We look at every Gordon Ramsay cooking show and rank up to the very best from the world-famous chef.
Professional footballer turned chef Gordon Ramsay is arguably the world’s most famous TV chef, having produced and starred in various hot TV shows based around his honest and loud persona. The professional chef recently landed quite the honor with Gordon Ramsay’s most-watched TV show becoming Next Level Chef, whose second season debut became the most-watched cooking series in television history, with 15.5 million viewers.
Combine this with long-running staples like Kitchen Nightmares, which lasted for seven seasons, and the competition reality show Hell’s Kitchen, which is set for its 23rd season in the fall of 2023, and the TV chef has become a pop-culture staple both in the USA and his home country of the UK.
Conversely, Ramsay’s career has been highlighted by programs taking a more in-depth look at food and culture, like Gordon Ramsay: Uncharted and Gordon,Gino, and Fred’s Road Trip showcasing the chef’s knowledge and skill outside the more sensational competition/reality TV format.
At the forefront of many memorable TV programs throughout the years, we list all the shows led by Gordon Ramsay and rank them up to the best. Programs with a USA and UK version will be put into a single entry.
13.Gordon Ramsay’s Ultimate Cookery Course
The first show in this list certainly delivers on its premise, a cookery course with Gordon Ramsay for those wanting to make 4-star restaurant quality food on a budget. Gordon Ramsay’s Ultimate Cookery Course highlights Ramsay’s skill, passion, and ability to be relatable and present cooking excitingly and engagingly.
That said, in the end, it is a cooking tutorial and lacks the drama or competition that makes up the best cooking shows led by Gordon Ramsay.
12.Ramsay’s Costa Del Nightmares
Ramsay’s Costa Del Nightmares is essentially a one-shot four-episode series based on the popular Kitchen Nightmares format. Despite this, the series feels like a slight afterthought and a way to get Ramsay to pristine European vacation spots instead of building on the “nightmares” format.
Perfectly watchable, yet the four episodes could have easily just been integrated into the Kitchen Nightmares series, and no one would have batted an eye. It did not need to be its own thing.
11.Master Chef Jr.
This spin-off of the Master Chef series brought the cooking challenge to young, talented cooks. While the series kept the same challenge/competition format as its original, Master Chef Jr. differs in tone due to the younger age of the participants. This made the series entertaining for families wanting to watch together and showed a more reserved Ramsay.
While the program highlights the family man that Gordon Ramsay is and presents a popular format for parents and kids to enjoy together, it is difficult not to categorize this program as a niche when considering the many other Ramsay projects available that appeal to a broader audience.
10.Gordon Ramsay: Uncharted Showdown
Gordan Ramsay Uncharted Showdown took viewers around the world with Gordon Ramsay as he got to sample different cuisines and experience different cultures. The “Showdown” version of the same show felt more like an afterthought to bring in some competition to the already beloved and well-received documentary series.
Across four episodes, Ramsay takes to different spots to explore their cuisine but also has a face-off with star chefs Paul Ainsworth and Matt Waldron — the final episode sees him competing with his daughter Matilda Ramsay. The concept is not horrible and holds some of the charms of Gordan Ramsay Uncharted, but it is not as good as its already proven and enjoyed predecessor.
9.Gordon Ramsay’s Food Stars
This series saw two seasons, one in the USA and one in the UK. The UK production is, arguably, more enjoyable, given the cast and slight format differences. Still, both offer an entertaining competition between established entrepreneurs looking for that push to take them to the next level.
Gordon Ramsay’s Food Stars slightly falters in dealing with people who are already professionals who have completed the task of building up a small business to warrant Ramsay’s attention for investment. It lacks the underdog stories, the possibility of an unhinged contestant, and the frenetic energy felt in other cooking competition shows led by Ramsay, landing it lower on our list.
8.Gordon Ramsay’s 24 Hours to Hell and Back
Kitchen Nightmares but quicker and with cheesy zoom-in effects and a big traveling bus, Gordon Ramsay’s 24 Hours to Hell and Back suffers from trying to take the winning format of other Ramsay restaurant improved programs by adding unnecessary elements. The show still has those shocking moments like angry, out-of-control staff/owners butting heads with Ramsay or a walk through a kitchen full of rotting food and vermin.
However, where the show lost out to Kitchen Nightmares is how rushed the format seems by constricting itself to 24 hours to turn around a restaurant. Moreover, Ramsay is charming on his own, and all the pseudo-tech acts as a goofy distraction. The show is entertaining, but it does make one wish they were watching Kitchen Nightmares instead.
