Deep-fried Turkey: Delicious or Dangerous?

While you may think the most dangerous thing you can do during the holidays is talk politics with your uncle, starting a kitchen fire because of a deep fried turkey  is a more realistic threat to your safety. According to the United States Fire Administration (USFA), the number of structure fires double on Thanksgiving, causing on average $28 million in property damage1. Cooking causes the majority of these blazes, with grease and oil as the main culprits in ignition2. Despite the astonishingly large number of holiday mishaps, home cooks continue using fats. A select few even engage in one of the most daring of food adventures: deep-frying a turkey.

A quick Internet search for “deep-fried turkey” reveals how dangerous this culinary practice can be. There are plenty of videos and pictures that document the aftermath of a deep-fried turkey fire. A careless and unprepared chef can turn a deep-fried turkey into a deep-fried disaster within minutes. The bird quickly becomes engulfed in a fireball that can be seen from the rest of the neighborhood. So then, what makes deep-frying more appealing than roasting? More importantly, can it be done safely?

The key to effectively deep-frying a turkey is oil. Oil makes the bird both delicious and dangerous. Oil’s interaction with the poultry causes the characteristic crispy golden brown crust that draws people to deep-frying. This same oil, however, can ignite and cause a fire. To effectively and safely deep-fry a turkey, you must understand the science underlying deep-frying.

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The main appeal of a deep-fried turkey is the texture created by oil interacting with the bird’s skin. In deep-frying, hot oil completely engulfs the food. Put an uncooked turkey in hot oil and bubbles immediately start forming. The bubbles are not from the oil, but from the water within the surface of the bird that escapes as tiny pockets of steam. Water boils at 212 °F, but the temperature of oil in a deep fryer is typically around 350 °F or greater. Because of these high temperatures, the water in the turkey skin rapidly evaporates. This dehydration at the surface combined with the high temperature make conditions perfect for the Maillard reaction.

Maillard reactions create the characteristic deep browning and appealing aromas that you may have experienced when you deep-fry a turkey. These reactions typically occur when proteins and sugars in foods are exposed to high heat (284 – 329 °F): the amino acid building blocks of proteins react with sugars at high heat to create a complex set of flavor molecules. This is why a deep-fried turkey may evoke similar flavors and aromas as seared steak, roasted coffee, or toasted bread. As heat continues to vaporize the water on the bird’s skin, the reaction speeds up and the resulting flavor molecules become more and more concentrated.

While Maillard reactions can also be achieved through roasting a turkey, deep-frying avoids some of the pitfalls of oven roasting. First, because the hot oil completely envelops the bird, the outside gets an even brown coat. The temperature of the oil remains relatively constant as it spreads into every crevice. Such uniformity can be harder to achieve in traditional oven roasting, because of differences in air temperature within the oven. Moreover, poor heat circulation can result in uneven cooking. In extreme cases, you might find one side of the turkey charred, while the other is still undercooked.

Next, because the oil can transfer more heat than air per unit volume and time, deep-frying can allow the bird’s surface to get hot quickly enough so that the inside does not overcook. In deep-frying, oil acts as the workhorse transferring heat to food. By contrast, ovens rely on air to transfer heat. Compared to air, cooking oil has a much higher rate of heat conduction. Heat transfers between substances when the molecules collide and transfer energy. Because a liquid such as oil is more dense then air, its molecules are more closely packed; there are more molecules per volume to transfer energy. As a result, the high heat needed for the Maillard reactions develops much faster in a deep fryer than in the oven. In general, oven roasting generally takes about 2-4 hours, while deep-frying can take as little as 30 minutes. Slower increases in surface temperature, as in the case of the oven, allow for more time for the high heat to spread to the center of the turkey and overcook the inside.

Many deep-frying fans claim that the practice “seals in the juices”, however, internal temperature has a larger impact on moisture. If you’ve ever bit into a dry piece of fried chicken, you know, that deep-frying does not guarantee juicy poultry. Fans claim that oil creates a barrier to lock in moisture, but as previously highlighted, hot oil causes it to vaporize and escape. Even water near the interior can escape if it reaches the boiling point because the crust remains porous. The meat on the inside cooks in the same way as in roasting, but only faster because the oil transfers more heat. Thus, regardless of whether you deep-fry or roast the bird, you need to watch the internal temperature to get a juicy turkey.

