False Facts About Giada De Laurentiis You Always Thought Were True

In terms of Food Network stars, there's really few that generate as much interest as Giada De Laurentiis. The Italian chef knows a thing or two about pasta and how to charm viewers at home, no matter where her culinary travels take her. But even with all her cooking and hospitality skills and delicious recipes, there is a lot more to De Laurentiis than meets the eye. And for a Food Network star, De Laurentiis has seen more than her fair share of rumors and tabloid articles — but just how much of that is true?

Between her celebrated shows on Food Network, cookbooks, and social media presence, it's only natural that De Laurentiis creates a media buzz once in a while. But when it comes to the actual truth about De Laurentiis, you should know there are plenty of false facts about the famous chef floating in the media sphere. So, read on to learn the actual truth about De Laurentiis, because you'll probably be more than a little surprised.

What's the deal with John Mayer? Here's what Giada De Laurentiis herself has to say

Perhaps one of the biggest rumors to plague Giada De Laurentiis' career has been that she had an affair with John Mayer. In 2010, tabloids all over rushed to claim that De Laurentiis and Mayer got together while the chef was still married to her husband at the time, Todd Thompson. But don't get too excited: De Laurentiis has vehemently denied those allegations.

In fact, in an interview with Redbook in 2011, De Laurentiis explained that the entire situation was blown out of proportion. "The John Mayer incident was completely unexpected. I was shocked," she explained. "What made it all even more surprising is that I haven't had any contact with John Mayer in three years." Then, De Laurentiis went on to describe how she thought the rumors of cheating began, as she and Mayer met once for about five minutes, but nothing happened. Additionally, she said that she never realized rumors could be invented out of thin air, as this one surely was. So, no, De Laurentiis didn't have an affair with Mayer, as interesting as a couple as they might have made.

How does Giada De Laurentiis feel about her fans?

As a bonafide celebrity and prolific creator, it's no secret that Giada De Laurentiis has plenty of fans who recognize her while she's out and about. But while a good amount of celebrities make it a point to show how much they love to meet their fans, De Laurentiis isn't exactly one of those celebrities. In fact, De Laurentiis says doesn't love to meet every kind of fan — especially those that get too close to her personal space, which she might have to guard more as a female celebrity.

As the New York Daily News reports, De Laurentiis explained that sometimes fans get way too close for comfort. "For sure [fans want to get close]," during an event in Las Vegas. "It's the only place that people expect to see me and sort of be able to touch my brand. I wish I could say no touchy-touchy, but it doesn't work that way." 

De Laurentiis also explained that she thought that her being a "female chef" meant fans were "less intimidated" to come up to her, and inevitably, some get too close for comfort. Clearly, meeting fans isn't always De Laurentiis' favorite activity — but considering her concerns about personal space, that's probably understandable.

Not everyone has loved Giada De Laurentiis' food

When you think of a chef as talented as Giada De Laurentiis, who has her own restaurant and shows on Food Network, you likely also assume that her food always turns out perfectly delicious. But that's not necessarily always true. In actuality, not everyone loves De Laurentiis' foods, and one of her harshest critics might be one of Hollywood's most famous celebrities.

During a 2017 appearance on The Ellen Show, De Laurentiis appeared alongside Ellen DeGeneres and Nicole Kidman to serve up some of her signature recipes. But Kidman wasn't a fan of De Laurentiis' pizza: "It's a little tough," she said while trying it on camera, causing all three celebrities to burst into fits of laughter.

Kidman then went on to say, "I know you're not meant to criticize but..it's a little tough." And while De Laurentiis joined in on the fun, she made sure to stand up for her work: "Nicole, it's been sitting there for like five hours! I hate doing these things!" she said emphatically. Clearly, De Laurentiis can't please everyone, especially Kidman. 

What about those Giada De Laurentiis and Bobby Flay rumors?

As Giada De Laurentiis has lived in the spotlight for so long, she's dealt with plenty of rumors about her love life. And one rumor has been more persistent than all the rest. Yes, De Laurentiis has been rumored to have had an affair with a certain coworker. But according to De Laurentiis, this is something that never happened.

