Watching other people make food, understanding their thought process behind each recipe, and hearing about the mistakes they’ve made and the lessons they’ve learned along the way helps you become a better home cook. Thanks to YouTube and unlike television, you can also do it on your terms instead of having to count the hours until your favorite show gets aired.
Here’s the thing: not all cooking shows on YouTube are alike. Some get the recipes wrong and cook bland food. Others honestly have more subscribers and views than their videos deserve because they contain misleading and mediocre advice. Then there’s the third kind where the hosts focus a little bit too much on themselves and too little on the food that they’re there to make in the first place.
In this post, I’ll share the best cooking shows on YouTube, so that you can skip the bs and focus on the people and content who will help you make great food, make you smile, and laugh your heart off.
1. Bon Appétit
If you like to discover new things about food and experiment with recipes and cooking techniques, you’re going to love Bon Appétit magazine’s YouTube channel.
What I like about Bon Appétit is that their videos are not scripted. Yes, you know what recipe one of their chefs is going to make or what topic they’ll get together in a group to talk about and experiment on. As they make mistakes and share personal stories, though, you sometimes learn more about cooking than you’d do from a class or a cookbook.
My favorite shows are It’s Alive With Brad where Brad Leone makes fermented food, From the Test Kitchen where Bon Appétit’s professional chefs cook classic recipes from various cuisines, and One of Everything where Alex Delany tries one of everything on the menu of iconic American restaurants with his colleagues starring as guests.
This year, Bon Appétit started filming outside of the test kitchen and from the homes of their team. And they have some great content for home cooks. Whether it’s making the most of whatever veggies you have in the freezer or cooking up classic Italian-American dishes like chicken parmesan and pasta carbonara, you’ll find many videos to draw inspiration from for tonight’s dinner.
2. Gordon Ramsay
Learn how to cook tasty food at home with professional chef and TV personality Gordon Ramsay‘s recipes and cooking techniques on YouTube.
Even if you only recently got into home cooking, Gordon Ramsay needs no introduction (but I’m going to make one anyway). Michelin-star chef, restaurateur, and infamous loudmouth with a number of television shows on cooking and restaurant makeovers, Gordon Ramsay is as big of a personality as they come on YouTube.
He’s also very good at teaching you how to cook. His step-by-step instructions will help you get the basics right. Start with the home-cooked favorites playlist. When it’s that time of year again, don’t forget to get recipe ideas from Gordon’s top holiday recipes playlist.
The best part about learning from Gordon Ramsay’s YouTube channel? He can’t get angry at and won’t scream at you even if you get things wrong 🙂 .
3. Sam the Cooking Guy
No, his food isn’t healthy. But it’s delicious. Meet Sam the Cooking Guy, who’s out on a mission to make America cook again.
When you’re craving a chopped cheese sandwich, chicken döner kebab, cheese panini, or BBQ pork sandwich — and you’re wondering how you can make one at home — head to no other cooking channel on YouTube than Sam The Cooking Guy.
Television cook (who’s won 15 Emmys, people!), YouTube personality, and restaurateur Sam Zien is here to help you make easy and delicious food at home. He’s also entertaining. Whether it’s responding to haters or exchanging passive-aggressive comments with his son and camera operator Max, his show is authentic and lively to watch.
Finally, someone who just helps you cook good food and is not there to impress you with anything else but their genuine passion for food. And he uploads a lot of content every Monday, Wednesday, and Friday. See for yourself. Check out his 206-page playlist called best munchies recipes. Or his 196-video playlist for burgers and sandwiches.
4. French Cooking Academy
Learn to cook French food from someone who actually knows how to do it. Every Thursday, Stéphane posts a new French recipe on his YouTube channel, French Cooking Academy.
From home-style roast chicken and duck leg confit to classic stews like beef bourguignon and cassoulet, French Cooking Academy has a recipe for any season and every occasion. Get started with Stéphane’s easy comfort food recipes and move on to the more advanced recipes for keen home cooks.
Stéphane is really good at teaching you classic French cuisine. One thing I really like about his approach is that he makes the most complex of dishes with the most elaborate of sauces surprisingly easy to understand and cook. Many home cooks give up on the idea of cooking French food because it looks too difficult to make. That’s not going to be the case after you watch a couple of videos on French Cooking Academy.
As an added benefit, you’re going to pick up some words for ingredients and cooking methods in French along the way.
5. Italia Squisita
Folks, it’s hard to put into words just how great this YouTube channel is. If you want to learn anything about Italian cuisine, go to Italia Squisita.
The best Italian chefs in the world will teach you how to make Neapolitan-style pizza, authentic and traditional pasta dishes, and cook risotto, ragu, pesto, and meatballs the right way. Italia Squisita is like getting private lessons in cooking Italian food from the only professionals who have the knowledge and experience to tell you how to do it.
It’s also really entertaining. Check out their playlist called “Italian Chefs’ Reactions and Reviews,” where Italian chefs watch and comment on the most popular videos for Italian recipes on YouTube. You’ll be amazed by how little you — and most food bloggers, YouTubers, and even professional chefs — know about Italian cuisine.
If you love to make Italian food, Italia Squisita’s videos on YouTube are going to be a game changer for your home cooking.
6. Everyday Food
Fun, friendly, and down to earth, Martha Stewart’s editorial team will teach you how to make quick and delicious food at home on the Everyday Food YouTube channel.
