Ninja Foodi FD401 Review – Is It Worth It?

A pressure cooker can cook almost anything but its biggest flaw is it cannot make foods crispy.

The Ninja Foodi FD401 solves this problem by combining the regular pressure cooker with an air fryer. You can use the new feature to air fry foods and dehydrate. As expected though, this does lead to a higher cost than a pressure cooker. Is the extra money worth it?

This Ninja Foodi FD401 review will show you if this kitchen appliance is right for you or not. We cover the features, pros, cons, and even what you need to know before you buy.

If you want a more comprehensive list of the best air fryers click here.

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The Ninja Foodi FD401 Air Fryer

Brand: Ninja

Product: Foodi FD401 8-qt. 9-in-1 Deluxe XL Cooker & Air Fryer

Overall Rating: 8.9/10

Price: Check Price On Amazon

Capacity: 8 Quarts

Power: 1760W

Weight: 26lbs (11.8 KG/1.86 Stone)

Warranty: 1 year

Ninja Foodi FD401 Ratings

Total Rating8.9/10
Air Frying7.5/10
Pressure Cooking9.5/10
Easy To Clean8/10
Material Quality9.6/10
Ease Of Use9.4/10
Versatility9.6/10
Durability9/10
Warranty8.5/10

Ninja Foodi FD401 Air Fryer Overview

The Ninja Foodi FD401 aims to solve the biggest problem of the pressure cooker – the fact that it lacks air frying features. This kitchen appliance has 2 main functions:

  • Pressure Cooker – the pressure cooking function of the Ninja Foodi FD401 is actually impressive.
  • Air Frying – this feature drastically reduces how much oil is needed to cook crispy foods.

Very Good Design

Ninja products are renowned for their smooth design and the Ninja Foodi FD401 is no exception. The materials and colors were carefully chosen to create an appliance with smooth lines and a modern overall appearance. This instant pot will look good in all kitchens.

Intuitive Control Panel

The digital control panel allows you to quickly adjust the most important cooking settings. There are 6 main controls present and the appliance gives you access to 9 cooking options. Those 6 controls are:

  • Function – After pressing this button, you have to use the “Start/Stop” button to select the function you want to use.
  • Temperature – Allows you to select the cooking temperature.
  • Timer – After pressing this button, you adjust cooking time with the “Start/Stop” dial.
  • Start/Stop – The button/dial is used to select time, temperature, and function. After time and temperature are adjusted, you can select the cooking function. Then, you press the button to start. Whenever desired, you can press the button again in order to stop cooking.
  • Keep Warm – An extra feature that can be used while slow cooking, steaming or pressurizing food. Basically, after the food is finished cooking, the appliance automatically changes to Keep Warm. You have to press the button to stop the process.
  • Power – Allows you to completely shut down the cooker.

XL Cooking Capacity

The Ninja Foodi FD401 is available in 3 sizes, with the 8-QT model being the most popular. This model’s Cook and Crisp Basket is 5-qt and allows you to cook quick roasts even for a larger family or for an event with guests.

In addition, the layered insert actively increases the cooking capacity of the basket.

Reversible Rack

The appliance includes a Deluxe Reversible Rack, which allows you to broil and steam. You can also use it to TenderCrisp 8 chicken breasts in one go.

Fast Frozen To Crispy

One of the huge advantages of a pressure cooker is that you can quickly cook your meals from frozen to done. With the Ninja Foodi FD401, this process is particularly fast. It only takes 20 minutes to pressure cook frozen meat. This involves quickly defrosting and cooking at the exact same time. If you want to continue cooking, you can simply add the crisping lid for a tasty crispy finish.

Is Ninja Foodi FD401 For You?

The Ninja Foodi FD401 is a versatile kitchen appliance you can use for many different cooking projects. The intuitive control panel makes this kitchen appliance very easy to use despite its versatility. You can use the appliance to:

Air Crisp

You use this cooking function to give your food the crunchiness and crispiness you expect from deep fried foods but without using the same amount of oil. Consequently, the fried foods you make can be very healthy.

Steam

This is a highly preferred cooking method by top chefs from around the world because you can cook foods that are delicate at a temperature that is very high. Steaming is also a healthy cooking method that allows you to prepare foods that are highly nutritious and delicious at the same time.

Slow Cooking

You can use this feature to slowly cook foods for a long time at a very low temperature. This has the advantage of keeping more nutrients in meals during cooking. Slow cooking is very healthy when compared to other cooking methods.

Yogurt

With the Ninja Foodi FD401, you can make healthy, creamy, and delicious yogurt in the comfort of your own home. You gain the flexibility to ferment, pasteurize, and even control yogurt consistency. The unit can be set to run for 12 hours in order to achieve a Greek-style yogurt.

Sauté-Sear

The appliance is very good for sautéing and searing. You only need to use it as a simple stovetop so you can sauté veggies, brown meats, simmer sauce, and so much more. Make sure you wait for the oil and the surface to become hot enough before you add the ingredients so they don’t stick  to the surface.

Broil

This cooking function uses higher temperatures than the rest. Therefore, you can easily brown and caramelize foods.

Bake-Roast

You can use the Ninja Foodi FD401 just like a regular oven so you can make baked treats or simply tender meats.

Dehydrate

The Dehydrate function is great for those who want to dehydrate vegetables, fruits, and meats to make healthy snacks.

