7 emotional stages of watching ‘Chopped’, the most stressful and addictive show ever

We are self-professed Food Network addicts and you know what? We’re okay with that! However, it’s emotionally draining. If you’ve seen the show Chopped, you’ll understand all the emotional stages of watching such a show. Host Ted Allen takes a lot of pleasure in announcing what basket of ingredients each competing chef will cook with. Things like pickled pigs feet, baby fennel, and quail eggs are the norm and no—we wouldn’t know what to do with that, either! TBH, we still have nightmares about some of those mystery baskets. Luckily, the talent they bring on are masters at figuring out ways to make the timed, themed dishes. The latest Chopped series has even more at stake with celeb chef,Bobby Flay as judge and prize. That’s right—the chefs compete for the chance to cook against Chef Flay and we’re breaking into a nervous sweat just thinking about it because, BOBBY FLAY!

With that said, every time we watch Chopped, without fail, we go through a series of emotional stages that are unavoidable. If you’re a Food Network fiend like we are, you’ll get it.

Stage 1: This is going to be awesome!


At the start of every episode, we’re all in. We forget all the stress the previous episode caused and celebrate the surprises we know to be in store. We want to believe things will go smoothly because Ted Allen’s silky voice and calm demeanor tells us to! At this point, we’re buckled in, ready to enjoy the ride.

Stage 2: There's no way they can do anything with those ingredients.


Seriously. Every basket holds things we’ve never heard of before. We scream at the TV the chefs can’t do it because we know in our hearts that they’re capable. However, what business does anyone have creating an entree using duck breast and caramel corn? The answer is no one and whoever came up with these baskets has a serious problem.

Stage 3: They're doing it! They're really doing it!


Once the chefs fall into a cooking groove, we revert back to feeling hopeful! They’re commanding the kitchen, using the ingredients, and proving they can do it. We believe! We believe!



Then, at some point, someone has a misstep: a forgotten ingredient or burnt whatever. We’re typically bent over in a panic hoping it will all go away. No one wants to be that person who royally messed up on TV so for their sake, and ours, please just fix it!

Stage 5: That's it. We can't watch anymore.


The timer, and Ted’s incessant shouting of how much time is left, causes unnecessary stress. Maybe the chefs need to hear it but we’d rather not know. The camera often pans to the judges, asking their opinions on what they’re witnessing. When we decide we can’t bear to see how it plays out, we debate changing the channel. Unless Bobby Flay is judging. Then we won’t turn it off no matter what’s going on, or how brutal it gets.

Stage 6: We can't look away.


The chef who did the thing redeemed him/herself and we’re applauding (alone, in our pajamas)! No way would we change it now—this is going to happen! We’re going to win! We don’t know what else we could possibly do with our lives other than witness history, in this moment. Thank you, Food Network TV gods!

Stage 7: Meh, we knew all along that person would win. 


When the judges reveal who’s getting ‘Chopped‘, we’re usually so emotionally exhausted, we don’t always see who wins. Sometimes it’s the person we’ve been rooting for, while others, it’s another contestant we wanted to tank. Regardless, just as we’re about to turn the channel, another episode begins and the cycle starts all over again. It’s a lifestyle.

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