How Much Anthony Bourdain and Other Food Network Stars and Celebrity Chefs Are Really Worth
There’s never been a better time to be a celebrity chef. Everyone wants to sample a bit of fine dining, and the popularity of the Food Network means renowned chefs and their restaurants are as well-known as ever. The prices might be high and the lines might long, but those factors aren’t keeping customers away. Good food is big business, which is why these 20 celebrity chefs are worth a ton of money. We’ll count backwards ending with the richest chef, and you just might be shocked by who’s No. 1.
20. Michael Symon
- Net worth: $4 million
This restaurateur, TV show host, Iron Chef America participant, and cookbook author starts our list with a net worth of $4 million. The Cleveland-based chef owns several restaurants, including B-Spot, where you can get one of the best burgers in the country.
Next: Our first female entrant
19. Anne Burrell
- Net worth: $5 million
This spiky-haired blond chef can thank a host of Food Network shows, such as Chef Wanted and Secrets of Restaurant Chef, for helping put her on this list with a net worth of $5 million. The New York native also appeared on Iron Chef America and is an instructor at the Institute of Culinary Education.
Next: You can dine with the fishes at one of this chef’s restaurants.
18. Cat Cora
- Net worth: $7 million
Cora was the first female chef to be one of the titular pros on Iron Chef America and she is a successful restaurant owner. One, the Ocean Restaurant by Cat Cora, is literally located inside an aquarium in Singapore.
Next: Love him or hate him, he’s got a healthy bank account.
17. Guy Fieri
- Net worth: $8.5 million
Whether or not you think his “Welcome to Flavortown” tagline is kitschy or great, there is no getting around the fact that Fieri is tremendously successful. Even though Guy’s American Kitchen might be one of the worst celebrity chef restaurants in America (and even had a spoof menu living online for a while), Fieri remains successful. He is probably known best for his show Diners, Drive-Ins and Dives, though he has written several cookbooks and owns several restaurants worldwide. Add it all up and it equals a net worth of more than $8 million.
Next: Giving up a film career worked out well for this guy.
16. Alton Brown
- Net worth: $13 million
Starting out in the film industry, Brown changed gears and is now one of the more recognizable faces on the Food Network. His show, Good Eats, debuted on Food Network in 1999, and he now has a hand in several shows on the channel. Also the author of multiple cookbooks, Brown has parlayed his culinary career into a net worth of $13 million.
Next: A burly Englishman who’s bringing home the bacon.
15. Robert Irvine
- Net worth: $15 million
Like the chefs we have already encountered and many of the ones to come, Irvine started out as a chef before expanding to other areas. He made his name with the Food Network show Restaurant: Impossible, but he also makes money with his restaurants, cookbooks, and apparel.
Next: An outspoken New Yorker who is known for TV as much as for food.
14. Anthony Bourdain
- Net worth: $16 million
You know this outspoken chef from shows like No Reservations, Parts Unknown, and The Layover. You might remember his cameo in the movie The Big Short. Though Bourdain is best known as a TV personality these days, he got his start as a chef and has written several books. The combination of all his work helps him claim a net worth of $16 million.
Next: One of the original Iron Chefs shows up on the list.
13. Masaharu Morimoto
- Net worth: $18 million
Morimoto was one of the original Iron Chefs as he starred in the Japanese version of the show before it was produced by the Food Network. When it was rebranded as Iron Chef America, Morimoto remained as one of its stars. According to his website, he operates several restaurants around the world as also has his name on beer, knives, and cookbooks.
Next: It’s not surprising to see this woman make the list.
12. Giada De Laurentiis
- Net worth: $20 million
The question shouldn’t be, ‘How did Giada De Laurentiis make the list,’ but instead, ‘Is that all she’s worth?’ She hosts several Food Network programs, has authored a handful of books, and is a well-liked Italian chef. When you put it all together, it adds up to a healthy net worth of $20 million.
Next: Lifestyle guru checks in with a big net worth.
11. Sandra Lee
- Net worth: $20 million
Lee got her start crafting homemade curtains, which turned out to be quite lucrative, but that was just the start. The Food Network is just one channel broadcasting her shows, and she has also written numerous books, all of which has helped this chef and lifestyle guru amass a net worth of $20 million.