While hot oil is essential for transforming your turkey into a delicious brown and crispy treat, properly controlling the oil will keep you safe. The first step is having the proper equipment. While a turkey can be deep fried in any number of large pots you already have, none of them are specifically designed to safely handle 3 gallons or more of hot oil and a giant turkey. Having a deep fryer specific for turkeys ensures that when you use the right amount of oil, the turkey is completely submerged and the oil won’t overflow. Also you can cook with a turkey deep fryer outside; this keeps the hot oil safely away from anything flammable in your home. So if you do make a mistake, it’s far away from anything that can spread a fire.

Next, to avoid turning the turkey into a giant fireball, it must be properly dried. This means checking that the bird is completely thawed and free of excess water. If too much ice or water remain, either can quickly vaporize causing oil to spray into the air. You may have seen a similar reaction occur when you throw drops of water into hot oil to test if it’s reached frying temperature. Sudden vaporization results in tiny droplets of oil spewing out in a fine mist. As microscopic droplets, the oil increases its chances of contacting the burner and reaching its flash point, or the temperature at which a material can ignite. (The flash point is around 600-700°F for many cooking oils.) In the deep fryer, oil won’t get as hot, but as droplets, oil can reach this temperature because of their small size and increased surface area. The ignition of a few small oil droplets can set off a chain reaction that engulfs the entire bird. This is why a seemingly innocent icy turkey can turn into a fireball.

Finally, you may want to consider that deep-frying adds a significant amount of fat to your bird compared to roasting it. The entire surface of the turkey is covered in oil and some may seep into the interior. In general, deep-frying can result in as much as 5 to 40% of a food’s weight in oil3. If you are concerned about your fat intake you might want to avoid this deep-fried treat. However, eating a deep-fried bird only on Thanksgiving likely won’t jeopardize your health too much.

Deep-frying a turkey requires significant culinary effort. Although this cooking method is potentially dangerous, your fowl can develop delicious flavors and aromas that cannot be achieved as quickly in the oven. Whether or not you want to make the investment ultimately depends on what you like about eating turkey. If you only care about juicy meat, then using an oven and monitoring the temperature can be easier. However, if you crave a truly unique treat encased in a crispy brown crust, then deep-frying a turkey may be your next gastronomic adventure.

A Complete Guide to Deep-Frying Your First Turkey

Thanksgiving is that special time of year where families come together to smile and eat a lot and grow increasingly more agitated with one another as the evening presses onward. At the end of that dark and mildly prejudiced tunnel, there’s one thing we can all look forward to: The turkey.

There are plenty of ways to cook a bird, but our favorite—by far—is a deep fryer bath. There truly is nothing like a well-fried bird. Crispy on the outside, succulent and juicy on the inside; it’s a life-changing experience. The problem is, it can be confusing and even a little intimidating trying to figure out everything you need to deep fry a turkey. That’s why we compiled the complete how-to guide for deep frying a turkey without lighting your house on fire.

WHAT YOU’LL NEED

The Right Bird

Remember those days as children, when Mom or Dad would come home with the massive Thanksgiving bird—a good 25-pounder for the table? Well, leave that behind if you’re intent on frying, because this is about quality, not quantity. Ideally, you’re looking for a bird between 10 to 16 pounds. Anything heavier and, even if you’ve properly thawed your bird, you’re going to burn out the skin before you get to the actual meat and everybody knows the skin is the best part. If that pains you a little too much, try picking up two birds. Since they take way less time to cook than a conventional oven, cooking two birds is actually feasible.

A Quality Oil Thermometer

It’s the smallest part of the puzzle, but it’s invaluable to the process. Temperature matters no matter how you’re cooking something and oil is far more volatile than an oven. A quality oil thermometer can mean the difference between the perfect Thanksgiving and a crispy fried mess.

