Kitchen Tech | Smart Cookie Oven Makes Baking Irresistibly Easy
There are cookies and there are fresh-baked cookies. When it comes to which ones you’d rather eat, there’s no contest. The creators of CHiP, a new smart cookie oven, know this. It’s why they launched a Kickstarter campaign to get their product into consumers’ hands. For $99, you can be among the first 500 owners of this brilliant new appliance. It’s the invention that dorm dwellers, office workers, hotel guests, and gym rats have been waiting for.
“Sometimes it can be a little bit tedious being able to make cookies from scratch,” says CEO and founder Kevin Yu in the Kickstarter video. Hence, the creation of CHiP, which is to cookies what Keurig was to coffee, but with more advanced technology. CHiP is about half the size of a traditional convection oven and uses substantially less energy than other baking methods.
Users scan a pod of prepared CHiP cookie dough with a smartphone and the app sets the temperature and the bake time on the Wi-Fi connected appliance. The user drops the dough onto the 10-inch, non-stick baking tray, closes the lid, and lets the magic happen. Cookies are ready to eat in less than 10 minutes and you can bake as many as four “gourmet sized” cookies at a time. Plan your cookie binge up to four hours ahead with the delay start mode and keep baked cookies warm for up to two hours after baking (because you’ll want to go back for seconds and thirds and fourths, obviously).
Perhaps one of the biggest perks of CHiP is the cookie dough selection. Gluten-free, dairy-free, egg-free, nut-free, soy-free, vegan, vegetarian, paleo, and kosher eaters will all find at least one flavor that satisfies their sweet tooth within their dietary restrictions. Classic flavors like Oatmeal Raisin, Chocolate Chip, and Chewy Ginger are in the works along with outlandish flavors like Red Velvet Beetroot White Chocolate and Dark Chocolate Rocky Road. You can even select from chewy, classic, or crispy textures when baking. (Most mothers don’t honor those requests!) If you happen to have your own favorite cookie recipe, CHiP has a manual setting as well.
Admittedly, some of the bells and whistles on CHiP are a little hokey. You can send a “cookie gram” to friends or family (i.e. a photo or video of yourself enjoying your CHiP cookies, which would more likely inspire envy than gratitude) and the appliance will wish you “happy birthday” on the big day (which you might not want to be reminded of once you reach a certain age anyway). But still. For fresh-baked cookies without the prep, mess, and equipment requirement, we can forgive a bit of hokeyness.
CHiP will “remember” your favorite cookies and remind you to order dough directly from the app. Prices for a pack of four cookie pods range from $5 to $9 depending on flavor. Three-month, six-month, or one-year subscriptions are also available, supplying you with 16 cookies per month and reducing the price per cookie as much as 30 percent.
The caveats to this cookie baking innovation? You have to get in on the Kickstarter before Dec. 2 and CHiP doesn’t ship until Oct. 2017. Until then, you’re stuck with the old-fashioned oven. Tough cookie.