Adam Moran: Who Is The Man Behind Beard Meats Food?

Adam Moran is a new and still rising star on the worldwide competitive eating circuit from Leeds, U.K. Turning pro in the 2010s while in his mid-twenties, Moran has since placed highly in major events and won a lot of prize money by virtually inhaling small mountains of fat and calorie-dense junk food. He's also become a fan favorite and a food celebrity because of his engaging persona and online presence. 

Moran's self-deprecating wit, long and immaculate beard, and shriek of a catchphrase have served him well as he runs a profile-boosting, skills-boasting YouTube channel called Beard Meats Food. With more than 3.7 million subscribers and well over 1.1 billion views overall, Moran's channel is one of YouTube's most popular of all time among food personalities. Whether he's in a competitive situation or sharing a video documenting a personal challenge to eat gigantic pizzas or as many burgers as possible, the public loves to see Moran eat.

He's more than just a guy who eats an inordinate amount of food though. Moran's story of how he became a competitive eater and self-made media personality is as compelling and exciting as an eating contest. Here's the truth about the man behind the beard behind Beard Meats Food.

His career as a competitive eater began on a lark

Moran's journey to fame by consuming seemingly impossible amounts of food began improbably, and ironically, as a self-awarded prize for achieving a difficult health goal. "I got really enthusiastic about fitness and strength training in my mid-twenties," Moran told ShortList. "I did this long diet just to see how lean and in shape I could get. I got down to something like 8 percent body fat."

Looking to congratulate himself for a job well done with a decadent calorie bomb, Moran took his girlfriend's suggestion to engage in a food challenge at a restaurant near his home in Leeds. It wound up being the first of many. "I managed it, really enjoyed [it], so did a few more as a bit of a weekend hobby," he said. He liked the eating contests so much that his brother-in-law suggested he start recording his eating feats for YouTube. Within three years of the bearded eater's video channel debut in 2015, Beard Meats Food, Moran racked up 41 million views. "Before I knew it, I was making more money from my eating exploits than from my actual job." That's when he quit a career in finance to devote his working life to YouTube (and eating large quantities of food).

He's Europe's top competitive eater

Beyond going to restaurants and recording himself eating enough food in one sitting to feed a large family, Adam Moran faces off against others on the competitive eating circuit. At these well-produced public events, he often destroys the competition. Officially tracked by Major League Eating, the governing body of contested consumption, Moran is ranked number 17 among competitive eaters on the planet as of February 2024. He's one of just six food athletes in the top 30 who isn't from the United States, and the only person in the top 50 from Europe.

Major League Eating-sanctioned events not only involve eating a lot, but also doing so in a short, finite period of time. Under those parameters, Moran has thrived, packing away a shocking amount of food. Among his accomplishments: He ate 10 of Burger King's spicy Angriest Whoppers in under 25 minutes, a 7-pound pizza in 25 minutes, 7 pounds of pancakes in 18 minutes, and 40 Cadbury Creme eggs in 12 minutes. At the prestigious contest involving Nathan's Famous hot dogs in 2019, Moran placed 10th. Moran is particularly adept at McDonald's-based contests, taking down 17 Big Macs in a one-hour challenge, and 155 Chicken McNuggets in 40 minutes on another occasion.

He holds multiple food-related world records

Moran's popular YouTube channel lends him a higher profile than most of the other top-ranked Major League Eating professionals, but he is objectively great at what he does. He's set and broken multiple records with regards to the largest amount of certain foods eaten in set periods of time. Shepherd's Place Farm, a restaurant in Nottinghamshire, U.K., offers a 4,000-calorie breakfast challenge, made up of eight complete English breakfasts (minus the blood pudding) with bacon, eggs, sausage, toast, and beans. In 2019 Moran ate it all in a record 12 minutes. 

He's the historical leader in Yorkshire pudding eating too, consuming 40 of the eggy-bread British side dishes at a 2015 event. Moran is also the world record holder in eating Jaffa cakes, a popular chocolate sandwich cookie sold in the U.K. In 2016, he was clocked eating 100 of the treats in just under eight and a half minutes.

Competitive eating made him healthier

Before he made his name as a competitive eater, Adam Moran wanted to get rid of excess body fat, and he did, enjoying his first food challenge as a prize when he finished. In the years since he started competing and making videos as Beard Meats Food, Moran has kept off the weight he lost, maintaining leanness and a low body fat percentage. 