At Least a 30-Quart Pot With Fry Basket/Turkey Brace

Choosing the right pot for deep frying can be a little difficult, because you don’t want something so big that it becomes cumbersome, or something so tiny that it creates a possible overflow safety hazard—when oil makes contact with an open flame, chaos can and often does ensue. For a 10- to 16-pound bird, at least 30 quarts will be necessary, and even better if you can find yourself a 40-quart one.

Most half-decent fryer pots will come with them, but you’ll also require either a turkey brace or a fry basket to help get the bird into and out of the oil. Plan ahead, because you don’t want to be improvising a way to get a turkey out of scalding hot oil.

Oil—Lots of It

You’re going to need enough oil to submerge the bird about two inches under, so depending on the size, that could be quite a bit. How much, exactly, depends on the dimensions of your pot, the size of the bird, etc. As far as what oil to use is concerned, peanut is ideal (although consider the dietary restrictions of your guests), but you can use just about anything with a high smoking point—soybean, safflower, even cottonseed. Just stay away from canola oil here.

A Propane Burner

Every year, a video of someone totally fucking ruining their house pops up because they didn’t think an accident could happen. Spend the extra 50 bucks and get yourself a quality outdoor burner, and make sure you set it up in a place that gives you plenty of extra room for an “oopsie.” Driveways and backyards are ideal, just make sure it’s somewhere that won’t go up in flames.

PREPARATION

The Night Before

Prepping to deep fry a turkey starts well before the day you want to fry. The night before, take your turkey, put it in the pot, and then fill the pot with water until the turkey is completely submerged. Take the turkey out of the pot, and note where the water level is. Take a marker and make note of the water line. That’s how much oil you’ll need for your pot.

NOTE: Seriously, DO NOT try to guestimate your way to proper oil level. Too much oil will boil out of the pot, onto the burner, and start a massive grease fire. Too Little oil means a partially cooked bird, and that’s almost as bad as a massive grease fire.

Seasoning

After you measure out the water, take the bird, dry it off completely, and season it the way you’d like. For deep frying, we recommend a good brine, a dry rub of your choice, or if you’re feeling like a master chef, an injection—garlic, butter, and kosher salt are our go-to’s. With a brine, just be careful to rinse and pat down everything until it’s dry. A brine’s mostly water, and if room temperature oil and water don’t mix, boiling oil isn’t going to be any better. After you’ve seasoned the bird and butchered the neck and giblets, allow it to marinade overnight.

Setting Up The Burner

When setting up the burner, make sure you’re doing so on a flat, even, sturdy surface, and that every prong of the burner’s base is flush to the ground. That probably sounds like some unnecessary common sense, but you’d be shocked at how dangerous deep frying a turkey can be, even if you’re not a total idiot. Before you do anything, test your lines, and make sure there are no leaks. If all checks out, ignite the flame.

Loading The Bird

The only thing left to do before frying is loading the turkey on the brace or fryer basket. Whichever method you choose, load the turkey shoulder-side-down and make sure your handle extends far enough outside of the pot so that you won’t risk burning yourself when grabbing it. Additionally, if it’s going to be sitting in a basket, make sure you give the skin touching the metal a good baste of whatever oil you’re going to be using to avoid sticking.

COOKING THE BIRD

Ahh, the finale! Cooking doesn’t take a lot of effort, so much as it does care.

Begin by filling the pot with oil, all the way up to the line you’ve already marked. Turn on the burner and bring the oil to between 350 and 375 degree Fahrenheit. Once you have that going, grab your bird and lower it very slowly into the oil. Don’t be alarmed if it starts to splash, spatter, and boil around it—so long as you dried it well and removed the excess water from it after the water soak (or brine), you’ll be good.

If you want to be extra safe, you can also turn the burner off completely for this part. You won’t lose too much heat, and it removes all the “the accidentally overflowing oil just ignited and now I’m on fire” danger from the equation. Or, if you have a partner, you can simply have them keep an eye on the burner and, if things start to go south, cut the burner immediately. Whatever makes you most comfortable.

