All The Details About Valerie Bertinelli's Food Network Exit Explained

For nearly a decade, Valerie Bertinelli was a beloved figure on the Food Network, charming audiences with her warmth, charm, and recipes made for sharing. From her cooking show "Valerie's Home Cooking" to her co-hosting gig on "Kids Baking Championship," Bertinelli's goal has been spreading joy to her co-workers and audience. Bertinelli's presence has been synonymous with the network's commitment to fun, family-friendly programming.

That is until Food Network decided not to renew Bertinelli's multi-series contract at the end of 2022. The shows that she had filmed continued to air on the network through the beginning of 2024, but now, Bertinelli will no longer be found on the network. While Bertinelli and Food Network have both commented on what happened, many fans have been left wondering about the details that led to the personality's departure from the network. From misunderstandings to personal tragedy to promising future endeavors, these are all of the details behind Valerie Bertinelli's departure from the Food Network.

Valerie Bertinelli's shows

Valerie Bertinelli starred in two shows on the Food Network. In her first show, Valerie's Home Cooking, Bertinelli shared her passion for cooking with her viewers. The show, which ran from 2015 until 2023, featured Bertinelli cooking on camera and sharing her food with her family and friends. "Valerie's Home Cooking" was nominated for multiple Emmys over the years. In 2019, the show won two Emmys, one for Outstanding Culinary Program and one for Outstanding Culinary Host. When the show ended, Bertinelli took to Instagram to speak directly to her fans, saying in a video, "The bad news is that it's the final season ... I have loved making this show. It was such a dream come true. Every single part of it brought me so much joy."

Bertinelli was also the host of "Kids Baking Championship" alongside baker Duff Goldman of "The Ace of Cakes." In the show, which started in 2015, child bakers compete against one another to win a prize of $25,000. Bertinelli and Goldman guided the young chefs as they vied for the title of best young baker. The show has been nominated for multiple Emmys and one Kid's Choice Award. As both of the shows, or at least Bertinelli's presence in them, have come to an end, fans are left missing the charming TV personality.

The Food Network Opted not to renew her contract

Valerie Bertinelli's time at the Food Network has, unfortunately, come to an end. The former "One Day at a Time" actress was with the network for almost ten years, but at the end of 2022, Food Network decided not to renew her contract. By that point, her show "Valerie's Home Cooking" was already coming to an end, but Bertinelli was still hopeful that she would be able to continue hosting "Kids Baking Championship." "Her deal expired, they opted not to renew it. They could have come to me with an offer just for 'Kids.' They never did. Simple as that," Bertinelli's manager Marc Schwarz told Variety.

While her contract technically ended at the end of 2022, season 12 of "Kids Baking Championship" was filmed directly after season 11 during the summer of 2022, meaning that Bertinelli was still appearing on the network through February of 2024, when season 12 ended. The network was allegedly led to believe that Bertinelli would refuse to continue on Food Network only as the host of "Kids Baking Championship," but instead wanted her exclusive, multi-series deal renewed. Whether or not this is true, based on her manager's comments, it seems as though Bertinelli would have been happy to continue in her role as co-host of the baking show.

Valerie Bertinelli's sad feelings about leaving Food Network

Valerie Bertinelli was devastated when she found out that she had to leave the Food Network. In a heartfelt post on her Instagram, Bertinelli spoke about the departure to her 1.5 million followers. "I've been avoiding facing what I got confirmation for last night," the star shared, continuing, "It really hurt my feelings. And I know it's not supposed to, logically, I know that it's business ... But it really hurt my feelings to know that I'm not going to be asked back."

It's possible that Bertinelli's contract was not renewed due to widespread budget cuts and layoffs at Food Network's parent company. In 2022, Discovery acquired WarnerMedia. The Food Network, whose parent company before the merger was Discovery, was forced to make difficult decisions in this consolidation, and unfortunately for Bertinelli, her contract may have been on the chopping block for this reason. For Bertinelli, the reasons don't matter that much — she is sad about leaving her friends. She said in her Instagram video, "I think I'm just most sad that I won't be able to tell everybody what they mean to me."

Valerie Bertinelli says that Kids Baking Championship saved her life

Valerie Bertinelli didn't just love being on the Food Network, she adored it. Her time as the co-host of "Kids Baking Championship" was especially close to the actor's heart, because the show got her through an incredibly challenging time in her life. Seasons 11 and 12 of the show were filmed around the same time, during the summer of 2022. This also happened to be the same time that Bertinelli was going through a harrowing divorce with her now ex-husband, Tom Vitale. Vitale and Bertinelli started dating in 2004 and were married in 2011. 2022 also happened to be just two years after Bertinelli's first husband, rock guitarist Eddie Van Halen, passed away of lung cancer in October 2020.

Bertinelli spoke about how much "Kids Baking Championship" helped her in an Instagram video, calling 2022 her "apex year of hell." The star continued, saying, "Without sounding like a drama queen, the show saved my life." Bertinelli said that seeing her amazing coworkers and being able to feel productive was immensely helpful. "It was like a flotation device," she said, "It really hurts that I won't be able to go back and see everybody and say, 'Hey! I made it through!'"

