The kitchen can be a forbidding place. Grocery planning isn’t most people’s idea of a good time. Neither is meal prepping. But Chefling, a Sunnyvale, California startup that raised $1 million in January for its artificially intelligent cooking app, promises to take care of the hard work for you.
It today announced a partnership with Bosch and Thermador, a Bosch subsidiary, to bring internet-connected smarts to home cooking appliances.
“We are excited to bring Chefling into the ever-growing, dynamic Home Connect ecosystem,” Johannes Ochsner, head of connected products and digital services at BSH Home Appliances, said. “By continuing to introduce partners like Chefling into our platform, we are expanding a robust network to create unique experiences for consumers in the kitchen.”
The new and improved Chefling app boasts what the startup’s calling UltraConnect, which leverages natural language processing to parse recipes for culinary keywords and coordinate multiple appliances. Items like cooking time and defrosting temperature are automatically extracted and sorted in an in-app, chronological list with tappable buttons that kick off each step.
UltraConnect will be available on iOS starting October 7, and on Android before the end of 2018. It’ll work both with Chefling’s curated collection of tens of thousands of recipes and custom recipes uploaded from within the app, the company says.
Chefling can do more than preheat an oven.
Spotlight features include a shopping list creator, a pantry management tool that keeps track of perishables in your fridge (and lets you know when they’re about to expire), and tight integration with online retailers and grocery stores. Also on tap: voice apps for Google Home and Amazon’s Echo speakers (and soon Microsoft Cortana devices) that walk you through cooking instructions, let you add items to the aforementioned shopping list, and suggest recipes based on what’s in your kitchen.
Earlier this year, Chefling incorporated Google’s Vision API into its shopping list flow, enabling users to tack on groceries by scanning store receipts. Currently, it can recognize receipts and barcodes from places like Walmart, Target, and Safeway, and in the future, it will be able to ID specific products.
“What we’re trying to do is build the complete [kitchen] assistant,” Chefling cofounder Amar Krishna told VentureBeat in an interview. “Chefling was created to make cooking simpler and more enjoyable. This aligns well with the vision of BSH Home Appliances, which is to improve the quality of life for consumers by offering unique experiences that add true value and convenience — everything from shopping to cooking to automatic ordering.”