Once the bird is fully submerged in the oil, you’re going to want to keep the oil at a consistent 350 to 375 degrees Fahrenheit—this is perhaps the trickiest part, especially for first-time cookers.

Now, you’re going to see a lot of recommendations for how long you should leave your bird in for. Estimates seem to be all over the place, but as a rule of thumb, you want to cook the bird at 3.5 minutes per pound. You can also cook it at an even 3 minutes per pound and then an extra 5 minutes at the end. On a 15-pound bird, that’s a difference of 2.5 minutes in the fryer, which won’t make too much of a difference.

When the time is up, check the bird by gently pulling it a quarter of the way out of the pot. If it looks crispy and golden brown remove it entirely. If you want to be extra safe—and you should—use an actual meat thermometer. The breast meat should be at least 165 degrees Fahrenheit, and the dark meat should be at least 175 degrees Fahrenheit.

If all is good, you’re ready to eat! Throw that thing on the table and blow your family’s mind with its deliciousness. Happy Thanksgiving!

Fry That Bird Without the Injuries with the Big Easy Oil-Less Turkey Fryer

We’re well into a season full of football and good eating, Thanksgiving notwithstanding. And if you’re one of the many unfortunate souls who hasn’t had the pleasure of tasting a fried turkey then be sure to check out this oil-less fryer from Char-Broil.

Called the Big Easy, this fryer allows turkey fanatics to fry an entire bird without the dangers of using an oversized vat of boiling oil. No more fire risk, no more impossible oil stains on the deck. It’s all possible thanks to Char-Broil’s TRU-Infrare technology. It features a rotary ignition, powered by propane, and comes with a removable grease tray to make cleanup a cinch. Fry turkeys up to 16 pounds, or opt for roasted chickens or beef if that’s more your fancy on Turkey Day. The Big Easy comes with a one-year warranty and is available now for $90.

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Pro Tips For Making Kick-Ass Burgers This Memorial Day

You can see it now, can’t you, in your mind’s eye? It’s juicy, it’s delicious, it’s cooked perfectly, and you made it: it’s your ideal Memorial Day burger. Let us help you get there with a few handy tips that will help your fantasy burger become a reality this holiday weekend.

At TwinStar Media, we take burgers very seriously (we have to… we own Grill Magazine. So much so, that we wanted to share some tips we gathered from our Grill Master. He teaches students how to cook for a living, so we figured he’d be a good person to ask.

Here are a few things we learned from Chef Delanoy that every home cook should keep in mind before picking up that spatula this weekend:

1. Use ground beef with an 80/20 lean-to-fat ratio

If you want something to be moist, like a burger, you have to maintain the moisture within the product. To do that, Chef Delanoy says, it’s important to use a ground beef with high fat content, because fat equals moisture.

He adds that whatever heat source you use, whether it be a grill or a pan on the stove, heat transfers very well through fat. That means the fattier the burger, the faster it will cook, Chef Delanoy explains.

2. Charcoal grills are great — but propane grills work too

Chef Delanoy says his personal preference is using lump charcoal in a charcoal grill, instead of briquets, but that, of course, is a matter of personal preference.

“I like cooking over a fire,” he tells Consumerist, likening it to methods of cooking that go back thousands of years.

Propane grills will also do the trick, he adds — “you’re getting plenty of good flavor from that,” Chef Delanoy says.

Don’t have an outdoor space or a grill at your disposal? Cooking a burger on the stove works, too, as we found out when we tested Chef Delanoy’s burger-making tips last year (among a few other methods you can check out).

“If you have a nice heavy iron, cast iron skillet or something like that, that’s gonna hold heat, you can get a really good char,” he notes.

3. Don’t press that patty!

You might’ve heard that moving a burger around on the grill is bad — that’s arguable, Delanoy says, but there is one thing you definitely shouldn’t do: smushing the burger with your spatula — even if makes your grill flare up in a cool way.

“A lot of people do that, and it’s kind of the most tragic thing you could do because you’re basically just pressing out all the flavor,” Chef Delanoy explains.

