Reality Television Personalities The Best American Idol Contestants Ever  

Katie Wells
Originally by
48k votes 3.9k voters 37k views 146 items Follow

List Rules Only American Idol contestants should be on this list

Who are the best American Idol contestants ever? As the FOX reality singing competition show continues on after a dozen seasons, the list of great Idol contestants continues to grow. AI is a force to be reckoned with, and it's certainly among the best reality TV shows in recent memory. Which artist do you believe is the best AI alum of all time? Vote for your favorites, vote down any you just can't stand (yes, Sanjaya is on the list, so have at it) and, if your personal favorite isn't listed, add that contestant, please.

Here's the thing about American Idol: Most of the winners are genuinely outstanding singers and have gone on to enjoy great success in the music world. It's hard to argue that Kelly Clarkson, the very first AI winner from season one, isn't a phenomenal talent and a force in the music industry. She's definitely one of the best female vocalists around.The same goes for country songbird Carrie Underwood, who won Idol in the show's fourth season. She went on to become one of the most celebrated female vocalists of the past 10 years. And Phillip Phillips, the singer-songwriter who took the American Idol crown in 2012, is enjoying a great deal of success with his debut album, The World from the Side of the Moon.

One thing about this list of favorite 'American Idol' contestants: Many of the best artists didn't actually win on the show. Some were runners up, while others finished in the top five before getting booted off. 'Idol' runners up who went on to become major stars include Katharine McPhee, Adam Lambert, David Archuleta and Clay Aiken are all good examples. Oh, and guess what? Top five finishers who went on to great success would certainly include rocker Chris Daughtry, country singer Kelly Pickler and certainly Jennifer Hudson. J-Hud finished *seventh* on 'Idol' in season three, and went on to win an Academy Award for her performance in the movie Dreamgirls

Enjoy this list of Idol finalists, don't forget to vote. You can also re-rank this list in any order you want. While you're at it, why not cast your vote for the person you believe would be the next great 'American Idol' judge, too?

1
+ - 1,326 879
Carrie Underwood is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Best American Idol Contestants Ever
Carrie Underwood Country pop, Pop music, Contemporary Christian music

12 American Idol Finalists Who Just Went Back To Totally Normal Jobs The Greatest Rock Stars Who Died Before 30

2
+ - 1,201 800
Kelly Clarkson is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Best American Idol Contestants Ever
Kelly Clarkson Adult contemporary music, Blues-rock, Blue-eyed soul

3
+ - 1,025 892
Chris Daughtry is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Best American Idol Contestants Ever
Chris Daughtry Rock music, Pop rock, Post-grunge

4
+ - 1,527 1,129
Adam Lambert is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Best American Idol Contestants Ever
Adam Lambert Pop music, Rock music, Electronic music

5
+ - 824 819
Jennifer Hudson is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Best American Idol Contestants Ever
Jennifer Hudson Pop music, Contemporary R&B, Soul music

6
+ - 698 815
Kellie Pickler is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Best American Idol Contestants Ever
Kellie Pickler Country pop, Pop music, Country

7
+ - 579 754
Jordin Sparks is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Best American Idol Contestants Ever
Jordin Sparks Christian music, Pop music, Teen pop

8
+ - 610 856
David Cook is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Best American Idol Contestants Ever
David Cook Pop rock, Post-grunge, Alternative rock

9
+ - 672 856
Katharine McPhee is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Best American Idol Contestants Ever
Katharine McPhee Pop music, Contemporary R&B, Rhythm and blues

10
+ - 664 742
Clay Aiken is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Best American Idol Contestants Ever
Clay Aiken Pop music, Contemporary Christian music, Pop rock

11
+ - 729 842
Jessica Sanchez is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Best American Idol Contestants Ever
Jessica Sanchez Hip hop music, Pop music, Contemporary R&B

12
+ - 636 880
Phillip Phillips is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Best American Idol Contestants Ever
Phillip Phillips Rock music, Folk music, Indie rock

13
+ - 308 416
Scotty McCreery is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Best American Idol Contestants Ever
Scotty McCreery Country

14
+ - 370 702
Bo Bice is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Best American Idol Contestants Ever
Bo Bice Christian music, Country rock, Pop rock

15
+ - 345 522
Haley Reinhart is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Best American Idol Contestants Ever
Haley Reinhart Pop music, Rock music, Jazz fusion - Pop, Jazz

The Top Earning American Idol Alumni 16 Songs That Don't Mean What You Think They Do

16
+ - 482 821
Kris Allen is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Best American Idol Contestants Ever
Kris Allen Blue-eyed soul, Pop music, Folk rock

17
+ - 448 841
David Archuleta is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Best American Idol Contestants Ever
David Archuleta Blue-eyed soul, Pop music, Teen pop

18
+ - 339 658
Melinda Doolittle is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Best American Idol Contestants Ever
Melinda Doolittle Rhythm and blues, Jazz, Soul music

19
+ - 218 398
Elliott Yamin is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Best American Idol Contestants Ever
Elliott Yamin Blue-eyed soul, Pop music, Contemporary R&B

