How our family created an “intentional” smart kitchen

removing screens from the kitchen area for less distractions

Ok… I know it may not be the smart kitchen we tech enthusiasts are dreaming about, but it is my first start!  Here is what I like about our kitchen set up.

Simple:  Our smart kitchen doesn’t have wires, screens or lots of hardware.  It only consists of the Amazon Echo.  Like many families, there are too many distractions in the day, and we are trying to keep our kitchen tech free.

Hands-free task/data entry:   Groceries, to do’s or calendar requests.  When things needed to be added to the to-do list or grocery list my wife and I were scrambling for a phone or device.  The problem was when we picked up the phone to add milk to the shopping list; we ended up spending 10 min on unplanned screen time. (thank you Facebook!)

Hands-free Cooking:  Imaging this… you are in the kitchen cooking bacon and eggs for your little girls, and you use the last  drop of orange juice.  Your family has already transitioned to a digital shopping list, in our case ToDoist, but your hands are wet, the baby is crying, and the bacon is burning.  Waalaa..  rather than scramble for a phone and open the app and type in orange juice, you yell over the chaos, Alexa adds OJ to the shopping list.  Bam, added to the shopping list and while you are cooking and your wife is at the store, it updates, and she knows to grab OJ.

***I should note that it is necessary to use one my favorite little life hacks called IFTTT to connect Echo grocery list with Todoist, but it takes just a few minutes to do so.

Hands-free morning routine:  During my morning routine of getting things organized, coffee and kids loaded for daycare, there is inevitably that “thing” that pops in my head that says “do this” or  “don’t forget x” when you get into the office.  Now I can relay the message to Alexa as I buzz through the kitchen, and it shows up in my ToDoist list.

Day to day use cases:

  • How many ounce’s are in a cup?  We will be in the kitchen and my wife will ask how many pints in a quart etc. Now, we just ask Alexa and the cooking magic continues.
  • Is it going to rain tomorrow?  In the old days, we would have to get out a device out and “ask Google”.   Now with Alexa always on standby we ask and she lets us know when the rain will be in our area.

I could keep going with the use cases but here is the summary.  We all have grown accustomed to getting answers from the web; now you can stay connected and not forget things but keep the focus on the family and not go to a device.  I believe we are only scratching the surface of Voice and if you have a voice product that you need more use cases or an enthusiast to test hit me up!


In an effort to make every step count, this is our current process.  How do you use Amazon Echo?