As E! reported, De Laurentiis was spotted out on the town with another Food Network star, Bobby Flay, the night before her divorce from then-husband Todd Thompson was announced. That's not to say they had a fling, but it certainly is interesting. Not only that, but plenty of Reddit users agree that there seems to be more going on between Flay and De Laurentiis. 

Whenever the two friends are on camera together, there's an undeniable chemistry, and fans have taken notice. "Word on the grapevine is that they both got their respective divorces because they were getting busy with each other... fornicating," one Reddit user wrote. However, both Flay and De Laurentiis have denied any romantic involvement with each other. "We've worked for many years together, but I don't think that's ever going to happen because I'm smarter than that," De Laurentiis told Andy Cohen of Watch What Happens Live.

Did Giada De Laurentiis make it all on her own?

No matter how you feel about Giada De Laurentiis, there's no way you can deny that the woman is talented when it comes to cooking and that she has the credentials to prove it, in addition to a commitment to her work. While Italian cooking is known as De Laurentiis' specialty, she can whip up just about everything, and she likely deserves the fame and fortune she's accumulated along the way. However, in the beginning, the chef did get a boost from her somewhat prominent family.

Reportedly, De Laurentiis was discovered because of a Food & Wine article about an event honoring her famous film producer grandfather, Dino De Laurentiis. After the younger De Laurentiis was featured in the article alongside her grandfather, the head of Food Network offered the chef her own show. None of that is to say that De Laurentiis didn't learn how to cook on her own, but the fact that she had a well-known grandfather certainly provided her with an advantage in the industry.

Giada De Laurentiis' family wasn't completely supportive of her career

Not only did having a famous grandfather help De Laurentiis' early career, the chef has also maintained a thriving personal life throughout her career. So, it's really only natural to assume that Giada De Laurentiis' family was always proud and supportive of her, especially once she landed her own show on the Food Network. However, as she told Redbook in an interview, her family, especially her grandfather, wasn't always supportive of her culinary passions. And though eventually he did come around, as De Laurentiis explained, she wasn't surprised that it took him so long. 

"Over the years, I think he became quite proud, and maybe even a little shocked, at my success," she explained, adding that because of his Neapolitan heritage, he was used to men leading the family and business. Additionally, De Laurentiis' grandfather didn't appreciate some of her cooking tips. "I remember him once saying to me, 'How can you tell people to open a jar of prepared pasta sauce?' Those were the kinds of debates we would have." But despite not always having her family's support for her entire career, De Laurentiis seems to have made it work.

Giada De Laurentiis' upbringing wasn't as charmed as it might seem

Giada De Laurentiis has achieved a lot in her life, and with all that achievement came plenty of fame and fortune. But no matter how successful she has become, she didn't always have it so easy, and though it might be easy to look at De Laurentiis and just conclude that she had a charmed childhood, that couldn't be further from the truth.

In an interview with Redbook, De Laurentiis described that her upbringing was anything but pleasant, but it wasn't because of her family but other children and adults around her: "I had a very tough childhood," she said. "I came here from Italy in the '70s and didn't speak a word of English, so the kids at school tormented me. Truly, it was horrifying the names they called me, and the teachers never really did a thing to stop it."

Though De Laurentiis seems to have had some privileges in life, an easy childhood certainly wasn't one of them.

Did Giada De Laurentiis always want to be a chef?

Because Giada De Laurentiis is such a natural in the kitchen and in front of a camera, you probably think that being a celebrity chef is something she's always wanted to do. Or, that at the very least, she's always wanted a career in food. But when she was younger, she wasn't so sure.

In an interview with Eater, De Laurentiis confirmed that she got a degree in anthropology from the University of California in Los Angeles, and that it was a pretty big deal. "I paid for my own college," she said. "I paid to go to UCLA, probably why I went to UCLA." But getting a degree in anthropology obviously meant that at some point, De Laurentiis wasn't thinking about becoming a chef. And that might have been because of her family. "Because I'm a girl," she explained, "I come from a large Italian family, they only care about boys. Girls are supposed to get married and have children..."

