into investing in a really good water filter that is proven by independent studies to filter different types of PFAS, especially if you live by a military base or airport.
- When purchasing furniture or carpet, avoid stain treatment chemicals. (Like StainMaster)
- Even your mattress contains PFAS chemicals but these organic mattresses do not.
- Avoid buying clothing with labels indicating water, stain or dirt repellant. (Like Patagonia or REI jackets)
- Avoid choosing personal care products with “fluoro” or “perfluoro” on the ingredient list.
- Dust more often! PFAS “forever chemicals” chemicals stick to dust particles so the more dust you have in your home, the more likely there is PFAS in the air you breathe. Click here for our favorite air purifiers.
Mamavation’s Investigation of Safest Air Fryers without PFAS Coatings
Mamavation evaluated about 40 different air fryer products available in the United States in 2021 and then up to 80 in 2023. We started out pretty excited about a handful of models that had been previously reviewed as non-toxic, along with products that had prior claims of using only stainless steel with no coatings.
If you are looking forward to a crispy texture with chicken wings, homemade mozzarella sticks, or the taste of deep frying or fried foods without the oil? Mamavation is looking to air fryers but with the following categories:
- Air Fryers with Air Fryer Baskets
- Air Fryer Ovens
- Convection Ovens with glass bowls
- Countertop Toaster Ovens
Mamavation ran into several issues after studying reviews, contacting the companies directly, and studying their marketing online:
- PROPRIETARY (Likely PFAS) NON-STICK COATINGS: Most brands contained coatings that were “proprietary”, which may likely mean some sort of PFAS chemical coating. While other brands responded to our inquiries immediately to tell us they used PFAS coatings. PFAS chemicals are referred to as “forever chemicals” because they are incredibly persistent in the environment.
- CERAMIC NON-STICK COATINGS: Ceramic non-stick coatings are typically made of nanoparticles, which are common but not well studied. However, some titanium dioxide nanoparticles have been linked to precancerous gut lesions as well as immune disruption. This type of ceramic coating is very common in cookware, so we can only assume it also may be inside the air fryer if they don’t answer our inquiries.
- ALUMINUM FOOD CONTACT SURFACES: Aluminum (especially when uncoated), has the potential to leach aluminum into your food. Aluminum is bioaccumulative and a known neurotoxin that can cause neurological disorders like dementia. Aluminum cookware is an obvious culprit, but it’s also been found present at lower levels in ceramic and stainless steel cooking products. Aluminum can also cause slow growth in children, speech problems, seizures, and eventual system toxicity that causes serious problems including anemia, nervous system trouble, and bone and brain diseases.
- PROPRIETARY (Likely PFAS) NON-STICK ON INTERIOR OF UNIT: Many products avoid PFAS coatings on their food contact surfaces, but still included it on the interior of the unit. This is problematic because PFAS can become aerosolized and drop down on the food.
- FUMES: Some of the Air Fryers included warnings from the manufacturers along with reviews from customers regarding an initial “smell” that is common with the first use (sometimes the first few) of the appliance. We are assuming you don’t want products that produce smells. However, sometimes these smells go away after first or second use. That is not as troubling.
- PACKAGING CHEMICALS: We found something that could be common in brands that did not respond to our other inquiries. At least one of the companies confirmed to use a coating on the product during shipping to protect the parts from being scratched. But they did seem to all provide this information within the manuals to let the consumer know how to handle this with the first use to either prevent the smell or to be prepared for a one-time smell after following their explicit instructions prior to using the Air Fryer.
Air Fryer & Air Fry Oven Brands That Are Not Our Favorites
These brands were found to contain one of the following contaminants within the surfaces touching food: Teflon, “nonstick coating”, PTFE fluoropolymer, or plastics. This section may also comprise companies that did not return email communication and we were unsure of their materials on food contact and non-food contact surfaces.
