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Best Smart Kitchen Gadgets for Home Cooks

June smart oven
(Image credit: Future)

Smart kitchen appliances give home cooks an edge in a number of ways. First, when you connect a kitchen gadget to your smartphone, you can more easily schedule when something should start cooking and monitor its progress remotely. For example, if you have a smart coffee maker, you can set it to start brewing a cup when you say "Alexa, good morning." Another advantage is that many smart kitchen gadgets, like the Anova sous vide, have recipes built into its app, which takes the guesswork out of knowing how long you need to cook a steak to make sure it's perfectly medium rare. 

From Instant Pots to coffee makers to home beer-brewing machines, here are our favorite smart kitchen gadgets.

Black Friday 2019: What to expect

Black Friday is coming up fast; we expect there to be a number of discounts on home  and kitchen appliances, especially the Instant Pot. Check out our best Black Friday deals page for sales.

Latest News & Updates (November 2019)

  • Traeger's Wi-Fi-connected pellet grills—the Traeger Pro 575 and 780, Ironwood 650 and 885, and Timberline 850 and 1300—can now be connected to, and controlled using Alexa. Owners can now change the temperature, set timers, monitor the temperature of their food, and shut down the grill using voice commands.
  • Anova's newest sous vide machine, the Anova Precision Cooker, which is a more powerful version of the $99 Precision Cooker Nano. Whereas the Nano is Bluetooth-only, the new Precision Cooker has Wi-Fi, and a more powerful 1000-watt heating element. The Precision Cooker is available for $199.
  • The Instant Pot Duo (starting at $45 for the Mini)—our favorite Instant Pot overall—now comes in four colors. In addition to the original black, it's now available in teal, red, and white.

Best Instant Pot Pressure Cooker

Instant Pot Duo

(Image credit: Instant Pot)

Instant Pot Duo

The Best Instant Pot

Intuitive controls
7 cooking modes
Great price
Fewer program settings than other models

Instant Pot has almost single-handedly popularized the pressure cooker market, and with good reason. Its programmable device can not only make 5-minute risotto, but can also be used to cook eggs, cakes, yogurt, and more in the fraction of the time it takes traditionally. After testing all of the company's models, the best Instant Pot is the Instant Pot Duo. It was the best at making eggs, chicken, rice, pork, and more, and it's reasonably priced. too. This model is available in 3-, 6- and 8-quart sizes.

Read our full Instant Pot Duo review.

Best Coffee Maker

Braun Brew Sense Drip Coffeemaker

(Image credit: Braun)

Braun Brew Sense Drip Coffee Maker KF6050

The best overall coffee maker, complete with an attractive design

Cup Capacity: 12 cups | Size: 14.2 x 7.9 x 7.9 inches | Features: Programmable, permanent filter, adjustable keep-warm temperature, adjustable automatic shut-off (15 minutes to 5 hours), cleaning alert and cycle, charcoal water filter

Attractive design
Adjustable keep-warm setting and automatic shut-off
Water tank and filter basket are difficult to access
Buttons can be confusing

The Braun Brew Sense Drip Coffee Maker KF6050 is the best coffee maker for more than one reason. For starters, it looks classy and will fit neatly on your countertop. Not only does it make a good cup of coffee, but has features such as a permanent filter and a charcoal water filter. It makes up to 12 cups at a time, and you can also adjust the temperature of the warming plate, to keep your coffee hotter longer.

Best Espresso Machine

(Image credit: Breville)

Breville Bambino Plus espresso machine

A reasonable price, no-fuss design and consistent brews.

Dimensions: 12.6 x 11.8 x 7.7 inches | Materials: Stainless steel | Capacity: 64 fluid ounces | Settings: Control panel: 1 Cup, 2 Cup and Steam buttons; adjustable milk temperature and texture level | Warranty: 2 years, limited | Price: $499.95

Compact size
Good-looking design
Easy to use
Simple maintenance
Filter basket has a tendency to stick

While small, the Bambino is the best espresso machine because it consistently produces excellent cups of espresso. It has a 1,560-watt thermacoil, so it's ready to go within seconds with a press of a button, and can make double or single shots from a large, removable 2-liter reservoir that keeps the coffee coming. An autofrothing and temp-sensing steam wand is capable of whipping up milk for lattes, too.

