Colorado Ranks High Among States With The Best Chefs

Fact Checked by Michael Peters

Thanks to its environment with the Rocky Mountains and its people who enjoy nature and staying healthy, it’s no wonder the food scene in Colorado is making moves.

In June, it was announced that the MICHELIN Guide is coming to Colorado. The Guide, first published in France in 1900, helps provide practical advice on where to dine and stay and its inspectors are well respected around the world. To obtain a referral from the MICHELIN Guide means a lot in the foodie world.

As we celebrate National Culinary Arts Month in July, took a break from Colorado sports betting coverage and looked at which states have access to the best of the best chefs you can find in America. utilized Best Chefs America, which has the 5,000 best chefs in a database to establish the top culinary talent in the United States, to collect the state location for each of the top chefs. We then utilized the estimated July 1, 2022, Census state population numbers to figure out the states with the best chefs by capita.

Note this is where they are located, not where they are from.

Bonus Bets Expire in 7 Days. One New Customer Offer Only. Must be 21+ to participate & present in CO. Gambling problem? Call 1-800-GAMBLER. Visit for Terms & Conditions. US promotional offers not available in NY, NV, or Puerto Rico.

States With The Best Chefs

Overall RankState# of Chefs on ListChefs Per Capita
2Rhode Island490.000045
7New York5400.000027
13New Jersey1980.000021
16New Hampshire230.0000164
21New Mexico280.0000132
23South Carolina640.00001211
24North Carolina1280.0000119

Ski Areas Standout Culinarily

Colorado comes in at 11th in the country on the per capita ranking thanks to having 130 chefs on the Top 5,000 list. Vermont is No. 1 in per capita, but California has the most with 796 chefs, followed by New York with 540. California may have the most, but its large population leaves it 14th per capita.

According to the website, its list “features premier chefs that have been nominated and recommended by their peers in the culinary field.” So they didn’t get on the list without the support of someone in the field.

Part of the reason for Colorado’s rise in the food world has to do with the state’s mix of flavors “thanks to a coupling of hyperlocal produce and ingredients, sourced sustainably, and the unique cultural influences of the region including German, Hispanic and Native American cultures,” according to the MICHELIN Guide in its release about coming to Colorado.

Of the 130 Colorado chefs named on the’s list, 55 of them are working in Denver. There are 15 to find in Colorado Springs, 13 to search for in Boulder, 11 in Aspen, eight in Telluride and seven in Edwards — if CO sports betting apps took wagers on such things, the odds would be short on finding great chefs in the state’s ski areas.


Douglas Pils has been a sports journalist for 30 years in Texas, Arkansas and New York having worked for the San Antonio Express-News, the Associated Press, The Dallas Morning News and Newsday. He most recently ran the Student Media Department at Texas A&M for eight years.

Cited by leading media organizations, such as: