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The Most Watchable Cooking Competition Shows 

Ranker Community
Originally by Ranker Community
Updated March 27, 2020 23.3k votes 4.6k voters 349.5k views 44 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.

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.

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1
MasterChef is listed (or ranked) 1 on the list The Most Watchable Cooking Competition Shows
MasterChef Gordon Ramsay, Graham Elliot, Joe Bastianich

Premiered: 2010

Number of Seasons: 3

Number of Episodes: 53

Network: Fox Broadcasting Company

Genres (Tv): Cooking show, Reality television

MasterChef (Fox, 2010) is an American competitive cooking reality show based on the original British series. A nationwide search for the best home cooks in America where one of 50 hopefuls will ...more

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#26 of 254 The Best Reality TV Shows Ever #7 of 44 Reality Shows That Involve Actual Skill Dreamcasting Celebrities We Want To See On MasterChef Celebrity Showdown

2
Top Chef is listed (or ranked) 2 on the list The Most Watchable Cooking Competition Shows
woogyjones50 added Emeril Lagasse, Gail Simmons, Padma Lakshmi

Premiered: 2006

Number of Seasons: 10

Number of Episodes: 136

Network: Bravo

Genres (Tv): Cook-off, Cooking show, Reality television

Top Chef is an American reality competition show on the cable television network Bravo, that first aired in 2006, in which chefs compete against each other in culinary challenges. They are ...more

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#675 of 802 The Best TV Shows To Binge Watch #772 of 2,296 The Greatest TV Shows Of All Time

3
Chopped is listed (or ranked) 3 on the list The Most Watchable Cooking Competition Shows
Ted Allen, Alex Guarnaschelli, Marc Murphy

Premiered: 2009

Number of Seasons: 13

Number of Episodes: 155

Network: Food Network

Genres (Tv): Game show, Food, Cooking show, Reality television

Chopped is an American reality based cooking television series created by Dave Noll and Michael Krupat, with executive producer Linda Lea, and hosted by Ted Allen that pits four chefs against ...more

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#293 of 383 The Best TV Shows of The Last 20 Years #20 of 254 The Best Reality TV Shows Ever 12 Things You Didn't Know About Competing On 'Chopped'

4
Hell's Kitchen is listed (or ranked) 4 on the list The Most Watchable Cooking Competition Shows
Gordon Ramsay, Jean Philippe Susilovic, Scott Leibfried

Premiered: 2005

Number of Seasons: 10

Number of Episodes: 141

Network: Fox Broadcasting Company

Genres (Tv): Reality Competition, Cooking show, Reality television

Hell's Kitchen (Fox, 2005) is an American reality competition television series based on the British series. World renowned chef Gordon Ramsay puts aspiring young chefs through rigorous cooking ...more

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#575 of 2,296 The Greatest TV Shows Of All Time #253 of 383 The Best TV Shows of The Last 20 Years The Best Seasons of 'Hell's Kitchen'

5
Top Chef Masters is listed (or ranked) 5 on the list The Most Watchable Cooking Competition Shows
Top Chef Masters Gail Simmons, Ruth Reichl

Premiered: 2009

Number of Seasons: 4

Number of Episodes: 40

Network: Bravo

Genres (Tv): Cooking show, Reality television

Top Chef Masters is an American reality competition series that airs on the cable television network Bravo, and premiered June 10, 2009. It is a spinoff of Bravo's hit show Top Chef. In the ...more
6
The Great British Bake O... is listed (or ranked) 6 on the list The Most Watchable Cooking Competition Shows
qweruioqwyeruio added Sue Perkins, Mel Giedroyc

Premiered: 2010

Number of Seasons: 10

Number of Episodes: 94

Network: British Broadcasting Corporation

Genres (Tv): Special Interest, Game show, Cooking show, Home improvement

The Great British Bake Off (also called Bake Off or GBBO) is a British television baking competition, produced by Love Productions, in which a group of amateur bakers compete against each other ...more

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7
Iron Chef America is listed (or ranked) 7 on the list The Most Watchable Cooking Competition Shows
Bill Murray, Anderson Cooper, Giada De Laurentiis

Premiered: 2005

Number of Seasons: 10

Number of Episodes: 176

Network: Food Network

Genres (Tv): Cook-off, Game show, Food, Cooking show, Reality television

Iron Chef America: The Series is an American cooking show based on Fuji Television's Iron Chef, and is the second American adaptation of the series, following the failed Iron Chef USA. The show ...more

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#1,025 of 2,296 The Greatest TV Shows Of All Time #43 of 254 The Best Reality TV Shows Ever

8
Cutthroat Kitchen is listed (or ranked) 8 on the list The Most Watchable Cooking Competition Shows
Sh├│naMcCormick added Alton Brown

