IKEA/Concept Kitchen 2025 IKEA/Concept Kitchen 2025

Innovations and prototypes from IKEA's Concept Kitchen 2025, on view in Milan.

IKEA has some bold predictions about how you'll be eating ten years from now. As part of Milan Design Week, the retailer rolled out a prototype of a futuristic kitchen that looks pretty unfamiliar.

Concept Kitchen 2025—a collaboration between IKEA, the design firm IDEO, and design students from Sweden's Lund University and the Industrial Design department at Eindhoven University of Technology in the Netherlands—suggests that a decade from now, our home cooking tools will be serious multi-taskers that reflect our evolving ethos around sustainability. A few sleek highlights:

Tables will be smart. The design includes a flashy, tech-equipped table that can double as a kids' play space and interactive cooktop. It's a responsive surface, thanks to induction cables wrapped beneath the surface and a projector that displays a version of a standard range.

IKEA/Concept Kitchen 2025

Smart tables would recognize produce and meats placed on it and suggest recipes starring those ingredients. It would even teach you how to slice and dice more efficiently, offering up tips for chopping broccoli and more. Here's how it works:

Fridges will be relics. Operating under the assumption that “we will be able to purchase items digitally and have them delivered by robots, wherever we are, within minutes,” the prototype also features small, self-refrigerating containers. The idea is that we’ll be constantly ordering food in small quantities (sushi for dinner, omelets for breakfast), as opposed to filling a shopping cart with random items (wait—we got three kinds of spaghetti sauce?) on a weekly supermarket trip. Translation: we’ll be eating even more pre-made meals, not stocking up on ingredients, so storage space becomes less of a necessity. The prototype does include some visible produce storage—an effort to reduce back-of-the-fridge syndrome, where forgotten cloves of garlic are left to rot behind a milk carton.

In addition to guessing how we'll equip our kitchens—and hoping that we'll do so with what the retailer hawks—the prototypes also explore how we'll relate to global resources. For example, flowing "gray" sink water into a hydration system for indoor herb plants nods to ongoing concerns about the availability of clean water.

Top image: IKEA/Concept Kitchen 2025

About the Author

Most Popular

  1. A young refugee from Kosovo stands in front of a map of Hungary with her teacher.

    Who Maps the World?

    Too often, men. And money. But a team of OpenStreetMap users is working to draw new cartographic lines, making maps that more accurately—and equitably—reflect our space.

  2. Life

    Amazon Go Might Kill More Than Just Supermarkets

    Supermarkets are community anchors. Amazon’s “just walk out” version embodies a disconcerting social transformation.

  3. Transportation

    6 Ideas for a Better New York Subway

    The beleaguered system looked outside its own ranks for ambitious new fixes.

  4. Transportation

    The EU Is Giving Teens a Month of Free Train Travel Across Europe

    The cultural enrichment plan could change young lives, and maybe even revive the heyday of the Interrail train pass.

  5. A LimeBike and LimeBike-S are pictured.

    I Have Seen the Future of Urbanism and It's a Scooter

    While you’re still trying to figure out dockless bikes, there’s a new two-wheeler to share around town. It could be a bigger deal than you think.