Iconic, cheeky, brilliantly British, and decorated Michelin Star Chef Gordon Ramsay may best be known for his global restaurants, meme-worthy quotes, and foray into US television with Fox’s Hell’s Kitchen, but, in 19 seasons, he hasn’t brought on a plant-based chef to compete to work as head chef at any Ramsay restaurant of their choosing and to enjoy an impressive cash prize.
Now 20 seasons in, the latest group of cooking hopefuls taking to the kitchen includes the show’s very first vegan contestant! Josie Clemens, a 24-year-old vegan chef from Michigan, is in the lineup of 18 new cooks for the season dubbed “Young Guns” as all chefs were 23 or younger at the start of the competition. The contestants will face off each week creating drool-worthy, Insta-ready food, with new life and energy that only a bunch of fired-up GenZ chefs can bring. Josie will let her plant-based skills shine in the kitchen, competing against her peers for the top prize—and no, despite the amount of meme saves on Instagram, that’s not to be called an “idiot sandwich,” one of the host’s most iconic insults.
Coming from a man who once said he was “allergic to vegans,” Ramsay has been slowly shifting into more plant-based cooking, even launching his TikTok with 13 million views on a tutorial for vegan eggplant steak. No word on if the immensely complicated and pain-steak-ingly long process is worth the result, but you can check out a recreation by Sweet Simple Vegan here. Several of Ramsay’s restaurants throughout the world have also adapted to the times, with most now offering vegan options on the menu.
The new season fires up on Monday, May 31 on FOX at 8/7c. For the latest on Hell’s Kitchen, check out the show’s Instagram (@HellsKitchenFox), and to follow along with Josie as she introduces a national audience to more plant-based cooking, check out her Instagram (@VeganChefJosie).