Innit yesterday announced a partnership with Chef’d to provide ordering and guided cooking of meal kits directly through the Innit app. The deal is the first meal commerce offering for Innit and points towards a future for the company where it becomes more of an all-in-one platform that helps users discover, buy and prepare customizeable meals.
In it’s earlier incarnation, Innit allowed users to customize its recipes based on ingredients they already had. Don’t have steak for these fajitas? Here’s how to make it with chicken. The app then serves up short videos to show users exactly how to slice, stir and sear your meal. Since then it has added integration with smart appliances from LG to do more of the work when preparing dinner.
But Innit recognizes that recipes are now actionable discovery and commerce platforms. In a perfect world (at least here at The Spoon), we could be inspired by a recipe, customize it to our taste, order all the ingredients and have them delivered to our house that same day.
The Chef’d deal isn’t there yet, but inches us a little bit closer to that future. Innit users will now notice a new “meal kit” option in the app. Tapping it brings up list of Chef’d meal kits that have been curated and developed in conjunction with Innit. Select your kit, delivery date and choose to pay for it all within the app. Once your Chef’d box arrives, Innit walks you through how to make it.
This kind of guided cooking helps alleviate one of the pain points we’ve found with meal kits — preparation. Sure, it’s easy to receive a box containing all the right ingredients, but doing all the work of cooking is still… work. With Chef’d, Innit helps trim the prep time by providing some ingredients pre-measured (think: herbs and spices), and helps make sure you don’t waste your money by showing you how to make that meal properly.
That’s a good first step, but it still doesn’t help connect my inspiration with immediate action. When I went through the ordering process today, the earliest delivery I could get was about a week out. I may be craving Thai Red Curry Ribs right now — but who knows how I’ll feel in a week? Additionally, you can’t get any Innit recipe as a meal kit, it’s limited to 19 options priced between $8.25 and $21.75 per serving.
Joshua Sigel, Innit COO is aware of this and told me the company is moving towards full commerce capabilities. “The goal is to make more of our meals purchasable as a meal kit, or as a shopping list to get from a local grocery store.” Sigel wouldn’t provide specifics but said we could look forward to more retail and other partnerships in the future.
For it’s part, Chef’d now adds another partner arrow to its quiver. Chef’d has been focused on becoming a platform to enable meal kits for the likes of Coca-Cola, Hershey’s, and Campbell’s. The company is also rolling out its own branded meal kits at Costco. Hooking up with Innit opens up Chef’d to an additional early adopter market (though Innit won’t say how many people are using its app), and with a company actively looking to innovate meal kits.
I may be over meal kits, but I’m intrigued by this partnership and want to see how it goes. If Innit’s platform can prove flexible enough, and it can secure the right partnerships, it’s easy to see this evolving from pre-fab meal kits right now, to truly customized shopping and guided cooking kits in the near future.