I enjoy cooking. I enjoy eating even more. I also love tech, as you could probably guess by the fact I created Goosed.ie all those years ago. When all of these things come together, I get really excited. At IFA Berlin this year, I met the guys from Meater and I’ve just had a chance to get into the kitchen and test out what could be the world’s best smart thermometer.
What is Meater?
Meater is a wireless temperature probe which takes the guesswork out of cooking meat. I tested out the Meater+ model which promises improved connectivity when monitoring your meat while cooking. For this test, I cooked a lovely spatchcock Piri-Piri chicken.
Why have a cooking probe?
I’m fairly confident in my cooking abilities, but even so, I sometimes overcook food because I’m being overly cautious. For others, cooking can be a nightmare because they’re afraid of undercooking. Cooking with a temperature probe removes the guesswork and ensures that your meat is not just cooked thoroughly and safely, but also cooked to perfection.
How does Meater work?
The Meater is a has a surprisingly sharp pointed end which you can push into the meat before you cook it. The pointed end measures the internal temperature of the meat that you’re cooking. The exposed part of the probe measures ambient temperature.
Because I was testing the Meater+, the prob actually speaks to the stylish charging dock. The benefit here is that extended range you get versus the original Meater which needs the phone to be closer to the probe itself. I was roasting a chicken which meant I could take a seat and let the oven do the work, monitoring the Meater+ probe from afar.
Monitoring like this was made possible by the Meater app. The Meater app and my Amazon Alexa too would you believe. More on that later.
Cooking with Meater
First of all, you open the Meater app, available for iOS and Google Play. Once you’re up and running, you tell the app what you’re cooking and how you like it. Typically, this is handier for steaks as you really shouldn’t be cooking a chicken or many other types of meat medium-rare.
With my spatchcock chicken placed onto a roasting dish, the next step was to push the Meater probe into the meat. It’s important you push it in right up to the line on the probe, as this ensures the probe doesn’t get damaged in the heat.
I will admit that popping a gadget into the oven feels totally weird, but trust the process.
With your Meater in place, it’s time to put your bird in the oven. Now, you can sit back and let your oven do the work. Through the app, you can check the internal temperature of the meat you’re cooking, the ambient temperature (in this case the heat in the oven) and the target temperature for your cook.
When the meat is ready, the app will send you a notification. One thing I always forget about is letting the meat rest. I’m usually too hungry for that to be honest. Again, I trusted the process. The data coming from the probe was enlightening. With the chicken out, resting on the counter, the internal temperature continued to rise. The chicken continued to cook for a few minutes after it left the oven. This is why meat is so easy to overcook and ruin.
Once the resting period is complete, you’ll receive a notification that it’s time to tuck in;.
Can you trust Meater enough to cook with it?
This is a resounding yes. Meater might event take the mantel of my favourite kitchen gadget, slipping in ahead of Drop. Setting the system up really couldn’t be easier. Considering there’s a fair chance you’re not cooking with a smart thermometer at all, I would fully recommend the Meater. From my own test, I could see, by comparing the oven and ambient temperatures, that the probe was accurately measuring the heat in the oven.
Meater also totally changed my understanding of how the meat cooks. Seeing the internal temperature slowly rise, reaching a peak just in time for the app to tell me the chicken was ready kind of blew my mind. Maybe everyone knows some of this stuff, but it was just something I’d never really thought about before. I had a fair idea that meat continued to cook when leaving the oven, but seeing the temperature continue to rise emphasised how important that resting phase is.
That would have been enough to sell me on this smart meat thermometer, but there’s more. If you have a spare smartphone lying around, you can connect this to your Meater and monitor the temperature from anywhere in the world. Hardly handy for an Irish BBQ while you sit in Oz, but if you did have to pop to the shop while there’s a roast on, you’d find out if you had to hurry home fairly quick.
The Meater team has also developed an Alexa Skill. This means you can simply ask your smart assistant to check your cook and it will read out the key stats for your dinner.
Meater: The Verdict
When I saw Meater, I just knew it was a great idea. In fact, days before I met the team at IFA I had wondered why this didn’t exist. Not only does it exist, the guys at Meater have created a truly brilliant kitchen gadget. It’s not just about safety either. It’s about making sure that meat you invested in is cooked to perfection so you can really enjoy it.
Meater comes in a couple of models. The base model Meater will do pretty much everything I’ve mentioned here. What you lose out on is a little range. If I had to pull the Meater+ up on anything it’s that the range still isn’t great as it cut out a few times and needed me to move the charging base into a better position a few times. With that in mind, I can only imagine that the base Meater really is best for frying where you have the phone very close to the probe.
Check out the Goosed.ie Instagram story for Meater.
Meater is available from their website, starting at €89 for the base Meater. I would recommend stretching a small bit and picking up the Meater+ with extended range for €109. If you prefer, you can also buy Meater on Amazon.co.uk.