- Beautiful 6qt Digital Air Fryer with Touch-Activated Display
- Beautiful 9qt TriZone Air Fryer
- Bella Pro 6.3 qt Air Fryer Touchscreen
- Black+Decker HF100/110 Air Fryer
- Breville BOV900BSSUSC The Smart Oven Air
- Breville The Smart Oven Air Fryer
- Breville The Smart Oven Air Fryer Pro (BOV900BSSUSC)
- Cafe Couture Oven with Air Fryer (C9OAAAS4RW3)
- Calphalon Performance Counterop French Door Air Fryer Toaster Oven
- Cosori Smart Air Fryer Toaster Oven
- Cosori CP158-AF, CP137-AF (Pro Air Fryer)
- Cosori CP358-AF (Pro II Air Fryer)
- Cosori CS358-AF (Smart Air Fryer)
- Cuisinart TOA-60 Convection Toaster Oven Airfryer
- Cuisinart TOA-65 Air Fryer
- Cuisinart TOB-135N Air Fryer
- Dash Chef Series 23 L Air Fryer Oven
- Dash Air Crisp Pro Digital
- Dreamiracle Air Fryer Toaster Oven Combo 21 Quart 7-in-1 Countertop Dehydrator
- Farberware Air Fryer Toaster Oven
- Galanz Digital Toaster Oven with TotalFry 360
- Innsky Air Fryer 5.8QT, 1700W Stainless Steel Air Fryer Oven
- Kalorik Maxx 26qt Digital Air Fryer Oven
- KitchenAid Digital Countertop Oven With Air Fry
- Ninja Foodi 6-in-1 2-Basket Air Fryer
- NuWave Pro Plus Oven
- Panaromia Air Fryer Toaster Oven Combo
- PowerXL Air Fryer 7 QT Maxx Classic
- Rosewill RHAF-16003V3 5.8-QT XL Air Fryer
Better Air Fryer and Air Fryer Oven Brands
These brands were better than the last category, but there were still things we didn’t find optimal. Some of the coatings in the “better” list of Air Fryers have opted to use ceramic coatings in lieu of Teflon. And much like the ceramic cookware investigation, we still had a challenging time confirming the specific materials used in the various air fryers as well. Because most ceramic cookware brands use nanotechnology to coat the surfaces, we could only assume this was happening here too. There are also brands in here that avoid PFAS coatings on food contact surfaces but still left “non-stick coatings” in other areas that may still impact the food inside. We also put products here that had Prop. 65 warnings that we couldn’t identify, products with aluminum as food contact surfaces that wasn’t easy to solve, and zinc-coated interiors.
- Aria 10 Qt Air Fryer Oven
- Black+Decker Crisp ‘N Bake Air Fry Digital Convection Countertop Oven
- Black+Decker Crisp ‘N Bake Air Fry Toaster Oven, TO3215SS 6 Slice
- Black+Decker Crisp ‘N Bake Air Fry Countertop Oven with No Preheat
- CalmDo 12.7 QT Air Fryer Toaster Convection Oven Combo
- Chefman Air Fryer Toaster Oven
- Cuisinart AFR-25, Airfryer Oven
- Cuisinart TOB-60N Air Fryer
- Elite Gourmet 10L Programmable Air Fryer Convection Countertop Oven
- Elite Gourmet EAF4700 Digital 5Qt Air Fryer
- Elite Gourmet 10L Programmable Air Fryer Convection Countertop Oven
- Emeril Everyday 8 QT Pressure Air Fryer
- Geek Chef Air Fryer Oven 12 Qt with Rotisserie
- Geek Chef Air Fryer Toaster Oven Combo, 4 Slice Toaster Convection
- Geek Chef 7-in-1 6-Slice Toaster/Air Fryer Oven 24 Qt
- Gourmia GTF7350 6-in-1 Air Fryer Oven
- Gourmia GTF7600 16-in-1 Multi-function, Digital Stainless Steel Air Fryer Oven
- GoWISE USA GW44800-O Deluxe 12.7-Quarts 15-in-1 Electric Air Fryer Oven
- Hamilton Beach 31220 Digital Air Fryer Toaster Oven
- hOmeLabs 11.6 Quart XXL 8-in-1 Air Fryer Oven
