How does it work?


Barilla believes that a couple of minutes can make a difference, so they created a smart-home device Passive Cooker to help people boil their pasta in two minutes and fully cook it using passive cooking. To use it, the toy-looking device must be clipped onto the cooking pot’s lid and be paired with the user’s smartphone (yes, the device is so smart it has an app). When the water boils, the steam reaches the chip inside the mini device and alerts the user via their smartphone that the water is boiling.


After two minutes, the device alerts the user again to tell them they must turn off the stove. Passive cooking comes through as the user now just has to be patient until the pasta is ready to be served and eaten. They will get the alert from the 3D-printed device and the app, so in the meantime, they can just continue going about their daily activities. Basically, Barilla’s Passive Cooker is a boss that tells users they need to hurry up and get their job done by chucking in uncooked pasta as soon as possible instead of just padding around the kitchen and watching short clips on social media.  

barilla passive cooker
images courtesy of Barilla



Can users make their own Passive Cooker?


If makers want to make their own Barilla Passive Cooker – maybe they want their own design or they think that their device is too small to fit on top of their pot lid – Barilla has uploaded the open source file of the chip, so they can experiment with and create their very own passive cooker. ‘We wanted to make this project open source so everyone can make their copy and even improve it if they want to,’ Barilla writes. The company believes its Passive Cooker can be a smart solution that helps users adopt the Passive Cooking method by following the correct process and timing.


Barilla has designed the device, developed the prototype, and decided to distribute it as an open-source project, so ‘anyone can build on our work and make it even better for the sake of the planet.’ For those who are not tech-making junkies, the built of the existing Barilla Passive Cooker may just work its magic with its 3D-printed case in 100% biodegradable filament, AAA batteries, a temperature sensor, and an Arduino board. The device works by connecting it with a dedicated mobile application.

barilla passive cooker
the passive cooker is linked to a smartphone via a dedicate app



Why did Barilla make passive Cooker?


First off, pasta is a, if not the, holy grail of Italy, so cooking it right and just is a definite must. Like all cooking methods, following the right timing is crucial, so Barilla developed a tech device that could help make it easier for people to adopt this alternative cooking method called passive cooking. Barilla states that passive cooking is an alternative way of cooking pasta that reduces carbon emissions by up to 80% in comparison with the traditional method. It has been around since the mid-19th century and is thought of to save energy since the stove is turned off after two minutes of active cooking.


Now that Barilla is helping this technique make a comeback in modern times, people could gradually adopt the method as they cook. ‘Around 16 million tonnes of pasta are produced worldwide. This means that around 400 million portions of pasta are served every day. If passive cooking was adopted by a large number of people, it would make a real impact on the planet,’ Barilla writes. The company also reminds users that not all types of pasta respond to Passive Cooking in the same way. For some shapes, the cooking time does not change, and for others, it must be corrected. They have uploaded the pasta table on their website to help the users figure out the right timing.

barilla passive cooker
using passive cooking, Barilla states that users can reduce carbon emissions up to 80%

barilla passive cooker
Barilla has uploaded the open-source file on their website

barilla passive cooker
the availability of the passive cooker is yet to be announced by Barilla



project info:


name: Passive Cooker

company: Barilla