5.2k voters

The Most Watchable Cooking Competition Shows

Updated May 10, 2021 21.1k votes 5.2k voters 395.5k views61 items

The best cooking competition shows, hosted by some of television's most entertaining celebrity chefs, have become one of the must-watch genres on television. Some of the best shows on television right now take place in a kitchen, and the best cooking shows on TV are the reason.

While the cooking show has been around almost since the advent of TV (Julia Child was a thing long before Meryl Streep played her), in recent years we have seen the rise of the cooking competition show. Whether you tune in to Top Chef on Bravo or Netflix to see elite chefs battle for the title of best chef, or Masterchef which features home cooks battling it out to see if they have the chops to compete with the pros, reality cooking competition shows have become must-watch entertainment for the culinarily curious. Adding to the mix are timed challenge cooking competition reality shows like Chopped and Cupcake Wars which put cooks in the kitchen but under extreme pressure to produce great food or go home. Shows like Worst Cooks In America aim to teach basic skills to hapless novices, only aiming to create the Best of the Worst, while competitions like Nailed It! pit amateur bakers against each other and revel in their lack of skills.

Which reality cooking competitions are the best? What is the most entertaining cooking competition show? Who are the best hosts of reality cooking competition shows? Vote on your favorite reality TV cooking competition show here to find out. If you don't see your favorite reality cooking show listed, make sure to add it to the greatest cooking competition show list so other viewers can make it their top cooking competition show. No matter what type of cooking contest you like, from barbeque to competitive baking, there is definitely something out there for you.

  • 1

    Top Chef

    Emeril Lagasse, Gail Simmons
    Top Chef is an American reality competition show on the cable television network Bravo, that...  more

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  • 2


    Gordon Ramsay, Graham Elliot
    MasterChef (Fox, 2010) is an American competitive cooking reality show based on the original...  more


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  • 3

    The Great British Bake Off

    Sue Perkins, Mel Giedroyc
    The Great British Bake Off (also called Bake Off or GBBO) is a British television baking...  more

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  • 4


    Ted Allen, Alex Guarnaschelli
    Chopped is an American reality based cooking television series created by Dave Noll and...  more

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  • 5

    Hell's Kitchen

    Gordon Ramsay, Jean Philippe Susilovic
    Hell's Kitchen (Fox, 2005) is an American reality competition television series based on the...  more

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  • 6
    Just how far is a chef willing to go to win a cooking competition? Cutthroat Kitchen hands...  more
  • 7

    Top Chef Masters

    Gail Simmons, Ruth Reichl
    Top Chef Masters is an American reality competition series that airs on the cable television...  more
  • 8
    Starting March 6, 2011, and continuing for four additional episodes, Food Network aired the...  more
  • 9

    Iron Chef

    Masaharu Morimoto, Hiroyuki Sakai
    Iron Chef is a Japanese television cooking show produced by Fuji Television. The series, which...  more
  • 10

    MasterChef Australia

    Gary Mehigan, George Calombaris
    MasterChef Australia is a Logie Award-winning Australian competitive cooking game show based...  more
  • 11

    Iron Chef America

    Bill Murray, Anderson Cooper
    Iron Chef America: The Series is an American cooking show based on Fuji Television's Iron...  more

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  • 12

    Ramsay's Kitchen Nightmares

    Gordon Ramsay, Neil Farrell
    Ramsay's Kitchen Nightmares (Channel 4, 2004) is a reality television program. In each...  more

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  • 13

    Kitchen Nightmares

    Gordon Ramsay
    Kitchen Nightmares (Fox, 2007) is an American reality television series based on the British...  more


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  • 14

    MasterChef Junior

    Gordon Ramsay, Christina Tosi
    MasterChef Junior (Fox, 2013) is an American cooking competition. 24 of the best junior home...  more

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  • 15
    The Great Food Truck Race is a reality television series that originally aired on August 15,...  more
  • 16

    Worst Cooks in America

    Anne Burrell, Bobby Flay
    Worst Cooks in America is an American reality television series that premiered on January 3,...  more

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  • 17

    Cupcake Wars

    Candace Nelson, Florian Bellanger
    Cupcake Wars is an American reality competition series which premiered on June 13, 2010 and...  more

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  • 18

    The Next Iron Chef

    Alton Brown, Simon Majumdar
    The Next Iron Chef, is a limited-run series on the Food Network, airing its fifth season in...  more
  • 19

    Food Network Challenge

    Keegan Gerhard, Kerry Vincent
    Food Network Challenge is a competitive cooking television series that currently airs on the...  more
  • 20

    Top Chef: Just Desserts

    Gail Simmons, Johnny Iuzzini
    Top Chef: Just Desserts is an American reality competition show, spun off from Top Chef. It...  more

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  • 21
    Guy Fieri sends four talented chefs running through the aisles in a high stakes, high skills,...  more

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  • 22

    The Taste

    Anthony Bourdain Nigella Lawson Ludo Lefebvre Marcus Samuelsson
    The Taste (ABC, 2013) is an American cooking-themed reality competition series. 16 contestants...  more

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  • 23

    Throwdown! with Bobby Flay

    Bobby Flay, Stephanie Banyas
    Throwdown! with Bobby Flay is a Food Network television program in which celebrity chef Bobby...  more
  • 24

    Kids Baking Championship

    Duff Goldman, Valerie Bertinelli
    Kids Baking Championship (Food Network, 2015) is a television program hosted by Duff Goldman...  more
  • 25

    Next Great Baker

    Buddy Valastro, Letty Alvarez
    Next Great Baker is an American television series that airs on TLC, hosted by Buddy Valastro,...  more