Professor Maxwell's 4D Chef Review (Spice Box Books)

Professor Maxwell's 4D Chef
What It Is

Cook up some STEM learning and play with Professor Maxwell's 4D Chef. This is a combination of a kids' cookbook, an app, and augmented reality to bring the science of cooking to life. As kids make rock candy, they'll also learn how crystals form. As they make muffins, they'll learn about gluten. And making pizza is a lesson in how yeast works. While the kit does come with all the tools you'll need, food ingredients are not included.

Kids can simply use the cookbook as a traditional cookbook, guiding them through making different recipes. Or kids can download the 4D Chef app and see the instructions come to life as they cook. Place a smartphone into the hands-free augmented reality goggles and point the goggles at the cookbook so that the animated character Professor Maxwell jumps off the page to guide kids through each step.

If you'd rather use a larger device, like a tablet, you can do that through hand-held mode. But the goggles allow you to keep both hands free to mix the ingredients while also watching the on-screen animations.

Is It Fun?

This is a hands-on way to introduce science concepts and make science more relatable through cooking. Kids who want to be the next Chopped Junior champ will enjoy learning how to make a variety of different kid-friendly recipes for breakfast, lunch, dinner, and dessert. The colorful pictures that accompany each recipe make it very clear what kids are supposed to do, and the augmented reality adds a fun tech twist.

Just keep in mind that results will vary, depending on a child's age and skill level. The chocolate chip cookies we made didn't look exactly like the ones in the cookbook, but they still tasted good.

Who It’s For

4D Chef is for ages 6 and up, and will appeal to kids who have an interest in cooking. Because this involves cooking and the use of the oven and stove, adult supervision is required.

What To Be Aware Of

The kit includes a 42-page recipe book, measuring cups, measuring spoons, a spatula, a whisk, a cutting board, a chef hat, two poach pods, a rolling pin, a knife, skewers, muffin liners, a clothespin, and an apron. 

We wish that a mixing spoon had been included in the lineup of tools to complete the kid-friendly kitchen set.

Because you'll be using your own food ingredients, if you have food allergies, you could substitute ingredients in the cookbook's recipes. Outcome of the recipes may vary.

If you wear glasses, wearing the VR goggles will be uncomfortable.

A smartphone is not included. The 4D Chef app is compatible with iOS and Android devices.

  • Fun

  • Repeat Play

  • Assembly & Instructions

    None or Very Easy