People Who Publicly Dissed Rachael Ray

No matter how you feel about Rachael Ray, it's impossible to deny that she's an international icon. The self-made woman has built an empire for herself through her TV programs, cookbooks, and other merchandise. The story of her ascent to fame inspires many people, but no one can win everyone over — not even Ray. Love her or hate her, Ray is here to stay. That being said, a surprising number of people are falling into the "hate her" camp.

For a seemingly even-tempered, friendly TV personality, Ray attracts a lot of negative attention. These aren't people who just hate her for being rich and famous, either. The list of people who dislike her ranges from fellow celeb chefs who know her personally, to complete strangers. For one reason or another, these people can't stand Ray. Here are some of the people who have had some terrible things to say about the celebrity chef.

Martha Stewart

The queen of homemakers, Martha Stewart, expressed her skepticism of Rachael Ray's skills in a not-so-flattering way in 2009. Stewart revealed in an interview with ABC that Ray had told her she couldn't bake. "She... just did a new cookbook which is just a re-edit of a lot of her old recipes... and that's not good enough for me," she said. "I mean, I really want to write a book that is a unique and lasting thing. Something that will really fulfill a need in someone's library."

Stewart went on to say that Ray is more of an entertainer than anything else, unlike Stewart who is a teacher. Fans expected the jabs to turn into a full-on feud, but Stewart defused the situation not long after with an apology to Ray on her show. She may have apologized, but it seems like one of those apologies that is more to save face with the public than anything else.

Emeril Lagasse

Emeril Lagasse eventually got over his tiff with Rachael Ray, but for a while it looked like they were going to be lifelong enemies. Lagasse has criticized Ray for not knowing how to cook, going so far as to say that he wouldn't put her on TV. Some of Lagasse's resentment might come from the fact that Ray's career started to take off as his TV fame was on the decline.

The two seemed to patch things up, though, or maybe Lagasse just realized that publicly berating a popular figure wasn't the best way to revive his career. Despite his insults of Ray, Lagasse would go on to become a frequent guest on Rachael Ray. Is it all an act, or has Lagasse actually come to respect Ray? We may never know, but he's at least proclaiming to have a change of heart. "I love coming here cooking with you, you know why?" he asked on an episode of the show. "Because you have this passion, and this love for what you do."

Giada De Laurentiis

While Giada De Laurentiis has officially denied the rumors of a feud with Ray, if you read between the lines it seems to indicate that there is some bad blood between them. In 2009, De Laurentiis tried to squash rumors of a feud in Redbook (via People) but her attempt to put out the fire was less than convincing. "Do we hang out all the time?" she asked. "No. Are we best friends? No."

The two went head to head on Iron Chef America in 2006, and De Laurentiis, who was teamed up with Bobby Flay, doesn't seem to have gotten over losing to Ray and Mario Batali. In 2014, she told Hamptons Magazine how annoying it was that people still asked her how she felt about losing to Ray. "It will bother me until the day I die and Bobby [Flay] knows that," she said. "He thinks I'm ridiculous, but it is what it is. I'm a fighter, and I like to win; I'm not a good loser."

To say that she and Ray are not best friends is putting it mildly. De Laurentiis seems like she still harbors quite a grudge against the woman who beat her. 

Anthony Bourdain

Anthony Bourdain was never known for holding back his true feelings. A former Food Network star, after he parted ways with the network he became very critical of it and many of its hosts. One of the stars Bourdain had a lot of contempt for was Rachael Ray. In a now deleted guest post on author Michael Ruhlman's blog (via The Millions), Bourdain expressed his dislike for his fellow celeb chef.

"Complain all you want," he wrote. "It's like railing against the pounding surf. She only grows stronger and more powerful. Her ear-shattering tones louder and louder. We KNOW she can't cook. She shrewdly tells us so. So... what is she selling us? Really? She's selling us satisfaction, the smug reassurance that mediocrity is quite enough."

Bourdain portrayed Ray as a sort of anti-Julia Child who, rather than enlightening aspiring home chefs and inspiring them to cook better food, "uses her strange and terrible powers to narcotize her public."

Harsh? Maybe. But it's precisely the kind of snark that fans came to expect and love from the sharp-tongued Bourdain.

Sara Dickerman

While it can be argued that a food writer who criticizes a chef is just doing their job, some of them take it so far that you have to wonder if they bear a personal grudge against the chef in question. Sara Dickerman, a food writer at Slate, insulted Ray so thoroughly that it left no question about her feelings about the TV chef. Even stranger is the fact that the review had nothing to do with Ray, but was about Gordon Ramsay's BBC America show Ramsay's Kitchen Nightmares. In her article, Dickerman threw Food Network under the bus, especially Ray. She accused Food Network of devolving, claiming it had "gone from being a guilty pleasure to something far more tedious and less inspiring." 

