Last Updated: March 16th
There may never have been a better time to binge some food TV. With the COVID-19 virus locking down… well… most of humanity, there’s a good chance you’re at home trying to “work.” That also means long evenings and nights not going out for the foreseeable future. It’s binging season, y’all, and food shows are a great option.
Food shows sort of have it all. You can revel in your FOMO with travel shows, learn new recipes via tutorials, and catch up on serious drama on all manner of competition shows. If you’re stuck indoors, learning new recipes is a great way to get the most bang for your binging buck. Plus, it’s always fun learning to cook something new in the kitchen.
The 20 shows below represent some of the best food-related shows streaming on Hulu right now. There’s a broad range from classic travel-focused food shows to down-and-dirty cooking competitions with cutthroat contestants vying for supremacy. Hopefully, you’ll find the show that suits you and dive in to pass the time. And don’t forget to try out those new recipes after the binge.
20. Beat Bobby Flay
5 seasons, 61 episodes | IMDb: 6.2/10
This is a great concept overall. Celebrity chef Bobby Flay invites home chefs into his studio kitchen to battle it out for a finale round to cook against Flay. Where the show works is in chef Flay’s ability to engage and encourage the home chefs as they battle each other. But don’t worry, there’s plenty of trash-talking too, amping up the fun factor. And, yes, Flay often wins in the finales but not always, making this a very addictive watch.
19. Guy’s Grocery Games
4 seasons, 45 episodes | IMDb: 6.1/10
This is a bit of an outlier when it comes to food competitions. Hosted by the mayor of Flavortown himself, Guy Fieri, the show is very bombastic and likely rigged to make sure the craziest ingredients are thrown at willing contestants as they try and execute something fun and hopefully edible. Overall, this isn’t necessarily a show to draw recipes from. But it is a show that’ll keep you very entertained. Who could ask for more right now?
18. Food Paradise
1 season, 13 episodes | IMDb: 7.9/10
This is a classic show from Travel Channel. Shows like these came around after the monumental success of Anthony Bourdain and largely follow that format. This version shines by filtering the Bourdain travel and food ideal through the vein of Guy Fieri’s Diners, Drive-Ins, and Dives. It’s Americana food with a loving lilt, making it a fun and very easy watch.
10 seasons, 205 episodes | IMDb: 7.3/10
Chef Gordon Ramsay’s MasterChef has proven to be one of the most fun watches out there in food TV land. The show pits home chefs against each other in the same kitchen to see who can perform under pressure. The show brings along a wide range of well-known celebrity chefs to test the mettle of the home cooks as the fast competition sheds fledgling home chefs very quickly. A bonus here is that Ramsay’s often acerbic nature is dialed back and he’s able to show a much more empathetic side. Thankfully.
16. The Great Food Truck Race
4 seasons, 22 episodes | IMDb: 6.6/10
Do you love food truck culture? Do you love cooking show competitions? Then this is the show for you. The show follows a fleet of food trucks as they race to make the most sales in a single day with the lowest earning truck getting eliminated. It’s straight-forward, fast-paced, and full of mouth-watering food. You can’t really ask for more from a unique food competition show.
15. Tasty 101
4 seasons, 33 episodes | IMDb: 7.2/10
This is a great show to get into immediately if want to up your kitchen skills. This is more an informational program than a “show” per se. Each episode offers you a skill — like chopping or knife sharpening — or a recipe. It’s direct, educational, and will help you master some serious skills and recipes in little time.
14. Huang’s World
2 seasons, 18 episodes | IMDb: 7.8/10
Chef and celebrity Eddie Huang is a natural fit for a travel show focused on food. The New York chef turned star travels the globe and learns customs and cultures by really diving deeply into the food scene. While the show does feel like a direct knock-off of Bourdain, it works. Huang doesn’t pretend he’s reinventing the wheel, he just rolls with it and creates a great travel and food show in the process.
12. Food Wars
2 seasons, 37 episodes | IMDb: 8.4/10
Let’s shift gears for a moment. The show is a great respite from the usual in-studio food shows or travel-based foodie romps. This is a narrative anime that has food at the center of every episode. The show follows a budding young chef as he tries to save his father’s restaurant, navigates Japan’s most elite culinary school, and invents recipes that wow his friends, diners, and family.
13. Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives
5 seasons, 56 episodes | IMDb: 7.3/10
This show might be the easiest binge on the list. You can just put it on in the background and dip in and out for hours. Whenever you do dip in, you’re going to see something truly delicious being cooked for Guy Fieri and he’ll be eating it shortly. The show also serves as a fascinating window into American food culture for the working and middle classes where quality is directly related to “bang for the buck.”
This is America, fam.
