What are the best cooking shows?

What are the best cooking shows?

Whether you're a professional chef, an amateur baker or a person who has no interest in cooking, there’s a cooking show out there for everyone. Luckily, streaming services have made it easier than ever to access your favorite cooking shows at the touch of a button. If you love cooking shows but are overwhelmed by all the options, keep reading to discover the best cooking shows of all time to inspire your next binge. 

10 Best Cooking Shows of All Time

From cooking competitions to instructional cooking shows that teach you how to make delicious meals, there are different types of cooking shows available. You can travel the world in a single series of Anthony Bourdain's A Cook's Tour or sit tight in the English countryside in The Great British Baking Show.

Master Chef 

We could not create a list of the best cooking shows of all time and not include Master Chef. It is no surprise that virtually every country in the world has its own version of Master Chef, it is a testament to its popularity. Each country's MasterChef has a completely different vibe. Whilst the US one is the most popular with its high-stakes dramatics, if you’re looking for something a little more toned down, but with talented chefs, the UK version might be for you. 

The premise is simple, get a bunch of talented chefs together and put them up against each other. One of the most popular elements of this culinary competition is the segment where chefs have to make a whole meal out of random ingredients left in the pantry. It is in this challenge that some of the most innovative and delicious plates of food emerge.

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A Cook's Tour

It was difficult to pick just one of Anthony Bourdain’s classics to include on this list, but if you are looking for a well-rounded cooking show that exposes you to a variety of different countries in a single series, A Cook's Tour is perfect. This was Bourdain's first-ever show, and its lack of fine-tuning is what we love about it. 

In the first season that aired on the Food Network in 2002, Bourdain begins in the fish markets of Tokyo and ends with a deep-fried mars bar in Scotland. If that doesn't tell you everything you need to know about this show, we don't know what will. Anthony Bourdain always delivers an insightful and enjoyable look at food through different lenses, and this show is no different, it is a must watch for any cooking enthusiast.

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Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives

Guy Fieri has become somewhat of a cult classic in recent years, with his signature flaming shirt distinguishing him as a host that knows what the people want. Unlike some of the more culturally elevated series that you are going to see on this list, Diners Drive-ins and Dines adopts a more casual approach. 

Guy Fieri travels around the USA visiting some of the most popular restaurants in each state. Most of the restaurants he visits are family-run businesses that have become an institution in their town, but the one thing that unites them all is some seriously mouth-watering food. In each restaurant, users are treated to a few cooking segments which show how they cook their most popular dish, usually with a secret sauce or a world-renowned seasoning mix thrown in there for good luck. 

The French Chef 

Julia Child's the French Chef has been airing since 1962 and remains as popular today as it did 60 years ago. The premise is extremely simple, Julia picks a dish to make and then makes it. It was originally created in order to show people that they could cook delicious meals without having to pay restaurant prices, with that sentiment staying with the show up until today. 

The main reason the show has remained so popular is thanks to Julia Child herself. Her onscreen personality is charming and alluring, and she’s able to make each and every dish look like a breeze to assemble. So, if you need some inspiration about what to cook for dinner this week or have an upcoming dinner party you aren't prepared for, put on The French Chef, and inspiration will strike. 

Hell’s Kitchen

Chances are, you've seen Gordon Ramsay's infamous "Idiot Sandwich" clip. Ever wondered what show that originated from? Well, it wasn't quite Hell's Kitchen but a parody of it. However, it does represent the show pretty accurately. 

Gordon Ramsay creates a high-stakes competition between two teams of chefs all battling to become the head chef of a restaurant. The show itself is based inside a studio kitchen in a restaurant, giving it a fast-paced high-stakes feel. You also get all of Gordon Ramsay's swearing, aggression, and out-of-control persona on screen too. The original series began in 2005, and it was renewed for a 22nd series in 2022.

Chef's Table

If you like the finer elements of food and cooking, you will love Chef's Table. Created by David Gelb for Netflix, the documentary series showcases some of the best chefs from around the world. Each episode focuses on a different chef and their signature dishes. 

You are brought into these chefs' lives and their kitchens as you learn more about them and what made them the chefs they are today. You might know Gelb for his previous documentary Jiro Dreams of Sushi, in which he follows 85-year-old sushi master Jiro Ono, learning about his philosophy of cooking. Chef's Table adopts a similar approach, but you are treated to a different chef every episode.

Stanley Tucci: Searching for Italy

A lot of people don't know that Stanley Tucci is a great cook, he has a few cooking books as well as a popular TV show titled Stanley Tucci: Searching for Italy in which he explores his Italian heritage and its delicious food. If you loved him in Devil Wear Prada, you'll love his real self traveling around Italy.

In this series, he explores a different area of Italy and its regional foods in each episode. That means a lot of pizza, and a lot of pasta, but he also tries some of the more obscure dishes, which you otherwise would never have heard of.

The Great British Baking Show

If you're looking for a wholesome cooking competition to watch, The Great British Baking Show is perfect. Currently hosted by Noel Fielding and Matt Lucas, and judged by Paul Hollywood and Prue Leith, the concept is simple. Twelve bakers battle it out until only one is left, with each week having a different theme. 

From cake week to pastry week, these bakers make everything you can think of. Each episode has three rounds, the signature round, the technical round, and the showstopper round giving the bakers ample opportunity to showcase their talents. Some of the show's winners have gone on to have thriving baking careers themselves, such as Nadiya Hussain.

Man Vs Food

Man Vs Food is the ideal show for when you want to watch something fun and completely unserious whilst still seeing some delicious food on display. Adam Richman is the original host of this daring food show where he tours the USA trying the best of local hearty American cuisine. The best part of the show is the food challenges that Richman takes on. Whether it's the hottest wings in the USA or the biggest burger known to man, Adam Richman will give it a good go, and it is entertaining to watch.

Barefoot Contessa

Barefoot Contessa is another Food Network instant hit. The show first aired in 2002 and Ina Garten's classic cooking show is still going strong today. It has an extremely homely vibe thanks to the fact that it is filmed in Garten's very own home kitchen. Family is at the center of this show, as all her meals are cooked for loved ones, which is why so many homemakers have taken inspiration from Barefoot Contessa for years. 

Hire a Personal Chef

If you have gotten your cooking show fix but your home-cooked meals just aren't living up to the culinary masterpieces you're seeing on screen, hiring a personal chef is the perfect solution. Treating yourself to a fully thought-out meal created by a talented chef in your area is guaranteed to be a great evening. 

At Miummium, we have a wide variety of chefs who offer different menus depending on your personal tastes and preferences. They will come to your house and cook you a delicious meal in the comfort of your own home. It's kind of like watching a cooking show, but you can actually eat the dishes at the end of it. 

Hire a personal chef