I have always been a fan of cooking shows, but since having my son and daughters, I have found that they are great options for shows I can watch that aren’t kids shows, without worrying about my kids being subjected to sex or swearing or other inappropriate things. Jack learned how to say “ready, set go!” from all the competitions I’ve watched. Haha. I am quite well versed in a number of different shows, (my husband has a total aversion to cooking shows since I’ve watched SO many of them) but here are my top 10. My top 3 are my top 3, and the rest of the shows are pretty interchangeable in terms of favorites. I have connected links to the names of the shows for anyone who wants to stream the videos.
Of all the shows I have watched, this is my ALL TIME FAVORITE. It is a super long show (they do 5 or 6 episodes a week, depending on the season), which means one season has 60 to 80 episodes. A little excessive, maybe, but they do a great job with the show. The best part? There is no drama. When you watch other competition shows, there is lots of smack talk about other competitors and throwing each other under the bus. With Masterchef Australia, all the competitors are supportive of each other and the show is about the cooking. I also like that professional chefs play a big part of the show. They bring in professional chefs at the top of their careers to act as mentors and to get the competitors to recreate incredibly challenging plates you couldn’t even imagine producing. Plus, at the end of each week they have a “Masterclass” that gives you a straight up “how to” cooking show. I love, love, love this show!!
2. Iron Chef
This is a great cooking show. I love that it is professional chefs who show up to cook. They get one ingredient that has to be included in as many dishes as possible, and each dish is judged. Person with the most points wins. Simple concept and great cooking. Plus, you learn how to use lots of different ingredients! There used to be a bunch of episodes on the American Netflix website, but as I am in Canada, I can’t confirm that anymore.
This show makes me feel incompetent as a chef. Watching what these kids can do in the kitchen is amazing. The Australian show has lots more episodes than the USA one, but I still really enjoy watching these kids cook and seeing how much they improve in the kitchen.
I have combined the USA and Canadian Masterchefs together as they are pretty much the same. I love that these home cooks get a chance at following their food dream, but I find the drama between the competitors to be frustrating. It’s still a pretty clean show, and still really enjoyable to watch. Plus, Gordon Ramsay. Need I say more?
In this show, four chefs compete against each other in 3 rounds. Each round, they are given a box of ingredients and they have to find a way to create a dish with all the ingredients in it. Some of the boxes are pretty mean, but it’s pretty interesting to watch the chefs come up with really creative dishes.
This is a totally ridiculous show. And I love it. Contestants are given a chunk of money to buy sabotages for their competitors. Sabotages could include things like cooking in a toy kitchen, wearing a sumo suit during the cook, having no utensils but aluminum foil… the list goes on. The person to survive three rounds of sabotages wins whatever money they have left.
This competition takes place in a shopping market. Contestants are given challenges that are based around shopping in aisles or only using specific ingredient themes. The last person standing is given a chance to win twenty thousand dollars by finding 20 ingredients on an shopping list in 2 minutes. Hosted by Guy Fieri, it’s a good time.
These shows are a competition for children to show their skill in the kitchen baking, or grilling outside. Like Masterchef Junior, it’s really great to watch young children come up with delicious and restaurant quality dishes.
This show is a kids competition that combines kids talents in the kitchen with performance skills. Kids compete for a scholarship and a web series based on their cooking show ideas. Similar to the Next Food Network Star, but with kids.
Finally, the Next Food Network Star. These cooks compete to win a cooking show on the Food Network. Challenges include both cooking and performance quality on a camera, so it’s a pretty cool twist on the normal cooking competition show.
So, now you have some ideas for cooking shows you can watch around you kids. Or just watch. You don’t have to have kids. Enjoy!