With growing concern surrounding daily living costs, I was very keen to get my hands on one of the best air fryers in an attempt to reduce the usage of my oven and reduce my utility bills. Sharing a one-bedroom apartment with my partner and eating different types of meals at varying times, often means our oven is used around three to four times a day (a bad habit that we definitely need to curb). I figured this appliance could really help to reduce the amount of money spent on heating up our oven, particularly when cooking single-portion meals. The opportunity to test it out couldn't have come at a better time.
While the addition of a new gadget might seem like an impractical buy for our small, compact kitchen, this air fryer has a capacity of just 1.8 liters. It's one of the smallest we’ve seen on the market and is perfect if you’re short on space. What’s more, it's also one of the cheapest money can buy, with an RRP of under $80 (£64.99). Better still, the Russell Hobbs Small SatisFry Air Fryer also boasts a modern black design with a sleek LED display screen with seven presets, making it compatible with most kitchens.
In this review, I explore why the Russell Hobbs Small SatisFry Air Fryer is a great buy for single people, couples, and small households. To do that, we’ll walk you through the testing process from start to finish, including unboxing, cooking, and cleaning, so you can gain a better idea of what to expect from this product before you go ahead and part with your cash.
Russell Hobbs Small SatisFry Air Fryer specifications
- Weight: 6 lbs
- Dimensions: : H11.8” x W9.6” / H30 x W24.5 x D24.5 cm
- Max temperature: 392°F / 200°C
- Power: 1,100 W
- Cost to run per hour: 16c / 37p
- Cooking modes: Fries, pork, prawns, bake, chicken, steak, and fish
- RRP: £64.99
- Color(s): Black
- Material: Aluminum and plastic
Gabrielle is a freelance contributor at Real Homes and a self-confessed foodie. After gaining a degree in English Literature, she started her journalism career at a women’s lifestyle publication and is no stranger to reviewing household gadgets and kitchen appliances.
Commuting into central London three days a week means she is often short on time and is keen to try any appliances that will reduce time spent on meal prep time without compromising on quality and flavor. Having had the recent misfortune of her oven breaking down, the Russell Hobbs Small SatisFry Air Fryer has provided her with a huge lifeline and has prompted her to become more creative (and less lazy) with putting together mid-week meals. She has been using the appliance for three weeks and will be keeping it for ongoing use.
Unboxing the Russell Hobbs Small SatisFry Air Fryer
The Russell Hobbs Small SatisFry Air Fryer comes in a medium-sized box which makes carrying it manageable. Upon opening the box, I was disappointed to find some plastic and polystyrene packaging. I did, however, appreciate that the appliance was carefully packaged in a way that kept its attractive shiny black exterior safe and protected from scratches, but I only wish that eco-friendly materials had been sourced instead. Accompanying the air fryer was also a seven-page user guide which, unfortunately, did not contain any recipes. With little countertop space in my kitchen, I was pleased to find the air fryer didn’t take up too much room and was lightweight enough to pick up and hold with one hand (although two hands are always advisable) and easily stored away in a cupboard when not in use.
First impressions of the Russell Hobbs Small SatisFry Air Fryer
I was impressed by the digital LED display, which instantly lights up when turned on. When navigating to the menu, symbols will appear for the seven available presets or "auto cook functions," which are pretty self-explanatory (i.e. a fish symbol for, you guessed it, fish!). As you would expect, there is also a manual cooking mode. Though preheating is recommended when using this mode, there isn’t actually an obvious preheat option. I found myself having to heat the air fryer for five minutes before adding my food to the basket and then readjusting the cook time, or selecting the desired preset.
Cooking vegetables in the Russell Hobbs Small SatisFry Air Fryer
I’ve heard a lot of success stories about cooking vegetables in air fryers, which always surprised me considering their high water content, so I was eager to see if the rave reviews were true.
Carrots and parsnips are some of my favorite veggies, so I went ahead and tossed a combination of the two in one tablespoon of oil and a teaspoon of dried rosemary. Then I popped them into the air fryer at 392°F (200°C) on a 20-minute timer.
While the vegetables didn’t come out quite as crispy as they typically do in the oven, I was still super impressed by the results. They were evenly cooked, retained lots of flavor and moisture, and still had a bit of crispness to them. In hindsight, I would have given them a few extra minutes for extra crispness. That being said, I was conscious that I didn't want them to become overcooked or too dehydrated.
Making homemade fries in the Russell Hobbs Small SatisFry Air Fryer
Air fryers are probably best known for their ability to cook fries to near a deep-fried standard, so testing this out was an absolute must (especially for a carb fan like me).
I chopped two large white potatoes into medium-sized wedges, tossed them in a tablespoon of oil, and seasoned them with salt and pepper. Again, I manually pre-heated the air fryer for five minutes at 392°F (180°C) before popping the wedges into the basket and cooking them for 15 minutes on the "chips" preset.
