As a person who recently set pasta on fire, watching the pros cook masterpieces on food-focused TV shows, movies, and documentaries is the closest I tend to get to feeling the heat of the kitchen stove. Thankfully, Netflix has made it easy for folks like me who can’t really cook vegan cacio e pepe to at least be able to fake it during polite conversation.
Whether you’re interested in learning more about how the food you eat makes its way to your plate or would rather spend hours watching Anthony Bourdain to glean both food and travel tips, these are the best food- and cooking-related things to watch on Netflix. And, who knows? Maybe after getting inspired by the pros, your meal-prep game will include more than nut butter, jelly, and healthier bread.
Start your culinary journey below.
1. Jiro Dreams of Sushi
Sukiyabashi Jiro is a three Michelin star, 10-seat counter restaurant in Tokyo that’s tucked underneath a train station and is a notoriously impossible reservation to snag. This documentary chronicles the owner Jiro and his two sons who work for him at the famous restaurant.
2. Anthony Bourdain: Parts Unknown
The chef, author, and TV star spends the hour-long episodes traveling, eating, and talking to people. That’s really the only premise of the show, which makes for spontaneous conversations and unusual delicacies.
3. Ugly Delicious
This new Netflix original series follows David Chang (the chef and culinary guru behind all of those Momofuku restaurants) as he delves into the international history of a single dish per episode.
4. The Great British Baking Show
American cooking TV shows are extremely intense—there’s abrasive music, loud countdown clocks, sabotage, and usually a lot crying. The Great British Baking Show on the other hand is super soothing and encouraging. There’s soft piano music playing in the background, contestants helping each other, and a nature-immersed locale where the bakers do their magic.
In 2013, Michael Pollan published Cooked: A Natural History of Transformation, and in 2016, Netflix released a four-part documentary series based on the book and narrated by Pollan. The series draws on the same historical, philosophical, and economic, underpinnings to explore the world of food and cooking.
For more help figuring out what to watch on TV, check out these Netflix TV shows for your next BFF hangout and these Hulu picks that are perfect for shut-in season.
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