ESP32-based Cereal Distribution Machine

Reporting from Shanghai, China
Aug 6, 2018

Kevin Obermann and Adrian Bernhart created a carousel of cereals, which mixes and matches customized breakfast blends.

Two American engineers, Kevin Obermann and Adrian Bernhart, are apparently among those who consider a humble bowl of cereals and milk to be the best breakfast one could ever have. And they may well have a point in thinking so! The magic comes not from just filling a bowl and adding a splash of milk, but by knowing which cereals to mix together. 

Who needs all that fussy mixing, though, when they can automate and customize their cereal dispensing chores? This is the approach Kevin Obermann and Adrian Bernhart took with their Cereal Dispensing Machine, even if they went a little further than that. A laser-cut plywood forms a four-station carousel for off-the-shelf dry-good dispensers, each of which got a stepper motor to replace the wrist-twisting. The original motors were a bit too wimpy to handle the more rugged morning selections and were eventually upgraded to gear motors. The platform that supports the dispensers also holds all the electronics, including an ESP32 to run everything and host the web app needed to choose your mix. 

Needless to say there are also RGB LEDs! Because breakfast should always look fancy to kickstart your day properly. Seemingly, though, the team ran out of GPIO pins and were unable to run the peristaltic pump needed to add the milk. There will always be version 2.0, though, as we read in Dan Maloney’s article on about Kevin and Adrian’s breakfast escapades.


If cereal is not your automated breakfast of choice, we totally understand. Perhaps a more Wallace-and-Gromit-style breakfast machine would do the trick, or a robotic peanut butter sandwich, which is a treat at any time during the day.

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