Thermapen has long been the gold standard for cooking thermometers, being easy to use, accurate and fast. However with the latest model, Thermapen One, it’s truly devised the king of all cooking thermometers, and the greatest way yet to know with unerring accuracy exactly what the internal temperature of your steak or roasting joint is. It's one of the best Christmas gifts you'll find for anyone who is fascinated by food and captivated by cooking. Admittedly it's of more use to meat eaters, but vegans wanting to precision cook cauliflower steaks and fennel may also find it useful, and of course it's a baking essential, if you are serious about your baking.
Thermapen One also functions well as a novelty room thermometer, which is a further bonus. Simply unfurl the probe and jab it in the air. Incidentally, if you're looking for further inspiration, we have put all of T3's Christmas content in one place.
Why Thermapen One is a great Christmas gift
If your beloved loves cooking, particularly meat or baking, I guarantee they'll love Thermapen One. Newcomers to cooking using internal temperature rather than time will be amazed at how much better tasting the results are – assuming you like your meat rare to medium, anyway. Those who prefer their meat charred beyond recognition should probably move on.
Everything about the product is well thought through and nicely engineered. The temperature probe is slimline and very sharp, so it's easy to poke into whatever you've got cooking. It's also long enough for even the most insanely enormous cuts of meat. The screen is large and easy to read, and the display flips 90º as you move the probe, so it can be read both horizontally and vertically. You can also change. between Celsius and Fahrenheit, of course.
The Thermapen requires one AAA battery. As is the norm these days, the battery hatch is screwed shut but since the battery should last up to 2,000 hours before a replacement is required, that doesn't seem too arduous. The longevity of the battery life is helped by the fact that Thermapen One turns itself off when left unused for a few minutes, even if the probe is not folded away.
Most impressively, you get temperature readings from it in milliseconds. It's hard to say precisely how long Thermapen One takes to calculate the temperature of whatever you stick it into, because it appears before you even have time to think about it. You can then stick the probe into a different part of your meal and get an instantaneous reading on the temperature there as well. This is particularly useful when checking the temperature of the legs and breast of a chicken, festive turkey or other roasting bird as the cooked temp is different for each.
The picture above shows laboratory testing of the Thermapen, showing how accurate it is even when compared to a medical-grade thermometer the size of a Blu-ray player. So you know your steaks are in safe hands.
If you are new to using meat thermometers, the Thermapen will soon make you realise that the cooking instructions on shop-bought meat are insanely over-generous. It really is revelatory.
When you're done, the probe can be sponged clean and sterilised with a wipe or boiling water. It's easy to fit in any drawer. The price makes it an ideal Christmas gift, being neither offensively cheap not prohibitively expensive. I've been using Thermapens for years, and the Thermapen One for the last 6 months, and I don't know what I'd do without it. For adventurous chefs, it's a must.
Thermapen One: price and availability
In the UK, Thermapen costs £65 at Amazon and Robert Dyas or direct from Thermapen.
In the USA, Thermapen seems to be exclusive to ThermoWorks and costs $105. Although Amazon has a large number of similar products.
In Australia, Thermapen costs AU$159 when available.
Also consider: Meater
For cooking in the oven, this Bluetooth-enabled smart thermometer is the bomb. Just jab one in your dinner, connect via the Meater app and you can see not only your oven's temperature and the current internal temperature of your roast, but also an estimated finishing time for it.
As you can probably guess from the name, this is largely aimed at meat eaters.