Netflix Renews BBQ Showdown (And You Won't Have To Wait 3 Years This Time) – Exclusive

Netflix's original cooking competition series, "Barbecue Showdown" — originally titled "American Barbecue Showdown" – is about to set the screen ablaze with its highly anticipated third season. In an exclusive memo to Mashed, Netflix confirmed that fans can tune in to the new installment of this program starting on Thursday, July 4, this year.

The show, which first ignited screens in September of 2020, has been a source of excitement and anticipation for its dedicated viewers, who eagerly await its return to celebrate one of America's most beloved culinary traditions. As a unique foray into the realm of competitive barbecue, the unscripted program has previously featured eight contestants, but the new season will bring together nine of the nation's top pitmasters in a thrilling open-fire arena, where they must push the boundaries of their craft in pursuit of a $50,000 grand prize.

Fans had to endure a prolonged wait between the first and second seasons of "Barbecue Showdown," with Season 2 launching in May of 2023. The nearly three-year gap may be attributed in part to the global COVID-19 pandemic, which disrupted production schedules across the entertainment industry. Thankfully, Season 3 is only trailing its predecessor by 14 months.

What to expect in Barbecue Showdown Season 3

In the comments section of a What's on Netflix article from August 2023, numerous viewers shared their excitement for the show's then-rumored third round. One user wrote, "Can't wait for season 3," while another chimed in that they "look forward to every season!" Clearly, fans are ready for the next installment, but what — exactly — can they expect from it?

Michelle Buteau, comedian and actress, will lead the charge once again as the host of "Barbecue Showdown." Expert judges Kevin Bludso (who we interviewed) and Melissa Cookston (who we also interviewed) will return, as well, to evaluate the contenders' dishes throughout the eight 45-minute episodes to come. Cookston is a world barbecue champion seven times over, the writer of a pair of smoke-centric cookbooks, and the businesswoman behind Mississippi's Memphis BBQ Company. Bludso, meanwhile, is a legendary James Beard award-winning pitmaster with deep roots in Texan barbecue; he's also the owner of Bludso's BBQ, a casual restaurant chain with locations across both Texas and California as well as the Land Down Under.