Recently, crowdfunding campaigns for single-purpose appliances have clearly jumped the shark more than this actual shark jumping Kickstarter. We’ve seen dedicated home tortilla toasters, hard cider makers and molecular gastronomy “spherificators” just to name a few – all with their merits and shortcomings. And that class of Kickstarter has a new entry: The CHiP Smart Cookie Oven. It’s a dedicated cookie baker because… maybe your oven isn’t working so good?
Like most of these Kickstarters, CHiP has its benefits. The machine offers up two major selling points: speed and convenience. Unlike a normal oven which can take time to heat up, CHiP promises to “bake perfect gourmet cookies in under 10 minutes,” preheating quickly and using custom temperature programs for different types of cookies as it goes. Convenience-wise, CHiP also offers its own “Dough Pods” (hello, Keurig of cookies!): Simply plop them into the CHiP, scan the package with your smartphone to let the machine know how to bake them, and you’re off to the races.
But, even if you are thrilled at the prospect of not needing to wait an extra 10 or 20 minutes for the oven to heat up, there is a big downside to CHiP: It only cooks four cookies at a time. That means CHiP is a timesaver if you want cookies for yourself (you selfish jerk!) but if you’re firing up cookies for an entire party, 50 minutes for twenty cookies suddenly seems far less easy that just using the big oven you already have.