Premiered: 2013

Number of Seasons: 6

Network: Food Network

Genres (Tv): Food

Just how far is a chef willing to go to win a cooking competition? Cutthroat Kitchen hands four chefs each $25,000 and the opportunity to spend that money on helping themselves or sabotaging ...more
9
Chopped Champions is listed (or ranked) 9 on the list The Most Watchable Cooking Competition Shows

Premiered: 2010

Network: Food Network

Starting March 6, 2011, and continuing for four additional episodes, Food Network aired the "Chopped All-Stars" Tournament. Sixteen chefs competed.
10
MasterChef Australia is listed (or ranked) 10 on the list The Most Watchable Cooking Competition Shows
kfresan added Gary Mehigan, George Calombaris, Matt Preston

Premiered: 2009

Number of Seasons: 4

Number of Episodes: 157

Network: Network Ten

Genres (Tv): Game show, Cooking show, Reality television

MasterChef Australia is a Logie Award-winning Australian competitive cooking game show based on the original British MasterChef. It is produced by Shine Australia and screens on Network Ten. ...more
11
Ramsay's Kitchen Nightma... is listed (or ranked) 11 on the list The Most Watchable Cooking Competition Shows
Mae-AmarUnda added Gordon Ramsay, Neil Farrell, Daniela Bayfield

Premiered: 2004

Number of Seasons: 5

Number of Episodes: 31

Network: Channel 4

Genres (Tv): Cooking show, Reality television

Ramsay's Kitchen Nightmares (Channel 4, 2004) is a reality television program. In each episode, chef Gordon Ramsay visits a failing restaurant and acts as a troubleshooter to help improve the ...more

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#12 of 254 The Best Reality TV Shows Ever #9 of 31 The Very Best British Reality Shows, Ranked

12
Cupcake Wars is listed (or ranked) 12 on the list The Most Watchable Cooking Competition Shows

Premiered: 2010

Number of Seasons: 7

Number of Episodes: 80

Network: Food Network

Genres (Tv): Cooking show, Reality television

Cupcake Wars is an American reality competition series which premiered on June 13, 2010 and aired on the cable television network Food Network. The cooking show is hosted by Justin Willman and ...more

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#1,701 of 2,296 The Greatest TV Shows Of All Time #58 of 254 The Best Reality TV Shows Ever

13
Iron Chef is listed (or ranked) 13 on the list The Most Watchable Cooking Competition Shows
MikeTrujillo added Iron Chef Masaharu Morimoto, Hiroyuki Sakai

Premiered: 1993

Number of Episodes: 302

Network: Fine Living Network, Food Network, Fuji Television

Genres (Tv): Cook-off, Food, Cooking show, Reality television

Iron Chef is a Japanese television cooking show produced by Fuji Television. The series, which premiered on October 10, 1993, is a stylized cook-off featuring guest chefs challenging one of the ...more

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#282 of 383 The Best TV Shows of The Last 20 Years #48 of 135 The Best Reality Competition Series

14
Worst Cooks in America ... is listed (or ranked) 14 on the list The Most Watchable Cooking Competition Shows
Anne Burrell, Bobby Flay, Tyler Florence

Premiered: 2010

Number of Seasons: 3

Number of Episodes: 22

Network: Food Network

Genres (Tv): Reality television

Worst Cooks in America is an American reality television series that premiered on January 3, 2010, on the Food Network. The show takes 12 to 16 contestants (referred to as "recruits") ...more

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15
Kitchen Nightmares is listed (or ranked) 15 on the list The Most Watchable Cooking Competition Shows
Mae-AmarUnda added Kitchen Nightmares Gordon Ramsay

Premiered: 2007

Number of Seasons: 5

Number of Episodes: 24

Network: Fox Broadcasting Company

Genres (Tv): Reality television

Kitchen Nightmares (Fox, 2007) is an American reality television series based on the British show. Chef Gordon Ramsay is invited by the owners to spend a week with a failing restaurant in an ...more

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#144 of 254 The Best Reality TV Shows Ever #25 of 44 Reality Shows That Involve Actual Skill Turns Out, Kitchen Nightmares Is Full Of Baloney And Gordon Ramsay Is Not That Mean

16
The Next Iron Chef is listed (or ranked) 16 on the list The Most Watchable Cooking Competition Shows
Alton Brown, Simon Majumdar, Donatella Arpaia

Premiered: 2007

Number of Seasons: 4

Number of Episodes: 38

Network: Food Network

Genres (Tv): Cooking show, Reality television

The Next Iron Chef, is a limited-run series on the Food Network, airing its fifth season in 2012. Each season is a stand-alone competition to select a chef to be designated an Iron Chef, who ...more
17
Food Network Challenge ... is listed (or ranked) 17 on the list The Most Watchable Cooking Competition Shows
Keegan Gerhard, Kerry Vincent, Claire Robinson

