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My Favorite Reality Contest TV Shows - Cooking

Updated on July 5, 2012

Do you share my Joy of the Chef Challenge & Extravagant Cake Shows?

I have liked cooking shows pre-cable TV. But now, OMG, I love the newest venue of the chef's challenge and the building of fantastical cakes.

The ideas for a great meal and creative desert is a wonderful incentive.

But, I think part of it is watching experienced chefs having difficulty with the planning, execution and even the taste of the recipes they create on-the-fly.

I mean, how can I but feel better when one of my dishes crashes and burns in any way possible when an expert has disastrous time attempting to make a good meal.

The cake challenges I would not even attempt, but it sure is fun to watch.

I see posted here in Squidoo to write about what you enjoy. So here's dinner and desert in no particular order beyond the dinner course shows followed by the cake shows. :D Enjoy.

Top Chef... My Ultimate Favorite - Bravo, Wednesdays, 10/9 central

Top Chef
Top Chef

This show is the first one that started my fascination with cooking show challenges.

It gets better every year.

Cool Chef and head judge Tom Colicchio and hosted by the very classy and cookbook author Padma Lakshmi. Can't beat the chemistry.

Chef contestants (Cheftestants) compete in in each episode in a Quick Fire challenge which may include immunity from elimination or special prize. Then the Chefs proceed into the Elimination challenges to chose a winner, with the loser being told "Please pack your knives and go"., The final winner receives the honor of being named Top Chef and $200,000 and other prizes to start their own restaurant. Even the losers win though, as many have went on to their own successful careers.

Credit and to see more: Top Chef on

Top Chef Masters... The Elite Chefs version - Bravo, Wednesdays, 11 /10 c

Top Chef Masters Season 3 with Curtis Stone
Top Chef Masters Season 3 with Curtis Stone

It's been panned by the critics for being a lame follow-up to the Top Chef show because it lacks the rivalry of the younger chefs. I like it because there is a grace free from drama about the Master chefs treatment of each other. Another Bonus: Curtis Stone will be hosting it this season. Yum!

This season 12 Top Chefs will compete by elimination much like the original Top Chef series. Each week, winners of the Quick Fire will receive $5000, the episode winner will win $10, 000, with the final prize of $100,000. The prize money for each is earmarked for their favorite charities, How cool is that?

Credit and to see more: Top Chef Masters on

When I'm feeling Evil... Throwdown with Bobby Flay - Food Network in Syndication

I like to see Bobby get beat trying to come up with a better version of the meal of which his guest chefs are well known. Sometimes it does happen during his surprise drop-in challenges. I'm not sure if Bobby is very confident or just a little arrogant, but to me he's seems supremely arrogant.

Told you it was Evil. :D

I'm not sure if Bobby is a very confident chef, or just a little arrogant, but I think it may be both.

Credit: Throwdown with Bobby Flay on

What's your Favorite Chef Show here?

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What Chef Challenge do you think should be here?

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Cake Boss... A Family business - TLC, Mondays, 9/8 c

There's nothing like a all-in-the-family business...

I'm not kidding. Buddy Valastro is the Cake Boss. His team includes his 4 sisters, 3 brothers-in-law and his even his mom. I wonder how that works. Actually you can see how the family vs. business works on a daily basis. He especially has some nearly head-butting moments with his sister, Mary.

Filmed in the family bakery Carlo's City Hall Bake Shop in Hoboken, New Jersey.

Credit: Cake Boss on

Ace of Cakes... A delightful Contrast - Food Network 2006-2010

Love the contrast of a tattooed, biker-looking, rock musician with a successful cake business.

Duff and his talented cake building artist employees, some are also rock musicians, turn out some of the best bakery creations. Sometime unusual tools are used. Like the hardware-type. :D

Filmed at Charm City Cakes in Baltimore, Maryland.

Ace of Cakes is no longer filming, but I'll keep watching re-runs til I see all 104 episodes. :D

Credit: Ace of Cakes on

Ultimate Cake Off... Cake Artist's Challenge - TLC, Mondays, 9/8 c

Three chef and their teams are challenged to create huge theme cakes that are created especially for events. These chefs make their over the top creations in hours instead of weeks. The winning chef's cake is used in the event.

Very little drama, just for drama's appeal, beyond the hectic contest itself which is more than enough to frazzle these cake artists.

