Holds a Master’s degree in Engineering and is keen on her own home’s climate. Sometimes we think that Carolina owns every single product she writes about – that’s how profound and insightful her reviews always are.
For 8 years, Richard had been working as an HVAC specialist and AC unit installer since his student years. Now, he’s our main consultant on every technical aspect that may arise during our tests and research.
Last updated: September 23, 2021
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Unfortunately, not all the air purifier models available are as high-quality and efficient as their manufacturers would have you believe. Moreover, far not every one will be suitable for eliminating those strong cooking odors. To ensure you`re getting the best air purifier for a kitchen, we`ve done the necessary research, hunting down the top 6 models on the market.
When choosing the air purifiers for our reviews, we made sure these models included filters that effectively cleared out cooking odors and smoke. We also chose units with different coverage areas to suit all kitchen sizes. Some of them even include features like air quality indicators for real-time monitoring, Wi-Fi controls for monitoring the air quality and adjusting settings from almost anywhere, and even a wall-mounted option for added convenience. If you`re interested in the best air purifier for a kitchen, check out our detailed reviews and handy buying guide below.
The best small air purifier for the kitchen should be durable, energy-efficient, and safe for your family to use. The Pure Enrichment PureZone 3-in-1 covers you in all these areas and has a bunch of great features as well.
This model has simple touch controls on the top of the unit, with LED lights displaying all your selections and telling you when the filters need changing. These controls include the on/off/filter reset, the 3 fan speeds, the automatic timer, and the UV-C light/Night Mode.
Inside the unit is the 3-stage filter system, which includes a pre-filter, an activated charcoal filter, and a True HEPA filter. These pieces work together to remove 99.97% of the kitchen and household odors, pet dander, pollen, dust, and so much more from the air you’re breathing. The UV-C light sanitizes the air even more, killing the bacteria and germs that could make your family sick. This lightweight model is also ozone-free for added safety.
Why did it make our list? This model has some great features, like the simple controls and the optional UV-C light that cleanses the air of the germs the filtration system missed. It is also ozone-free and has a sleek look that fits well in any kitchen.
What could be better: Though in the kitchen, this likely won’t be an issue, the bright LED lights are a bit bright for the bedroom. Night Mode turns them off and runs on low, but for higher speeds, the lights stay on.
If you want the best air purifier for kitchen smells but don’t want to pay a fortune for one, the Levoit LV-H132 is a good option to try out. This model has a 3-stage purification system that includes a pre-filter, a True HEPA filter, and a high-efficiency carbon filter. Together, these trap those unwanted odors, as well as pet hair, allergens, dust particles, mold, smoke, and much more.
As well as clearing out the nasty particles from your kitchen, this model runs quiet, so you can use it in your bedroom or any other room you like. This almost silent operation doesn’t affect its efficiency since this unit can still circulate the room 4 times each hour for the purest air possible.
Other handy features include the Smart Filter Change Reminder, which tells you when the filters need replacement, and the two night light brightness levels or turning the lights off completely if you prefer a darker room. The Levoit LV-H132 is CARB and FCC certified, and ETL listed as well.
What makes it stand out? The decent price makes this a great model for those on a budget. It is also small and quiet but still efficient enough to keep your kitchen air fresh and pure, no matter what meals you’re cooking.
What could be better: This unit is missing some basic features, like a timer and an auto-shutoff, though the low price may still make it worthwhile to keep on hand.
Those who have pets are dealing with more than just cooking odors in their kitchens. They are also dealing with pet odors and hair that could get into their food. The filtration system in the Winix HR900 takes care of all of these issues and many more.
The 5-stage filtration system in this unit starts with the pet pre-filter, which collects pet hair, dander, and other visible particles, the washable fine mesh pre-filter for other large particles, and the activated carbon filter for odors, smoke, and VOCs.
There is also the True HEPA filter for airborne allergens like mold spores, pollen, microbes, and other particles of 0.3 microns or larger, and the PlasmaWave technology that creates hydroxyls to eliminate viruses and bacteria in the air, preventing the spread of illnesses.
