Last Updated: September 23rd
As great as the scripted TV available on Netflix Instant is, sometimes you just want something that requires a little less thinking. This is where the pleasures of reality TV come in. Reality TV might once have largely focused on groups of people simply trying to live together (Survivor, The Real World, Big Brother, etc.), but the genre has branched out in all sorts of directions over the last two decades. Netflix’s offerings illustrate this well. Looking for something adventurous? Check. In the mood for a food competition? Check. Maybe after a day of work you just want to watch a show about people at work. That’s there too. So, sit back in your recliner, kick off your shoes and immerse yourself in the variety of the best reality shows on Netflix right now.
The Great British Baking Show (1 of 6 seasons)
For amateur bakers or just those with a serious sweet tooth, there’s no better piece of TV food competition than the BBC’s The Great British Baking Show (or Bake Off if you’re watching in the U.K.). The show pits amateur bakers from around the U.K. in weekly competitions to become the “star baker” or risk being eliminated. Like a lot of food competition shows, the contestants must face various challenges that test their technical skill and creativity, all while being graded by judges who are anything but sweet when they bite into a cookie or pastry they don’t like. While the show has had its share of controversy ranging from everything from “smutty” remarks from the hosts to accusations of favoritism, it’s had a major boost in the sale of baking products worldwide.
The Great Food Truck Race (5 of 6 seasons)
Food truck culture has never been more popular than right now, which of course means there’s going to be a reality show cashing in on the craze. Hosted by chef and Food Network veteran, Tyler Florence, the competition sees seven food truck teams racing across the country for the chance to win $50,000. As host of the show, it’s Florence’s job to torment each of the teams with surprise “speed bump” challenges in every city to keep them on their toes. Unlike some of the other food competition shows, the contestants regularly engage in everything from trash talk to sabotage, making the entire thing feel a bit like Cannonball Run with tacos and cheeseburgers.