A Lot or a Little?
What you will—and won't—find in this TV show.
While the competitors don't share their recipes in detail, they do explain their thinking process about ingredients and cooking techniques. Viewers see the basic process of preparing, grilling, and presenting food.
This competition puts young grillers to the test in challenges that encourage their creativity, time management, and skill at the barbecue. There are moments of panic and mishaps that throw best-laid plans into chaos, but the kids think well on their feet and prove perseverant. Eliminations can be hard, but for the most part, all the participants handle criticism well. The contestant pool includes both boys and girls.
Positive Role Models
These impressive young cooks are great role models for kids. They're highly motivated and have high expectations for themselves, and they work hard to achieve their goals. The hosts and guest judges mix criticism with praise in a way that acknowledges the kids' talents and teaches at the same time. Competition is fierce but friendly.
Violence & Scariness
Rarely, there are kitchen mishaps such as a cut finger.
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Products & Purchases
Show sponsors such as Walmart and Lay's get on-screen recognition, and there's lots of mention of host channel Food Network and its partner magazine.
Parents Need to Know
Parents need to know that Kids BBQ Championship is a reality competition that pits eight young grillers against each other for a cash prize, a Food Network magazine spot, and winner status. Each episode challenges contestants to prepare a meal related to a theme (luau, campfire) under a time restriction. The process tests the kids' abilities to work under pressure, think creatively about ingredients and cooking techniques, and present an appealing product. Hosts and guest judges sample the kids' work and offer feedback (both negative and positive) before eliminating one contestant each week. Some kids get emotional when things don't go as planned or when they're sent home, but overall the series features very friendly and self-affirming competition, as well as some impressive skills from these young grill masters.
Is It Any Good?
You don't have to be an aspiring griller yourself to be impressed by this pool of contestants who would put most average backyard flame tenders to shame with their skills. No matter the challenge -- Hawaiian luau to campfire roundup -- these kids can butcher, season, and sizzle with the best of them, and they use every challenge as a chance to experiment and learn something new. In that way they're excellent role models for kids regardless of their interest (or lack thereof) in cooking; they take chances and submit to critique from the experts so they can get better at what they love. The process isn't always easy, but there's something positive to take away from every experience. In so doing, they prove what one contestant names as his reason for being there: "To show that kids can do amazing things."
If your kids (or you, for that matter) are foodies, though, Kids BBQ Championship can inspire you to step outside your comfort zone and mix it up a little at the grill. This isn't an instructional show, but you can pick up plenty of tips from the contestants and the judges on everything from experimenting with ingredients to monitoring the flame to achieve your desired results. This broadly appealing series is a fun pick for curious families and could inspire young chefs in your own house.
Did we miss something on diversity?
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