Another great feature is the triple Smart Sensors that measure the odors and particles in the air and combines with the Auto Mode to adjust the fan speed as needed for fresh, clean air. Sleep Mode kicks in automatically when the room darkens and switches back to Auto Mode when the light comes on again.
Why is it special? We loved the 5-stage filtration system, the triple Smart Sensors, and the quiet operation. This unit is also AHAM, Energy Star, and UL certified, ensuring it is a safe and quality unit.
What could be better: The replacement filters are a bit pricey, plus the Ultimate Pet pre-filter is flimsy and could be broken easily, requiring frequent replacement.
The best air purifier for cooking odors keeps the air in your home fresh and clean, plus is energy-efficient and easy to use. The RabbitAir MinusA2 SPA-700A meets all of these standards, thanks to its 6-stage purification system and simple controls.
There are 5 filters in this unit, starting with a washable pre-filter for those large allergens, followed by a medium filter for any particles 1 micron or larger. The BioGS HEPA filter traps 99.97% of allergens, bacteria, and viruses.
You can choose one of four options for the fourth filter, including the Germ Defense, Odor Remover, Pet Allergy, or Toxic Absorber, fighting the most common issues in your home. The charcoal-based activated carbon filter captures those household odors. The negative ion generator can be turned on or off as needed.
This model includes an Auto Mode, which alters the fan speed to match air quality shifts and switches to Night Mode when the room darkens. It comes with a wall-mount kit and remote control. Other features include Pollen Mode, a mood light, an odor sensor, and an air quality indicator.
What we liked: This model can be used with the floor stand or wall mount, includes 6 stages of filtration, a customized filter, and remote control for easy setting changes.
What could be better: This model is quite expensive, though its great features and efficiency may make it worth the price. It is also quite loud on turbo mode.
The TruSens Air Purifier is a great air purifier for cooking odors and other unwanted particles floating around in the air. It is a nice size, with a carry handle on top, and a ton of great features.
This model uses 360-degree filtration to pull the air into the unit and through the 4 levels of purification, including the carbon pre-filter, an activated carbon filter, a HEPA filter, and a UV-C light filter. Together, these remove 99% of particles of 0.3 microns or smaller, as well as gases, odors, and even those harmful germs and bacteria.
A SensorPod air quality monitor can be placed anywhere in the room to measure air quality at all times. The readings show up on the LED display in the unit. When the air quality is low, the air purifier adjusts the fan speed accordingly.
Other great features include the PureDirect dual airflow technology for better purified air circulation, 5 fan speeds, Night Mode for dimmer lights, filter change indicators, and the timer mode with 2, 4, 8, and 12-hour settings.
What are its best features? The best features include the SensaPod, which monitors the air quality from across the room, the 4-stage purification, the detailed color-coded LED display, and the dual airflow for excellent circulation.
What could be better: The TruSens Air Purifier can be loud at the highest speeds. It also includes a HEPA-type filter instead of a True HEPA filter, so collects slightly fewer allergens than a True HEPA filter would.
For those with large kitchens and homes, the Alen BreatheSmart 75i is the best HEPA air purifier for a kitchen. This model has a 1300 sq. ft. coverage area, so it works for almost any size of home, plus it comes in 8 great color options for the front panel.
This model has 5 fan speeds, all of which run quietly to prevent disturbing you while you cook or visit with family and friends. It includes Smart Sensor technology that uses a color-coded system in real-time for consistent air quality monitoring.
Other great features include the touch controls, Auto Mode that switches the fan speeds as needed as the air quality changes, the timer, and the filter indicator light.
Inside this unit is the medical-grade True HEPA filter, which collects 99.99% of the nasty airborne particles you`d otherwise breathe in. For additional purification, this model has both antimicrobial and carbon layers to collect those odors, VOCs, bacteria, fungi, smoke, and so much more for cleaner air.
Why did it make our list? We loved that this model has a huge coverage area, multiple color options, and runs quieter than other units. The advanced sensor technology also makes it easier to monitor the air quality in your kitchen.