Another spin-off of the kitchen nightmare format, Hotel Hell is likely the most successful re-envisioning of having Ramsay help struggling businesses by extending his service past just the kitchen. It does not hurt that the program ran multiple seasons and gave viewers many classic episodes like “Hotel Chester” and “Applegate River Lodge.”
This is one series with a US and UK version. While both are similar in format, the UK series is notable in how often it has Ramsay showing off his butt as he gets in and out of hotel showers. Overall, Hotel Hell is highly entertaining and is great for a binge session along with Kitchen Nightmares.
6.Gordon Ramsay: Uncharted
One of the few Gordon Ramsay programs not though Fox, Gordon Ramsay: Uncharted aired on the National Geographic channel and followed the chef across several locations, looking and sampling hard-to-source ingredients and unique culinary techniques. The show offers an insightful look into world cuisine and acts as a highlight for Gordon’s personality and devotion to cuisine.
While the show saw some critique for its similarity to the late Anthony Bourdain’s Parts Unknown series, Ramsay has stated his respect for the iconic chef. He believes him to be an irreplaceable talent. Ramsay did bring his unique take to the format, and the show is a fascinating dive into other cultures’ approaches to cuisine.
Master Chef has undeniably become one of the most beloved cooking shows on TV, and currently sitting at 13 seasons, it seems to be a staple of cooking TV that is here to stay. The show follows a pretty traditional cooking competition format, with amateur and home chefs competing in a series of challenges to take home the title of master chef.
However, the gigantic open kitchen and the constant involvement of Ramsay and a rotating panel of judges make for a rather exciting and fast-paced cooking show that leans into the personalities and camaraderie of its contestants and hosts.
For those who enjoy competition shows without drama, Master Chef may easily be your top pick for the best Gordon Ramsay program, but for us, it does not rank as high for that very reason.
4.Gordon, Gino, and Fred’s Road Trip
From Richard Ayoade in Travel Man, to Steve Coogan & Rob Brydon in The Trip, British TV has a way of building up highly entertaining travel shows around the personalities of those making the journey. Gordon, Gino, and Fred’s Road Trip fits this formula swimmingly as Gordon Ramsay, Gino D’Acampo, and Maitre d’ Fred Sirieix travel across various countries to experience their cuisine and culture.
The show also highlights the friendship between the three through witty banter and occasional s***-talking. Its focus on the three and how they interact throughout may not appeal to everyone — the format does feel more apt for British TV than American — but it delivers quality in exploring other cultures and entertainment.
Kitchen Nightmares gave us one of the all-time most absurd pieces of reality TV ever committed to the medium in the infamous “Amy’s Baking Company” episode, which even had its follow-up to try to piece together the complete mess that was the attempt to reinvigorate the restaurant.
While the show focuses on Ramsay coming in to fix the problems of a restaurant through mentorship, the series’ major draw has also lied in the heavy drama, revealing gross kitchens and unhinged staff/owners thinking they can stand toe-to-toe with Ramsay.
This is a Gordan Ramsay staple of television, and you can revisit the most intense moments in one of the countless online compilations.
2.Next Level Chef
While it is difficult not to shake the idea that the show was inspired by the dystopian movie The Platform, which saw success on Netflix, Next Level Chef is an inventive way to shake up the regular formula of a competition cooking show. Three teams compete, and in each round, they are randomly assigned a level, with the top having the first pick at ingredients and the best food, with the bottom having bare-bones and receiving scraps.
The show challenges competitors to make the best of what they get, and having the top floor does not always prove to be the best-made meal, making it easy to always cheer for the underdog team. The show’s record-breaking popularity is no surprise here, and it also wonderfully presents Ramsay as both an experienced chef and a defined personality as he pushes competitors and explores the versatility of food with his team and fellow judges.
At 22 seasons and counting, one would be hard-pressed to find a more definitive TV show led by Gordon Ramsay than Hell’s Kitchen. Debuting in 2005, the show has seen over 400 contestants enter the famous kitchen in the hopes of securing a full-time position at one of Gordon Ramsay’s restaurants around the globe.
A purposeful boot camp that pushes contestants to the extreme has seen its fair share of contestants break down, explode, and even, in one case, challenge Ramsay to a fight outside. Still, the program is great for picking favorites and cheering them on throughout the season. It is the longest-running Gordon Ramsay show for good reason, and it is also easily his best.