Where 18 of Your Favorite Chopped Champions Are Today
Cooking competition shows have become increasingly popular over the past few years, especially Food Network's Chopped. Hosted by Ted Allen, the reality-based cooking show pits four chefs against one another in three different rounds. They have to make an appetizer, entree, and dessert, and they must utilize the most random and unusual mystery basket ingredients that the series decides to throw at them. A panel of three judges eliminates one contestant at the end of each course, and the winner receives $10,000 as well as Chopped champion bragging rights.
Unsurprisingly, Chopped champions are often just as successful off-screen as they are on. And if you're a fan of the show, you probably think about certain winners from time to time and wonder what they're up to now. Here are 18 of the most memorable Chopped champions that are still crushin' it in real life.
One of New York's leading Israeli and Middle Eastern chefs and restaurateurs, Admony won the episode titled, "Banana, Collard Greens, Grits," in season one. She's opened four fine-dining restaurants — Taim Falafel, Balaboosta, Kish-Kash, and Bar Bolonat. (Bar Bolonat actually closed in 2018 but was replaced with Balaboosta in the same space). Admony is also the author of cookbook Shuk: From Market to Table, the Heart of Israeli Home Cooking.
Since becoming a Chopped champion in the episode titled, "Alton's Challenge, Part 1," in season 34, Jobe has become a must-try New Orleans chef. After winning, he returned to his modern Italian cuisine with southern influences restaurant, Meribo, in Covington, Louisiana. In 2018, he opened up a second restaurant, Dirty South Sammich Co., in Pythian Market Food Hall in New Orleans.
In addition to being a permanent judge on Chopped, Chauhan won the holiday special titled, "Holiday Sweathearts," in season 44. As a founding partner and president of Morph Hospitality Group in Nashville, she currently oversees all of Morph's restaurants, including Chauhan Ale & Masala House, Tànsuǒ, The Mockingbird, and Chaatable.
Wallace became a Chopped champion in the episode titled, "Alton's Challenge, Part 2" in season 34. Afterwards, he returned to his own business, Nick Wallace Culinary, in Jackson, Mississippi, which brings farming to the table by doing everything from cooking for events to being a resource for restaurants and chefs. He's also participated in several culinary events that he's documented on his Instagram.
Siem won the Chopped episode titled, "Chocolate Obsession," in season 32. In 2011, she co-founded Prohibition Bakery in Manhattan. Unfortunately, the bakery closed in 2017, but she did co-author a cookbook of the same name about the alcoholic cupcake shop. She's also now a writer and currently advocates for mental health, which she frequently talks about on her Instagram.
Riggenbach won the episode titled, "Wild Ride," in season 24. Since then, he opened The Mockingbird restaurant in Nashville, which offers American comfort food with a global spin.
Sasto became a Chopped champion in the episode titled, "San Franchopco," in season 28. Since then, he competed in season 15 of Bravo's Top Chef, where he was a finalist but did not win. He was the executive chef at the Italian restaurant Cal Mare in Los Angeles until it closed in December 2019. And, according to his website, he now focuses on fresh handmade pastas.
Poonsukwattana won the episode titled, "Food Truck Fight," in season 21. She's currently the founder and owner of Nong's Khao Man Gai, which is located in Portland, Oregon, and specializes in just one dish: chicken and rice.
Stude won the episode titled, "We Love Leftovers!," in season 17. After winning, he returned to his chef de cuisine position at Second Bar + Kitchen in Austin, Texas. He then eventually became the executive chief at Boiler Nine Bar + Grill in Austin until the restaurant closed in February 2019.
Since winning in the episode titled, "My Froggy Clementine," in season four, Tolentino has moved to San Francisco and is now the executive chef at Curio. He also competed on Bravo's Recipe for Deception in 2016.
Rogers won the episode titled, "The Light Stuff," in season 36. A chef instructor, recipe developer, food writer, and culinary content producer, she has created content for Cook's Illustrated, NPR, and PBS. Most recently, she hosted a 14-episode digital beginner cooking series, The Real Bluprint.
Known for her butchery skills, Cauthen first honored her craft in Switzerland and Australia before opening a butcher shop, Belmont Butchery, in Richmond, Virginia. After winning the episode titled, "Grill Game," in season 34, she returned to running the store full-time and educates people on healthy eating and farming.
Napolitano won the episode titled, "Food Truck Luck," in season 35. Since then, she and her partner have continued to conquer the food truck industry. Their Los Viajeros food truck, which focuses on Latin flavors inspired by Dominican, Cuban, and Mexican cultures, can be found in Manhattan in the Flatiron District, Bryant Park, and in the Bronx at Jacobi Medical Center.
Johnson won the episode titled, "Feel the Burn," in season 35 of Chopped. Currently, she works as a private chef for high profile clients and oversees her own line of spice blends called AIRIS FOODS. She also serves as an adjunct Instructor at the Johannesburg Culinary and Pastry School in Johannesburg, South Africa under her company, Airis the Chef, LLC. Additionally, she mentors high school students and adults about the culinary industry.
Chapman won the episode titled, "Money Saver," in season 21. She is currently the head chef at Reap and Sow Supper Club and executive chef at Haymaker Bar and Kitchen in New York.
Sampath won the episode titled, "Snail Snafus," in season 29. Since then, she became the chef de cuisine at Junoon in New York. Up until February 2018, she was also sous chef at The Breslin in New York. She also launched a food truck, Kukree, which focuses on Southeast Asian, Indian, Mediterranean, and American flavors, in Seattle.
Fang became a Chopped champion in the episode titled, "Chinese New Year," in season 27. She is currently the chef and co-owner of Fang, a Chinese restaurant in San Francisco, where she cooks up dishes that are influenced by both Northern and Southern China's cuisine. In addition, she runs the popular food blog MyFangalicious.com.
Wehrli won the episode titled, "Naan the Wiser," in season 29 of Chopped. Up until December 2016, he was the executive chef at The Iroquois New York Hotel in Midtown Manhattan. Currently, he's the executive chef for Laurent Tourondel Hospitality, whose restaurants include the Kimpton Eventi Hotel, L'Amico Restaurant, The Vine, and Second.