While Dickerman criticized other shows, Ray received the brunt of her frustration with the network. "And, worst of all, there are endless hours of Rachael Ray, who dines out on the cheap and cooks on the fly, chirpily renouncing such culinary values as elegance, subtlety, and perhaps even flavor," wrote Dickerman. "It is enough to make you give up on TV cooking shows." Ouch. 

Her cousin, Gina Mesnick

Even members of Ray's own family have turned against her. In 2013, scandal broke out after Ray's aunt, Geraldine Dominica Scuderi, tragically died while house-sitting for her sister, Ray's mother, Elsa Scuderi. Scuderi accidentally locked herself outside, where she passed away from a heart attack in the freezing cold.

While neither Ray nor her mother were present, the fact that Ray owned the house infuriated Scuderi's daughter, Gina Mesnick. Mesnick claimed that the tragedy was a result of Ray and her mother neglecting Scuderi. To add insult to injury, neither Ray nor her husband, John Cusimano, showed up at the funeral — instead, Ray was allegedly tweeting about cats, recipes, and TV shows. "I found it very insensitive and inappropriate," Mesnick told the National Enquirer. "It just shows how demeaning Rachael was to my family on the day we buried my mom after she died under such horrible circumstances."

Ray's representative said she was filming an episode of her show during the funeral, and her cousin took it as a personal insult that she didn't even send her husband to pay his respects to Scuderi.

Michelle Malkin

Conservative commentator Michelle Malkin became enraged with the bubbly TV personality back in 2008 after she appeared in a Dunkin' Donuts ad. In the ad, Ray promoted Dunkin' Donuts while wearing a black and white scarf, inciting Malkin's outrage. According to Malkin, the scarf Ray was wearing resembled an Arab kaffiyeh, a garment which has supposedly "come to symbolize murderous Palestinian jihad." It's the kind of protest that you wouldn't think would gain much traction, but it did — and quickly. 

The company issued a statement that said Ray was simply wearing a scarf and that no overt political message was intended, but the damage was already done. Malkin's allegations that Ray and the donut company were promoting terrorism caused Dunkin' Donuts to pull the ad. Within a short time after publishing her article, Rachael Ray went from a fun foodie to a possible terrorist in the mind of many.

So many bloggers

One of Ray's biggest haters is more of an entity. A good portion of the internet harbors a deep loathing for the chef. A blog called Bored Board, where people proudly "bash mediocrity" is filled with hate posts about Ray, and is the successor to the more blatantly named Rachael Ray Sucks. That's not the only place people are hating on Ray online, either. Insults directed at the chef fill online forums and can even be found on Reddit.

Bloggers have long lists of reasons for why they detest Ray. The author of The Veg Blog hates everything from the way Ray spells her name, to her widespread presence, to her catchphrases. The Mango and Ginger blog bashes Ray's sense of style and even her voice. While famous people are inevitably going to attract criticism from all over the world, Ray has racked up an impressive number of detractors.

Dog lovers

Dog lovers everywhere turned their backs on Ray after a class action lawsuit was filed that claimed her dog food line was falsely advertised. Ray's Nutrish dog food claims to be natural, but reportedly contains synthetic ingredients. "By deceptively marketing the Products as 'natural' and having 'no artificial preservatives,' Defendants wrongly capitalized on, and reaped enormous profits from, consumers' strong preference for natural food products made free of artificial preservatives," plaintiff Christina Grimm says in the lawsuit. According to Grimm, the brand being represented as "natural" led to people buying a product they would not have otherwise purchased.

The lawsuit infuriated dog lovers who blamed Ray for feeding dogs food that wasn't as natural as it claimed to be. The makers of Nutrish responded by saying that the label met all regulations and that the lawsuit should be dismissed. In spite of this, the dog food maker took a hit; the following year, the company was bought by Smucker.


As a general rule of thumb, you should tip your server at least 15 percent. Those extra dollars might not be factored into your bill, but tipping is about more than just good manners. Servers rely on tips to boost their paychecks since their base salary is quite low. You'd think that a rich celebrity like Ray could afford to tip her servers even more when she goes out to eat, but according to the Miami New Times, the chef is a stingy tipper. She's been seen tipping just a dollar on a $10 bill (that's only 10 percent) and has even encouraged her $40 a Day viewers to only tip around 10 percent in order to save money.