4. Salt & pepper are your friends

While you can add whatever seasonings you want to your burger patties, don’t shy away from good old salt and pepper.

“I think salt and pepper are tragically under utilized on burgers on grills,” Chef Delanoy says. “Salt and pepper are where you build flavor in everything. So you’re enhancing the meat flavor, you’re enhancing the char and smokiness of the grill by using salt.”

Beyond that, Chef Delanoy says he’s not a fan of mixing in or adding too many other things to burgers.

“If you’re gonna do that, make meatloaf and serve it with potatoes.”

5. Use a heat thermometer to make sure it’s done

When it comes to cooking raw meat, it’s important to get the temperature up to at least 165 degrees Fahrenheit for safety reasons. And you can’t just judge by color, as the USDA’s Food Safety & Inspection Service explains, oxidation from freezing and thawing can cause red meat to turn brownish without any cooking.

FSIS also notes that “some lean ground beef may remain pink at temperatures well above” 160° F.

Chef Delanoy agrees that a meat thermometer is the “guaranteed way” to make sure a burger is cooked thoroughly.

“Don’t guess. You can guess all day, but unless you’ve done it 10,000 times, you’re not gonna be good at it,” he advises, adding, “I know when it gets to 165 degrees it’s done, it’s gonna be juicy.”

Happy eating, everyone, from our stomachs to yours.

Thought We Were Supposed to Be Saving The Bees, Not Eating Them

Love them or fear them, the one thing that has dominated headlines for the past few years when it comes to bees, is that we need them. Colony collapse is real, neonaticides are to blame and if we don’t change things fast the world as we know it could end.

“Save the bees” is a generally accepted battle cry and the quickest way to confuse a beekeeper is to suggest that instead of saving them, we start eating them.

“This takes me by surprise!” Holly Bayendor McConnell writes via email.

Although she imagines there are “nutritionally beneficial properties in bee larvae,” Bayendor McConnell, the President of the Metro Atlanta Beekeepers Association, wouldn’t be able to join the ranks of those who eat bee larvae. “As a beekeeper concerned with the well-being of bees, I would never think of eating them,” McConnell writes.

But that’s not stopping people like Chef Mario Hevia, who claims the tiny, white larvae are delicious. He’s eaten and served them raw while working at Seattle’s Canlis restaurant, a swanky spot that boasts a garden and an apiary on its grounds.

“They taste like fatty honey,” Hevia says.

However, as with anything even slightly controversial in the food world – there are a few hurdles we need to clear before we go hog wild on eating larvae. First comes from the concerns voiced from beekeepers and chefs.

“Consuming bee larvae may be a necessary, or at least an interesting, part of other culture’s diets,” writes Taylor Hall, chef and owner of Apis Restaurant and Apiary in Spicewood, Texas.

“At Apis, though, we feel eating bee larvae is counterproductive to our efforts of improving the sustainability of honey bees. Honey bees are dying off at alarming rates, particularly in North America and Northwestern Europe. Some areas are seeing a 40 percent decrease, which means there are significantly fewer bees to pollinate the crops we rely on for food,” Hall writes.

This is exactly the type of argument that Damian Magista can’t adhere to. Owner of Bee Local Honey in Portland, Oregon, the urban beekeeper has spent significant amounts of time with wild honey hunters in places like Cambodia where larvae serve as a significant source of protein.

He notes that here in North America we live in a land of excess.

“We have an entire network on TV devoted to food and so to our western sensibilities, the idea of eating bugs or eating larvae is unnecessary because we have such excess,” Magista says.

His travels and observations of cultures that rely on larvae as a food source trumps the sustainability card.

“To sit there with these people who don’t have food on a day to day basis and say they can’t have this source of protein? You just can’t do that, it’s unreasonable,” Magista says.

Additionally, he points out that the honey bee as we know it is actually an invasive, non-native species to North America, originally brought over in the early 1600s by settlers.
“Native Americans used to call them “white man flies” because when they would start to see swarms of honey bees they knew the white man wasn’t far behind,” Magista says.

