Nestlé debuts AI cookie guide for baking 'perfect' cookies

Nestlé Toll House launched a virtual ‘cookie coach’ named Ruth to answer baking questions and more

Nestlé Toll House has deployed a high-tech method to help bakers achieve “perfect” chocolate chip cookies.

The nearly 82-year-old cookie company is currently using an artificial intelligence program that can answer baking questions through an automated chat service, according to a tweet shared by Nestlé.

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To access Nestlé’s new AI program, bakers will need to visit cookiecoach.tollhouse.com, where they will be greeted by a 3D animated “cookie coach” named Ruth. The character takes inspiration from Ruth Graves Wakefield, the Toll House Inn chef who invented the brand’s iconic chocolate chip cookie.

Inquisitive bakers can either type their questions directly in the program’s chat box or select prompts for Ruth to answer.

Aside from answering questions, Ruth can guide online users through recipe walkthroughs, including Nestlé’s original chocolate chip cookie recipe or a custom recipe the user puts together through the AI program’s limited ingredient options.

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When choosing the custom recipe script, Ruth asks the user for their cookie density and crisp preference, their desired morsels (semi-sweet, milk chocolate, dark chocolate, premier white, espresso and Funfetti), any additional ingredients they may want to use (nuts, dried fruit, oats or pretzel bits) and batch size.

For bakers who might need more hands-on help, Ruth offers baking tips and tutorials for scooping, measuring and mixing ingredients in addition to cookie storage, baking temperatures and timing. Ruth can also give a rundown of common baking ingredients and their variations or best-use practices, such including butter substitutes and softening techniques or how to deal with chocolate scuffing, bloom and expiration.

Nestlé Toll House's original chocolate chip recipe dates back to 1936, according to Ruth, the company's AI spokesperson. (iStock)

If issues come up throughout the baking process, users can go back to Ruth and request “cookie first aid,” where the AI program provide troubleshooting solutions for flat, raw, burnt cookies or dough that is too wet or dry.

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Nestlé USA’s Head of Digital Innovation & Transformation Orchid Bertelsen told FOX Business it took two years to develop the AI baking program.

“Delighting the consumer drives everything we do, so when we analyzed our Consumer Engagement Center calls and found 70% of all inbound inquiries were related to troubleshooting our iconic NESTLÉ TOLL HOUSE cookie recipe – which also happens to be the most visited page on our website, VeryBestBaking.com – we knew we had an opportunity,” Bertelsen wrote via email. “The creation of Ruth showcases our investment in tech innovation to ensure we’re meeting consumer needs.”

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The artificial intelligence market had a value of around $62.4 billion in 2020, according to estimates from Grand View Research, a leading market research firm. The group also published a revenue forecast that estimated the AI market will reach $733.7 billion by 2027.