Food is first and foremost the kind of nature that keeps us alive. But beyond food and in an effort to have fun, people began to look for other things to use food for. The answer came in the form of an eating contest, and this is where Joey Chestnut comes in.
One man who has made a name for himself in the unique niche of binge eating is Joey Chestnut. He is the record holder of many binge eating competitions. Who is Joey Chestnut? How did he make his mark in food contests? To learn more about the world’s best eater, read below.
When Joey was born by his parents on November 25, 1983, they certainly did not expect him to grow up to be a big food-eater. The World Champion was born in Vallejo, California; and although his parents were together at the time of his birth, they were separated when he was 2 years old. Joey was raised by his mother.
The separation from Joey’s parents may have led to his incredible appetite for food. After being entrusted with the sole responsibility of raising her son, Joey’s mother took a job in a restaurant. With her low income, she raised Joey, paid for his education from middle school to high school, and finally got him admitted to San Jose State University.
Joey owes the big appetite he has for food to his mother’s cooking. His training routine for competitions includes a milk, protein, and water diet, which he uses to stretch his stomach.
He first took this appetite into the world of competition in 2005 when he participated in the championship for fried asparagus while he was still at San Jose State University. His competitive career began after he defeated high ranking competitor Rich LeFevre, who announced his arrival by consuming an impressive 6.3 pounds of asparagus in 11.5 minutes.
As the holder of many records and winner of several competitions, Joey Chestnut has made a lot of money by winning competitions, and his success has found the support and sponsorship of food brands. With all of this income, Joey has been able to build a net worth of $900,000.
Family – Parents, Wife
Although Joey proposed to his long-time girlfriend, Neslie Ricasa, in 2014 and the lady said yes, the couple never made it to the altar. They separated in 2015 and Joey is currently believed to be single.
Not much is known about Joey Chestnut’s family. He was raised by his mother alone after his father left him when he was just two years old. There is no record of him having any siblings.
Joey Chestnut’s Eating Records
Joey Chestnut is undoubtedly one of the biggest food competitors in the world. He has an impressive number of world records with 11 world records in food. With his victory over Rich LeFevre, he announced his arrival on the stage of the competitive eating competition. In his year of a breakout, not only did he want to win against LeFevre, but Joey went even further and entered the Nathan’s Famous Fourth of July International Hot Dog Eating Contest.
On his first attempt, he took third place. In October 2005, he set the first of many world records at the World Grilled Cheese Eating Championship Circuit, eating 32.5 grilled cheese sandwiches in 10 minutes. He quickly rose to rival Takeru Kobayashi, who had been the hot dog eating champion for a while. However, despite a good attempt that led Kobayashi to a new world record, Joey was unable to beat the reigning champion and lost to him in both the hot dog competition and the sausage competition.
In 2007 Joey finally defeated Kobayashi. After a year that began with victories in Wing Bowl XV, where he won with a record of 182 chicken wings in 30 minutes, he took up his new challenge against his rival Kobayashi. After a long battle at Downing Hot Dogs, Chestnut Kobayashi narrowly handed in his first defeat in six years with 66-63 hot dogs. At the Hamburg World Championship in Tennessee, he rounded off the 2007 season with a new world record by eating 103 Krystal Burgers in 8 minutes.
Joey continued to win several competitions and established himself as the dominant name in the sport. He graduated from San Jose in 2012 and became a civil engineer. Joey is still a competitive eater and has competed every year since graduating college. His most recent victories include a new hot dog world record in 2018 with 74 hot dogs in Nathan’s Hot Dog Contest.
He currently holds 42 records in food competitions, including 141 hard-boiled eggs in eight minutes, 7.61 pounds of chicken wings in just 12 minutes (at the same time he ate 9.8 pounds of ribs), and much more.