Newr battery-powered induction cooktop cuts cord on clean camp cooking
Induction cooktops have become the darling of greener RVing, cutting the hassle and emissions involved with traditional gas stoves and better complementing all-electric camper van designs. Given their power draw, however, they're not portable enough for use away from a vehicular battery or grid-based electrical socket. Indiana startup Newr is looking to go where others haven't, developing a lithium-powered self-contained induction cooker for light vehicle camping, tiny home living, boating, tailgating and more.
Various startups and companies, including Korean gear manufacturer Kovea, have experimented with battery-powered induction cookers, but we have yet to see one of those designs make it to market. Newr hopes to crack the code with a smarter breed of modern induction cooktop it calls the Chef.
Still in development, the Chef relies on power from an integrated lithium-ion battery. Its thick disc shape reminds us of a robotic vacuum cleaner and supports an 11-in (28-cm) cooking surface. Two Chefs can be paired together with a central dock to make an induction cooker with the space of a dual-burner stove.
According to Newr's estimates, the efficiency of induction cooking allows the Chef to boil six cups of water in just over three minutes and reach temperatures as high as 665 °F (352 °C). Newr is working to make the Chef capable of cooking a day's worth of meals on a full charge.
App-based operation with voice control support promises to make the Chef easier to operate and monitor than the average portable camping stove, and Newr plans to include recipes with full instructions and notifications to make cooking full meals just as easy. The company even plans to integrate both a scale for measuring ingredients and a timer.
Some RV manufacturers, including Winnebago, have made a move toward portable induction cooktops not only because of their clean, efficient operation but also because of their sleek, easily-stowable design. That's a driving goal behind Newr, which is seeking to create a versatile cooker for small spaces that can be readily stored away to free up limited table or counter space.
Other advantages of induction cooking include no open flame to start a fire or blow out in heavy winds, rapid heating and precise temperature control, even cooking without hot spots, and an easy-clean surface. Induction cookers work with compatible pots and pans.
According to its website, Newr plans to have a beta-model Chef ready before the end of the year. The company does not list intended pricing, but the US$500 deposit required to place a preorder suggests that it won't be the most affordable way to start cooking off-grid.
You can have a look at the Chef cooking and sizzling in Newr's series of YouTube shorts.