I couldn’t resist taking a peek at the eight-minute mark and I’m glad I did, as they clearly needed a good shake to help them cook evenly. After the time was up, I took them out. Although pleasant enough, they could have done with just a few more minutes for some extra crispiness.
On a separate occasion, I decided to cook some frozen McCain Gastro-Style fries at 392°F (200°C) for 20 minutes and these came out perfect — golden and crispy on the outside and gorgeously fluffy on the inside.
What I liked most was that any excess oil had collected at the bottom of the basket. However, this did mean that I was unable to tip the fries onto my plate without them getting re-coated in oil again, which resulted in me having to carefully retrieve them using some kitchen utensils.
Cooking bacon in the Russell Hobbs Small SatisFry Air Fryer
A slice of sourdough bread topped with a generous helping of avocado, vine tomatoes, and streaky bacon is my go-to weekend brunch. So I was super excited to see how this air fryer would fare when cooking a few smoked rashers.
The bacon took a total of eight minutes for the fat to crisp and render, but it did require some turning and shaking halfway through. Due to the size of the basket, the bacon was too long to lay completely flat and I did find that the edges went a little curly.
Although fat had visibly collected at the bottom of the basket, I still needed to use some kitchen towel to soak up some of the residue on the rashers. Though the results were not perfect, I did love the minimal mess and it was a refreshing change not to have fat splattering inside my oven or all over my hob.
I also attempted to cook the other ingredients in the air fryer at the same temperature. While the tomatoes came out perfectly, the bread remained a pale hue and was a little dry. Cooking all the ingredients in this way also inevitably meant that they lost quite a bit of heat while sitting on the plate waiting for the other elements to cook. I’m not going to knock myself for giving it a try, but let’s just say I will definitely stick with using my toaster in the future.
Heating frozen food in the Russell Hobbs Small SatisFry Air Fryer
Frozen battered chicken breast chunks crisped up really well in the air fryer. The cooking instructions said they would take 20 to 22 minutes at 392°F (200°C) in an oven, so I applied the same cooking settings to the air fryer.
After checking the chicken chunks at the 10-minute mark, I could see they were likely to be ready much quicker than anticipated. I turned them once and cooked them for a further five minutes. I ended up with golden, crispy-coated pieces of chicken that were surprisingly moist inside. To be on the safe side, I cut two pieces open to double-check they were fully cooked, and as expected, they were piping hot inside.
How to clean the Russell Hobbs Small SatisFry Air Fryer
I must confess — I’m not the tidiest person when it comes to making meals in the kitchen. So any appliance that keeps food contained and is easy to clean is a super big draw for me. And, quite frankly, the fewer times I need to clean out my oven, the better.
The crisping plate was easily pulled out of the basket for cleaning, and thanks to the non-stick coating, fat and greasy build-up were quick to clean off. I found good old-fashioned warm water and dish soap did the trick, but it was reassuring to know that the parts can also be put into the dishwasher when time is not on my side.
On the topic of cleaning, the LED display, while attractive, is very prone to showing fingerprints, which also happens to be a pet peeve of mine. I found myself constantly wiping this area with a soft, damp cloth to remove marks (and dust particles), which is worth bearing in mind if, like me, you’re hyper-aware of these things.
How does the Russell Hobbs Small SatisFry Air Fryer compare to others?
Although it's reasonably priced, the Russell Hobbs Small SatisFry Air Fryer does appear to be slightly more expensive than other air fryers on the market of a similar capacity with similar functions. With no obvious predecessor of its own to judge it against, it is difficult to say whether this air fryer could be considered a more modern upgrade.
However, when comparing this air fryer against models from competitor brands, it does boast most of the popular features we would expect, including a digital display, presets, a cylinder shape, and a sleek, glossy exterior. However, welcome features that would give this product the "edge" would include options to grill, bake, and roast — as opposed to the standard air fry function.
Recording at 49.1dB I found the air fryer’s noise level to be absolutely fine and not distracting at all. If anything, I often forgot that it was on while sitting down in my open-plan living area, as its gentle hum almost faded into the background.
Should you buy the Russell Hobbs Small SatisFry Air Fryer?
It might not be the fanciest appliance on the market, but it’s still a great introductory gadget for anyone who is new to the air frying scene (like me) and doesn’t want to part with a ton of cash to join the party.
If you’ve got this far, you’ve probably realized that this air fryer probably isn’t suitable for households larger than two people. Realistically, it’s better suited to single people as its capacity is quite limited. Use it to cook a meal for two you might find the different elements going cold unless, of course, you’re happy to use it exclusively for cooking sides, which it definitely excels at.
Invest in this air fryer and the best-case scenario is you’ll find yourself ditching the oven in favor of this convenient, fuss-free new style of cooking, saving yourself lots of time, mess, and money spent on energy bills in the process. Worst-case scenario, you’ll be super grateful that you bought this appliance should you ever have the misfortune of your oven breaking down.