As a result of being "a girl" in an Italian family and the first in her family to go to college, it took De Laurentiis awhile to realize what she wanted to do in life, but once she did, there was no holding her back.

Giada De Laurentiis' views on social issues aren't exactly clear

It's no secret that many celebrities love to speak out about social issues. When Time's Up and #MeToo hit Hollywood, a ton of powerful and influential female celebrities made the most of their platforms to inspire change in the industry. And while you might assume that Giada De Laurentiis was among them, she didn't seem to be — at least, not entirely. 

When fellow celebrity chef Mario Batali was accused of sexual misconduct in 2017, De Laurentiis' reaction wasn't exactly what was expected of a female celebrity at the time. In an interview with the Eater Upsell podcast (via People), De Laurentiis explained: "Anybody who's ever hung out with Mario knows he's a very charismatic person." She added, "We drink too much and sometimes ..." 

While De Laurentiis didn't condone Batali's behavior, it seems like she was torn. And that's not the only instance where she's been less than "woke," as they say. De Laurentiis has also been accused of cultural appropriation with some of her recipes and the way she presents them, specifically with one particular Filipino dish. Though she may be rich and famous, De Laurentiis might not be as politically correct as you might think.

Where is Giada De Laurentiis really from?

Obviously, with a show on Food Network called Everyday Italian, and a knack for nailing her pasta dishes every time, it's natural to assume that Giada De Laurentiis knows a thing or two about Italian cooking and Italian culture in general. But some might not know that part of De Laurentiis' affinity for Italian food comes from the fact that she wasn't born in America.

Specifically, De Laurentiis was actually born in Rome, Italy and didn't live in America until her family moved when she was seven years old. Still, even after being mostly raised in the US, Italy was always close to De Laurentiis' heart. "My family takes their culture very seriously, so even when we moved to the US, we still lived very Italian lives," De Laurentiis told Insider. "We spoke Italian at home, we only ate Italian food," she continued. De Laurentiis might have perfectly adapted to life in America, but it's clear her Italian past is very important to her, and probably part of the reason why she knows her way around a lasagna.

Giada De Laurentiis' diet isn't as Italian as you might think

Despite that Giada De Laurentiis might have perfected the art of Italian cooking at home, that doesn't necessarily mean that all she eats is Italian food, and especially not just pasta. Obviously, pasta might be what De Laurentiis is known for, but in her daily life, she eats a much more balanced diet.

In an interview with Eating Well, De Laurentiis explained  what she eats on a day-to-day basis, and typically, "It's whatever my daughter wants for lunch! We have a lot of pasta and quesadillas." However, when it comes time for dinner, health is on her mind. "Dinner is lighter and healthier," De Laurentiis said, and, according to Eating Well, dinner at the De Laurentiss house typically includes a salad with some kind of deliciously prepared lean protein like turkey meatballs, salmon, or a chicken corden bleu. Really, it seems like De Laurentiis is always changing it up: "I do like to vary what I eat," she said, and that's the truth. 

When it comes to confidence, Giada De Laurentiis has her struggles

To take one look at Giada De Laurentiis is to see a beautiful, talented, and successful woman. Obviously, you would assume that she's super confident, but that's actually false. In addition to having dealt with bullying when she was younger, De Laurentiis told Redbook that she still struggled with confidence, even as a successful adult and celebrity.

"In fact, pretty much every time I try something different or do something in front of a live audience, I truly think they might throw peanuts at me," she explained. "I feel like that child again." 

Cooking in front of a camera or live audience can't be easy, and the length of time De Laurentiis has done it doesn't make it any less terrifying. However, she's learned to cope with that lack of confidence, and use it to her advantage. "I also think that pit-in-your-stomach feeling is what keeps you alive and better at what you do," she added. Say what you will about De Laurentiis, but she's really learned how to be happy with herself, though she isn't without her moments of self-doubt.