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Bertinelli Slams Food Network for Departing from Cooking Education

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  • Actress Valerie Bertinelli has expressed unhappiness with the Food Network’s current direction, expressing regret over its shift away from its original focus on cooking and learning.
  • Bertinelli previously hosted two shows on the network, “Valerie’s Home Cooking” and “Kids Baking Championship”, which were cancelled in 2023 and January 2023 respectively.
  • She shared her feelings about the cancellations on Instagram, revealing that “Kids Baking Championship” had been crucial during her difficult year in 2022.

Renowned actress and former Food Network host, Valerie Bertinelli, has publicly criticized the current trajectory of the Food Network. She shared her thoughts on Instagram’s text app, Threads, reflecting on her initial draw to the cooking channel for its educational culinary shows.

“I fell in love with Food Network two decades ago because of all the amazing ITK [in the kitchen] shows,” Bertinelli recalled, referring to popular programs like Rachael Ray’s “30-Minute Meals”, Ina Garten’s “Barefoot Contessa”, and Giada De Laurentiis’s “Giada at Home”.

She expressed her sadness, “I learned so much. It’s sad it’s not about cooking and learning any longer. Oh well, that’s just business, folks.”

Bertinelli’s relationship with the Food Network spans years, as she hosted “Valerie’s Home Cooking” for 14 seasons, from 2015 to its end in 2023. She also served as a host and judge on the network’s reality cooking competition, “Kids Baking Championship”, for 12 seasons.

She announced her exit from “Kids Baking Championship” in January. In an emotional video on her Instagram, she admitted that the news had deeply affected her, despite understanding the business logic behind the decision.

“And I know it’s not supposed to, logically I know that it’s business. Budget cuts, right? But it really hurt my feelings to know that I’m not going to be asked back to be on ‘Kids Baking Championship.’ It really sucks.”

Bertinelli had co-hosted the show with Duff Goldman since 2015. In her video, she highlighted the significant role the show played in her life, especially during a tough time in 2022.

“And, without sounding like a drama queen, the show saved my life. Working with all those wonderful people and feeling productive and knowing I could spread some kindness and not just wallow in my turmoil and just try to keep my head above water, it helped me, it was like a flotation device,” she said.

She added, “So it really hurts that I won’t be able to go back and see everybody and say ‘Hey, I made it through, hi!’”

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During this challenging period, Bertinelli was also going through personal issues. She filed for divorce from her husband Tom Vitale in May 2022, after 11 years of marriage. The divorce was finalized in November, with Bertinelli announcing on Instagram, “Happily divorced. God. Finally. It’s finally over.”

As a final tribute to “Kids Baking Championship”, Bertinelli thanked her co-host Goldman and the show’s crew. She also shared some words of encouragement for future contestants.

“And to all the bakers that are coming in for the new season, even though I won’t be there, I’ll be there with you in spirit and I just want you to remember this: You are there for a reason. You’re some of the best bakers in America right now. And if you don’t make it to the next round, please always remember this, it’s not because you’re not a good baker, you just had a bad day,” she shared.

Let us know what you think, please share your thoughts in the comments below.

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8 Comments

8 Comments

  1. David

    April 17, 2024 at 6:41 pm

    She’s so dumb she doesnt understand the elites are attacking the food supply, beef, over 75 food processing olants have burned down in the last 4 years, now bridges are going down to hit the supply chain. Someone wake ditzy up please. They don’t want us eating, and certainly not learn to cook. Just eat their bioengineered, fake foods with mrna and shut up.

    • Lydia Vanderlaan

      April 17, 2024 at 7:56 pm

      David I agree with you but that was not the issue she was addressing.She was addressing the change of direction on the Food Network.

  2. Helen

    April 17, 2024 at 6:46 pm

    I am saddened by her departure. I learned a lot of great tips from watching the show and she the information regarding different foods and how to prepare them was a big plus for me. Her show was very educational and real. We don’t see a lot of educational cooking shows anymore. Every show seems to be a competition of some sort and I think Food Network is overdoing it. Let’s get back to the basics. Because of our bad economy more people are having to resort to cooking at home and I think that’s where the focus should be. Help the home cook make interesting and flavorful meals for their families.

  3. Marisela

    April 17, 2024 at 9:38 pm

    We watch food network and have been doing so for many years. However, it seems to us that the majority of the shows are with Guy Fieri in one way or another and appears to look as if he w
    owns the food channel (or will soon own it🙄). We saw him win the spot for his own show on food channel years ago and like him-just to much of a good thing. In addition there’s Bobby Flay who seems to win pretty much the majority of the best Bobby Flay challenges and is boring because we know who is the winner. My family and I dislike the “gradual” changes in the network and find that we look for other things to watch and search for recipes other than from the food network! In the kitchen it’s cooking not a competition!!!!!!! Very disappointed with them.

  4. Camille Gilliam

    April 17, 2024 at 9:45 pm

    That show would be really good for kids, remember schools don’t have home ec class anymore, their mother’s work so they are missing out.

  5. susan m blake

    April 17, 2024 at 10:31 pm

    i have watched the food network for many years, ever since it started, the kids baking show will not be the same without Valerie. they may even lose alot of people watching this program, including me. like Valerie said, that show was created to show us new cooking skills or recipes. we are tired of these adult contests and half the time, chefs are cooking so high above our cooking skills, whats the point? the show THE KITCHEN we all love to watch, because they are showing us real recipes and how to make the food.

  6. Veenerschnitzel

    April 17, 2024 at 11:44 pm

    I stopped food network BECAUSE of Valerie’s preaching and at times political biased comments. Her and Cardea’s both. But I do agree the direction of the channel is nothing I’m interested in watching or listening to. However I found a Jamie Oliver channel and have thoroughly enjoyed it!

  7. Sara Graves

    April 18, 2024 at 8:39 am

    I really enjoyed Valerie’s Kitchen and the Kids baking show.I thought both were very good shows.
    Networks seem to cancel good wholesome shows for some reason.I will not be watching the kids baking championship
    it will not be the same without Valerie.

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