Whether you watch basic TV channels or you're a sucker for the Food Network, you probably know all too well how popular cooking shows are and continue to become.
After airing the long-running competition series Hell's Kitchen and MasterChef — both helmed by renowned British restauranteur Gordon Ramsay — Fox added another Ramsay-led series to their roster in 2022.
Next Level Chef is unlike any culinary competition we've ever seen before, bringing together the country's best less-experienced chefs — be they line cooks, social media stars, food truck owners, or anything in between. But what really makes this a one-of-a-kind competition is a set built three stories high, with each floor containing a wildly different kitchen. The goal is to put the chefs to the ultimate test by seeing not only what they can create in the best of conditions, but what kind of magic they can make in the worst.
Along with becoming recognized as one of the food world's next superstars, the winner of Next Level Chef also walks away with an impressive prize. What is it? Let's dive into the details.
What's the prize for the winner of 'Next Level Chef'?
Prizes on cooking competition shows vary widely. While one might award a winner $10,000 (like the Food Network's Chopped), another might give them a chance to become the head chef at a new restaurant (such is the case for the winner of Hell's Kitchen).
Meanwhile, Next Level Chef awards its winner the grand prize of a year-long mentorship from the show's professional chefs and a whopping $250,000. It could mean the difference between cooking as a hobby and cooking for a living. The prize is definitely life-changing.
'Next Level Chef' is designed to really challenge its contestants.
The idea of Next Level Chef is that the contestants will start from the literal bottom, much like Gordon himself, who began his restaurant career as a dishwasher. The contestants on Next Level Chef don't start there, but they do begin the competition in a makeshift basement where the kitchen is challenging, to say the least.
From there, they must prove themselves in order to earn the chance to move up a level, where the kitchen and ingredients vastly improve.
Want to win a mentorship and $250,000? There's a casting application online for 'Next Level Chef.'
After premiering its first season in January 2022, Next Level Chef was quickly renewed for Season 2. While it's not yet been confirmed that the show will return for a third season, giving its popularity, it's a safe to say it will.
Those who think they have what it takes to compete on Next Level Chef can apply for the show online. The application asks questions about a potential contestant's cooking experience, their availability to film, and their motivation for competing, among many other questions.
There are also spots on the form where applicants can discuss their signature dishes, describe their strengths and weaknesses in and out of the kitchen, and even admit to not being able to take criticism well. It's a pretty in-depth application, but for a shot at $250,000, that's to be expected.
Catch Next Level Chef premiering on Sunday, Feb. 12, and then settling into its permanent spots on Thursdays at 8 p.m. ET on Fox.