Food TV Shows

About Food

Food has been a part of television from almost the beginning, and the TV chef has been a popular character in American culture for the better part of a century. Chef and cookbook author James Beard hosted the first network cooking show in the 1940s, establishing a genre that would eventually lead to entire cable networks devoted to the nuances of food preparation. The contemporary food show, however, is often much less about food than its ancestors were.

Early TV cooking shows were often concerned as much with advertising as they were with cooking instruction. Sponsors' products-kitchen appliances, gadgets and food products-were promoted openly and enthusiastically. By the time Julia Child hit the airwaves with her The French Chef in 1963, though, the cooking show had becomes a more serious mixture of entertainment and education, giving home cooks an enjoyable way to learn how to cook new dishes.

In recent years, the food genre has broadened to include a range of program types. The celebrity-chef cooking show remains popular, but the reality and game show genres have reached into the realm of food, as well. In competitive cooking shows, chefs work individually or in teams to create dishes which are evaluated by a panel of judges. In one type of reality food show, a celebrity chef helps to make over struggling restaurants; in these shows, the focus is generally on the interpersonal drama of the situations rather than on the details of food preparation.

Yet another food-TV genre merges the cooking show with a travelogue, as a host seeks out interesting dishes in far-flung locales; the culinary subjects may be regional delicacies, exotic cuisines or otherwise unusual fare. Some of these shows have an educational component, as the host looks on while the local chef shows the audience how to prepare the dishes.

About This Genre
Trisha's Southern Kitchen
Trisha's Southern Kitchen
Cupcake Wars
Cupcake Wars
Chopped
Chopped
MasterChef
MasterChef
Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives
Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives
America's Test Kitchen
America's Test Kitchen
Barefoot Contessa
Barefoot Contessa
Cook's Country
Cook's Country
The Chew
The Chew
Farmhouse Rules
Farmhouse Rules
Cutthroat Kitchen
Cutthroat Kitchen
The Great British Baking Show
The Great British Baking Show
Anthony Bourdain: Parts Unknown
Anthony Bourdain: Parts Unknown
The Kitchen
The Kitchen
Bizarre Foods
Bizarre Foods
Cake Wars
Cake Wars
Chopped Junior
Chopped Junior
BBQ Pitmasters
BBQ Pitmasters
Giada in Italy
Giada in Italy
MasterChef Junior
MasterChef Junior
Hell's Kitchen
Hell's Kitchen
Guy's Grocery Games
Guy's Grocery Games
Beat Bobby Flay
Beat Bobby Flay
Bobby Flay's Barbecue Addiction
Bobby Flay's Barbecue Addiction
Anthony Bourdain: No Reservations
Anthony Bourdain: No Reservations
Good Eats
Good Eats
Come Dine With Me
Come Dine With Me
Cooks vs. Cons
Cooks vs. Cons
Flip My Food with Chef Jeff
Flip My Food with Chef Jeff
Halloween Wars
Halloween Wars
30 Minute Meals
30 Minute Meals
Barefoot Contessa: Back to Basics
Barefoot Contessa: Back to Basics
First Class Chefs
First Class Chefs
Martha Bakes
Martha Bakes
Gordon's Great Escape
Gordon's Great Escape
Ramsay's Best Restaurant
Ramsay's Best Restaurant
Top Secret Recipe
Top Secret Recipe
I'll Have What Phil's Having
I'll Have What Phil's Having
Sweet Genius
Sweet Genius
Rachael Ray's Week in a Day
Rachael Ray's Week in a Day
Rachael Ray's Kids Cook-Off
Rachael Ray's Kids Cook-Off
Hungry Investors
Hungry Investors
Rev Run's Sunday Suppers
Rev Run's Sunday Suppers
A Bite of China
A Bite of China
Carnival Eats
Carnival Eats
Bizarre Foods with Andrew Zimmern
Bizarre Foods with Andrew Zimmern
Lidia's Italy
Lidia's Italy
Welcome to Sweetie Pie's
Welcome to Sweetie Pie's
Denise Austin
Denise Austin
Jamie's 15 Minute Meals
Jamie's 15 Minute Meals
Everyday Italian
Everyday Italian
A Taste of History
A Taste of History
New York Live
New York Live
Recipe.TV
Recipe.TV
Panna Recipes
Panna Recipes
Big Chef Takes on Little Chef
Big Chef Takes on Little Chef
Mom's Cooking
Mom's Cooking
Grill It! with Bobby Flay
Grill It! with Bobby Flay
Secret Recipes
Secret Recipes
Sandwich King
Sandwich King
Bizarre Foods America
Bizarre Foods America
Hungry Games
Hungry Games
Best. Ever.
Best. Ever.
United Tastes of America
United Tastes of America
Hungry Girl
Hungry Girl
Crave
Crave
Extreme Chef
Extreme Chef
Epicurious
Epicurious
Ten Dollar Dinners with Melissa d'Arabian
Ten Dollar Dinners with Melissa d'Arabian
Food Network Chef Bobby Flay
Food Network Chef Bobby Flay
Food Network Thanksgiving
Food Network Thanksgiving
Family Pickle
Family Pickle
Mission Menu
Mission Menu
Fat Chef
Fat Chef
Drop 5 lbs with Good Housekeeping
Drop 5 lbs with Good Housekeeping
Foods of the Bible
Foods of the Bible
NapaStyle
NapaStyle
The Taste
The Taste
Giving You the Business
Giving You the Business
The Chef
The Chef
Duet
Duet
Loving Spoonfuls
Loving Spoonfuls
Deep Fried Masters
Deep Fried Masters
A Chef's Life
A Chef's Life
Compete to Eat
Compete to Eat
Food Network Competition Shows TV Sampler
Food Network Competition Shows TV Sampler
Ultimate Holiday Feast
Ultimate Holiday Feast
Unwrapped 2.0
Unwrapped 2.0
All-Star Academy
All-Star Academy
Consumed: The Real Restaurant Business
Consumed: The Real Restaurant Business
Live with Kelly & Michael
Live with Kelly & Michael
The Next Iron Chef
The Next Iron Chef
Gordon Ramsay's F Word
Gordon Ramsay's F Word
Snack-Off
Snack-Off
Man Vs. Child: Chef Showdown
Man Vs. Child: Chef Showdown
Heston's Feasts
Heston's Feasts
Emeril's Table
Emeril's Table
Secrets of a Restaurant Chef
Secrets of a Restaurant Chef
Restaurant Stakeout
Restaurant Stakeout
Food Fetish
Food Fetish