20
+ - 116 185
Allison Iraheta is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Best American Idol Contestants Ever
Allison Iraheta Pop rock

21
+ - 359 744
Crystal Bowersox is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Best American Idol Contestants Ever
Crystal Bowersox Blues-rock, Rock music, Acoustic music

22
+ - 337 674
Carly Smithson is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Best American Idol Contestants Ever
Carly Smithson Pop music, Rock music, Gothic metal

23
+ - 123 99
Tori Kelly is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Best American Idol Contestants Ever
Tori Kelly Pop music, Rhythm and blues, Soul music

24
+ - 365 753
Fantasia is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Best American Idol Contestants Ever
Fantasia Christian music, Pop music, Contemporary R&B

25
+ - 162 265
Taylor Hicks is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Best American Idol Contestants Ever
Taylor Hicks Blues-rock, Blue-eyed soul, Pop rock

26
+ - 136 200
Ruben Studdard is listed (or ranked) 26 on the list The Best American Idol Contestants Ever
Ruben Studdard Pop music, Contemporary R&B, Gospel music

27
+ - 81 112
Colton Dixon is listed (or ranked) 27 on the list The Best American Idol Contestants Ever
Colton Dixon Christian music, Contemporary Christian music, Alternative rock

28
+ - 261 574
Tamyra Gray is listed (or ranked) 28 on the list The Best American Idol Contestants Ever
Tamyra Gray Contemporary R&B, Rhythm and blues, Soul music

29
+ - 145 305
Danny Gokey is listed (or ranked) 29 on the list The Best American Idol Contestants Ever
Danny Gokey Blue-eyed soul, Country pop, Contemporary Christian music

The Best Survivor Contestants That Ever Played How Will You Spend Your Time When You Retire?

30
+ - 304 701
Brooke White is listed (or ranked) 30 on the list The Best American Idol Contestants Ever
Brooke White Indie pop, Christian music, Pop music

31
+ - 96 144
Ranker Video v
Lauren Alaina Country pop, Country

32
+ - 240 527
Kimberley Locke is listed (or ranked) 32 on the list The Best American Idol Contestants Ever
Kimberley Locke Adult contemporary music, Pop music, Electronic dance music

33
+ - 84 157
Angie Miller is listed (or ranked) 33 on the list The Best American Idol Contestants Ever
Angie Miller Piano rock, Contemporary Christian music, Pop rock

34
+ - 109 185
Pia is listed (or ranked) 34 on the list The Best American Idol Contestants Ever
Pia

35
+ - 204 516
LaToya London is listed (or ranked) 35 on the list The Best American Idol Contestants Ever
LaToya London Contemporary R&B, Rhythm and blues, Jazz

36
+ - 155 487
Constantine Maroulis is listed (or ranked) 36 on the list The Best American Idol Contestants Ever

37
+ - 220 664
James Durbin is listed (or ranked) 37 on the list The Best American Idol Contestants Ever
James Durbin Glam metal, Progressive metal, Groove metal

38
+ - 69 153
Casey Abrams is listed (or ranked) 38 on the list The Best American Idol Contestants Ever
Casey Abrams Blue-eyed soul, Pop music, Rock music

39
+ - 62 79
Diana DeGarmo is listed (or ranked) 39 on the list The Best American Idol Contestants Ever
Diana DeGarmo Pop music, Country

40
+ - 44 87
Trent Harmon is listed (or ranked) 40 on the list The Best American Idol Contestants Ever
Trent Harmon

41
+ - 72 105
Mandisa is listed (or ranked) 41 on the list The Best American Idol Contestants Ever
Mandisa Christian music, Contemporary Christian music, Rhythm and blues

42
+ - 225 625
Lee DeWyze is listed (or ranked) 42 on the list The Best American Idol Contestants Ever
Lee DeWyze Rock music, Folk rock, Alternative rock

43
+ - 59 151
Siobhan Magnus is listed (or ranked) 43 on the list The Best American Idol Contestants Ever
Siobhan Magnus Pop music, Rock music, Soul music

The All-Time Greatest Survivor Winners The Best Space Movies Streaming on Hulu

44
+ - 54 60
Pia Toscano is listed (or ranked) 44 on the list The Best American Idol Contestants Ever
Pia Toscano Pop music

45
+ - 38 71
Kimberly Caldwell is listed (or ranked) 45 on the list The Best American Idol Contestants Ever
Kimberly Caldwell Adult contemporary music, Blue-eyed soul, Pop rock

46
+ - 111 290
Jena Irene is listed (or ranked) 46 on the list The Best American Idol Contestants Ever
Jena Irene Alternative rock, Rock music, Pop music

47
+ - 56 84
Jason Castro is listed (or ranked) 47 on the list The Best American Idol Contestants Ever
Jason Castro Christian music, Pop music, Folk music

48
+ - 46 90
Ranker Video v
Josh Gracin Country

49
+ - 51 80
Victoria Justice is listed (or ranked) 49 on the list The Best American Idol Contestants Ever
Victoria Justice Synthpop, Pop music, Dance-pop

50
+ - 28 55
Bucky Covington is listed (or ranked) 50 on the list The Best American Idol Contestants Ever
Bucky Covington Country