This Is the Only Fast Food Item Anthony Bourdain Will Ever Eat

As a guy who’s made his millions traveling the world in search of previously unheard-of foods, Anthony Bourdain isn’t one to shy away from telling us exactly what he thinks. But no matter how many locally-sourced, can’t-get-it-anywhere-but-here dishes he’s tried over the course of his career, even well-traveled chefs have their guilty pleasures.

In addition to Bourdain, we’ve rounded up 14 celebrity chefs who’ve shared their dirty little secrets, and we’re loving it. From favorite fast food joints to sinful junk food snacks, these are the guilty pleasures celebrity chefs succumb to.

1. Wolfgang Puck

Wolfgang Puck via Instagram

He loves In-N-Out. | Wolfgang Puck via Instagram

Guilty pleasure go-to: In-N-Out

A burger chain that’s mouthwateringly delicious? You bet. Unless you live under a rock, you’re well-aware that In-N-Out is a favorite, and famous celebs aren’t the only well-known folks to love every bite of those juicy burgers. Top chefs are undoubtedly discerning consumers, and there are plenty who love the chain just as much as Wolfgang Puck.

“I like it because you can have a hamburger wrapped in lettuce instead of a bun,” Puck told Bloomberg. “I feel like I am eating a salad. My wife loves it. With our burger, you eat the meat. With theirs, you eat the condiments.”

Next: Another famous chef can’t get enough, either.

2. Alton Brown

Alton Brown via Instagram

Another win for the West Coast chain | Alton Brown via Instagram

Guilty pleasure go-to: In-N-Out

Alton Brown makes one thing clear when it comes to his fast food preferences, and the reigning winner, once again, is In-N-Out. The host of Iron Chef America, Good Eats, and Cutthroat Kitchen gets giddy just thinking about the “greasy but oddly clean-tasting” burgers, and simply can’t get enough of the shakes, which he sincerely believes taste the way they did when he was a kid. In fact, Brown gushed over his true feelings about the caliber of the chain’s shakes. “It makes me tear up just thinkin’ about it,” Brown told Delish.

Next: This place is known for their “old-fashioned burgers.”

3. David Burke

Burke loves Wendy’s. | Spencer Platt/Getty Images

Guilty pleasure go-to: Wendy’s

You may know him from his time spent on Iron Chef America or Top Chef Masters. Or, perhaps you’ve eaten at one of the many well-known restaurants he’s had his hand in. Either way, David Burke has had a seasoned career, which means lots of late nights. And on the nights he drives home hungry, Burke’s fast food stop of choice is always Wendy’s.

Next: One of these spots is a Louisiana favorite. 

4. Danny Meyer


He loves Chipotle salads. | Saul Loeb/AFP/Getty Images

Guilty pleasure go-to: Popeyes and Chipotle

Best-selling author, restaurateur, and CEO of the Union Square Hospitality Group, Danny Meyer admits that he considers there to be two front-runners in the fast food game. “I treat myself to Popeyes a couple of times a year and I am wickedly happy downing a few pieces (wings and thighs best) of their crispy, spicy chicken — with a side of dirty rice and biscuits,” Meyer told Bloomberg. “Or I’m completely satisfied making a lunch of a salad from Chipotle, loaded with grilled chicken, pinto beans, shredded cheese, extra cilantro, and spicy dressing.”

Next: Meyer’s not the only one who loves Popeyes. 

5. David Chang


Even with access to some of the best food in the world, Chang loves Popeyes. | Joe Raedle/Getty Images

Guilty pleasure go-to: Popeyes

Chef, author, and restaurateur behind the Momofuku restaurant group, David Chang knows a thing or two about quality cuisine. He’s had guest judge spots on Top Chef: All Stars and MasterChef Australia, and hosted the first season of The Mind of a Chef, which Anthony Bourdain produced. Despite his international success — including two Michelin stars — Chang would never say no to some good ‘ole comfort food. In particular, his favorite guilty pleasure is Popeyes fried chicken.

Next: The moment we’ve all been waiting for 

6. Anthony Bourdain

Anthony Bourdain via Facebook

His sophisticated taste buds still love KFC’s mac and cheese. | Anthony Bourdain via Facebook

Guilty pleasure go-to: KFC

The man’s a culinary legend. His rockstar attitude coupled with impossibly sophisticated taste buds, along with his refusal to turn down anything he’s offered makes him one of the most celebrated foodie celebs of all time. For these reasons, it gives us great pleasure to know that he, too, has a fast food favorite.

When WebMD asked if he had a guilty-pleasure food, Bourdain simply replied, “KFC’s macaroni and cheese. I’m SO ashamed.” It’s OK, Bourdain. We feel you on the macaroni and cheese front.

Next: Don’t worry, Bourdain’s choice is still better than most other fast food options. 

7. And here’s the one fast food item he’ll NEVER eat

He stays far away from these. | Chris Hondros/Getty Images

Bourdain’s most hated fast food: Chicken McNuggets

Although we just divulged Bourdain’s love for KFC’s creamy side dish, we respect the man too much to leave it at that. We owe it to him to go one step further here. Although Bourdain admits to having moments of weakness — he’s only human, which is why we love him so much in the first place — he’s still a big naysayer on the fast food epidemic.

