13 of TV’s Best Food Moments From 2022

13 of TV’s Best Food Moments From 2022

From the mouthwatering to the terrifying, these were the food moments we'll remember most.

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In 2022, there was one food show that dominated the conversation: The Bear. It had all of us saying “yes chef” in casual conversations and craving Italian beef sandwiches. And while it may earn the top spot as best food show of the year, it’s not the only one that featured food to keep its story moving. Meaningful culinary moments popped up in comedies, dramas, and animated shows across the board, each leaving an impact for different reasons. Here are 13 of those moments that we haven’t stopped thinking about in 2022.

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Abbot Elementary: Baltimore-Style Pizza

Abbot Elementary: Baltimore-Style Pizza

Gregory Doesn’t Like Pizza - Abbott Elementary

Who doesn’t like pizza? Well, it turns out Gregory Eddie (Tyler James Williams) is maybe the only person. When fellow teachers were arguing about the best slice in Philadelphia, Abbot Elementary’s grumpy substitute teacher tried to get out of admitting his distaste for pizza by saying he only eats Baltimore-style pizza, and he likes it extra crunchy and extra wet. Yum.

Watch all seasons on Hulu or HBO Max.

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The Bear: Kitchen Meltdown

The Bear: Kitchen Meltdown

Kitchen Nightmare | The Bear | FX

While there are plenty of moments throughout The Bear that places the food front and center, it’s in episode seven, “Review,” that the artistry of the filmmaking shines. The episode provides a realistic depiction of what it’s like to work in a restaurant (and all the anxiety therein) while highlighting the arc and development of each of the ensemble’s characters. It’s a hard job to do in a 20-minute, single-shot episode, but it does it well.

The camera never cuts away, bobbing and weaving between the chefs as they prep for service, set up the dining room, and lash out at each other. Even more anxiety-inducing than the frantic moments of action is the brief downtime between each, when the characters try and fail to take a deep breath or actually taste that delicious doughnut that was smashed into the ground.

Watch season one on Hulu.

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Bob’s Burgers: Sauce Side Story

Bob’s Burgers: Sauce Side Story

Linda’s Family Story | Season 12 Ep. 20 | BOB’S BURGERS

Technically, every episode of Bob’s Burgers fits the bill—in its 13th season the show continues to be consistently heartwarming and hilarious, with plenty of culinary delights throughout. But last season’s “Sauce Side Story” stands out in 2022 as a particularly food-focused narrative that reveals something new about the Belcher family’s origins—in particular, Linda’s familial connection to food. We’re going to spend all of 2023 trying to figure out what’s in that secret bolognese sauce recipe.

Watch all seasons on Hulu.

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The Dropout: Green Juice

The Dropout: Green Juice

Elizabeth Holmes enjoying her green juice - The Dropout | Amanda Seyfried

Amanda Seyfried’s Emmy win could have been solely based on how she (as Elizabeth Holmes) goes to town on that cup of green juice. In The Dropout, Hulu’s original drama based on the true story of Elizabeth Holmes and the Theranos scam, Holmes’ obsession with green juice arises right alongside her voice deepening and her closet going all black. The drink is a representation of the image she thinks she needs to portray—at first sip, she hates the stuff, but after being constantly encouraged by her boyfriend and business partner Sunny Balwani (Naveen Andrews) to down the stuff, she eventually starts to believe the lie that she likes it. Sound familiar?

Watch the limited series on Hulu.

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Emily in Paris: The McBaguette

Emily in Paris: The McBaguette

Emily and Gabriel eating at McDonald’s | Emily in Paris 3x01

Emily in Paris is pure camp. The storyline barely matters, it’s okay that you love to hate the titular Emily, and the show’s loose grasp on reality can be forgiven in exchange for the spectacle of the over-the-top fashions and hilariously broad representations of both Americans and the French. Nothing exemplifies all of that more than the first episode of season three of Emily in Paris, which may as well be one long McDonald’s ad.

In the episode, Emily (Lily Collins doing the best she can with an infuriating character) lands a meeting with McDonald’s to put together a marketing campaign for the McBaguette, a very real menu item in France that now has Emily in Paris and Netflix branding all over it. It’s likely only a matter of time before there’s a stateside limited edition release of the sandwich, which includes baguette bread, minced steak, salad, Emmental cheese, old-fashioned mustard, and Dijon mustard sauce.

Watch all seasons on Netflix.

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Fleishman is in Trouble: Beef Lo Mein

Fleishman is in Trouble: Beef Lo Mein

Fleishman Is In Trouble Official Trailer | Jesse Eisenberg, Claire Danes, Lizzy Caplan | FX

The limited series Fleishman is in Trouble mostly follows Toby Fleishman (Jesse Eisenberg) as he deals with a divorce from his wife, Rachel (Claire Danes), and everything that comes from dating again and raising two kids on his own. At one point, while speculating about what Rachel’s life is like without him, he visits her empty apartment to find the fridge packed with beef lo mein—a dish he remembers her always hating. It’s in the emotionally jarring penultimate episode that we finally find out why all that lo mein is there, just one of many resolutions to unanswered questions throughout the series that turns the whole story on its head.

