Chopped's Geoffrey Zakarian Hates Working With This Popular Ingredient

Geoffrey Zakarian is a celebrity chef and cookbook author best known for his dapper appearance and culinary skills. A judge on Food Network's Chopped, Zakarian has mentored many up-and-coming chefs, and as the author of several cookbooks, he's given guidance to countless home cooks.

Zakarian — who literally wrote the book on the essentials everyone needs in their kitchen, entitled My Perfect Pantry – enjoys working with many items, except one specific ingredient. The chef revealed to the Food Network that he hates working with white truffle oil. Zakarian also doesn't like to eat a dish where white truffle oil is an ingredient. However, he is actually a fan of truffles, explaining on Twitter that he doesn't like truffle oil because, "it is generally overused and not used properly... and I'd rather have the real thing."

Zakarian cringes when truffle oil is added to a Chopped mystery basket, according to another Food Network story in which judges on the show are asked to reveal their most hated ingredients. While Chopped host Ted Allen and co-judges Alex Guarnaschelli and Scott Conant listed their reviled ingredient with a detailed explanation as to why they didn't like the item, Zakarian simply said, "white truffle oil" — once again doubling down on his opinion of the oil. 

Zakarian Loves Other Oils

Though Zakarian might not be a fan of truffle oil, he does enjoy cooking with other quality oils. The Iron Chef, who believes in eating healthy and working out, has his own bespoke line of olive oils. The oils, which are available on Amazon, are extra virgin olive oils made from Koroneiki olives that are hand picked. The olives are grown organically by a family-owned cultivar that uses no chemicals, pesticides, or artificial fertilizers. The "restaurant quality olives oils are the same quality as the ones Zakarian serves in his restaurants, including New York City's the Lambs Club and the National and Point Royal in Hollywood, Florida."

Zakarian also sells a host of products on his website. The chef offers everything from spices and cookies to crab cakes and toffee. The entrepreneurial chef also sells his own line of cookware on home shopping site, QVC. Zakarian, who admits his guilty pleasure is rose wine (via Food Network), also sells a curated selection of his favorite wines on QVC.