Ninja Foodi Multi-cooker

Stuart Forster reviews a Ninja Foodi Multi-Cooker.

Disclosure: Stuart was gifted a Ninja Foodi Multi-Cooker to facilitate this review, which Ninja has not reviewed or approved. Some of the links below, marked with a (£), are affiliate links, meaning, at no additional cost to you, I will earn a commission if you click through and make a purchase.

The Ninja Foodi Multi-Cooker is a one-pot machine that pressure cooks, steams, slow cooks, sautés, air crisps, bakes/roasts and grills food. It’s easy to use and I’ve cooked some delicious dishes in it. I find it a fantastic piece of kitchen equipment; I’ve been singing its praises to friends and family during the month that I’ve been testing it.

I love cooking, finding it a great way of relaxing. Planning a meal, prepping the ingredients and cooking is a way of shutting off from the outside world and being creative. I’m normally reluctant to adopt new equipment into my routine but have been highly impressed with the Ninja Foodi. I’ve used it frequently over recent weeks.

Ninja Foodi Multi-cooker with the pressure cooker lid.
Ninja Foodi Multi-cooker with the pressure cooker lid.

The Get to know your Foodi pamphlet

First off, it’s easy to use. It comes with a four-page Get to know your Foodi pamphlet. The easy-to-read document explains the functions of the multi-cooker and provides an overview of how to use them. It has a cooking cheat sheet on the back page, providing ideas about how to cook a handful of ingredients using the various settings.

The cooking mode is controlled via buttons on the front of the machine. The duration of cooking and temperature or intensity, depending on the mode, is also set via buttons. It really is simple to use.

Buttons on the front of the Ninja Foodi.
Buttons on the front of the Ninja Foodi.

On opening the packaging when the Ninja Foodi Multi-Cooker arrived, I was initially perplexed by why it came with a ‘spare’ lid. Get to know your Foodi explains that the loose lid is for use while pressure cooking ingredients. It twists on an off and has a vent at the back; flipping the vent after pressure cooking is complete releases a jet of steam. The lid doesn’t unlock until the unit has depressurised.

Southern-style spicy air crisped chicken.
Southern-style spicy air crisped chicken.

Using the Ninja Foodi Multi-cooker

Admittedly, I was sceptical as I unpacked the Foodi. I didn’t believe that it would be able to do all the things that it promised. Cooking a herb-roasted chicken, the first dish I attempted, helped win me over and start believing that the Ninja Foodi was the real deal. In approximately 50 minutes a pasty whole organic chicken was transformed into a delicious, crisp-skinned roast bird that smelt and looked as good as anything basted and roasted in an oven for a couple of hours or more.

Herb-roasted chicken cooked in the Ninja Foodi.
Herb-roasted chicken cooked in the Ninja Foodi.

That encouraged me to get hold of a couple of racks of ribs. I marinated them for 24 hours before first pressure cooking then air crisping them. The result was fall-off-the-bone, succulent meat with outstanding flavour.

Rack of ribs cooked in the Foodi.
Rack of ribs cooked in the Foodi.

While in a Chinese supermarket on Stowell Street in Newcastle’s Chinatown I bought a selection of frozen dim sum. I placed a selection of it on the reversible metal rack that comes with the Foodi, added water and selected the steamer mode to prepare the dim sum. Easy. I’ve subsequently steamed vegetables and served them with rice.

Raw organic chicken in the pot
Raw organic chicken in the pot. Less than 50 minutes later the herb-roasted chicken was cooked and ready to eat.

Inspiration from the Ninja Foodi booklet

Leafing through the 50-page Ninja Foodi booklet provided me with inspiration for dishes such as Buffalo wings and potato wedges. I was impressed by how little oil was required during cooking. That encouraged me to try making chips to serve alongside rump steak. I pressure cooked the chips for four minutes then seasoned them and added a dash of olive oil before air crisping for 20 minutes.

Buffalo wings: my first attempt to make them.
Buffalo wings: my first attempt to make them.

It’s proving fun to experiment with the Ninja Foodi. Prior to sitting down to write this review I cooked a brunch hash in it. My ‘weekend special’ featured chunks of potato, chopped red pepper, onion, chorizo and halloumi. Tasty and filling, it was ideal for after a morning workout.

Weekend brunch: a hash featuring potato, halloumi, chorizo, red pepper and onion.
Weekend brunch: a hash featuring potato, halloumi, chorizo, red pepper and onion.

Another reason why I like the Foodi is that it enables me to cook food straight from the freezer without waiting to heat up the oven. That has been very welcome when calls have overrun around lunchtime and I’ve just wanted to warm something while continuing to work.

The fact it’s easy to clean is also something I find positive. All the cooking takes place inside of a non-stick six-litre pot.

All told, the Ninja Foodi Multi-cooker is a well-designed, robust piece of kitchen equipment. The fact it’s so easy to use and clean makes it a joy to cook with. I’m looking forward to trying new recipes that I find online and experimenting with my own creations.

Steak, chips and grilled cabbage. I served this with a peppercorn sauce.
Steak, chips and grilled cabbage. I served this with a peppercorn sauce.

Further information

Read more about the Ninja Foodi on the Ninja website which sells the Ninja Foodi Multi-Cooker OP300UK (RRP £199.99). The Ninja website also has recipe suggestions. A 26-page instruction booklet provides details about using the Ninja Foodi various settings, cleaning and maintenance, accessories and troubleshooting, should anything go wrong.

The Ninja Foodi Multi-Cooker (£) is sold via Amazon (£):

Enjoy cooking? Read this post about my experience cooking with French chef Marc Meurin, whose Le Meurin restaurant holds two Michelin stars.

Photos illustrating this post are by Why Eye Photography. Why Eye Photography is based in North East England. To discuss photography projects contact 07947 587136.

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