It turns out Top Chef finalists enjoy the drive-thru, too.
The final three contestants on Top Chef: Houston—Evelyn Garcia, Buddha Lo and Sarah Welch—shared their favorite fast food and trashy meals in an exclusive chat with E! News.
"I f-cking love McDonald's, man," Houston-based Evelyn said. "No one can beat McDonald's fries. McDonald's fries and Hot 'n Spicy McChicken."
Okay, we're lovin' it.
Buddha, who earned a reputation as a culinary maestro throughout the season, can't resist some fried chicken. "Popeyes is amazing." Buddha told E!. "It is so good. I can't believe how good it is."
Who knew Buddha, the executive chef at Huso in Port Douglas, Australia, would be so relatable?
"If I did my own trick," Buddha said, "caviar and fried chicken is probably some of the best bites I've ever had."
Well, that didn't last long.
"Your trash food is caviar and fried chicken?" Sarah joked.
You know what they say: You can take the boy out of his Michelin plate restaurant, but…
Sarah, the executive chef at Marrow in Detroit, offered up a "homemade" alternative.
"One of my favorite trash meals is when you take one box of macaroni and one package of ramen," Sarah said. "You cook the macaroni. Right before the macaroni is done cooking, you add the ramen. You add hot dogs to that and you mix in both the cheese and seasoning packets. It's called Mac Ramen."
Alright, we're taking notes.
While this season of Top Chef brought in some of the most well-respected chefs in the world as guest judges, the finalists agreed that it was just as scary cooking for host and judge Padma Lakshmi throughout the competition.
"It's intimidating," Buddha said of the experience. "I've watched the show for 15 years and I was finally cooking for her. You want her respect. You don't want to let her down. If you let her down, you let yourself down. She's a very well-trained, seasoned eater."
Sarah, who earned her way back into the competition by winning the redemption series Last Chance Kitchen, understood the importance of pleasing Padma's palette.
"Padma's approval on the show has a lot to do with whether you succeed or fail," Sarah said. "You can tell from the start if she thinks you have the credential to be there. If she does, she's holding you to an impeccably high standard. If she doesn't, you're busting your ass to change her mind."
See who takes home the Top Chef: Houston title when the series finale airs June 2 at 8 p.m. on Bravo.
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