K Is for Smart Kitchen Technology
Technology used to be a word mainly used in the TV room, but lately smart tech has found its way into every room in the house — especially the kitchen. Now you can find programmable coffee machines and refrigerators that remind you that you need to buy milk.
It’s all pretty cool — and really great if you’re shopping for someone who can’t get her fill of high-tech gadgets. Check out this list of awesome presents to make your loved one’s kitchen (and brain) even smarter than ever.
- Echo Show, $230: Alexa used to just talk to us. Now she comes with a screen, which can be used to play videos, track a shopping list, read recipes, and more.
- FoodSaver System, $66: The FoodSaver you remember from those incessant infomercials has gotten a facelift, taking up less countertop space while still employing the same technology that vacuum-seals foods to keep them fresh.
- Woods USB Plug Wall Tap, $12: Anyone who spends a ton of time in the kitchen will love this outlet adapter. It can charge an iPad and send juice to a stand mixer at the same time!
- Nest Thermostat, $246: With the oven and stovetop going at once, kitchens can heat up quickly. The Nest Thermostat gives home cooks the ability to control the temperature with a phone or a voice command to an Alexa-enabled device.
- ChefSteps Joule Sous Vide, $196: If your techy friend isn’t already trying sous-vide cooking, she should be! And she should do it with this machine. It’s small, sleek, and WiFi-enabled, pairing with a companion app that displays exactly how the food is doing. She’ll get perfect results every time.
- Wemo Mini Smart Plug, $30: For anyone who dreams of having a smart home but doesn’t have the cash to completely rewire everything, this plug turns any appliance into a smart device.
- iRobot Roomba, $300: Even the most fastidious chefs drop things on the floor while cooking, so the iRobot Roomba will be a welcome partner in the kitchen, automatically sucking up wayward bits and pieces and eliminating the need for post-dinner sweeping.
- Sonos PLAYBAR, $699: Chip in with some other family members to get your sister this sound system, which pairs with Alexa to allow for hands-free commands. Just get a verbal agreement that she’ll let you play your favorite song every time you visit.
- Digital Measuring Cup & Scale, $26: The precise baker in your life will love this digital measuring cup and scale. It provides a digital read-out to ensure perfect measurements every time.
- FitBit Zip Wireless Activity Tracker, $90: Cooking is hard work, and now your friend can prove it with this clip-on activity tracker. She can show how many steps she took, how far she walked, and how many calories she burned just trying to get dinner on the table.
- Amazon Dash Wand with Alexa, $20: That friend who is constantly running out of important staples? She needs one of these wands to help her reorder stuff simply by scanning the barcode of whatever she needs.
- Breville Smart Toaster Oven, $250: The mother of all countertop toaster ovens, this one has 10 preset functions that do everything from toasting to slow cooking.
- Simple Human Sensor Trash Can, $150: A trash can might not seem like a great gift, but it is when it’s from the covetable Simple Human brand. This little guy senses movement to automatically open the lid (and looks super handsome in the kitchen).
- TileMate, $24: Bluetooth-enabled and tiny, the TileMate is a wireless tracker to make sure your mom never loses her iPad ever again. (Even though you know she almost always leaves it in the kitchen.)
- Click & Grow Indoor Herb Garden, $60: Gardening obsessives who hate to hang up their trowel during the winter months will love this indoor herb garden. Built-in technology monitors the soil content to ensure the plants get the right nutrients, and the device self-waters, so even those without a green thumb can grow plants successfully.
- Awair Air Quality Monitor, $199: This device tracks toxins, dust, and CO2 levels, and even the temperature or the humidity. And it provides tips on how to make the air in the house even healthier.
- Crock-Pot Smart Slow Cooker, $100: For anyone who loves the idea of a slow cooker but is nervous about leaving an appliance plugged in all day while the house is empty, this smart slow cooker is the perfect gift because it can be adjusted — or turned off entirely — through an app.
- 8-Quart Instant Pot, $130: Believe it or not, there are still plenty of people who don’t have an Instant Pot. Don’t be friends with those people — or just get them their very own seven-in-one miracle machine.
- OXO Glass Electric Kettle, $80: Cordless and beautifully designed, this kettle from OXO boils water quickly and is begging to be gifted to any and all tea-lovers.
- Hiku Shopping Button, $44: Essentially an alternate version of the Amazon Dash Button, this Hiku Shopping Button allows users to scan barcodes and give voice commands to reorder groceries in a snap. It even has a magnet to keep it handy on the fridge.
- Brita Infinity Smart Water Pitcher, $74: This Brita pitcher is like past versions, with one essential upgrade — it’s WiFi-enabled and automatically reorders replacement filters whenever they’re needed.
- Thermos Hydration Bottle, $52: For your friend who always resolves to drink more water and never actually does. This Thermos bottle has a smart lid that actually keeps track of consumption and gives real-time read-outs on its companion app.
- Hamilton Beach 12-Cup Programmable Coffee Maker, $45: Who doesn’t want to wake up and know that coffee is already being brewed? This coffee maker can be programmed to make perfect coffee (bold and regular) at any time.
- Fujifilm INSTAX Smart Phone Printer, $150: If your friend is obsessed with taking pictures of her food, she needs this sleek printer, which churns out high-quality copies for her to hang on her fridge.
- Philips 60W Equivalent Dimmable LED Smart Bulb, $50 for four: Here’s a bright idea — give this pack of smart light bulbs to the cook who’s always complaining it’s too dark in her kitchen. These can be paired with the Hue Bridge (sold separately) and can then be controlled remotely.
Note: All prices were accurate during the editing process, but may have fluctuated since then. If they have, hopefully the items are less expensive and not more expensive!