If you’ve ever wondered about the practical side of home cooking — like how to grill the perfect steak, make creamy mashed potatoes, or which type of flour to use for what — chances are that you’re going to find your answer on Everyday Food.
My favorite playlists are Kitchen Conundrums with Thomas Joseph and Healthy Appetite with Shira Bocar. Thomas shares super useful tips and tricks to get day to day things right in the kitchen and Shira offers great ideas for healthy and delicious recipes to cook at home.
What I really like about Everyday Food is that it’s a channel that doesn’t pretend to be something else. It’s an easy-going, no-frills show that helps home cooks like you and me make delicious food in a quick and easy way. What more can you ask for, really?
7. Pro Home Cooks
Mike G is on a mission to find some of the best bread, pizza, sandwiches, and recipes for home cooks like you and me on his YouTube channel, Pro Home Cooks.
Mike is an approachable and warm host. He’s a home cook like you and me; an ordinary person in the best possible sense of the word. And he knows how to break down complicated topics, like fermenting food or brewing your own beer, into simple and easy guides.
Some of my favorite playlists on Pro Home Cooks are the sandwich series, where Mike shows you how to cook sandwich classics like the Philly cheesesteak or katsu sandwich, and the beginner’s guide to baking bread, where he shares the art and craft of making sourdough bread at home.
8. Jamie Oliver
Want to learn how to cook healthy and mouth watering food at home? Head on to Jamie Oliver‘s YouTube channel.
Jamie Oliver is a British chef and restaurateur. He shares recipes for staying healthy, cooking tips and tricks, and ideas for cooking with your kids on his channel. Check out his stay at home cooking skills playlist, practical how-to videos for your day to day meals, and favorite burger recipes.
Jamie cooks everyday food, and that’s what’s great about his channel. In his philosophy, you don’t need fancy ingredients and costly cookware to make great food for you and your family. All you need to cook Jamie’s recipes is fresh ingredients and the right technique. That’s a home cooking philosophy I definitely agree with.
True to its Vice Media ownership, the hosts on Munchies have at least as much character as the food. And that’s what makes it a unique YouTube channel.
From The Cooking Show with Munchies Culinary Director Farideh Sadeghin to my all-time favorite food show, The Pizza Show show with New York City pizzaiolo Frank Pinello, Munchies is a channel packed with great content about cooking and eating — at home, in restaurants, or across the world with rapper and chef Action Bronson.
Munchies is one of those YouTube channel that doesn’t always get it right. But when they do, they make some of the best shows and episodes ever made (and that will probably ever be made) about food and cooking. I mean, just check out a couple of episodes from the iconic Chef’s Night Out series, where professional chefs and their friends go out to their favorite restaurants and get drunk as they talk about life and work.
Where else are you going to watch Action Bronson exchanging chicken wings for ice cream with an ice cream truck driver? Or Cajun chef Isaac Toups telling you to be real delicate with your garlic as he smashes it with the power of Thor while showing you how to make Cajun Jambalaya?
10. Matty Matheson
He’s extremely loud, very obnoxious, and swears more than you can imagine. But he knows how to cook delicious food. He’s Matty Matheson.
There’s nothing average about Canadian chef and Internet personality Matty Matheson. Whether it’s his size, his tattoos, his hairstyle, or his behavior, you have to admit he broke the mold. He’s also a rarely authentic and truly captivating person who wants to show you the best things he’s learned about cooking in his career.
Sit back, turn down the volume, and listen to what this man has to share. Start with his home style cookery playlist where he’ll teach you a thing or two about steak, pasta, or salad. Or check out It’s Suppertime to see his carbonara and meatballs, bomb-ass bánh mì, or big dog porchetta.
We all need a little craziness and playfulness here and there. And Matty Matheson is the best person on the Internet to help you go wild in your home kitchen.
11. NYT Cooking
Yes, the New York Times has a cooking channel on YouTube. And NYT Cooking is not behind a paywall, unlike the cooking section on its website.
You can count on NYT Cooking for great recipes and real advice. From Alison Roman’s creamy cauliflower pasta and baked ziti to the 8 spectacular pies checklist for home cooks with a sweet tooth, you get the same high-quality and high-reliability food journalism that you’re used to getting from one of the best newspapers in the world.
Some of my favorites on NYT Cooking are by chefs Samin Nosrat and Sohla El-Waylly. I really like the #CookMyLife challenge that asks chefs to cook through three dishes that have defined their lives.
Greek celebrity chef Akis Petretzikis shares tasty recipes and great tips for cooking Greek and, as a whole, Mediterranean food on his channel.
John Quilter, a.k.a. Food Busker, recently went through a creative drought on his YouTube channel. Still, no one can do street food recipes like John.
Food52 is a lesser-known YouTube channel with great hosts and genius recipes. Baker and food writer Erin Jeanne McDowell is a real darling.
America’s Test Kitchen post no-nonsense recipes, tried-and-tested cooking techniques. They also do pretty objective kitchen gear reviews.
I’m not vegan per se, but I do eat plant-based meals most often. When I’m looking for inspiration, I go to Pick Up Limes and avantgardevegan. Or to John Joseph’s raw stories and recipes shared with love on The Hard Truth.
Now that you know my favorite cooking shows on YouTube, what are yours? Which hosts do you find the funniest, most genuine, most insightful? If you could only watch cooking videos from a single YouTube channel for the rest of your lifetime, which one would it be?
Thanks for reading and let me know your faves in the comments below, folks.