A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this TV show.
Some culinary education.
Positive messages around trying your best, being a good sport, and how cooking doesn't need to be fancy to be enjoyable and tasty.
Positive Role Models
Hosts Antoni and Kristen are kind, supportive, and empathetic judges. Contestants all have a positive attitude and are kind to their competitors.
Recurring hosts are diverse (LGBTQ+, female chef in a male-dominated industry, Asian-American). Contestants are also diverse across a number of attributes, and some talk about their personal identities and how it shapes their cooking.
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Sex, Romance & Nudity
Infrequent jokes based on innuendo -- most prevalent in the "date night" episode.
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No cursing but some rude language like "sucks" and "oh my God."
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Products & Purchases
There's a product in the title of the show (though it isn't marketed that egregiously in the episodes.) More problematic is the sheer amount of product placement -- unlike most cooking shows the ingredients are in their original packaging so there are a ton of logos and some products mentioned by name. Also, there's a large grand prize ($100,000), so some contestants mention the money aspect of winning fairly frequently.
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Easy-Bake Battle: The Home Cooking Competition is a competition that pits home chefs against each other for the chance to win a $100,000 prize. It's hosted by Antoni Porowski (Queer Eye's food expert) and celebrity chef Kristen Kish (Top Chef, Iron Chef). There's a lot of product placement: besides the kids' toy that inspired the show concept, all the ingredients appear in their original packaging so there are logos aplenty. Also, because the grand prize is a vast sum of money, contestants mention the material benefits of winning quite a bit. Otherwise, the only objectionable content is infrequent mild innuendo (most prevalent in the "date night" episode. This cooking competition serves up family-friendly fare, and kid chefs may be inspired to recreate its easy recipes at home.
Is It Any Good?
Food snobs avert your eyes -- there's not a teaspoon of foodie pretentiousness in the recipe for this cooking competition. The charm of Easy-Bake Battle is its ethos: making cooking seem less intimidating, fancy and expensive seeming for all the home cooks just trying to get dinner on the table. The conceit is clearly aimed at adults who need meal prep inspiration, but a lot of the "hacks" in the show could actually help making cooking feel more accessible to kids too. Kids won't find the convenience/time-saving aspect as compelling, but the show is fun enough just as a competition. The hosts are great -- Porowski's quirky puppy dog personality gets a chance to shine, and it's fun to watch Kish throw away her fine-dining bonafides and delight in a dish with humble ingredients tasting really delicious.
Some grown-ups may tsk-tsk about how Easy-Bake Battle relies on packaged foods and not making everything from scratch, while others will rejoice that finally a cooking show is reflecting real life meals. Adults also may also not be thrilled that kids ask for a toy oven after watching (though grown-ups of a certain age may secretly delight in the nostalgic item being brought back into their lives).
Did we miss something on diversity?
Research shows a connection between kids' healthy self-esteem and positive portrayals in media. That's why we've added a new "Diverse Representations" section to our reviews that will be rolling out on an ongoing basis. You can help us help kids by suggesting a diversity update.