Best Sous Vide Machine

Anova Nano Precision Cooker

(Image credit: Anova Culinary)

Anova Nano Precision Cooker

Best Sous Vide Machine

Smaller than previous model
Efficient at cooking
Good on-device controls
Excellent app
Bluetooth only

"Sous vide" is a process in which you vacuum-seal something — say, a steak — in a plastic bag, then immerse it in a hot water bath for a long time. This low-and-slow cooking method results in amazingly tender and juicy meat. Anova's Nano Precision Cooker takes the guesswork out by connecting to your smartphone via an app, and alerting you when your food is ready. Plus, the app has recipes and tips from Serious Eats, one of the better cooking sites online. The Bluetooth-only Nano, Anova's newest model, is smaller than the original, yet has better on-device controls, and heats water and cooks your food just as fast.

Read our full Anova Nano Precision Cooker review.

Best Smart Thermometer

iGrill Mini

(Image credit: iGrill)

iGrill Mini

Best Smart Thermometer

Small
Easy setup
Long temperature probe
Only one temperature probe port

How do you know if the turkey is done? You could keep opening the oven and sticking a thermometer in the bird, but what if you could simply sit back and watch the football game and get an alert on your smartphone when the bird is cooked? That's where the iGrill2 comes in handy. The Master Kit comes with three meat probes as well as an ambient temperature probe, which makes it great not just for grilling, but smoking meat as well, too. The iGrill2 works over Bluetooth (it has a 150-foot range), and its app has recommended temperatures for all sorts of meats and doneness levels (rare, medium rare, etc.), and can send you alerts when what you're cooking hits a preset temperature.

Read our full iGrill Mini review.

Best Smart Kitchen Scale

Drop Scale

(Image credit: Drop)

Drop Scale

Best Smart Kitchen Scale

Accurate
Non-slip top
Automatically changes recipe proportions
Requires smartphone to view weights

If you don't use exact measurements when baking, your pie or cake could turn out to be a disaster, which is why a kitchen scale is essential. Drop's connected scale makes baking easy for newbies, guiding you through recipes on your iPhone or iPad, ingredient by ingredient. If you want to double the recipe, a clever feature in the app will automatically change the amount of ingredients proportionally.

Best Barbecue Smoker

Traeger Ironwood 650

(Image credit: Traeger)

Traeger Ironwood 650

Best for Barbecue

Easy to use
Helpful app
Maintains a steady temperature
Well built
Expensive
Can’t view cook history in app
Hard to clean out fire pot

The one thing that will mess up a brisket, or any smoked meat, are spikes in temperature inside the smoker. Traeger's Ironwood 650 is a Wi-Fi-enabled smoker that not only monitors, but regulates its temperature automatically. You can also control the grill using an app, which is also packed with recipes. The Ironwood 650 uses wood pellets, so fuel costs are slightly higher than traditional charcoal smokers. However, we can't argue with the results: delicious, delicious barbecue.

Read our full Traeger Ironwood 650 review.

Best Beer Brewing Machine

PicoBrew Pico C

(Image credit: PicoBrew)

PicoBrew Pico C

Simplifies beer-making process
Lots of beer recipes
Can also be used for sous vide and cold-brew coffee
Makes great-tasting beer
Basic interface
PicoStill loses wireless connection
Instruction manual could be clearer

Brewing your own beer can be a messy and inexact process. The PicoBrew looks to make doing so as easy as pressing a button. All that you need to do with this machine is insert packets of hops, yeast and grain, and the machine (mostly) does the rest. A few weeks later, and you've got 5 liters of beer. PicoBrew also partnered with more than 50 breweries, so you can replicate that awesome IPA that you can't find in any store. Plus, a new PicoStill attachment lets you distill spirits, too.

Read our full PicoBrew Pico C review.

Best Smart Oven

June Smart Oven

(Image credit: June)

June Smart Oven

Best Smart Oven

Automatically recognizes food
Clear door lets you see food cooking
Records time-lapse video of cooking
Expensive
Monthly subscription

A camera built inside the June smart oven not only lets you watch from your smartphone as your food cooks, but this oven has AI, which uses the camera to identify what you put in, and immediately suggests the optimal cooking time and temperature. At $500, this large device isn't for everyone, but it'll give you a taste of the future. 

Read our full June smart oven review.