Ninja Foodi 9-in-1 Multi-Cooker OP350UK review

Ninja Foodi 9-in-1 Multi-Cooker OP350UK review

In this Ninja Foodi 9-in-1 Multi-Cooker OP350UK review we put the brand’s classic cooker to the test, making chicken, chips, and charred corn. Along with Instant Pot, Ninja is one of the most popular multicooker brands. And if you’re in the market for a versatile countertop cooker, Ninja is definitely a brand worth considering. With plenty of models to choose from, Ninja’s range of multicookers come in a variety of sizes that all offer slightly different functions.

The Ninja Foodi 9-in-1 OP350UK has a six litre capacity which is plenty big enough for 4-6 person recipes. It’s double the price of some multicookers, but the crisping lid means it’s much more versatile too, functioning as one of the best air fryers, as well as grilling and roasting. It’s simple to use with but it’s a chunky beast that’s not for small kitchens.

Ideal Home rated: 4 out of 5 stars

Reasons to buy:

  •   Uncomplicated controls
  •   Includes lots of cooking charts for guidance
  •   Cooking pot has a non-stick coating
  •   Dishwasher safe accessories
  •   Lots of recipes available online
  •   Keep warm function

Reasons to avoid:

  •   No pre-set food programs
  •   When pressure cooking the hinged crisping lid can’t be removed
  •   Bigger footprint than other multicookers
  •   Noisy when using the crisping lid
  •   Cooking pot doesn’t have a flat base

 Ninja Foodi 9-in-1 Multi-Cooker OP350UK

Specs

  •   Power: 1460W
  •   Capacity: 6 L
  •   Pre-sets: None
  •   Cooking functions: Pressure, steam, slow cook, yogurt, sear/ sauté, air crisp, grill, bake/ roast, dehydrate
  •   Weight: 9 kg
  •   Size: 32 x 43 x 36cm
  •   Included:  Reversible rack, Cook & Crisp basket with detachable diffuser, cooking pot, pressure lid

Unboxing

The Ninja Foodi 9-in-1 comes in a big heavy box that meant it was easier to unpack on the floor. Thankfully it’s got two big easy-to-grip handles on either side, so getting it out of the box and moving it to the kitchen counter was easy enough. Having said that, it’s worth noting that at 9kg (not including the pressure lid and rack) it’s a weighty cooker. In the box there were some plastic bags to protect each of the parts, but otherwise it was free of any chunky plastic or polystyrene packaging.

The Ninja is a substantial multicooker, it takes up more space on the counter than most others I’ve reviewed. Plus, there’s an additional pressure cooking lid and a reversible rack that need to be stored separately. So even if you plan to keep it on the counter, these extras will need a home.

The main crisping lid is hinged, so when you want to pressure cook or slow cook, you just leave it open and attach the other lid. This might be tricky if you’ve got low wall cabinets because it’s quite tall with the crisping lid open. Nevertheless, the pressure lid slots easily into place.

The pressure release valve is quite traditional and when you turn it to vent, your hands are very near the steam outlet so it’s a good idea to wear oven gloves or use tongs. All the cooking functions are clearly laid out on the control panel and there’s a big dial to switch between cooking modes and adjust the time and temperature.

Cooking in the Ninja Foodi 9-in-1 Multi-Cooker

When you first switch on the Foodi it remembers the last cooking method you used, but if you want to do something else, turning the dial allows you to select a different cooking method. The cooking methods to choose from are pressure, steam, slow cook, yogurt, sear/ sauté, air crisp, grill, bake/ roast and dehydrate.

After you choose your cooking method, pressing either the time or temperature button and turning the dial again will adjust these settings before you press the dial to start cooking. I found it really easy to operate and barely had to consult the manual for this part.

Ninja Foodi 9-in-1 Multi-Cooker 6L OP350UK

The Foodi doesn’t have any pre-set cooking programs for different foods or recipes. However, I was pleased to see that it comes with a recipe book and cooking charts included in the box. Lots of other multicookers that I’ve reviewed fail to provide cooking charts, so you end up having to guess and experiment a lot. But with the Foodi, the charts provide a good starting point for lots of common foods. Even if you do have to adjust times to suit your taste, it’s helpful to have a starting point.

Baking a cake in the Ninja Foodi 9-in-1 Multi-Cooker

For my first attempt at cooking in the Ninja OP350UK I picked an orange almond cake recipe from the Ninja cooking circle website. I made up the cake batter as directed and then filled a lined cake tin. The recipe tells you to put the cake tin on the low rack. I baked it as per the recipe, on 140oC for a total time of one hour, stopping after 35 minutes to sprinkle almonds on top.

There was no preheat required, the timer started its countdown from the minute I pressed start. My first impression was that it was noisier than I expected. I’d say the volume was about the same as my kettle when it comes to a boil. The cake filled the house with a lovely orange aroma and was easy to lift out with the handles on the rack.

The flaked almonds didn’t stick to the top of the cake, so they fell off when I turned it out of the tin. But other than this very small complaint, I was really happy with the cake. It may have taken longer than it would in my main oven, but it was a beautifully soft and fluffy cake that I’d happily serve to guests.