11. F*ck, That’s Delicious
3 seasons, 30 episodes | IMDb: 8.1/10
Rapper and former pro-cook Action Bronson is the perfect fit for a Bourdain-esque travel and food show. Bronson has a stoner affability that leads to quelling munchies all over the world as he tours. The show has a knack for bridging the food of the streets with the food of the higher-classes without making one feel superior to the other. Overall, this is a breeze to watch and has some serious FOMO moments.
10. Kitchen Nightmares
6 seasons, 92 episodes | IMDb: 7.4/10
Interestingly, Kitchen Nightmares is another show where chef Gordon Ramsay is more sympathetic than sharp-tongued. The celebrity chef travels the country trying to help struggling restaurants and their owners get back on their feet. The show is often harrowing in how poorly run the kitchens are. But it’s also heart-warming in how Ramsay is able to bring crews and families together to save their livelihoods and make food people want to eat.
9. Bizarre Foods With Andrew Zimmern
5 seasons, 24 episodes | IMDb: 7.9/10
Chef Andrew Zimmern took a concept proven by Anthony Bourdain — that travel and food go hand-in-hand — and expanded it to include breaking down xenophobic ideas about food. Let’s face it, it’s easy to “other” food from cultures that don’t fit in our own norms. It happens all too often. Zimmern set out on a quest to show the world that we all eat things that are unique to our cultures and locations, and no, it’s not weird. Well, maybe sometimes it is, as Zimmern pointed out in his “scrapple” episode.
8. Jamie’s Quick & Easy Food
2 seasons, 26 episodes | IMDb: 8.3/10
Chef Jamie Oliver has an affability that makes him the perfect stand-and-stir cooking host. This is a great recipe show for anyone looking to get into cooking but who also feels intimidated by ingredients lists that hit double digits. Oliver keeps these recipes to just five main ingredients which are often very easily sourceable at the average supermarket near you. These are recipes you can try right now, and you should.
7. Cutthroat Kitchen
7 seasons, 91 episodes | IMDb: 7.2/10
Alton Brown’s cooking competition show is like Chopped with karma. Four chefs compete for $25,000 with a twist. They can spend their prize money to handicap their opponents by taking away ingredients, adding unnecessary steps, or just annoying them. It’s fun first and foremost with some serious cooking tips thrown in to inspire you in your own kitchen.
6. Bong Appetit
2 seasons, 20 episodes | IMDb: 8/10
Cannabis has changed food culture drastically in places it’s legal. Food as a delivery system for THC and CBD is a natural fit, and chefs have built entire brands around just that. This stoner food show travels around the country and dives into everything cannabis and food. Again, there’s no reinventing the wheel here when it comes to travel/food shows. But who cares? Get some THC in your body and set it on autoplay.
12 seasons, 153 episodes | IMDb: 7.5/10
Chopped is the home chef’s answer to Bravo’s Top Chef. Aspiring home cooks gather to compete in a high-pressure cooking competition for cash. There are secret ingredients, sharp-tongued-yet-helpful judges, and tear-jerking backstories from the contestants. This is the sort of show where you’ll realize you’ve watched an entire season without really noticing.
4. The Wine Show
2 seasons, 20 episodes | IMDb: 8.9/10
Are you looking for an Italian wine education? Hulu’s got you covered. Matthew Goode (Downton Abbey) and Matthew Rhys (The Americans) galavant across the Italian countryside, sip glass after glass of wine, eat piles of cheese and cured meats, and learn the ins-and-outs of the wine trade. The two hosts have real chemistry that helps make this show amazingly bingeable. Rhys is a giggling, tipsy mess half the time and Goode is a cheeky bastard.
3. Worth It
5 seasons, 47 episodes | IMDb: 8.7/10
This series from Buzzfeed has a great concept. The hosts land in a city and try differently priced versions of the same foods and then reconvene to judge whether the $100 luxury version of something in a starred restaurant was really better than the $1 street food version of that food. It’s a fun watch that’ll have you reconsidering where you spend your food dollars when you arrive in a new city.
15 seasons, 231 episodes | IMDb: 7.6/10
Top Chef is the gold-standard of cooking show competitions. The show invites around 16 professional chefs on each season to cook-it-out on TV for the title “Top Chef,” a purse of $125,000, and features at the Food & Wine Festival in Aspen. The show set the bar for which all other cooking shows reach. It’s fast-paced, dramatic, and mouth-watering fun.
1. Anthony Bourdain: No Reservations
2 seasons, 30 episodes | IMDb: 8.4/10
Anthony Bourdain’s No Reservations is the show that changed food and travel shows forever. There are many imitators on this list. But this is the OG travel and food show that’s a must-watch while it’s still available. Bourdain’s ability to blend travel, food, and culture into the single, watchable format without pandering and upping the format’s style will always be a great watch or even rewatch if you haven’t visited the series in a while.