Watch the limited series on Hulu.

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Is It Cake?: Every Time It Is Cake

Is It Cake?: Every Time It Is Cake

Is It Cake? | Official Trailer | Netflix

Is It Cake? is one of the stupidest concepts to ever grace a streaming service, with the most simple and yet ridiculous concepts, and despite all that it still managed to be one of the best food competition shows of the year. Why? Because no matter how hard we try to pretend we’re better or smarter than this show, there’s nothing more delightful than the moment in each episode when we see a realistic creation that is in fact cake. The second host Mikey Day slices through what appears to be a hand bag or a seashell or an uncooked steak to reveal the frosting and crumbs within is oddly satisfying.

Is It Cake? is not anything resembling prestige TV. But it just might have perfected the formula for highly-watchable nonsense. This is the shut-your-brain-all-the-way-off, so-ridiculous-it-just-might-work cooking show we’ve been looking for.

Watch season one on Netflix.

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Los Espookys: Tati’s Cooking

Los Espookys: Tati’s Cooking

Los Espookys Season 2 | Official Trailer | HBO

The delightfully surreal comedy Los Espookys is easily one of the most underrated shows out there, filling each episode so jam-packed with jokes that you can blink and miss a laugh-out-loud punchline. And some of the best visual gags in season two revolve around Tati’s (Ana Fabrega)...unusual cooking methods. Her “gazpacho” made from ketchup is as gag-inducing as it is hilarious, and her method of hiding candies in whole carrots to make her appear healthier is downright inspiring.

Watch all seasons on HBO Max.

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The Rehearsal: Açai Bowl

The Rehearsal: Açai Bowl

The Rehearsal | Official Trailer | HBO

If you haven’t yet watched The Rehearsal, the less you know going in, the better. Nathan Fielder’s experimental, semi-reality series takes twists and turns in just six episodes that rival the most acclaimed dramas out there. In the broadest terms, the show is based on the premise that people might have less anxiety if they’re able to rehearse important life moments before facing the real thing. That leads to Fielder recreating rehearsal spaces based on real bars and restaurants, which is one of the most technically impressive feats of the show, but it’s when Fielder steps in as an employee at an açai bowl restaurant that the narrative arc of the series takes on a completely different life. By the end, you’re questioning reality as you know it.

Watch season one on HBO Max.

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Severance: Waffle Party

Severance: Waffle Party

Severance Waffle Party

Severance doesn’t give up its details easily. The sci-fi drama delighted in leaving viewers just as in the dark as the innies were from their outies, slowly leaving a trail of earth-shattering revelations in each episode. So when the premise of a “Waffle Party” was first mentioned, it really could have been anything. Without giving too much away, that Waffle Party did in fact feature real waffles, but the implication of the “party” is something much more sinister.

Watch season one on Apple TV.

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Saturday Night Live: Meatball Song

Saturday Night Live: Meatball Song

Meatballs - SNL

Saturday Night Live is at its best when it’s bizarre. In “Meatballs,” Sarah “Squirm” Sherman is hiding a secret from Chris Redd, and that secret just happens to be a bunch of meatballs growing out of her flesh as skin tags with minds of their own. If the visual alone isn’t enough, these meatballs harmonize for a little meatball song that you’ll never be able to get out of your head. Just like the lumps growing out of Squirm’s extremities, that melody is highly contagious.

Watch most recent seasons on Hulu and Peacock.

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Tuca & Bertie: Salad Dessert

Tuca & Bertie: Salad Dessert

Bertie’s salad dessert

In season of three of Tuca & Bertie, Bertie (Ali Wong) lands a dream job with her hero, Chef Winter Garcia (Justina Machado), and spends the season trying to impress her. Unfortunately for Bertie, idea after idea gets shot down—that is, until she’s eaten by a snake and can sell anything with the confidence gained by being partially digested. When she spews out the word “salad” during an impromptu pitch meeting, the course of her career changes forever, all thanks to that snake with the super cool hat.

Watch season one on Netflix and seasons two and three on HBO Max.

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Yellowjackets: Rabbit Chili

Yellowjackets: Rabbit Chili

YELLOWJACKETS Trailer (2021)

From the very beginning, we know something dark is happening in Yellowjackets—the high school girls’ soccer team that crash-landed in the woods is still holding onto a lot of secrets about what really happened 25 years later—but from episode one, we get hints at how these girls managed to survive. When adult Shauna (Melanie Lynskey) kills and then butchers a pesky rabbit in her garden, she does it with such ease that you know this isn’t her first time. More enlightening still is when she straight up tells her husband that the chili tastes better this time around because of the rabbit and he brushes it off as a joke. Maybe these girls were trying to tell the truth all along and no one was really listening.

Watch season one on Showtime.

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