Roasting a chicken in the Ninja Foodi 9-in-1 Multi-Cooker

Ninja Foodi 9-in-1 Multi-Cooker 6L OP350UK raw chicken

To figure out the cook time for a whole chicken I used the cooking cheat sheet that came in the box. First I pressure cooked it on high for 15 minutes in the basket, with 125ml water in the pot. After preheating for about 10-15 minutes, the Ninja prompted me to add more water and when I opened it up, it was clear it had boiled dry before reaching pressure. So I added more water and restarted it for 15 minutes. This time it reached pressure very quickly and started counting down the 15 minutes.

At the end of the pressure cooking program, I flicked the steam release valve to vent, it took just 45 seconds to release all of the pressure so that I could open the lid.

Ninja Foodi 9-in-1 Multi-Cooker 6L OP350UK air fried chicken

I brushed the chicken with oil, seasoned with salt and pepper and closed the crisping lid. This was when I realised that my chicken was a tad too big and I had to squash it down to get the lid to close. I set the Ninja to Air Crisp at 200oC for 20 minutes.  But when I checked it, it wasn’t thoroughly cooked, so I added a further 10 minutes.

The finished chicken wasn’t perfect. The top had been touching the crisping lid and that part of the breast was overcooked and tough as were the tops of the legs. The meat underneath was tender and moist though. Even though my chicken was 2.2kg which was within the range on the cooking cheat sheet, I think I’d get much better results with a smaller chicken and perhaps a longer pressure cook time and shorter browning time.

Ninja Foodi 9-in-1 Multi-Cooker 6L OP350UK chicken plate

Making wedges in the Ninja Foodi 9-in-1 OP350UK Multi-Cooker

The recipe book that came in the box had a recipe for potato wedges that I thought would go nicely with the roast chicken. As directed, I pressure cooked the wedges for three minutes. The preheat took 10 minutes and the quick pressure release was a further minute and a half, which meant this stage took around 15 minutes in total. Then I poured oil over the wedges and set to Air Crisp for 30 minutes.

Ninja Foodi 9-in-1 Multi-Cooker 6L OP350UK chips

I turned the wedges a few times to ensure even crisping and browning and I was really pleased with the golden colour and crisp texture once the program ended. As per the recipe I made a dressing which I poured onto the wedges at the end of cooking, it did make them a bit soggy but added loads of flavour.

Steaming corn on the cob in the Ninja Foodi 9-in-1 Multi-Cooker

Ninja Foodi 9-in-1 Multi-Cooker 6L OP350UK steamed corn

Next, I followed the time given in the steam chart for corn on the cob. I popped the corn on the reversible rack, added 500ml of water and set to steam for six minutes with the steam vent open. After preheating for seven minutes it started counting down.

It’s worth noting that lots of steam was released during cooking so it’s best to keep the Ninja close to your extractor fan to avoid a really steamy kitchen. Other than this, it worked well and the corn was perfectly tender and cooked when the timer finished.

Ninja Foodi 9-in-1 Multi-Cooker 6L OP350UK corn

To make the corn a little more interesting I decided to switch on the sauté function, added a little oil and paprika, then the cooked corn cobs. I wanted a fried, slightly charred texture on the outside. The sauté function did work well, my only issue is that the base of the cooking pot isn’t completely flat. So the oil sat around the outside edge of the pot and I had to move the corn to the edges otherwise it wasn’t frying in the oil.

Ninja Foodi 9-in-1 Multi-Cooker 6L OP350UK finished corn

Cleaning

Not only is the Ninja Foodi easy to use, but virtually all the removable accessories are dishwasher safe, so it’s also super easy to clean. Even the pressure lid can go in the dishwasher. The pressure release valve and anti-clog cap have to be washed by hand but given that everything else can go in the dishwasher, I think that’s forgivable.

If you don’t have a dishwasher, the cooking pot has a non-stick coating, so it cleans easily. The Cook & Crisp basket and detachable diffuser can be a bit trickier to clean. After air frying the whole chicken there was a lot of baked on greasy residue, so I just filled the cooking pot with warm soapy water and left the basket in that to soak overnight. Everything wiped away easily in the morning.

Should you buy the Ninja Foodi OP350UK Multi-Cooker? 

Ninja Foodi 9-in-1 Multi-Cooker 6L OP350UK chicken dinner

The Ninja Foodi 9-in-1 is a versatile multicooker that’s got enough functions to make it a useful addition to your kitchen. It’s easy to use and easy to clean with lots of information on cook times and settings, making it a great option if you’re unsure of multicookers and want advice on how to cook various foods.

It is big, maybe too big for smaller kitchens. Having said that, it doubles as an air fryer, so it saves space in comparison to having a multicooker and a separate air fryer. It also has a large capacity so is great for bigger families and for batch cooking.

I enjoyed how simple it is to use and although my roast chicken didn’t cook quite as I’d hoped, I was pleased with everything else I made. If you’re nervous of pressure cooking and venting the steam, there are multicookers with safer and easier steam release mechanisms. But all things considered, I like the Ninja and I do think it’s a useful bit of kit.

About the reviewer

Helen McCue is a freelance contributor who trained as a Home Economist. After starting her career in the food industry, she moved into home appliance reviews, utilising her cooking skills and experience to put all kinds of products to the test, and over the years has reviewed hundreds of home and kitchen appliances for a variety of publications.

Having completely renovated her current house, Helen reviews kitchen appliances from her open plan kitchen at home in a beautiful Berkshire village. When she’s not working, Helen can be found enjoying the local countryside or dreaming about her next house renovation project.

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