Valerie Bertinelli had a hunch she wouldn't be asked back

Valerie Bertinelli was hopeful that she would be asked to return. However, when it became clear to the actor that she was not going to be asked back, she took it on the chin. In fact, Bertinelli had a hunch ahead of time that her contract would not be renewed. The "Home Cooking with Valerie" star took to X (formerly Twitter) to respond to an article by People, saying, "I got an inkling I might not be asked back when I saw I was not in the holiday specials."

According to the article that Bertinelli was responding to, talks between the Food Network and Bertinelli's team had "stalled," citing that as the reason that the star was not returning to the network. Bertinelli was not afraid to call People out on false reporting, saying in the same post, "This is a tad misleading. There were never any talks, so no talks could be stalled."

Even though she was ghosted, Valerie Bertinelli says that there is no bad blood

In a post on X (formerly Twitter), Valerie Bertinelli spilled some gossip about her departure from the Food Network. According to the actor's post in response to a People article, Food Network was not exactly gracious when letting her know that her contract was not being renewed. In January of 2024, Bertinelli posted, "I got a text by a third party on Friday that told me I would not be back. LOL I was basically ghosted."

While this gives the impression of bitterness, Bertinelli realized that she sounded a little bit too harsh in this post. In another response, Bertinelli wrote on X, "I have zero ill will toward anyone at FN, I enjoyed every single moment I worked for them, and they are all lovely, kind, hard-working people. And I understand business is business." A source close to the issue confirmed this version of events to Variety, making it clear that there is no bad blood between Bertinelli and the Food Network – just feelings of sadness on Bertinelli's part.

Valerie Bertinelli says the Food Network isn't about cooking anymore

Straightforward cooking shows are few and far between on the Food Network these days, as the network has been focusing more and more on competition shows for the last two decades. In this way, "Valerie's Home Cooking," an in-the-kitchen, heartwarming cooking show, was a very special show both for Bertinelli and for Food Network audiences.

On the tail end of her show ending and "Kids Baking Championship" not renewing her contract, Valerie Bertinelli criticized the Food Network for its lack of focus on, well, food. On Threads, the actor wrote, "I fell in love with Food Network two decades ago because of all the amazing ITK (in the kitchen) shows. '30 Minute Meals,' Ina, Giada ... the list goes on." Bertinelli has also cited a deep love for Julia Child in the past. In many ways, Bertinelli's show was a continuation of this tradition that she loved so much. The post was a response to someone else, who wrote that "[competition shows] will kill the channel." Bertinelli finished off her post by writing, "I learned so much. It's sad it's not about cooking and learning any longer. Oh well, that's just business, folks."

Valerie Bertinelli believes in indulgent – but still fresh – food

Valerie Bertinelli brought a fresh approach to food through her show, "Valerie's Home Cooking," where she cooked bright, Italian-inspired fare. Bertinelli started her career as an actor, and is most well known for her role in the show "One Day at a Time." Bertinelli opened up to The Washington Post about how her career in Hollywood corrupted her relationship with food, saying that until just a few years ago, she would strictly control her calories, follow diets, and weigh herself on the scale. Then she turned 60 and realized that her way of life just wasn't working. "What wasn't working for me was living my life by a number," she said, "Because no matter what that number was, it wasn't going to be good enough."

It was this realization that inspired Bertinelli's newest cookbook, which is aptly titled "Indulge." "Why can't we indulge every flipping day of our lives?" Bertinelli asked The Washington Post. The book features indulgent but still fresh recipes, such as white-chocolate chip cookies with lemon and lime or kumquat-braised chicken. The cooking on "Valerie's Home Cooking" was similarly fresh and comforting. Some of the most popular recipes that she cooked on her show include spicy penne arrabiata and stuffed mushrooms. As Bertinelli makes her departure from the Food Network, fans will miss seeing her recipes. However, there is no need to fear, as Bertinelli's presence in the world of food is not going anywhere.

She will continue to work with food in the future

While Valerie Bertinelli may be done with the Food Network, she is certainly not done with food. Even though she isn't exactly sure why she got into food media after her show "Hot in Cleveland" ended ("Who the f*** knows?" she told The Washington Post), it is now an extremely important part of her life. The actor and TV personality has published several cookbooks, and her most recent, "Indulge: Delicious and Decadent Dishes to Enjoy and Share" was published in April 2024. As she navigates life after the Food Network, her first stop along the way is clear; Bertinelli is on tour promoting her new cookbook.

While fans, including some celebrities like Khloe Kardashian and Mark Hammil, have voiced their support for Bertinelli to return to the Food Network, this seems unlikely. As she begins to think about future projects, however, she is also evaluating offers from platforms other than the Food Network. It seems like Bertinelli will have plenty of opportunities to continue working with food.