Cooking could be easier in the future with the invention of the 3-D food printer "Foodini." But would you (and should you) use it?

By Marnie Soman Schwartz
Natural Machines

The newest kitchen gadget makes burgers, pizza, crackers, and artisanal desserts that are way fancier than anything your childhood Easy-Bake Oven could have turned out. The Foodini, a 3-D printer for food from Natural Machines, uses a similar technology as other forms of 3-D printing, but creates shapes with food materials instead of plastic, reports CNN. And this food of the future is actually not too far away-the company hopes to have models (which will retail for about $1,300) in mass production by the first half of 2015.

If printed meals make you think "frankenfood," consider that the machine actually does use fresh ingredients. You choose healthy recipes, put ingredients into different capsules, and then start printing away. You can also create patterns and designs, taking the visual appeal of your meals up a notch. (Want to take a picture? Brush up your skills with these 9 tips to take a better food photo.) Foodini isn't the first 3-D printer for food, but others have mostly focused on one ingredient, like chocolate or sugar. This machine, on the other hand, can make a wide range of foods and use multiple ingredients, so you can print a burger, and then a slice of cheese and a bun to go with it. (Just don't forget to cook it-the printer doesn't do that for you.)

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