But according to Magista, we’ve forgotten the bee’s invasive history – and since we now look to the bee as a precious insect that not only produces delicious honey, but is responsible for pollinating the nation’s crops – we tend to be a bit dramatic when it comes to eating them.

“It’s all subjective and I think people without knowing or experienced things make this rush to judgements which quite frankly are just silly.”

Josh Evans, a researcher at the Nordic Food Lab in Denmark offers another angle to Magista’s argument.

Evans pointed to an article he wrote in a 2013 issue of Wolf Magazine that details his reasoning behind first eating larvae (and even the further developed pupa), bringing it back to the “save the bees” mentality.

There is a parasite called the Varroa mite (Evans refers to it as a “puny, vociferous force”) that attacks drone comb and eats holes in the larvae. And even though the majority of drone bees die, removing a significant portion of the drone comb helps to control the mites and ensures overall hive health.

So we’ve got the reasons that might help open our minds, but let’s clear that final hurdle. Honey is delicious. Fresh honey comb is described best in Evans’s article as “luxurious, bewildering and ambrosial.” But larvae?

Essentially, they’re bugs, and bugs are generally regarded as gross. And the thought of eating them? It immediately conjures the most disgusting idea of them all.

“Bug guts popping in our mouth,” Magista offers.

But according to him, the larvae don’t so much pop as they do snap.

“It’s like eating a good bratwurst where you get that snap on the skin. It’s super satisfying and not gross, instead it’s a nice snap and then a very clean, light flavor,” Magista says.

Evans describes the flavor as “smooth and savory and slightly sweet. The flavor is something of egg and raw nuts and warm honeydew melon.”

While Magista and Hevia have only eaten them raw – Evans and his crew at the Nordic Food Lab turned raw larvae into mayonnaise through emulsion, dehydrated the larvae and served them as a crunchy snack and even blended them with honey and used it as the sweetening component in granola.

Again, there are people who can’t wrap their heads around eating larvae for fun, like Corky Luster of Seattle’s Ballard Bee Company.

“The only sampling of flavor I get is from pupae bursting in my face when I’m cleaning off bottoms of frames. Can’t say it tastes good from my point of view,” Luster says.

However, there are curious folks out there, especially with the popularity of eating other insects on the rise. Magista says he has been approached to help open a bug-focused food cart in Portland and doesn’t doubt one will open soon, with or without his input.

As for chefs and the general public asking him or any other beekeeper for larvae?

“I think maybe little pockets of people who are particularly interested in things that are a little challenging or shocking. We’re seeing a trend moving toward eating bugs; and I think it’s a bit early right now, but I could definitely see it happen.”

THINGS YOU CAN MAKE WITH A COFFEE MAKER BESIDES COFFEE

In the age of fancy espresso makers, Keurigs, and smartphone-friendly coffee brewers, a classic coffee maker is a breath of fresh (well, coffee-scented) air in an overly-complicated world.

Along with the obvious benefit of simple, American-style coffee, there are actually tons of other uses for your common coffee maker. Covering breakfast, lunch, dinner, and dessert with one appliance, you’ll wonder why the hell you even bother with a stove.

1. A Hot Toddy

Put two tea bags in your coffee pot, let brew, add a shot (or ten) of fine whiskey and some honey. Baby, you’ve got yourself the hottest toddy this side of the Mississippi!

2. Hot dogs

Can you call such a simple recipe a recipe? Put a few thawed hot dogs in your coffee pot and let it sit for an hour. Then stuff those dirty dogs down your gullet.

3. A grilled cheese sandwich

Set your burner on warm or, if your coffee maker is a bit older, brew a hot cup of coffee and immediately after, put the sandwich on the burner. Pro-tip: spray that sucker down with some Pam for maximum buttery goodness. You can also do this by putting a pan on the burner if you don’t want to get it gross.

4. Oatmeal

Instant oatmeal? Easy. Pour 10 oz of water into the carafe, turn it on, wait five minutes. Boom. Done.

