Everything You Need To Know About Make This Tonight

What do Ree Drummond, Guy Fieri, Bobby Flay, and Giada De Laurentiis have in common? The obvious answer is that they're all celebrity chefs with a number of Food Network show titles to their credit. Another thing these four have in common is they're all in their 50s, putting them on the cusp between Boomers and Generation X. You'll need to dig deep into Food Network's roster to find a personality Millennials might find relatable. 

Fortunately, the new generation of chefs and their younger audience have their own platform, one the Los Angeles Times referred to back in 2015 as the Food Network for the digital age. At that time, this digital network, called Tastemade, was definitely attracting the younger demographic. About 60% of its active users were between 18 and 34 years old. Nowadays, many of these users are tuning in to "Make This Tonight," a cooking show that aims to not only please the famously hard to please, but also improve everybody's cooking skills.

The hosts of 'Make This Tonight' hardly bother with recipes

The best summary of "Make This Tonight" might come from a YouTube description: "It features real people making real recipes in real time," with the promise that you'll be able to make the host's chicken adobo in 30 minutes. Not coincidentally, each show is about a half-hour long, too. "Make This Tonight" sets itself apart from other cooking demonstrations by showing the cooks prepare a meal from start to finish, with hardly any cuts or edits.

Nor does "Make This Tonight" have an intense, Gordon Ramsay-like "make it my way or don't make it at all" attitude. The new wave of chefs on the show don't care too much how you make their dish. The hosts play fast and loose with their recipes, leaving you to wonder if they even have a recipe. (The Tastemade website does feature recipes for each episode.)

For example, chef Andre Boyer was throwing together ingredients for lumpia, a Filipino spring roll, on a recent episode (via YouTube). "Eyeball it," he said. "You can never add too much in Filipino cooking." Another "Make This Tonight" host, chef Alex Williams, prefers cooking by taste to cooking by the book. "If you're just going by the rulebook it's not gonna end" — here he broke off, unable to finish his thought about why using the rulebook, aka cookbook, is so wrong. He finished by saying, "You need to cook with a feeling and taste your food" (via YouTube).

How you can watch 'Make This Tonight'

"Make This Tonight" is available on a large number of streaming and TV services, so you're bound to find a way to watch that works for you. Per Variety, "Make This Tonight" and the rest of the Tastemade lineup is on Hulu, Amazon Prime Video, Xfinity X1, Xumo, AT&T TV, Vizio, Sling, YouTube TV, Roku, Apple TV, and Samsung TV Plus. And that's a partial list. You can also go straight to the Tastemade website and get ad-free Tastemade+ for $2.99 a month. And hold on to your hats, according to Business Wire, you can even watch "Make This Tonight" on the screen of Samsung Family Hub refrigerators.

While the COVID-19 pandemic was bad news for many people, it was positive for a company that makes digital content about cooking at home. Shows such as "Make This Tonight" and especially "Struggle Meals" saw increasing viewership, with more people cooking during the pandemic lockdowns (via Los Angeles Times). Following this success, "Make This Tonight" is going international in 2021, and even this decision was made with Tastemade's demographic in mind. "Our audience, Millennials and Gen Z, are far more open and excited to learn about things around the world," Tastemade co-founder Steven Kydd told the L.A. Times.

Who are the chefs on 'Make This Tonight?'

You won't find Gordon Ramsay or Alton Brown on "Make This Tonight," so who are these chefs who are so good at feeling their way through spring rolls and Thai chicken? KATU 2 in Portland, Oregon announced the Season 9 lineup of "Make This Tonight" hosts back in March, but it's no longer 100% current. We're already up to Season 11, which begins June 15, according to Tastemade. For one, the popular "Make This Tonight" chef and former pro football player Derrell Smith now has his own Tastemade show, "Mad Good Food" (via AMNY). Other recent "Make This Tonight" chefs include Daisy Ryan, who was a Food & Wine "best new chef" in 2020; Charles Olalia, who ran the popular L.A. Filipino restaurant Ma'am Sir until the pandemic forced it to close permanently (via Los Angeles Times); and Italian-born Daniele Uditi, a master pizza maker who is the chef at Pizzana in Los Angeles (via Just a Taste). Chef Andre, maker of Filipino lumpia, is Andre Boyer, whose acting resume is longer than his cooking resume, per his website. Chef Alex, the "cook with a feeling" host, is Alex Williams, a former chef to the stars who is currently chef de cuisine at Michelin-starred Trois Mec, per Williams' website.

The "Make This Tonight" cast of characters create the right vibe for a digital-savvy generation that watches its content on tablets, phones, and refrigerator doors. Alex Williams set the proper tone right at the start of one show (via YouTube): "I'm super stoked to cook with you guys tonight."