A Preview of Today’s Kitchen of the Future


| 10/3/2018 10:45:00 AM


Envisioning the kitchen of the future has become a perennial pastime since Chicago’s 1893 World’s Fair, when suffragist Mary Lease predicted that within a century, women would be freed from the drudgery of the kitchen by a meal pill that would eliminate the need for cooking. The fair also featured more realistic kitchen inventions, including Aunt Jemima pancake mix and the world’s first automatic dishwasher. Four decades later, the 1933 World’s Fair returned to Chicago to showcase Homes of Tomorrow, which included more sophisticated dishwashers and other time-saving kitchen appliances. In 1956, General Motors took a spin at the kitchen of tomorrow in its promotional video “Design for Dreaming,” where a cake could be baked by simply inserting a card into a slot to see a preview of the finished product and watch the ingredients automatically start on an assembly line.

Today, some of these ideas remain wishful thinking, while others are already a reality. Meanwhile, some of today’s realities have surpassed anything past futurists imagined. Here’s a look at what the kitchen of the future looks like today, and how it might look in the near future.

robotic kitchen arm
Photo by Shutterstock

The Connected Kitchen

An outstanding feature of today’s futuristic kitchen is connectivity to the Internet of Things. One promise the connected kitchen is on the verge of delivering is guided cooking. This year’s Consumer Electronic Show and Kitchen and Bath International Show featured smart appliance systems designed to let you choose a recipe based on your available ingredients, send the ingredients to the over for preheating and use videos to guide you through unfamiliar cooking steps. For instance, Whirlpool announced that its smart ovens will now integrate with the Yummly app, which uses image recognition technology to take an image of your available food, follow integrated cooking tutorials and videos, and send instructions to your connected over or microwave.

But today’s connected kitchen isn’t limited to smart cooking appliances and apps. LG’s ThinQ smart fridge that includes a built-in touchscreen, a webOS operating system, Alexa integration and built-in speakers to stream music wirelessly. You can also connect your kitchen appliances to a high-definition camera surveillance system so you can check on your children and pets while you’re cooking, or confirm that your appliances are turned off in other parts of your home.



Automated Indoor Gardening

The kitchen of the future also offers new ways to bring food to your table, including automated indoor gardening. One of today’s most popular indoor gardening methods is hydroponics, which replaces traditional soil with a mineral nutrient solution that directly nourishes plants, either through unsupported roots or through roots supported by a medium such as perlite. Hydroponics systems may also be suspended in the air and misted (aeroponics), or even combined with aquaculture systems to support edible fish and aquatic animals (aquaponics).



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