Marcela Valladolid is one woman who knows how to wake up one’s appetite by transforming different ingredients into mouth-watering dishes. She is not just an ordinary cook, she is a great chef! For anyone who is a fan of Food Network, her name will definitely not sound unfamiliar because she was the host of the cooking series Mexican Made Easy and a judge on the show Best Baker in America, both on the channel. In addition to being a chef, Marcela is also an author and a mother of three.
Who is Marcela Valladolid?
The chef was born Marcela Luz Valladolid on July 19, 1978, in San Diego, California. In accordance with the naming tradition of Hispanic Americans, she lists her father’s last name, Valladolid, and her mother’s maiden name, Rodriguez, on her website to have Marcela Valladolid Rodriguez.
She never had any plans of pursuing a career as a chef until she began to work at a cooking school owned by her Aunt Marcela in Tijuana, Mexico. Her experience there sparked off a passion for cooking in her and led to her decision to tow that path as a profession. Consequently, Marcela Valladolid enrolled into Los Angeles Culinary Institute and subsequently graduated as a certified cook.
Not ready to stop there, she moved to Paris, France, where she got into the Ritz-Escoffier Cooking School, finishing as a classically trained pastry chef. She took her knowledge back home to Tijuana and established her own catering company. Her desire to share her knowledge with others led her to teach cooking techniques at her home to various classes made of 40 students.
Marcela’s growth in the cooking industry went a notch higher when she became a member of staff of the American food and entertaining magazine, Bon Appétit, as editor and recipe stylist. She also took part in the 2005 reality game show, The Apprentice: Martha Stewart, and finished fourth.
In her first cooking show which aired on Discovery en Español in the United States, the chef showed viewers how traditional recipes are preserved in local Hispanic homes. She followed this up by releasing her first cookbook titled Fresh Mexico: 100 Simple Recipes for True Mexican Flavor in August 2009.
In 2010, Marcela Valladolid appeared on Food Network’s Mexican Made Easy, which was her second cooking show. She also released her second cookbook, Mexican Made Easy, in September of the following year. The aim of the show and the book was to show the world that there was no “yellow cheese” in traditional Mexican cooking and that her Mexican cooking style can be done with “fresh flavor that fits all”.
Marcela has also featured on other shows on Food Network, including Throwdown! with Bobby Flay where she was one of the judges for a fish taco-themed competition on the show’s 6th season. She also teamed up with the celebrity chef (Bobby Flay) to compete against Masaharu Morimoto and teammate Andrew Zimmern on Iron Chef America in 2012.
In the same year, she made it to the final round in a celebrity version of Chopped and among four competitors, she finished in the second position. The next year, Marcela Valladolid appeared as one of the judges on Guy’s Grocery Games. She is also one of the two judges on CBS’ The American Baking Competition.
On the 27th of November 2013, the beautiful lady appeared as a guest model on the game show, The Price Is Right. Meanwhile, in 2004, she contested in That’s Too Much and won a car. Returning to Food Network in January 2014, Marcela Valladolid debuted on the show The Kitchen as one of the co-hosts. However, she eventually left the show in October 2017.
Marcela Valladolid’s Family (Husband and Kids)
The popular chef was once married to Fausto Gallardo, a Mexican activist. Their marriage lasted for a short while before they divorced in 2003. Many years later, they were able to sort out their differences and got back together, remarrying in 2012. Unfortunately, the union crashed again due to Marcella’s alleged affair with Great British Bake Off star, Paul Hollywood, who appeared with her as a judge on The American Baking Competition in 2013.
She is currently engaged to Philip Button and together, they have two children named David Button-Valladolid (son), born on April 9, 2014, and Anna Carina Button-Valladolid (daughter), born on December 5, 2016. Also, Marcela Valladolid had a son named Fausto Gallardo on April 27, 2004, with her ex-husband.