However counterintuitively it sounds, he did it by continuing to eat enormous quantities of food. "When you diet for a long period of time your body gets to a point where it won't lose any more weight," he told Metro. "That's why bodybuilders have 'cheat meals,' because it helps their bodies recover with all the protein. It also gives you energy to want to go and train and without it I wouldn't have got the body I wanted."

Those huge volumes of food help fuel Moran's fitness regimen which includes two hours of daily weight work. When he isn't actively training for a contest or recovering from a challenge, Moran adopts a restricted diet to balance out his calorie load. During those times, Moran tends to eat a single daily meal consisting of vegetables, yogurt, four pieces of fish, peanut butter, jelly, and whole grain cereal.

The path to coining his catchphrase

Near the beginning of most Beard Meats Food challenges, Moran takes a moment before subjecting his body to yet another caloric assault. To pump up both himself and his viewers, he emits a guttural, mumbling scream that indicates he's ready to go. What he actually says has been a subject of debate among Moran's fans. Many theories have been floated, including "husker do," "hootskoot," "hooch schooo," "what's happening," "what's good," or merely undefined gibberish.

When directly asked on X, formerly known as Twitter, in 2016, Moran revealed that his catchphrase is "LETS GET IT in a stupid voice lol." He further explained it in a 2020 Beard Meats Food Q&A. "I don't know where that came from. I've just done it for basically every video I've ever done," Moran said. "Then it kind of became a catchphrase, and then I kind of became self aware of the catchphrase." That explains why he makes it sound purposely garbled and ridiculous.

He was once employed for his unique skills

After compiling a big following with Beard Meats Food on YouTube and winning some competitive eating contests, Moran began to entertain endorsement offers and corporate partnerships. Huckleberry's American Diner, which bills itself as "The U.K.'s first Man V Food diner," signed Moran in 2016 to be its "chief eating officer," or "CEO." This wasn't completely a publicity stunt, nor was the job entirely ceremonial, as Moran had real duties as a Huckleberry's official. He served as the chain's tester, sampling the food challenges that the Huckleberry's corporate kitchen concocted for consideration on the menu, weighing in with his opinion, and facing off against any challengers. 

"He's been a regular at Huckleberry's ever since we opened, so to have him on our team makes him a valuable addition," Huckleberry's co-owner Sarah Rowlands told the Wharfedale Observer that year. Huckleberry's committed some cash to protect its investment in Moran and his services. During his time as chief eating officer, the company had a £1 million (approximately $1.25 million) insurance policy on Moran, or rather his stomach and taste buds. 

These days, the diner still offers multiple food challenges on its menu, allowing anyone interested to put their guts on the line as they try to finish a big pile of food, whether it's a giant plate of nachos, a 5-foot-long chili dog, or 12 sliders with 1 pound of fries and a 1-pound milkshake.

He's got his own signature shake

The Five Guys chain makes very large, highly caloric cheeseburgers, meaning it's just waiting for competitive eaters and self-challenging mass-quantity consumers like Adam Moran of Beard Meats Food. Indeed, he has taken on several Five Guys-based challenges that he recorded for his YouTube page, including eating £100 worth (approximately $125) of Five Guys food, consuming the largest burger Five Guys could make, and scarfing down 10,000 calories' worth of Five Guys fare in one sitting.

"I should be on commission from Five Guys now," Moran quipped in a 2020 Q&A video on his channel. A hallmark of a visit to Five Guys for Moran, for both business and pleasure, is one of the chain's signature milkshakes, which are prepared with as many add-in ingredients as a customer wants. Moran's shake of choice gets three mix-ins: peanut butter, Oreo cookie crumbles, and bacon pieces. He calls it the Beard Shake, and in 2021, Five Guys U.K. officially endorsed "the famous #BEARDSHAKE" on its Instagram page.

Adam Moran is a musician

Claiming the No. 1 spot on the singles chart on Christmas is a big deal in the United Kingdom. Each year, songs from high-profile acts and novelties that benefit charities compete in the race, and the British entertainment media thoroughly covers the prognostication and prediction. YouTube personality Ladbaby landed the Christmas No. 1 spot every year from 2018 to 2022 with food-oriented novelty songs that dedicated proceeds to food banks. In 2020, Adam Moran of Beard Meats Food tried to cut into Ladbaby's dominance on the chart with his own collection of parody food songs. Each tune is about a particular dish, including "Garlic Bread (I Think I'm in Love)," "I Want Chicken Wings," "I Got Cheesecake," and "Grab the Mince Pies."

