22 Things You Didn't Know About Eddie Jackson

You know Eddie as the Season 11 winner of Food Network Star. But how much do you really know about what he’s like when the cameras aren’t around? 

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All About Eddie

Think you know Eddie? Read on to learn little-known facts about the Food Network Star. 

Culinary Strength: Ingenuity

"My greatest strength is to be able to mix and match dinner flavors. I don't just cook one specific type of food — not just Asian or Caribbean. I try to do a little bit of everything to mix and match flavors and see what I come up with," he says.

Get the Recipe: Caribbean Chili-Stuffed Muffins

Game-Day Must-Have: Wings

"I have a rum-glaze chicken wing recipe that I do for my tailgate parties," he says. He loves them so much, he even used them on Food Network Star.

Get the Recipe: Spicy Rum Chicken Wings

A Winning Moment with Dad

After learning of his Star victory, Eddie says, he gave his dad "a huge hug and a kiss."

Football vs. Food? Football Wins

When asked to choose between football and food, he chooses football. "I've been through a lot of ups and downs in my life, from playing professional football to getting hurt to where I couldn't play anymore and turning my life into food because it's something I've always wanted to do," he says.

Go-To Dish: Escabeche Fish

Not only is this Eddie's favorite dish to make, but it's also the first one he feels he perfected. It "is a Jamaican dish in which you lightly fry fish, but it's topped with pickled veggies," Eddie explains. "So it's kind of on the borderline of being healthy but not healthy — 'cause cheat day."

Culinary Hero: Bobby Flay

"He's definitely my culinary hero because we have a lot in common. He's a grill guy, and we both like strong flavors. I gravitated to him at a young age," Eddie says.

Loving Food Through Family

Eddie credits two people for instilling in him a love of food. "My grandmother at first. It started with a biscuit (watching her make them)," he says. "Later on, my dad influenced me in my teen years."

His Last Meal Would Be Barbecue

"If I was on my deathbed, I would ask for a whole rack of ribs," he says. "My favorite side would have to be my grandmother's potato salad."

Where There's Food, There's Fitness

"Fitness is a big part of my life. I'm a big fan of moderation and watching what you eat on a daily basis," he says of how he balances food and fitness. "It's just part of who I am."

Watch: Eddie Jackson's Fitness Playbook

Favorite Cooking Memory: Childhood 'Cue

"By far, [it was] the first time my dad taught me the ins and outs of barbecue on the patio of our apartment on a small Weber grill back in 1991," he says. 

Ultimate Cheat Day Meal: Get Grilling

"My ultimate cheat day meal would have to be something off the grill because I am a grill fanatic. That's why I love Bobby Flay so much," he says.

Get the Recipe: Eddie Jackson's Flank Steak

Favorite Late-Night Snack: Fries

"I am a fanatic for french fries. I hate to admit it," he says. "Being a personal trainer, I teach my people not to eat french fries. But that's my weakness."

Weirdest Thing in His Fridge: Pickled Eggs

If you take a peek inside his fridge, you'll probably find something pickled. "I love pickling things," he says. "You might find pickled eggs or something like that."

Go-To Karaoke Tune: "This Is How We Do It" by Montell Jordan 

He Supports the Next Generation

"I am a kid fanatic, so putting food and kids together is a win-win for me." 

Favorite Emoji: Seeing Sunshine

"The dude with the sunglasses, and the flexed arm." 

He Was Wowed by Kids BBQ Championship

“The knowledge the kids have about food at such a young age was very impressive." 

Meaty Pizza Toppings Are His Favorite

“I’m a carnivore." 

Drink of Choice: He'll Pick Two, Please

“Whiskey, nice and neat. Or any ice-cold beer. Or both — I have two hands!” 

He Barbecues Regularly — Daily, In Fact 

"Considering my food truck is based around grilling and barbecuing: every day.” 

Smoke Wars: He Prefers to Use a Charcoal or Wood Grill     

“It gives a better flavor."

First Concert: Bobby Brown, Shabba Ranks and TLC

Want More Eddie?

Check out some of Eddie's top recipes, watch brand-new videos and relive his Food Network Star journey.

More: Eddie Jackson