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Cooking – or watching someone else cook – can provide solace and comfort in times of stress. If you find that to be true for you, this list is for you. Our correspondent Julie Chang Murphy has curated a list of the best food and cooking shows on Instagram, to stream on Hulu, Netflix, and other services, and binge watch right now.

cooking can be source of calm and serenity in a challenging time

We’re finding that in moments of high emotion and stress, we frequently crave either a chance to cook something – or to watch someone else do so.

the best food and cooking shows to binge watch right now

the best food and cooking shows to binge watch right now

We’ve got friends and family all along the home cooking spectrum. Some are reveling in their newfound time to whip up delicious restaurant-worthy meals. While others are crying silently into their third bowl of cereal for the day, mourning their favorite dining establishments.

Wherever you are on the spectrum, there’s never been a better time to binge on a cooking show – whether for inspiration or just to reminisce about the glory days of dining out (which were really just about a week ago – can you believe it?)


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If you’re in, here are some ideas about terrific shows to watch  – or re-watch.

the best cooking shows to binge-watch right now

We’ve included travel-based docuseries, cooking competitions and how-to channels on IGTV to satiate all your cravings. Here are the top 12 cooking shows to watch now.

Food & Travel Shows

1. No Reservations

No food and travel show is complete without the late Anthony Bourdain’s original hit which first debuted in 2005 and changed the genre forever. 

The best cooking shows to binge-watch right now: Anthony Bourdain’s No Reservations. Courtesy Photo.

The idiosyncratic bad-boy chef travels to familiar culinary hotspots and out-of-the-way gems in his global quest for the ultimate dining experience. Something we wish we could do right about now. Watch or rewatch on Hulu while it’s still available.

2. Ugly Delicious

James Beard Award-winning chef David Chang, founder of the Momofuku restaurant group follows in Bourdain’s sociological approach towards food.

The best cooking shows to binge-watch right now

The best cooking shows to binge-watch right now: Ugly Delicious. Courtesy Photo.

He’s joined by writers, activists, actors and comedians to use food as a vehicle to break down cultural barriers and tackle misconceptions. From the complicated history of soul food to the true origin of pizza, you’ll definitely come away learning something more about the world. Now in its second season on Netflix.


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3. Salt, Fat, Acid, Heat

New York Times Magazine food columnist and author Samin Nosrat travels to the home kitchens of Italy, southern islands of Japan, the Yucatán, and back home to Berkeley to highlight the elements of food she claims are essential to a delicious dish.  

The best cooking shows to binge-watch right now: Salt, Fat, Acid, Heat. Courtesy Photo.

Nosrat has an easy-going and non-pretentious style that is especially appealing to home cooks. This 4-episode series is currently on Netflix.

4.  Cooked

The celebrated author of The Omivore’s Dilemma and In Defense of Food, Michael Pollan, joins with Netflix to star in a 4-episode mini series based one of his other books, Cooked.

The best cooking and food shows to binge-watch on Netflix right now: Cooked with Michael Pollan. Courtesy Photo.

Each episode explores food past and present through the four elemental categories — fire, water, air and earth. The series sees Pollan traveling through Australia, India, Morocco and back to California. The central message- “a clarion call for a return to the kitchen in order to reclaim lost traditions and restore balance to our lives” could not be more prescient.


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Cooking Competitions

5. The Great British Baking Show

This utterly charming PBS show (also on Netflix) is something the whole family can watch together.

Cooking and food shows on Netflix: The Great British Baking Show. Courtesy Photo.

Passionate novice bakers compete each episode to present a themed concoction. But there is no cutthroat competition or yelling. Just lovely British manners, endearing contestants and beautiful pastries.

6. Nailed It

If you’ve ever felt crushingly incompetent while watching any cooking competition show, Nailed It is the show you’ve been waiting for.

The best cooking and food shows on Netflix and other streaming services right now: Nailed It. Courtesy Photo.

Each episode on Netflix sees totally unassuming bakers attempt to pull off a series of difficult baking projects—all of which are way too difficult for them, which makes their ultimate failures absolutely hilarious. The “most successful” baker wins a $10,000 prize so they can go forth and buy a cake, instead of making one ever again.


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7. The Big Family Cooking Showdown

Another feel-good British import on Netflix, this show is the savory companion to The Great British Baking Show.

The best cooking shows on streaming services right now: The Big Family Cooking Showdown. Courtesy Photo.

The true genius of the show is recognizing the tension and drama inherent to any family cooking situation, which is quite entertaining when it doesn’t involve your own family micro-manager (not that I would know anything about that.) Ultimately, the show is a wonderful celebration of the family meal.

8. Kitchen Nightmares

Although celebrity chef Gordon Ramsay might be most known for his sharp-tongue expletives, in this series, Ramsay is actually more sympathetic and heartwarming.

The best cooking shows on streaming services right now: Kitchen Nightmares. Courtesy Photo.

He travels the country trying to help struggling restaurants and their owners get back on their feet. This timely show on Hulu shines on a light on the struggles of the average restaurateur and the livelihoods and neighbors that depend on them.


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How-To-Cook Instagram Channels

9. Kitchen Quarantine

Michelin-starred chef Massimo Bottura just launched a new Instagram series called “Kitchen Quarantine.”

Food and cooking shows on Instagram

Food and cooking shows on Instagram: Massimo Bottura Kitchen Quarantine. Courtesy Photo.

Watching the affable Bottura make Thai curry, tortellini or salad is somehow motivating and soothing at the same time.

10. So Yummy

Families with young children (and frankly, children of all ages) will adore this down-to-earth channel of sweets and treats.

Food and cooking shows on Instagram: So Yummy.

So what if candy bar bakes and Oreo cakes aren’t the healthiest? If there was any time to treat yourself, it’s now.


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11. Gather and Feast

The first thing that you notice about this channel is the gorgeously depicted food.

Food and cooking shows on Instagram: Gather and Feast.

Dig a little further and you’ll find wholesome recipes that are simple and straightforward to make – even for hesitant home cooks.


12. WhatsGabyCookin

There’s much to love about the recipes here. They’re practical (23 recipes to turn a can of beans into something spectacular), creative (Bacon and Brussel Sprout Pizza) and filling (Chicken Fajita Quinoa Bake).

Food and cooking shows on Instagram

Food and cooking shows on Instagram: WhatsGabyCookin. Courtesy Photo.

We have used many weeknight recipes from Gaby and they have quickly become part of our dinner rotation.

the best cooking shows to binge-watch right now

Those are our top picks for excellent cooking shows that are perfect for this moment. Please let us know what foods and food shows are comforting you during this time. Up next, we’ll be sharing our favorite staff recipes with you! Stay safe and healthy, dear reader.

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For access to insider ideas and information on the world of luxury, sign up for our Dandelion Chandelier Newsletter hereAnd see luxury in a new light.

Crediting her training as a cultural anthropologist at Wellesley College, Julie has immersed herself in various industries in the last 15 years including fashion design, event planning, and fitness. Julie lives in New York where she loves trying every ramen and dumpling restaurant with her husband and three children. She finds joy in bold prints, biographies of fierce women, kickboxing. And spending way too long finding the perfect polish color to express her mood.