What is not ideal about it? The Alen BreatheSmart 75i is very expensive when compared to the other models in our reviews. The lifetime warranty is also only valid after product registration and a completed filter subscription.
Things to Consider
Air purifiers are fantastic units for getting rid of the unwanted particles floating around in the air. This includes things like pet hair, dander, dust, pollen, mold spores, and cooking odors. Of course, with so many different models available, it can be hard to choose the perfect one for your kitchen since they may have varying features and sizes to choose from. To make this decision easier, we`ve covered the most important features that these models have to offer, so you can choose the perfect one for your home.
Why your kitchen needs an air purifier
Even if you`re careful when cleaning up your kitchen, wiping the counters, washing the dishes, and cleaning up spills on the floors, this doesn’t take care of those lingering odors from cooking. Many of the foods you cook with, like onions, spices, and fragrant cheeses, leave their scents behind after you`ve cooked and consumed your meals. Those odors mix, creating a less than pleasant stink in your home. As well as making you uncomfortable, guests will notice those odors as soon as they walk in the door.
That`s why it`s important to get the best air purifier for your kitchen. These units will circulate the air, trapping those odors. Homes with pets may also need these units to catch those pet hairs that could otherwise end up in the meals you`re serving. If your cooking gets away from you and spills on the stove to cook on the burner or gets burned in the pan, the air purifier will also take care of the smoke from these occurrences.
Another benefit of a kitchen air purifier is that it can remove mold and mildew from the air, making it much safer for your family and keeping those nasty particles from contaminating your food.
Features to consider when choosing an air purifier for kitchen
When choosing a new air purifier for kitchen smells, there are a few features you may want to look into. This will ensure that you`re getting the perfect model for the size of your kitchen and the issues you`re dealing with.
The coverage area displayed on the air purifier tells you the largest size the room should be for it to circulate the air efficiently, clearing out those unwanted particles in a timely fashion. There are small room models, like the Levoit LV-H132, which works well for kitchens that are 129 sq. ft. or smaller. If this model is placed in a room larger than this recommended size, it won`t be able to pull all of the air through as quickly, forcing the unit to run more often at higher speeds and still leave some unwanted particles in the air. There are also models with huge coverage areas, like the 1300 sq. ft. of the Alen BreatheSmart 75i. These models are perfect for large kitchens or open-concept homes with few walls and doors to keep the odors from spreading. Be sure to measure the size of the room or area you`ll be using your air purifier in and purchase one that can handle that size.
To clean the odors and other unwanted particles out of the air, you need the right filtration system.
Though some models include multiple filters, for kitchen odors, there is only one filter that you absolutely need. This is the activated charcoal filter, which is a porous filter that collects those organic chemicals in the air that create those odors. As the air passes through the activated charcoal filter, the material absorbs those odor particles, sending only fresh-smelling air back out of the machine.
Though they don`t trap odors, a HEPA filter can capture those solid particles that create odors on their own, like smoke, mold spores, pet hair, and pet dander. The dense mesh traps those particles, keeping them from contaminating the air and producing those odors.
Though these are usually separate filters, some models combine these technologies, like the Alen BreatheSmart 75i. This model has a True HEPA filter with antimicrobial and carbon layers, effectively eliminating odors and other harmful particles, so it can still be considered the best charcoal activated air purifier for kitchen odors despite not having this as a separate filter.
Most of the air purifiers on the market offer a few different fan speeds to choose from to help you eliminate those odors and particles at the speed needed. For instance, you may need to turn up the fan to get rid of odors during the preparation and cooking of the meals, then turn it down again when the odors are gone. The more speeds you have, the more options there are in clearing out the air. All of the units in our reviews have either 3 or 5 speeds, so you can choose which option is right for your home.
A timer is a handy feature to have on your air purifier for kitchens. This feature allows you to set a specific amount of time for the unit to run. Then, when the time is up, it shuts itself off instead of running continuously until you turn it off manually. Most models have options for 2, 4, and 8 hours, though some allow you to run it for 12 hours or choose a set hourly time as you see fit.