In fact, he told WebMD, “I avoid American fast food whenever I can. I never eat chicken McNuggets.” Apparently, they’re just as stomach-churning as the lightly grilled warthog rectum he once ate (do yourself a favor and skip the Google search on that one).

Next: Bourdain’s not the only one who refuses to eat at McDonald’s. 

8. Gordon Ramsay

Gordon Ramsay poses for a photo prior to signing copies of his new book 'Bread Street Kitchen' at Selfridges

The notoriously tough chef has a sweet spot for gummy candy. | Tim P. Whitby/Getty Images

Guilty pleasure go-to: Gummy sweets

Gordon Ramsey’s thoughts on fast food aren’t all that surprising. While we’re not shocked that he’d never eat a burger from McDonald’s, we’re slightly amused by his candy of choice. Admitting he loves chocolate and gummy sweets, it’s safe to say his tooth is a whole lot sweeter than his in-your-face temperament.

Next: Donuts, anyone? 

9. Laurent Tourondel

Burger King

His favorite fast food place is king. | Justin Sullivan/Getty Images

Guilty pleasure go-to: Krispy Kreme and Burger King

Laurent Tourondel is an accomplished chef. His impressive resume includes Executive Chef positions, Michelin-star restaurants, and being named Restaurateur of the Year by Bon Appetit magazine in 2007. But even the genius behind the BLT restaurant empire can’t resist the sticky goodness of a Krispy Kreme doughnut.

Additionally, Tourondel admits to another fast food favorite — Burger King. “Burger King is king! I think overall their fast food packs in the most flavor,” he told Delish.

Next: Not even Iron Chefs can resist the crowd favorite. 

10. Jose Garces

In-n-Out Burger

Another win for In-N-Out | In-N-Out via Facebook

Guilty pleasure go-to: In-N-Out

It really is hard to deny the pull of the West Coast’s most famous drive-thru. We’d never try to argue In-N-Out’s undeniable success, and neither would Jose Garces. The famous Iron Chef revealed to GQ, “When I step off a plane in California from the East Coast, it’s just what I crave!” And we don’t blame him.

Next: These particularly twisty fries deserve a spot on this list. 

11. Stephanie Izard

Arby's curly fries

The curly fries have won her over. | Arby’s via Facebook

Guilty pleasure go-to: Arby’s

In addition to being a Top Chef champion, Stephanie Izard is the chef at Girl & The Goat, Little Goat, and Duck Duck Goat. But more importantly, she isn’t afraid to admit her love for Arby’s curly fries. And with so much flavor packed into each and every fry, it’s hard to resist. Why does she love them, and how? “Because they are delicious (especially with ranch dressing),” she says.

Next: This chef rose to fame with his famous steakhouses. 

12. Charlie Palmer

He’s a fan of their cleanliness. | In-N-Out

Guilty pleasure go-to: In-N-Out

Leave it to a famous steak house chef to consider how clean a fast food joint is. For Charlie Palmer, cleanliness is just one of the many reasons he loves In-N-Out so very much. “The places are incredibly clean. I’m impressed as hell by that. And whatever’s in that sauce is tasty.” His order of choice, he says, is the double-double cheeseburger “Animal Style.”

Next: Ice cream is always a good choice. 

13. Alfred Portale

He has childhood memories here. | Win McNamee/Getty Images

Guilty pleasure go-to: Dairy Queen

There’s certainly no lack of experience when it comes to renowned chef Alfred Portale. In fact, an impressive list of other well-known chefs have worked under him, including Tom Colicchio, Wylie Dufresne, and Christopher Lee. In addition to owning two esteemed restaurants — Gotham Bar and Grill in New York and Gotham Steak in Miami — Portale has made television appearances and written a handful of cookbooks.

He’s known for being at the forefront of the New American cuisine movement, but that doesn’t seem to stop his love for a childhood classic. Portale, who’s been going to Dairy Queen since he was a kid, prefers the Buster Bar or hot fudge sundae as his ultimate guilty pleasures.

Next: One last chef who just can’t get enough of In-N-Out. 

14. Tyler Florence

In-N-Out wins again. | Larry Busacca/Getty Images for NYCWFF

Guilty pleasure go-to: In-N-Out

Yet another Food Network host with nothing but high praise for In-N-Out, Tyler Florence swears by the double-double cheeseburger, “Animal Style.” And his exact thoughts? “I dare anyone to tell me their burgers aren’t as good as any you’ll find anywhere, from fast food to fine dining.” Well, Tyler Florence, challenge accepted.

Next: Another burger place to round out the list

15. Tim Love


A cleaner version of McDonald’s. | Whataburger via Facebook

Guilty pleasure go-to: Whataburger

Former contestant on Iron Chef America and Top Chef Masters, chef Tim Love expresses his undying loyalty for a lesser-known, better-tasting version of McDonald’s. According to Love, who owns Texas-based restaurants including White Elephant Saloon, the Love Shack, and Lonesome Dove Western Bistro, Whataburger is a cleaner, fresher Texas version of McDonald’s. His recommendation? Whataburger with cheese, bacon, and jalapenos, and two sausage-and-egg taquitos.

So, there you have it. You can now take comfort in knowing that Anthony Bourdain occasionally dabbles in fast food fare. Or, perhaps the biggest takeaway is the fact that In-N-Out is hands-down the most winning burger joint of all time. Either way, everyone’s a winner here.

Read more: 15 of the Worst Celebrity Chef Restaurants in America