Premiered: 2005

Network: Food Network

Genres (Tv): Reality television, Home improvement

Food Network Challenge is a competitive cooking television series that currently airs on the Food Network. Each episode, professional chefs compete in a timed competition in their professional ...more
18
MasterChef Junior is listed (or ranked) 18 on the list The Most Watchable Cooking Competition Shows
Gordon Ramsay, Christina Tosi, Graham Elliot

Premiered: 2013

Number of Seasons: 1

Number of Episodes: 7

Network: Fox Broadcasting Company

Genres (Tv): Game show, Cooking show, Reality television

MasterChef Junior (Fox, 2013) is an American cooking competition. 24 of the best junior home cooks in the country between the ages of eight and 13 will compete in the first audition round and ...more

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#2,201 of 2,296 The Greatest TV Shows Of All Time #9 of 38 The Best Reality TV Shows in 2020

19
Top Chef: Just Desserts ... is listed (or ranked) 19 on the list The Most Watchable Cooking Competition Shows
Gail Simmons, Johnny Iuzzini, Danielle Kyrillos

Premiered: 2010

Number of Seasons: 2

Network: Bravo

Genres (Tv): Cooking show, Reality television

Top Chef: Just Desserts is an American reality competition show, spun off from Top Chef. It premiered on the cable television network Bravo on September 15, 2010. Top Chef: Just Desserts ...more

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#192 of 254 The Best Reality TV Shows Ever #78 of 98 The Best Cooking TV Shows of All Time

20
Next Great Baker is listed (or ranked) 20 on the list The Most Watchable Cooking Competition Shows
Buddy Valastro, Letty Alvarez, James Brown

Premiered: 2010

Number of Seasons: 2

Number of Episodes: 8

Network: TLC

Genres (Tv): Reality television

Next Great Baker is an American television series that airs on TLC, hosted by Buddy Valastro, the star of his own reality series, Cake Boss. The show features contestants participating in ...more
21
Throwdown! with Bobby Fl... is listed (or ranked) 21 on the list The Most Watchable Cooking Competition Shows
Bobby Flay, Stephanie Banyas, Miriam Garron

Premiered: 2006

Number of Episodes: 92

Network: Food Network

Genres (Tv): Special Interest, Cooking show, Reality television

Throwdown! with Bobby Flay is a Food Network television program in which celebrity chef Bobby Flay challenges cooks renowned for a specific dish or type of cooking to a cook-off of their ...more

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#38 of 98 The Best Cooking TV Shows of All Time #2 of 13 The Best Bobby Flay Shows, Ranked

22
The Great Food Truck Rac... is listed (or ranked) 22 on the list The Most Watchable Cooking Competition Shows
PattiSchadel added Tyler Florence, Chris Hodgson, Lance Kramer

Premiered: 2010

Number of Seasons: 3

Number of Episodes: 20

Network: Food Network

Genres (Tv): Game show, Reality television

The Great Food Truck Race is a reality television series that originally aired on August 15, 2010, on Food Network, with Tyler Florence as the host. It features competing food trucks. The fourth ...more

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#948 of 2,296 The Greatest TV Shows Of All Time #79 of 254 The Best Reality TV Shows Ever

23
The Taste is listed (or ranked) 23 on the list The Most Watchable Cooking Competition Shows
Anthony Bourdain Nigella Lawson Ludo Lefebvre Marcus Samuelsson

Premiered: January 22, 2013

Number of Seasons: 2

Number of Episodes: 16

Network: ABC

Genres (Tv): Reality competition

The Taste (ABC, 2013) is an American cooking-themed reality competition series. 16 contestants are put in team and individual cooking challenges with the help of mentors Anthony Bourdain, ...more
24
Guy's Grocery Games is listed (or ranked) 24 on the list The Most Watchable Cooking Competition Shows
bojanthebest added Guy Fieri, Troy Johnson, Melissa d'Arabian

Premiered: 2013

Genres (Tv): Game show, Food, Reality television

Guy Fieri sends four talented chefs running through the aisles in a high stakes, high skills, grocery store cooking competition. The chefs are hit by real-world challenges like finding ...more

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#67 of 98 The Best Cooking TV Shows of All Time #1 of 10 The Best Guy Fieri Shows

25
Ramsay's Best Restaurant... is listed (or ranked) 25 on the list The Most Watchable Cooking Competition Shows
DannyLatcovich added Gordon Ramsay

Premiered: 14 September 2010

Number of Seasons: 1

Number of Episodes: 11

Network: Channel 4

Genres (Tv): Cooking show

Ramsay's Best Restaurant is a television programme featuring British celebrity chef Gordon Ramsay broadcast on Channel 4. During the series restaurants from all over Britain competed in order to ...more