Keep Warm

As already highlighted before, after you steam, slow cook or pressure cook, the appliance automatically changes to the Keep Warm setting. Whenever you select the function, the appliance warms up and maintains the temperature for up to 12 hours. All you have to do is to press the Keep Warm button to turn the feature off. The Keep Warm feature cannot warm up cold food; it is only meant to keep food warm at a safe temperature.

The Benefits Of The Ninja Foodi FD401 Air Fryer

By now, you are surely aware of the fact that the Ninja Foodi FD401 is an impressive pressure cooker + air fryer combo. However, as impressive as it is, this appliance is not for everyone.

So before making a decision, check the benefits listed below to see if this Ninja appliance deserves a place in your kitchen.

Save Time Because Of Fast Cooking

With the use of this cooker, you can cook foods at much higher temperatures than with any regular oven you might have in your home. You can easily get a chicken ready in minutes and cook even tougher meats in around half an hour. Obviously, based on the cooking functions you select, cooking speed will vary. However, speed is always higher than with other alternatives.

Cooking Becomes A Simple And Easy Task

The Ninja Foodi FD401 includes a highly intuitive control panel that features only buttons you will actually use. You just need to read the user manual that comes with the appliance and you’ll know everything there is to know about how to perfectly cook different types of dishes. While you can manually control temperature and cooking time, the device has preset functions that will make your job easier.

Healthy Cooking Becomes Easy

With this kitchen appliance, you have the huge advantage of being able to use cooking methods that are much healthier than most other options. For example, you can make crispy fried foods without using a lot of oil.

You can also bake or make healthy snacks without using the oven.

With almost all the cooking functions, the vitamins, minerals and important nutrients in your foods will be preserved.

Want to know more about how healthy an air fryer is? Try reading this article.

Before You Buy

Before you buy the pressure cooker air fryer combo unit, you should be aware of the following things:

  • The machine is heavy and big. Due to this, you will need enough space on your kitchen counter.
  • The air fryer lid (also known as crisping lid) cannot be removed as it is hinged so you need appropriate space for the lid to fully open while using the appliance. Do not put the appliance under cabinets, unless they are at a suitable height.
  • At 33 inches, the cord is not that long, which means you need to place the appliance close to an electrical outlet while using it.
  • Some users complain about the Foodi’s pressure release valve because it is shorter and harder to maneuver than that of the Instant Pot. When using the appliance, you have to make sure you never come into contact with the steam that is released by the valve.
  • The design of the unit makes hot air come out from its back during air frying so you have to place the kitchen appliance away from cabinets and walls.
  • Accessories are not compatible between the 6-quart and 8-quart models.

Ninja Foodi FD401 Pros and Cons

As with every kitchen appliance, there are some clear pros and cons. We highlighted the pros and cons of using the Ninja Foodi FD401 below:

Pros

  • This kitchen appliance is capable of cooking really fast
  • Very easy and simple to use
  • Intuitive digital control panel
  • Versatile so you do not have to buy other cooking equipment, like ovens or air fryers because you can use the Foodi for different cooking techniques
  • Can prepare many different healthy dishes and snacks
  • Great for homemade yogurt
  • The cooker includes a recipe book

Cons

  • The unit is heavy
  • No delayed cooking function available
  • Slow cooking does not produce the best possible results
  • You cannot remove the air fryer lid. Due to this, as the pressurizing cover is used, you need to place the air fryer lid in an up position. You need enough upper space available for this
  • When cooking time is over, the appliance has a beep sound. However, the beep is not very loud so you have to be in the kitchen to hear it

Ninja Foodi FD401 FAQ

What’s The Difference Between The FD401 And The OP401?

The big difference between the two models is that the FD401 also includes a Yogurt function so if you want to be able to make yogurt, the latter model is definitely a better option. Also, the FD401 has a more modern and sleek design.

What’s Extra In The Ninja Foodi Deluxe?

The Deluxe model appeared in 2019 and it improved the design of the original Ninja Foodi with a stainless steel finish. Also, the user interface was modified to add a larger LCD screen and an extra intuitive central dial. The cooking capacity is larger for the newer version. Additionally, the new Ninja Foodi Deluxe features a Yogurt function.

Is The Slow Cooking Option Good?

Slow Cooking is one of the functions of the Ninja Foodi FD401. While cooking time is basically the same with this kitchen appliance as with a slow cooker, the results can differ. For instance, some meats might not end up as tender as you would like them to be with this device. Simply put, some people will like the slow cooking function while others will prefer the classic slow cooker.

Does Water Need To Be Removed Before Air Frying, After Pressure Cooking?

Yes, water needs to be removed if you want to use the air frying function after pressure cooking.

How Much Can You Bake With The Ninja Foodi FD401?

The ceramic-coated pot you use for baking has a diameter of 9.5 inches and a depth of 5.5 inches. If you want, you can buy a separate Deluxe Bake Kit that can be used to bake cakes and casseroles.

Final Thoughts

The Ninja Foodi FD401 is a very good air fryer and an even better pressure cooker. You can use the appliance to cook many kinds of dishes.

Furthermore, Foodi is also great for those who want to make baked goods and casserole dishes.

While the slow cooking function is not the best, it will still get the job done better than many similar devices.

Overall, the Ninja Foodi FD401 is among the best units of its kind on the market, second only to the Instant Pot Duo Crisp Air Fryer.

It is expensive when compared with others but it is durable so you can use it for a really long time without any worries.

According to numerous reviews from buyers, the durability of the appliance is very high and the warranty is always respected so you can use the pressure cooker with confidence to cook delicious meals for years on end.

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