Nobody wants a noisy machine in their kitchen distracting them from their meal prep and cooking. A loud unit also makes it impossible to talk to your family or any guests you`ve invited over for a meal. Luckily, these units are designed to run quietly, so you can use them in your living spaces without disturbing you. Of course, the higher fan speeds will be a bit louder, like the ones on the TruSens Air Purifier, but these speeds are only designed to be used when the air needs to be cleaned quickly, so you likely won`t need them too often. Many models also include a Night Mode, which runs quieter at low speeds to make it easier to sleep without turning the unit off.
Air quality detector
An air quality detector monitors the air quality in your home at all times, usually displaying it on the unit, so you always know what the air in your home is like. This way, you know when to turn the unit up to clear out the dirty, smelly air and down again to maintain the healthy air quality. These monitors can be built right into the air purifier, like the one on the Winix HR900. These usually work with an Auto Mode, which adjusts the fan speed automatically when the air quality monitor detects poor air quality. They can also be separate from the machine, like the one on the TruSens Air Purifier, so you can set it anywhere in the room to monitor the air quality.
Though this isn’t a common feature, some air purifiers include Wi-Fi capability, which allows you to remotely access the unit to turn it on or off, change the settings, or just monitor the air quality when you’re away from home. This feature usually includes an app available for download that pairs with the unit you’ve purchased for consistent readings and adjustments at all times.
Dimensions and weight
The dimensions and weight of the air purifier you’re considering tells you how big and heavy it is. The larger the unit, the more difficult it will be to find a space for it. These units need to be kept at least a couple of feet away from any walls and furniture for proper airflow, which will also determine how big of a unit you can fit in the space you have available. A heavy unit won’t be too much of a burden if you plan on placing it in one spot and leaving it there, but if you are going to move it from room to room, a lighter model is best.
The warranty is one of the most important features to look for since some air purifiers may not work as intended. If there are faulty parts or pieces that are installed incorrectly, the warranty will ensure that you get the unit repaired or replaced without costing you a fortune. The longer the coverage lasts, the more peace of mind you’ll have. Be sure to check out the fine print, too, since there may be some conditions included with the warranty. For instance, the lifetime warranty of the Alen BreatheSmart 75i is only included with the proper registration and a filter replacement subscription.
This depends on the air quality in your home. If you only notice low air quality when cooking, you can leave it off or run it on low at other times. Some people may need to run their units longer than this, though, especially if you have pets in your home, you live in an area with low air quality from pollution or nearby wildfires, or during those seasons with high pollen counts.
Though these units rarely state that they are waterproof, they won`t automatically be ruined if water spills on them. They all have durable plastic bodies, and many of them also include touch buttons, with no cracks or seams for the water to get into. The only issue will be if the water gets into the intake area since this could result in water damage on the filters, fans, or internal motor. It`s best to keep water away from these units, just in case.
The UV-C light uses short-wave ultraviolet light to eliminate those airborne microorganisms that the other filtrations systems may not be able to destroy. These include things like mold, viruses, and bacteria, which could cause health issues if breathed in by the members of your household. Rather than trapping them, these contaminants are inactivated, so they are no longer harmful to your family.
An air purifier for your kitchen can rid your home of those unpleasant cooking odors that would otherwise linger. All 6 models in our reviews are fine machines, though some stand out among the rest.
Our top choice is the Pure Enrichment PureZone 3-in-1, which has 3 filters, a UV-C light, 3 fan speeds, and a 200 sq. ft. coverage area. This unit is also durable, energy-efficient, lightweight, and features a timer, Night Mode, filter indicator, LED lights, and touch controls.
The Levoit LV-H132 is a quiet, compact model with a great low price. This unit also includes 3 speeds, a 129 sq. ft. coverage area, a Smart Filter Change reminder, 2 night light settings, and several certifications.
The Winix HR900 includes 4 filters and PlasmaWave technology, 3 fan speeds, triple Smart Sensors, and both air quality and change filter indicators. There is also an Auto Mode, a Sleep Mode, and it is certified for efficiency and safety.