Jimmy Kimmel Is a Massive Cookbook Collector That Keeps 1 By His Bed

A quick dive into late-night host Jimmy Kimmel will reveal his passion for cooking. A slightly deeper look will unveil his love for cookbooks.

The comedian reportedly reads cookbooks before going to bed. His latest joy is barbecue.

One could accuse him of hoarding cookbooks, but with his net worth of around $45 million, it wouldn’t matter since he could build an annex in his California home to shelve every one of his 1000-plus cookbooks.

Jimmy Kimmel wasn’t always popular

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James Christian Kimmel, was born November 13, 1967, in Brooklyn. Despite his New York roots, he has no Brooklyn accent. Perhaps it’s because his family moved to Las Vegas, Nevada, when he was nine.

After Kimmel graduated Ed Clark high school in 1985, he attended the University of Nevada briefly before beginning to work on radio and television. He got his start working as a DJ in Arizona at 21. Then he began working on radio, getting gigs in Seattle, Tucson, Phoenix, and Tampa.

He wasn’t very popular, getting fired from each station before finding his niche as “Jimmy the Sports Guy” in LA It wouldn’t be long before he would reinvent himself with The Man Show and later in Jimmy Kimmel Live!

Jimmy Kimmel
Jimmy Kimmel | Randy Holmes/Walt Disney Television via Getty Images JIMMY KIMMEL

Kimmel says that he wasn’t popular during his high school years, later quipping that the only reason he got into show business was to be comedian David Letterman’s friend.

“There are kids in high school, and this guy’s a baseball player, this guy’s on the wrestling team, this guy is really smart.” He later adds that it was funny how life worked out, “I wasn’t popular in high school, but now every drunken guy in the United States wants to be my pal. They all want to buy me a shot, and pretty soon I’m throwing up.”

All those shots didn’t turn out to be Kimmel’s addiction, instead he found his weakness in the wide world of cookbooks and cooking.

Jimmy Kimmel’s addiction to cookbooks

Kimmel has over 1,000 cookbooks and he is decidedly non-apologetic about his addiction to buying online cookbooks and cookware.  The late-night comedian told Yahoo, Life: “For me, it’s not enough to cook up scrambled eggs on a Saturday morning anymore.”

He is especially proud of his wood-fired pizza oven in his backyard which he fires up for special occasions. Does Kimmel have a favorite cookbook or go with the flavor of the moment? His favorite cookbook seems to be what he is reading at the moment. Right now, that is that barbecue cookbook gracing his nightstand in his bedroom.

He loves working with whatever he finds in his kitchen. He does have a few favorite recipes like marinara sauce, pancakes and his kid-favorite quarantine recipe, Pasta Tina, which is simply cavatappi pasta with pureed cannellini beans instead of spaghetti sauce. He makes it nearly every day for his kids. They didn’t realize until the video that their pasta sauce was a healthy dose of legumes.

Jimmy Kimmel ponders fishing and food

What does Kimmel do when he’s not reading the latest cookbook on barbecue or making pancakes for his kids? He wouldn’t mind making the money he is making in television as a fly fisherman.

Fishing aside, he enjoys his Jimmy Kimmel Live! guest stars like chefs Gordon Ramsey and Norman Van Aken cutting up in the on-set kitchen making recipes like carnival corn dogs and eggs. But for the moment, foodie Kimmel is enjoying spending quality time making pancakes with his kids, finding new recipes for his family and setting his sights on the future now that he’s back from his summer hiatus.

One thing won’t change. He will still collect any cookbook that catches his fancy.