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What Food Network Stars Looked Like When They Launched Their First Show

Like fine wines, some chefs get better with age.

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1. Emeril Lagasse

Left: A younger and not-really-that-famous Emeril Lagasse on a 1994 episode of The Essence of Emeril.

Right: An older and very famous Emeril Lagasse at this year's New York City Wine & Food Festival. BAM! Time flies.

2. Nigella Lawson

Left: The incomparable Nigella Lawson in the very first episode of her show, Nigella Bites, which first aired in the United Kingdom in 2000.

Right: The Taste judge Nigella Lawson at a press night performance of "Fatal Attraction" on London's West End earlier this year.

3. Paula Deen

Left: Hey y'all, it's Paula Deen on an early episode of Paula's Home Cooking in 2003.

Right: Hey y'all, it's Paula Deen at the 2014 New York City Wine & Food Festival, one lawsuit later.

4. Jamie Oliver

Left: A 24-year-old Jamie Oliver in 1999 making bacon sandwiches, living in London, and talking about his band on The Naked Chef.

Right: A 39-year-old Jamie Oliver at this year's Food Revolution Day, part of his initiative to teach kids about the importance of cooking.


5. Giada De Laurentiis

Left: Giada De Laurentiis on her first episode of Everyday Italian in 2003, juuust before every man in America became wildly obsessed with Italian cooking shows.

Right: Giada De Laurentiis at a Stand Up To Cancer event in Los Angeles this year, still looking like a bona fide goddess.

6. Bobby Flay

Left: Bobby Flay being the broiest Food Network star on a 1996 show that was literally called Grillin' & Chillin.

Right: Bobby Flay still being the broiest Food Network star at a 2014 radio interview with Elvis Duran.

7. Alton Brown

Left: Alton Brown educating Americans on the science of cooking in the first season of Good Eats, which first aired on Food Network in 1999.

Right: Alton Brown at a 2014 screening of "Divergent" in Atlanta, Georgia.

8. Rachael Ray

Left: Rachael Ray in 2002, on an early episode of her hit show, 30 Minute Meals.

Right: Rachel Ray at the 2014 New York City Wine & Food Festival. To achieve Rachael Ray's eternally youthful glow, apply EVOO directly to the skin.


9. Masaharu Morimoto

Left: Masaharu Morimoto in 1998, about to school all lesser chefs on the best cooking show of all time, the original Iron Chef. This was a time when Americans voluntarily watched a show with subtitles because it was just that crazy.

Right: Masaharu Morimoto in 2014, attending an event for Autism Speaks.

10. Ina Garten

Left: The queen at the beginning of her reign in 2004, a woman who uses only the best mayonnaise, knows how to rock a cashmere scarf in the front seat of her convertible, and is a GOOD friend to all rich gays. She is THE Barefoot Contessa.

Right: Ina Garten looking flawless at the 40th Annual Daytime Emmy Awards. Endless class, style, and grace – how easy is that?!

11. Mario Batali

Left: The king of Crocs, Mario Batali, on a 2000 episode of Molto Mario.

Right: The king of Crocs, fleece vests, and plaid shorts, Mario Batali, at the New York City Wine & Food Festival in 2014.

12. Sara Moulton

Left: Sara Moulton on a very special 1997 episode of her show, Cooking Live, in which she cooked alongside the great Julia Child.

Right: Sara Moulton at Food Network's 20th Birthday Event last year, still rocking those bangs.


14. Anthony Bourdain

Left: Culinary badass Anthony Bourdain on the first episode of his Food Network show, A Cook's Tour, which first aired in 2002.

Right: Culinary badass Anthony Bourdain at the 2014 DC Central Kitchen's Capital Food Fight.

15. Sandra Lee

Left: Sandra Lee on a first season episode of her kind-of-cooking show, Semi-Homemade Cooking, in 2003.

Right: Sandra Lee at a 2014 campaign event for her boyfriend, New York Governor Andrew Cuomo.