The Ultenic K20 is a budget-friendly, dual-drawer air fryer that allows you to cook at different time and temperature settings simultaneously. The generous capacity is split between the two drawers and at the press of a button it will ensure both sides finish cooking at the same time, no matter how different the cook times. On test it impressed us with excellent wings and frozen fries, but fresh-cut fries need a bit more experimentation to perfect.
Great results cooking frozen fries
Drawers don’t slide smoothly
Fresh fries will require trial and error
No cooking charts in manual
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One minute review
Two of the biggest things to consider when choosing one of the best air fryers are capacity and whether to go for a single or dual-drawer model. If you want to cook different foods at the same time, a dual-drawer air fryer might be the one for you; but the drawback is that the two drawers will each have a relatively small capacity.
Ultenic is a brand that mainly designs and manufactures floor-care appliances, but the Ultenic K20 is the second air fryer it has launched – and its first dual-drawer model. At under £200, it’s competitively priced in comparison to other dual-drawer air fryers.
Offering an 8-liter/8.5-quart capacity split between the two drawers, each drawer can be programmed independently of the other. However, the Ultenic comes with a a sync button that will see both drawers automatically finish cooking at the same time.
There are a range of auto settings for common foods such as fries, meat, fish and vegetables, as well as bake and dehydrate functions. Plus, you can download an app that offers a selection of recipes for inspiration and guidance.
We found the Ultenic K20 intuitive to use, and although fresh-cut fries weren’t up to the standard we’ve seen from some other air fryers, frozen fries and chicken wings were cooked to perfection. It might not be a brand you’ve heard of, but given the competitive price, it’s one worth considering.
Ultenic K20 price and availability
- List price: £179.99
The Ultenic K20 is currently only available in the UK, where you can find it on Amazon. It’s one of the cheapest dual-drawer models we’ve reviewed, yet it doesn’t lack any features or functions. However, the interface isn't quite as premium as more expensive models.
Price and availability score: 4.5/5
Ultenic K20 design
- Dishwasher-safe baskets and crisper trays
- Simple touchscreen interface
- Good range of time and temperature settings
All dual-drawer air fryers are by their very nature bigger and bulkier than their single drawer counterparts. This one is comparable in size to other dual-drawer models we’ve reviewed at 12.3 x 14.4 x 14.4 inches/ 31.2 x 36.7 x 36.5cm (h x w x d), and note the depth includes the handles.
On the counter it doesn’t look too big and the matte black and brushed stainless steel finish certainly doesn’t give away its budget-friendly price tag. The touchscreen interface is on the front of the air fryer, so it’s easy to see and access. When switched off, the screen is black for a streamlined look – although a power button stays illuminated while it’s connected to the mains.
Each of the cooking baskets (also known as drawers) features a large handle and a removable perforated crisper plate. Four rubber feet on each crisper plate helps to keep it in position when the drawers are tipped. The drawers don’t slide in and out of the air fryer quite as smoothly as we’d like, although we suspect that with use, this will improve.
The interface is pretty intuitive to use; L and R buttons allow you to switch between the two baskets and set the cooking time and temperature for each side. The timer can be set in one minute increments between 1-60 minutes, and for the temperature, you can select anything between 80°C–200°C in 5°C increments. If you want both sides to cook on the same settings, program one side and then select the L=R button.
Or, if you’ve programmed different settings for each side, but you want them to finish cooking at the same time, there’s a sync button that will prompt the air fryer to delay the start time for the side that takes a shorter time to cook.
A preheat button will automatically warm the air fryer for five minutes at 200°C, although that temperature is adjustable. There are six preset cooking functions to choose from: fries, meat, fish and vegetables, as well as bake and dehydrate settings. The presets are a guide, and the time and temperature for each of these is adjustable.
Every time a button is pressed, the air fryer beeps, which will be off-putting if you’re sensitive to noise. On the plus side, though, the drawers and crisper plates can go in the dishwasher for easy cleaning.
The instruction manual includes all the basic info to get the air fryer running, but it doesn’t offer any cooking tables with suggested time and temperatures for cooking common foods. For this sort of guidance you can download the Ultenic app and browse through the recipes.
Design score: 4/5
Ultenic K20 performance
- Crisp and golden frozen fries
- Easy to program settings
- No reminder to shake foods
It didn’t take much time at all to get to grips with the simple touchscreen interface of the Ultenic K20, and we were quickly able to set each cooking basket independently as well as sync-cooking. Although there's a preheat function available, other than explaining how to use it, the instruction manual makes very little mention of it, so we decided it might not be essential.
