You think you know these celebrity chefs well, but can you recognize these 16 stars from when they were young?
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Sometimes it’s easy to forget that everyone was young once. When it comes to celebrity chefs, we’re so accustomed to seeing them on television that it doesn’t even occur to some to think about what they might have looked like when they were younger. Well, it occurred to us, so we tracked down photos of 16 of the biggest TV food stars as youngsters.
Bobby Flay made his first appearance on the Food Network in its earliest days and has had at least one show on the network at just about all times since then. He’s currently featured on Beat Bobby Flay, as well as Brunch at Bobby’s on the Cooking Channel.
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The first female Iron Chef; she has also published several cookbooks.
Cat Cora co-hosted Bravo’s culinary competition series Around the World in 80 Plates with Curtis Stone. She also has her own line of gourmet Greek specialty foods called Cat Cora’s Kitchen by Gaea; airport restaurants in San Francisco, Houston, and Salt Lake City, also under the same moniker; and her own cookware line.
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Kai Hecker/ Shutterstock
This Chicago-born “sandwich king” was the winner of the seventh season of Food Network Star.
This Next Food Network Star runner-up got his start working in a local diner kitchen at the age of 13.
Named Outstanding Pastry Chef of the Year by the James Beard Foundation in 2006, Johnny Iuzzini has been featured on Food Network, The Martha Stewart Show, TODAY, Good Morning America, and served as head judge on Top Chef: Just Desserts. Iuzzini published two cookbooks: Dessert FourPlay in 2008 and Sugar Rush: Master Tips, Techniques, and Recipes for Sweet Baking in 2014.
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Born in San Diego, this classically trained pastry chef started her own catering company in Tijuana, Mexico, after graduating from the Ritz Escoffier Cooking School in Paris.
Marcela’s first Food Network show, Mexican Made Easy, premiered in January 2010, and she’s currently a co-host on The Kitchen along with Mauro, Sunny Anderson, Katie Lee, and Geoffrey Zakarian.
Winner of the first season of The Next Iron Chef, this Cleveland-born chef is a major player in the culinary scene there.
Born Nadia Giosia, Nadia G rose to fame as host of Nadia G’s Bitchin’ Kitchen on YouTube, which became a show on the Cooking Channel that ran for three seasons. Her Cooking Channel series Bite This With Nadia G launched in July 2014, and she’s also appeared on Iron Chef America, Chopped All-Stars, and Cutthroat Kitchen.
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Rachael Ray has said her first memory is of her mother cooking in a restaurant kitchen. With cooks on both sides of her family, it’s no surprise that she ended up a culinary superstar. Passionate about all facets of food, she even launched a charity in 2006 called Yum-o!, which promotes healthy eating, teaches cooking, feeds hungry kids, and funds scholarships.
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This photo was taken in the star’s Royal Navy days, shortly before he became the muscleman he is today.
This suave kid, the son of a diplomat, had lived in Milan, Paris, Rome, Genoa, and Washington, DC all before the age of 12. grew up to run several New York restaurants and also run a full-service catering company.
Photo by Ethan Miller/Getty Images for Caesars Entertainment
This New York-born chef grew up in Jersey, and for a time sported a hairdo apparently inspired by the violinist from the band Kansas. He fell in love with food after first tasting a raw oyster on a fishing boat in France, and he graduated from the Culinary Institute of American in 1978.
After a lengthy stint as executive chef at New York’s now-shuttered Brasserie Les Halles, Anthony Bourdain blew up the culinary world with his expose Kitchen Confidential, which earned him a Food Network travel show called A Cook’s Tour. He leveraged that into No Reservations and The Layover on Travel Channel, and today he hosts CNN’s Parts Unknown.
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