REVIEW – When it comes to gadget trends, you know this is the place to come to check out reviews. In the last year, I receive at least a couple of emails a week offering review samples of air fryers. We’ve reviewed several of them, but we’ve not reviewed gadget that turns any 6-8qt electric pressure cooker like the Instant Pot into an air fryer – until today. Let’s check out the Mealthy CrispLid.
What is it?
The Mealthy CrispLid is a lid that transforms a 6 or 8 quart electric pressure cooker into an air fryer. That means you can turn your existing Instant Pot, Ninja Foodi, or even Mealthy’s own Multipot electric pressure cooker into an air fryer.
Although this product is called an air fryer you’re not actually deep frying foods in a container of oil. Instead, it’s more like a convection oven that swirls the heat around the food.
What’s in the box?
- Mealthy CrispLid
- Silicone pad
- User guide and recipe book
Design and features
The CrispLid can’t be used on its own. It turns any 6-8 quart-sized electric pressure cooker that has a steel basket into an air fryer by replacing the cooker’s lid.
The CrispLid has it’s own power cord, LCD display, cooking controls, and a see-through glass cover.
It also has a handle that folds down when it’s not in use.
The bottom of the lid has the heating element/fan.
The first version of the Mealthy CrispLid came with a shallow fry basket (the one on the right), but it now ships with a deeper basket that has a larger capacity and two handles that make it easier to lift out of the cooker.
To use the CrispLid, you take the lid off your electric pressure cooker, make sure the stainless steel inner pot is in place, add the trivet at the bottom and then the fry basket sits on top of the trivet.
The CrispLid sits on top of the cooker. Note that there isn’t a latch or lock to keep the CrispLid in place other than the weight of it.
Let’s “fry” something!
For my first test of the CrispLid, I made some fries – no surprise there right? The recipe book that is included with the unit instructed me to cut up one potato but who the heck only cooks one potato when they want french fries? That’s just crazy talk! So I cut up 2.
I tossed the raw potatoes with a little bit of olive oil and some salt and then put them in the larger fry basket.
I then placed the CrispLid on the pressure cooker, plugged it in and set the temperature to 375 degrees F and the cooking timer for 9 minutes and then pressed the start button.
The heating element in the CrispLid glows orange and the fan starts up. The nice thing about this air fryer is that you can see the progress of the cooking through the glass cover.
After the first 9 minutes, Jeanne held the lid out of the way while I used the included tongs to turn the fries. We then set the CrispLid back on top and set the timer for another 9 minutes as instructed in the recipe. At the end of the 18 minutes, the fries looked like the image above. They were not done. So I turned them again and added another 9 minutes to the time. They still weren’t done so I added an additional 9 minutes to the cooking time.
After 36 minutes, here’s the result.
Were they crispy and tasty? Yes! But in all honesty, I think it is easier to bake fries on a cookie sheet in the oven, which is what we have been doing for years. In my opinion baking fries is much easier and requires less clean up or even no clean up at all if you put parchment paper on the cookie sheet.
I also tested the Mealthy CrispLid by broiling veggies, reheating fried foods, etc. It worked well but sometimes took longer than the recipe claimed. The capacity of the basket is fine for 2 people but you’ll be making multiple batches if you have a large family.
What I like
- Turns an existing electric pressure cooker into an air fryer
- Included accessories (tongs, trivet, silicone mat) are handy
- Healthier than using a deep fryer
- See through cover
What I’d change
I like the fact that the Mealthy CrispLid allows you to turn your existing electric pressure cooker into a new type of cooker without buying yet another cooking appliance that requires storage. Yes, you’ll have to store the CrispLid, but it’s probably a third of the size of a free-standing air fryer.
If you have a large family, you may be disappointed with the capacity, but if you live alone or only have a significant other, the CrispLid is an easy to use cooking gadget that will save you some calories, and space in your pantry.