The Most Influential People of Food TV

Hot culinary news doesn’t flash across my newsfeed often. McDonald’s offering all-day breakfast comes to mind as the last time I really paid attention to any food-related story, but I freaked out when Alton Brown, Food Network star and creator of my favorite cooking show Good Eats, announced that he would soon release an internet-based reboot of his amazing culinary show in 2017!

“Host Alton Brown explores the origins of ingredients, decodes culinary customs, and presents food and equipment trends. Punctuated by unusual interludes, simple preparations and unconventional discussions, he’ll bring you food in its finest and funniest form.” Read more at:

Dice can’t wait for Good Eats “2.0,” but first, let’s look at the history of the culinary show.


food-betty1924 – Betty Crocker Cooking School of the Air

In 1921, an ad for Gold Medal Flour running in the Saturday Evening Post offered consumers a flour-sack-shaped pincushion as a prize for completing a puzzle contained in the ad. Overwhelmed by the more than 30,000 responses, many of which contained handwritten letters from homemakers across the country, the executives at Washburn-Crosby Company (a precursor of General Mills) created Betty Crocker to respond. A few years later, her radio program would be broadcast nationwide for 24 years by NBC radio. In 1945, Fortune magazine named Betty Crocker the second Most-Known American Woman behind only Eleanor Roosevelt.


food-james-beard1946 – James Beard Loves to Eatelsie-1-282x300

Known today for his namesake foundation and culinary awards, in 1946 James Beard’s I Love to Eat television program was the first network cooking show. Sponsored by Borden and featuring a sketch of Elsie, Borden’s famous cow, the show only lasted until 1947 and predated the use of the kinescope, so only a few audio recordings of the show remain. In 1990, the James Beard Awards were started and are considered to be the “Oscars of the food world.”



food-julia-child1963 – Julia Child is The French Chef

Airing 201 episodes from 1963-1973, Julia Child is arguably the most well known TV chef, bringing The French Chef to PBS stations across the country. In 1972, The French Chef became the first U.S. TV show to use open captioning, allowing deaf viewers to read the show’s dialogue.




food-alton1999 – Alton suggests some Good Eats

For 14 seasons, Alton Brown broke down the science behind the kitchen on Food Network’s amazing show Good Eats. Appearing in 244 episodes, Good Eats trails only Rachel Ray’s 30-Minute Meals and The Barefoot Contessa as the network’s longest running series.



What’s your favorite cooking show?