So for our first use of the K20 we opted not to preheat it, but get cooking straight away. We popped plain chicken wings in one basket, with no added oil, and loaded the other with 500g / 1.1lbs of fresh-cut chunky fries that we’d soaked in water for 10 minutes, before drying and coating in 1tbsp oil and seasoning.
For the fries, we pressed the fries preset that gave us a suggested cook time of 20 minutes at 200°C / 392°F. For the chicken wings we pressed the chicken/ meat preset, which was also 200°C / 392°F, but for 25 minutes. We opted to reduce the wings timer to 15 minutes, then hit the sync button and pressed start.
The air fryer started cooking the fries immediately, then after five minutes the wings basket started up. Helpfully, when you remove one drawer, both timers pause to ensure they stay in sync. We gave the chips a shake twice during cooking, whereas the wings had a shake halfway through.
Near the end of cooking, it was clear that the fries were going to need more time, so we paused cooking to gain access to the settings and added five minutes to the fries' timer. At this point the two sides were no longer able to cook in sync, and at the end of their 15 minutes, the wings were done. We ended up adding a total of 10 extra minutes to the fries, but we left the wings in the air fryer where they stayed warm; we were still able to serve them together.
The wings were a triumph – moist and tender meat with crisp and golden skin on the outside. The fries were okay; the cook time was longer than we’d like, and they were uneven in color and crispness. As such, we think a bit more experimentation with cook times and temperatures will be required to get perfect results. It’s also worth noting that you’ll only really benefit from the sync function once you’ve got to grips with how long different foods take to cook.
To cook frozen steak-cut fries, we opted to make use of the preheat function, in the hope this would lead to better results. After the five-minute preheat, we added 500g/ 1.1lbs of frozen fries and again selected the fries preset.
We gave the fries a shake twice during the 20-minute cook and, in contrast to the homemade fries, these turned out crisp, golden and evenly cooked – the perfect result.
During cooking, the Ultenic K20 isn't the quietest air fryer we’ve reviewed but at around 63dB it could hardly be considered a loud appliance. The fan noise is similar to a cooker hood or a quiet conversation. Cleaning up is easy, since the drawers and crisper plates can go in the dishwasher. The touchscreen is quite reflective and will show up any greasy fingerprints. As such, it will need a regular wipe over.
Performance score: 4/5
Ultenic K20 score card
|Price & availability||A dual-drawer air fryer at a budget friendly price, but currently only available on Amazon in the UK.||4.5/5|
|Design score||Overall a user-friendly design and control panel, but it lacks a premium feel that you get if you spend more.||4/5|
|Performance score||Easy to use and made great wings, frozen fries cooked nicely but homemade fries will take a bit of time to perfect.||4/5|
Should I buy?
Buy it if...
You want to air-fry different foods at the same time
If you want to air-fry nuggets at the same time as fries, or broccoli at the same time as chops, you’ll benefit from the flexibility of a dual-drawer air fryer.
You’re on a budget
This isn’t a cheap appliance, but that said, at under £180 it’s kinder on the wallet than most dual-drawer air fryers – as long as you don’t mind stepping away from the well-known brands.
You want an easy-to-clean air fryer
Both drawers and the crisper plates can be washed in a dishwasher to make cleaning simple. But it's worth noting that the manual recommends hand-washing if you want to extend the life of these parts.
Don't buy it if...
You want to watch your food as it cooks
The solid cooking drawers mean you can’t see inside the air fryer to keep an eye on browning. If that’s important to you, we recommend checking out the Instant Vortex Plus Dual Drawer air fryer.
You want a very large-capacity model
The 8-liter / 8.5-quart capacity will be ample for most medium-sized households, but if you’re looking for the best capacity, the 9.5-liter / 10-quart Ninja Foodi Max Dual Zone air fryer is worth a look.
You’d rather have one big cooking zone
Dual-drawer air fryers aren’t for everyone – while you get the benefit of being able to cook two different foods at the same time, the smaller drawers can also be limiting.
- First reviewed: October 2022
Helen is a freelance writer who specializes in kitchen appliances and has written for some of the biggest home-related titles around. She has been reviewing small appliances, including blenders, juicers, and multi-cookers, for more than 8 years, and also upholsters furniture when she's not testing the latest food tech gadgets.