(Pocket-lint) - Cooking is a precise art - you might be forgiven for thinking that it's all instincts and genius. That's not quite the truth, though - while the best chefs will obviously have a dash of inspiration in the mix, they'll also use a range of tools to make sure that their dishes come out right.
One such tool, the value of which many people don't realise, is the humble thermometer. Through the use of food probes, heat-proof thermometers can let you know the internal temperature of a dish, whether that's a steak or a stew. That temperature can help you get a much more accurate sense of when it's cooked through than more rudimentary tests.
Best of all, cooking thermometers are riding the waves of connectivity. We've gathered together some of the best smart thermometers around for you here, which have apps and features to let you easily check up on your food.
Our pick of the best kitchen thermometers to buy today
Salter Cook Bluetooth Cooking Thermometer 593
Salter's temperature probe is dead easy to use and really affordable - that's a combination that earns it the place atop our list handily. It'll pair with your smartphone to give quick readings and information, but really comes into its own when paired with Salter's Cook app, which lets you save your favourite recipes and can preset the thermometer to follow them, giving you a vital helping hand in the kitchen.
Meater's system is a good chunk pricier than Salter's, but has real style to go with it. Firstly, that charging block is really attractive and will make the unit feel at home in any kitchen. Its companion app is also really intuitive and easy to follow, while the probe itself gives its results quickly and is wireless. If you want a meat thermometer to make your mates jealous, this is a great pick.
This is a meat probe for the serious griller - if you love your steaks just perfect, Grilleye could be for you. With up to six probes at once, it's also perfect for those who are a little ambitious in terms of their concurrent cooking. It's also not the cheapest, of course, but its app is another solid effort, and if you do want the flexibility of that many probes it's a great choice.
Another thermometer that gets closer to the price-point set by Salter, this effort from Inkbird has some really nice features. Its battery is nice and long-lasting, while its app lets you select presets for different types of meat if you like, which is handy. Its display also means that you don't have to rely on a phone if you don't fancy it. Its magnetic design will let you mount it on metallic surfaces, too, which can be a space-saver if your countertop isn't too big.
Weber iGrill 3
Finally, Weber's iGrill system is in its third generation, and is perfect in a very specific setup - if you've got a Weber barbeque, to be precise. That does mean it won't fit most people's needs, but if you do have one of its iconic outdoor barbies you're in for a treat, one that could change how you use it entirely. It keeps track of everything about your grill, including fuel levels, while a smart proximity system will power it up when you get near with your paired smartphone.
If you want a temperature probe that's sensibly priced and doesn't have the smart bells and whistles of the others on this list, though, you would be wise to pick this one from ThermoPro.
It's as simple to use as anything we've ever tried, quick to give its readings and realiably accurate. Plus, being waterproof makes it really easy to wash off after you use it. For a simple solution, this is a great choice.