#TBT: Jeff Mauro

Related To:
FNS7 Finale

FNS7 Finale

Finalist Jeff Mauro revealed winner as Susie Jimenez congratulates him at the Finale as seen on Food Network Next Food Network Star Season 7.

Photo by: Edward Chen/Creel Films ©2011, Television Food Network, G.P.

Edward Chen/Creel Films, 2011, Television Food Network, G.P.

It’s Thursday, and while that means everyone is just one day away from the weekend, it also means it’s time to throw back — to an earlier period in Food Network’s history. Check back on FN Dish every Thursday to find the latest #tbt of your favorite chefs and get a retro look at their earliest days on TV.

While Jeff Mauro is now a firmly ingrained Food Network chef, his first days on TV weren't actually as a star — instead, he was a star in the making, as he was one of 15 finalists to compete on Food Network Star, Season 7.

During the run of the competition in 2011, Jeff offered a sandwich-focused point of view in the kitchen, explaining, "You are only a couple steps away from turning any sandwich into a meal and any meal into one fantastic sandwich." His unique culinary niche, coupled with his on-camera charm and comedic timing, caught the attention of the Selection Committee, including Food Network executives Bob and Susie, and they ultimately welcomed him to the Food Network family as the first-ever Sandwich King. Jeff's premiere series, titled after his nickname, aired that summer with a mix of sandwich recipes inspired by his Italian heritage, his hometown of Chicago and some of his favorite meals.

He's gone on to host several more seasons of Sandwich King, plus a travel-based show, $24 in 24, which challenged him to spend just $24 on one day's worth of breakfast, lunch and dinner in various cities across the country, like Los Angeles, New York City and Minneapolis. In true Jeff fashion, he was able to track down hearty, budget-friendly meals on the road, including several comforting sandwiches.

Related Reading:

Keep Reading

Next Up

Jeff Mauro's Funniest Kitchen Fails

In advance of the Sandwich King's new Web series, we asked him about his most-memorable cooking blunders — and how you can fix kitchen mistakes that aren't actually so bad.

Jeff Mauro's PB and J Blondie — 12 Days of Cookies

Get the recipe for Jeff Mauro's PB and J Blondie, part of Food Network's 12 Days of Cookies.

Jeff Mauro Takes Over Food Network’s Snapchat Discover

You can get all Jeff, all day, when he takes over Food Network’s Snapchat Discover today.

Jeff Mauro's Pecan Crescent Cookies — 12 Days of Cookies

These sugar-coated cookies have been a Christmas staple in Jeff Mauro's house since the late '70s.

Reinvented Grilled Cheese (Plus a Cheesy Love Letter from Jeff Mauro)

Get Jeff’s French Onion Grilled Cheese plus nine other tempting recipes from Food Network Magazine.