Credit: Ultimate Cake Off on

Fairy Tale Wedding
Fairy Tale Wedding

It's the most intense Ultimate Cake Off ever! The pressure causes some of the cake decorators to break down in tears as they work to make the winning cake for a fairy tale wedding with 500 guests, and take home the $10,000.


Which is your Favorite Cake Show?

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What Cake Show do you think should be here?

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Would like a care for a meal or just desert?

What Competition do/would you prefer to see?

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Picture Credit: Squid Chef created by SquidArtToo by Steve Thompson / tagsforkids

Leave your crumbs here... and a perhaps a tip? - Was our service up to par? How I could improve your dining pleasure?

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    • jastreb profile image


      5 years ago

      I love eating and cooking:) recently have started to bake cakes. It is such an addiction:) Thanks for a great lens and love the programs as well.

    • martie01 lm profile image

      martie01 lm 

      5 years ago

      Excellent Lens. I love watching the cake boss and Anthony Bordane.

    • endamclarnon profile image

      Enda McLarnon 

      5 years ago from Belfast, Ireland

      Gordon Ramseys Kitchen Nightmare is probably my favourite and you eventually get some great tips for meals out of it.

    • Alan Katz profile image

      Alan Katz 

      5 years ago from Florida

      Thanks for sharing this lens. You've given some interesting information. I too like watching the Food Network.

    • Rick Wyble profile image

      Rick Wyble 

      5 years ago

      Good lens. I also love cooking shows. I'm a fair everyday cook. I don't have the luxury of cable, but I loved the last Master Chef season because the blind girl took it all. I am visually challenged myself, so naturaly I was in her corner. I'm a rabid fan of PBS cooking shows. I make the best chocolate chip cookie you'll ever eat. Keep cooking.

    • Bonfire Designs profile image

      Bonfire Designs 

      6 years ago

      I am a Food Network junkie, love all the programs too!

    • artbyrodriguez profile image

      Beverly Rodriguez 

      7 years ago from Albany New York

      Now that he's retired, my husband, also, does all the cooking. He enjoys it!I went to N.J. to see Carlos Bakery, and bought a few things. Had to wait on line for one hour, though. Entertaining lens.

    • SoyCandleLover profile imageAUTHOR

      BW Duerr 

      8 years ago from Henrietta, New York

      @ElizabethJeanAl: Thank you... and I'm jealous! Your husband's a keeper. Can I borrow him? :D

    • ElizabethJeanAl profile image


      8 years ago

      I like to make fancy deserts and holiday meals, but now days my husband doesn most of the the day-to-day cooking.Thanks for sharing

    • verymary profile image


      9 years ago from Chicago area

      Nice lens! 5* and rolling this to "My Top 10 Top Chef Guest Judges"

    • SoyCandleLover profile imageAUTHOR

      BW Duerr 

      9 years ago from Henrietta, New York

      [in reply to spunkyduckling] Be careful... it's addicting. :D Thanks for stopping in.

    • SoyCandleLover profile imageAUTHOR

      BW Duerr 

      9 years ago from Henrietta, New York

      [in reply to awelldressedbullet] Thanks for dropping in for a meal, but cleanup not required. :D Thanks for dropping in.

    • profile image


      9 years ago

      Just stopped by to vacuum up the crumbs LOL, nice lens, thanks for the visit - Kathy

    • spunkyduckling profile image


      9 years ago

      Hey my mom and sister are a big fan of this show. I've watched a few times myself. Hmm..great topic for a lens, I can almost taste it! LOL

    • SoyCandleLover profile imageAUTHOR

      BW Duerr 

      9 years ago from Henrietta, New York

      [in reply to JaguarJulie] I know what you mean. I do sometimes catch my hubby watching Ace of Cakes over my shoulder. :D

    • profile image


      9 years ago

      Ah my dear -- it took quite a few episodes, but I've got hubby watching Hell's Kitchen with Chef Gordon Ramsay -- I've not caught any other cooking shows except maybe Martha Stewart. But, I do love the reality shows quite a bit!

    • SoyCandleLover profile imageAUTHOR

      BW Duerr 

      9 years ago from Henrietta, New York

      [in reply to chefkeem] Thanks so much for your comment and blessing. Much appreciated.

    • chefkeem profile image

      Achim Thiemermann 

      9 years ago from Austin, Texas

      Too many cooks might spoil the porridge but they sure make for a fabulous showcase lens! Blessed by a ChefAngel. :-)(Thank you for the features!)


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