5. Ramen

Perhaps the easiest recipe in the bunch, all you need to do is put your dried noodles in the coffee pot and set to brew. Add the flavor packet and anything else you desire and wait a few minutes for delicious results.

6. Scrambled eggs

On a little one-egg frying pan, crack open an egg, and cook to your heart’s content. Is there anything eggs can’t do?

7. Jimmy Dean sausage

Don’t want to use ol’ Jimmy’s sausage? Too bad, cause that’s the good stuff. Pam up your burner, throw on that sausage and cook. Pro-tip: you’re going to want to clear your schedule for this one, it’ll take a while.

8. Rice

Here’s what you need for this gem: 1. instant rice, 2. water, 3. 10 minutes. Toss it in the carafe, make sure the filter area is clear from coffee residue, and set it to brew.

10. Hard-boiled eggs

Toss a few eggs into your glass carafe. Brew and let sit for 10 to 12 minutes, then douse the eggs in cold water. So easy a baby seal could do it.

11. Broccoli

The basket at the top of the coffee maker is perfect for steaming broccoli, cauliflower, or any other vegetable you’re keen to steam. Throw it on top, set your coffee maker to brew the maximum amount of cups possible, and enjoy your steamed broccoli.

12. The best hot chocolate ever

Fill half your carafe with heavy cream and dump in an entire bag of chocolate chips. Brew two cups of water and let it sit, stirring occasionally. Share with friends or drink by alone. It tastes good either way!

8 Smart Devices For The Kitchen Of The Future

The Internet of Things is building the kitchen of the future. Everything from an app to turn on your coffee maker to a pan that monitors heat on your iPhone to cook the perfect steak is so close we can (almost literally) taste it. Here are some of the top tech gadgets making their way to our cookery in the near future.

1. Palate Home Smart Grill

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This is not your average George Foreman grill. The Palate Smart Grill from Palate Home can cook almost any food perfectly based on weight, composition, and desired done-ness, all controlled through an iPad app.

2. Pantelligent Smart Frying Pan

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Temperature control and perfect timing in a pan. This gadget lets you check the exact temperature inside your salmon, steak or whatever else you’ve got sizzling and let’s you know when it is ready without having to stick a fork in it. The Pantelligent app for iPhone monitors the cooking and lets you know the ideal time when the food is done.

3. Drop Connected Kitchen Scale

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This one aims to be an easy-to-use kitchen baking scale that guides you through select recipes connected to an iPad app. You pick out which recipe you want on the app and then place a bowl on the bluetooth connected scale, drop in each ingredient until the app says you have added enough into the bowl and follow along with the instructions to make the perfect cake, cookies or whatever else you desire.

4. LivBlends Smoothie Maker

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Y Combinator team LivBlends is mainly into juice delivery in the Bay Area for now, but it’s in the middle of cooking up a Keurig-like smoothie maker that could put your old JuiceMan to shame. The picture above is a prototype of what it will look like.

5. Prep Pad from the Orange Chef

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Prep Pad tallies up nutritional info from the foods added to any bowl on its connected food scale. The information is then transferred to an iPad app so you know exactly how many carb, fat and protein calories are in your food. It then gives you an overview of every ingredient you put on Prep Pad throughout your week and logs that with your connected Jawbone Up to help you meet your health goals.

6. HAPIfork

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The HAPIfork is an electronic fork that helps you monitor and track your eating habits for weight loss. It measures how long it took you to eat, the amount of fork servings and the time in between servings. It then uploads that info to an app via USB or Bluetooth to show you what you are doing.

7. Siemens Connected Coffee Maker

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Siemens is not in the business of making kitchen gadgets. It is creating the makeup of the actual kitchen infrastructure itself. It has a slew of appliances that are connected to a single app. This coffee maker is a part of that. Push a button on your phone beside your bed and you’ve got your morning espresso ready to go.

8. LG’s Smart Oven

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This connected kitchen appliance allows you to control cooking remotely from your smartphone. Click on the LG Smart Access Range app to set it and forget it. It also lets you send recipes to your range.