Moran and his YouTube channel are so popular that each of the competitive eater's Christmas releases reached the top 20 on the U.K. singles chart. "I Want Chicken Wings" fared the lowest with a No. 17 ranking in 2021, while "I Got Cheesecake" got the closest to dethroning Ladbaby in 2022 with a No. 4 showing. The revenue generated from digital sales and song downloads benefits the U.K. Stroke Association.

One challenge could have killed him

Competitive eater Johnny Scoville specializes in devouring whole chili peppers and other extremely spicy fare. With Blazing Foods, he created Johnny Scoville's Tube of Terror, a package of nuts seasoned with hefty portions of derivatives of six of the spiciest peppers available on the market. On the Scoville spice rating chart, the Tube of Terror came in at 13 million Scoville units, roughly 3,000 times hotter than a jalapeño.

In 2019, Adam Moran took on the very spicy nuts for a Beard Meats Food video, "Johnny Scoville's Tube of Terror Challenge." Already admittedly not a fan of overly spicy foods, Moran dutifully went through with the task at hand and consumed the entire Tube of Terror. And then he wondered if he'd survive. "That's the only one time I think in my life I thought I'm maybe gonna die because I remember like I couldn't hear anything out of my left ear," he told JaackMaate's "Happy Hour Podcast" in 2021. "My right arm started tingling. I'm thinking, 'oh my god. I'm gonna stroke here.'" In an attempt to relieve the heat (and not totally effectively at that), he drank milk and ate three cartons of soothing Ben and Jerry's ice cream, bread, and raw sugar.

He's got a speed-eating secret weapon

Competitive eating, which necessitates shoveling imposing amounts of food into the body in a limited period of time, is considered a sport by some because it is physically taxing, and like athletics, pushes the body to its absolute limits. Professional competitive eaters must learn certain tricks and techniques to ensure not only victory but their own short-term health. Moran employs one strategy that he claims keeps everything safely moving along in his stomach during an event. While he polishes off a substantial hill of food, he drinks Diet Coke.

Moran told an onlooker during a YouTube cheeseburger challenge that while it sounds counterintuitive, the bubbles relieve the load on his stomach. "If you've got a little more capacity to spare, so if you're not full, it's not really that big of a deal," Moran said. "It sounds disgusting, but it helps you get a little bit of air out, you burp a little. It's like Tetris really, a biological Tetris." Additionally, the sweetness of Diet Coke interrupts the monotony of knocking back savory foods. 

He's got complicated feelings about pizza

Moran has often stared down an entire pizza, or several, in YouTube food challenges and eating competitions. He's consumed so much pizza on camera and in public that his relationship with the food has turned complex. Partnered with competitive eater Dan Kennedy, Moran completed a two-person pizza-devouring fest in Buffalo, New York, in which the pair ate a 40-inch pizza in 13 minutes, beating the long-standing record by four minutes. Moran ranks it among his favorite feats. "It's cool to have dethroned some American competitive eaters on their turf," he told Craft & Slice.

Outside of challenges though, Moran doesn't eat a lot of pizza. "That's not to say I don't enjoy it, just that it's one of those foods that is always rough to digest, and you can't really make it part of an every day, balanced diet," he said. On the rare occasion he does partake in pizza, he skips the big names. "One thing I will say is that when I eat pizza by choice, I try to avoid chains. I'll seek out an independent Italian joint. Some of the places in New York are incredible," Moran explained. However, he did remark that of the mega-brands, Papa John's can make a good pie. "I've actually done a lot of promotional work for them," Moran admitted.

The beard requires a lot of work

A luxurious mane of chin hair provides Moran with a signature physical trait, a stage name, and a brand name. When you call yourself Beard Meats Food, you've committed yourself to having facial hair forever, which you've got to keep in top working order. Moran puts a significant amount of effort into beard maintenance, when he can. "I go in fits and starts when it comes to beard care, because I'm lazy and I travel a lot," he admitted to The Beard Mag. Ideally, he washes it daily, mainly because he gets a lot of food stuck in it due to his profession. Then he lets it dry, smooths it out with a wooden comb, and then oils it and maybe applies beard wax.

The true maintenance he delegates. "I see my barber every two weeks and he keeps it in shape. I don't let him take too much off," Moran told Northern Life Magazine. Letting go of a lot of it would be disastrous for the man known as Beard Meats Food, because it took him so long to grow in the first place. "If I shave this it would take two years to get it back," he said.