- Iconites 10-in-1 Air Fryer, 20 Quart Air Fryer
- Instant Pot Air Fryer Lid (add-on)
- Instant™ Omni™ Plus 26 Litre Toaster Oven and Air Fryer
- Ninja Air Fryer 5.5 qt (Ninja Max XL Air Fryer)
- Ninja Foodi 9-in-1 6.5 Quart
- Ninja SP101 Foodi 8-in-1 Digital Air Fry Toaster Oven
- Oster Copper-Infused DuraCeramic 3.3-Quart Air Fryer
- Oster® DiamondForce Nonstick XL 5 Quart Digital Air Fryer, 8 Functions
- Oster Digital Air Fryer Oven with RapidCrisp Countertop Oven
- Pampered Chef Deluxe Air Fryer
- PowerXL Air Fryer Oven 12 QT with 8-in-1
- Power XL Vortex Air Fryer 5-qt
- PowerXL Air Fryer Grill
- Rosewill RHCO-19001 7.4-Quart Electric Air Fryer Convection Oven Multicooker
- Rosewill Air Fryer Convection Toaster Oven, Stainless Steel Exterior, Family Size 26.4 Quart
- Val Cucine 10-in-1 Smart Air Fryer
- Weesta 5-in-1 19qt Air Fryer Toaster Oven
Best & Safest Air Fryers & Air Fry Ovens without PFAS Coatings
These are the safest air fryers without PFAS coatings. As of the time we did this investigation, these were the best brands we could find that were available for purchase in the United States. Again, these brands did not seem to contain any PFAS coatings on food contact surfaces or inside the machine at all. Ceramic was also not used as a food-contact surface. Safe food contact surfaces were uncoated stainless steel or glass. We linked up as many of these brands on Amazon as we could for your convenience.
Air Fryers without Issues:
- Big Boss Oil-less Air Fryer
- Classic Cuisine 12-17 Qt 1200 W Halogen Tabletop Oven
- NutriChef Convection Countertop Toaster Oven – Healthy Kitchen Air Fryer Roaster Oven
- NutriChef Air Fryer, Infrared Convection Oven
- Power XL Turbo Air Fryer (Use discount code “MamaFree” for free shipping)
- Rosewill Infrared Halogen Stainless Steel Extender Ring Convection Oven, 12-18L Dial
- Sahmwell Air Fryer Convection Oven for Countertop 18 Quarts (with glass bowl)
- Yedi “Tango” Air Fryer & Pressure Cooker
- Yedi Total Package 18-in-1 Air Fryer Rotisserie Oven
Air Fryers with Some Issues You Can Solve:
- Emeril Lagasse Power AirFryer Oven 360 (Confirmed Prop. 65 warning is about BPA in the chord. Baking pan may be made of aluminum and needs to be swapped.)
- Hamilton Beach Air Fryer 31225 Convection Countertop Toaster Oven (Swap out the aluminum bake pan.)
- Hamilton Beach 31323 Sure-Crisp Air Fry Toaster Oven (Swap out the aluminum bake pan.)
- Oster Compact Countertop Oven with Air Fryer (Prop. 65 is based on BPA in chord. Swap out the aluminum baking and broiler pans)
Consumer PFAS Studies Mamavation Has Released
Mamavation has been commissioning studies looking for PFAS “forever chemicals” inside everyday products you use. We are continuing to test and run studies and if you would like to tax-deductible donation, simply go to Environmental Health News and donate on behalf of Mamavation. Environmental Health News has partnered with us on most of our PFAS studies and provides support & more scientific scrutiny.
Here are the PFAS consumer investigations we have finished:
- Nut Butters
- Pasta & Tomato Sauce
- Cooking Oils
- Sports Bras
- Green Beauty Makeup
- Period Underwear
- Parchment Paper
- Bamboo Flooring
We also have other investigations you may like.