Next: Keeping busy keeps this chef’s bank account in the black.
10. Mario Batali
- Net worth: $25 million
Between his countless Food Network shows, such as Molto Mario and Iron Chef America, numerous restaurants, and countless books, Batali is a busy man. All that hard work has helped him accumulate a net worth of $25 million.
Next: Mexican cuisine has helped fortify this chef’s bank account.
9. Rick Bayless
- Net worth: $30 million
An expert in Mexican cuisine, Bayless owns and operates a handful of successful restaurants. He has also hosted the show Mexico: One Plate at a Time on PBS and has long been one of Chicago’s top chefs. His successful restaurants, including Tortas Frontera at O’Hare Airport, TV shows, and numerous books have helped him build a net worth of $30 million.
Next: You could say this chef has his hands in a lot of pots.
8. Bobby Flay
- Net worth: $30 million
His behavior might not be great, but this high school dropout has undoubtedly had a successful career. He has numerous Food Network shows, operates several restaurants, and has written a number of books. All that action has led to a big net worth for the native New Yorker.
Next: She went from being a government employee to being a renowned chef.
7. Ina Garten
- Net worth: $50 million
Garten got her start as a nuclear energy policy expert at the White House and took a leap of faith on entering the food business. It’s safe to say she landed safely on her feet. Garten’s Food Network show, Barefoot Contessa, is just the start of her notoriety. She also has authored several books and sells some Barefoot Contessa-branded items on her website.
Next: More than food drives this woman’s net worth.
6. Ree Drummond
- Net worth: $50 million
You might know Drummond as the Pioneer Woman, the name of her Food Network show, magazine, and blog. Those pursuits are just the beginning for Drummond, who sells jeans, jewelry, and cookbooks from her website. Yet according to a Yahoo article, Drummond and her family make a ton of money from the federal government. The family is a large landowner and is paid millions of dollars each year by the Bureau of Land Management.
Next: And bam! We enter the top 5 of our list.
5. Emeril Lagasse
- Net worth: $70 million
More than a dozen restaurants. A lengthy list of merchandise for sale. Thousands of shows hosted for Food Network. It’s no wonder Lagasse has a net worth of $70 million. All that from a man who declined a scholarship from the New England Conservancy of Music after high school to instead enter the culinary world.
Next: From humble beginnings to a major celebrity chef.
4. Rachel Ray
- Net worth: $80 million
According to her Food Network bio, Ray started out at the candy counter at Macy’s. From those humble beginnings, she’s established a huge commercial empire. Food Network shows, such as 30-Minute Meals, $40 A Day, and Tasty Travels, established Ray as a TV personality. Now, she’s the host of her own syndicated talk show, the woman behind a furniture line, and the proprietor of pet foods and other home goods. It’s easy to see why her net worth is so high.
Next: The Europeans are about to take over.
3. Wolfgang Puck
- Net worth: $90 million
The Austrian-born Puck would probably make this list based solely on income from his dozens of restaurants. But in addition to his acclaimed food, he also lends his name to several products, like the Puck Oven, coffee, and countless cooking accessories. Put it all together and it adds up to a vast fortune.
Next: Being rude and volatile is paying off for this guy.
2. Gordon Ramsay
- Net worth: $160 million
If you’re even a little bit familiar with the world of celebrity chefs, you’re probably aware Ramsay has a sharp tongue and explosive temper. He also has several Michelin stars, dozens of restaurants around the world, and a handful of popular TV shows on various networks. One of the most successful and well-known celebrity chefs, Ramsay is worth well more than $100 million, but he still ranks No. 2 on this list.
Next: The richest chef of all is…
1. Jamie Oliver
- Net worth: $400 million
This Brit has authored dozens of cookbooks and owns several successful restaurants, but that’s just part of what makes him wealthy. Oliver might be most well known for pushing for healthy school lunches (and sensible cuisine in general) and his quest to revolutionize the ways people think about food. Oliver is a busy man in the world of food, which is one reason why he’s been able to accrue several hundred million dollars.
Check out The Cheat Sheet on Facebook!