MY air fryer beeps after 20 minutes and it’s the moment of truth – will my Easter lamb be cooked to perfection?
I nervously pull open the basket and feel relieved to see the joint looks well-browned and a lovely smell of lamb and rosemary suddenly fills my kitchen.
I’m testing whether it’s possible to cook an Easter roast dinner entirely in an air fryer, as thousands of families invest in one to try and save money on their energy bills.
Sales of these machines have rocketed during the cost of living crisis.
It comes as research by Utilita has found you could save as much as £263.80 a year if you ditch your oven for an air fryer.
But how practical is this? And if you have family over for a lamb roast this weekend, is it possible to make it without turning the oven on?
The answer surprised me.
How I cooked my Easter dinner
First of all, I had to choose a joint that would fit in my one-basket Ninja air fryer.
I found a rolled boneless lamb joint but a boneless leg of lamb, lamp rump roast or lamb loin roast would all work just as well.
I’d recommend going for a boneless joint if you can as this will be far less time consuming down the line.
After researching a few recipes online, I smothered the joint with olive oil, sprigs of rosemary and thyme and a little seasoning and popped it in for 20 minutes at 180C.
I didn’t expect it to be cooked well enough in this time frame to be honest.
But I was pleasantly surprised when after this exact time, I opened the basket and found it was cooked to perfection.
The outside was crispy and brown and the inside was still a little pink, as lamb should be.
Be aware that if your lamb is thicker than two inches, you may need to cook it for longer.
This was incredibly easy to do even for novice cooks and it didn’t take long if you’re pushed for time.
Air frying is a great way to roast meat as it helps get a delicious crust on the outside quickly so keeping the inside succulent and juicy.
It’s much quicker than oven roasting and it’s healthier, as some airfryers will remove saturated fat whilst cooking making it a great option for your family dinner.
I took my lamb out and whilst the meat was resting under some foil, I popped my roast potatoes in to cook.
They took around ten minutes. I didn’t wash it out first so they cooked in the juices of the meat and came out crispy and delicious.
It’s a good idea to toss the basket a few times to ensure even cooking.
A few minutes before they were due to finish I threw some mixed vegetables in too.
The whole meal was ready in half an hour. I only had to hope now that it tasted nice.
How my Easter dinner tasted
The lamb was perfectly crispy on the outside and succulent and juicy in the middle and most importantly, piping hot.
The potatoes were lovely having been cooked in the juices of the meat and they had a lovely crunch on the outside and remained soft and fluffy in the middle.
My vegetables may have been a tad over cooked.
Next time, I’ll probably leave them in for a shorter time.
The only issue I foresee is the size of the meal.
The joint and the number of potatoes and veggies I can cook was limited so if you’re cooking for the hoardes, you may struggle to do it all in the air fryer.
This meal is probably only big enough to serve two to three people.
However, I was surprised by how good it tasted and the best thing was that afterwards there was no any washing up to do.
The fryer basket went straight in the dishwasher along with our plates, cutlery and chopping board. Job done.
In terms of cost, it was super cheap to cook this way.
Air fryers cost around 53p an hour to run.
Mine was on for 30 minutes in total so it would have cost less than 27p to make this Easter meal.
If I had cooked it in the oven, it would have taken at least an hour – more if you wanted it slow-cooked and falling apart, and Uswitch says this costs around 71p.
This is great saving to make and money I can definitely spend on some Easter chocolates for pudding instead.
It’s amazing that the air fryer not only cut my cooking time in half, but my energy bill was far cheaper too.
The meat tasted just as good if not better than if it had been cooked in the oven.
The air fryer totally lived up to the hype and though I’ve been using a while now, I definitely plan to be more experimental with it going forwards.