The Sporkful

The Sporkful

We obsess about food to learn more about people. The Sporkful isn't for foodies, it's for eaters. Hosted by Dan Pashman, who's also the inventor of the new pasta shape cascatelli. James Beard and Webby Award winner for Best Food Podcast. A Stitcher Production.


May 29, 2023 31 mins

In the 1980s, six women on an island off the coast of Massachusetts began selling lobster rolls as a church fundraiser. Today people travel by car, boat, and plane just to taste these hallowed summer treats. This week, one of those people is Dan. He travels to Martha’s Vineyard to uncover Grace Church's secret recipe. Plus, Daniel Gritzer from Serious Eats breaks down the science of why frozen lobster might be better than fresh.

On ...

Mark as Played

Comedian and podcaster Jamie Loftus set out on a cross-country road trip to try to figure out: Why do hot dogs have such a hold on American culture? And why does she continue to find them so damn delicious? Over the course of her Hot Dog Summer, she tried all kinds of regional American dogs, from a bacon-wrapped Sonoran dog in Tucson, to a bologna-wrapped dog in Baltimore, to one that involved SpaghettiOs. She also visited the fame...

Mark as Played

When the California government stepped in to try and prevent abalone from going extinct, it also criminalized the food traditions of indigenous people in the region. In this episode from our friends at the podcast Copper and Heat, we look into the history of this now luxury ingredient — a tale that involves San Francisco bohemians, Japanese fishermen, and a Pomo-Paiute woman who has risked jail time and fines in order to keep these...

Mark as Played
May 8, 2023 35 mins

This week we're exploring the musical history of jelly, from the Harlem Renaissance to Beyoncé and beyond. Along the way, we hear the story of a famous moment in internet history, explore depictions of Black women in music, and learn how jelly became an affirmation for LGBTQIA+ identity. And then, for our grand finale, we write an original song about JELLY!

This episode originally aired on August 12, 2019, and was produced by Dan Pa...

Mark as Played

ChatGPT can use artificial intelligence to generate high school essays, emails, cover letters, and a lot more. But can it write an episode of The Sporkful? Eater senior reporter Bettina Makalintal joins us to discuss, and to tell us what happened when she asked ChatGPT to write a “stinky lunchbox immigrant memoir.” Do the results reveal something about the way immigrants and food are represented in media today? And what does all th...

Mark as Played
April 24, 2023 35 mins

Cookbook author Andrea Nguyen helped change the tone of Vietnamese cookbooks when she published her first in 2006. “They had these long, long ingredient lists that kind of exoticized the cuisine,” Andrea tells Dan. “But we're here in America. Why can't we talk about Vietnamese food in America?” Several cookbooks later, Andrea has continued to demystify Asian cooking without dumbing it down. Over lunch at Sidestreet Pho in Alameda, ...

Mark as Played
April 17, 2023 52 mins

Crunchy, creamy, squishy, slimy… the list goes on. Texture might not be the first thing you think of when describing your favorite foods, but it plays a big role in the foods you love and the foods you hate. And it’s not just an individual preference; culture can help determine whether you love crunchy or squishy foods. On today’s show, we’re bringing you an episode from our friends at Gastropod that dives into the world of food te...

Mark as Played
April 10, 2023 28 mins

Bill Nye is a goofball nerd to the core, and he’s built a career on making science fun and accessible for everyone. So can Bill give Dan some satisfying answers to big, and small, food science questions? Like what’s the deal with the five second rule? And how should we think about GMOs? Then, Bill and Corey S. Powell, his co-host on the podcast Science Rules!, chat with listeners to explain the science of salting pasta water, and w...

Mark as Played
April 3, 2023 36 mins

How do you eat ice cream on a first date? When should you start meal prepping when you’re in a new relationship? What’s the perfect tailgating food? Sam Sanders, Saeed Jones, and Zach Stafford, the hosts of the podcast Vibe Check, join us to chat about food issues and obsessions in their lives. And they help us settle some listener food disputes about repeat recipes, and Chipotle bowls. 

The Sporkful production team includes Dan Pas...

Mark as Played
March 27, 2023 33 mins

Hip hop records as placemats. A sneaker chandelier, reminiscent of shoes hanging on telephone lines. A bouillabaisse overflowing with seafood from the south of France. That was the scene at one of the high-end events put on by Ghetto Gastro, a Bronx-based culinary collective. Jon Gray, Lester Walker, and Pierre Serrao formed Ghetto Gastro a decade ago, with a mission to present Bronx culture as high culture. Their first cookbook, B...

Mark as Played

Zahra Tabatabai’s parents grew up in an Iran that would be unrecognizable today. “The pictures I see of my family in Iran in the sixties and seventies, they're in bikinis at the beach, drinking beer,” she says. Now, after the 1979 Islamic Revolution, women are legally required to wear hijabs and alcohol is banned. A few years ago, Zahra became interested in the long history of beer brewing in Iran — a tradition that included her ow...

Mark as Played

A year ago we spoke with a young woman we’re calling Raina, who felt she was on the verge of developing an eating disorder. For context and perspective, we spoke with comedian Margaret Cho, who's struggled with eating disorders much of her life. This week, we get an update on how Raina is doing one year later.

This episode originally aired on January 9, 2017, and was produced by Dan Pashman, Anne Saini, and Shoshana Gold, with editi...

Mark as Played
March 6, 2023 30 mins

The Copenhagen restaurant Noma has consistently topped lists of best restaurants in the world. People fly in from all over the globe to pay $500 per person for the hyperlocal tasting menus dreamed up by chef/owner Rene Redzepi. But a couple months ago, Redzepi announced the restaurant will close next year because it had become unsustainable, “financially and emotionally.” The announcement came as many high end chefs have spoken out...

Mark as Played
February 27, 2023 27 mins

When Alexandra Yingst plopped down at a bar in Reykjavik after a 10-hour drive through a blizzard, she saw something unexpected: a Big Mac, in seemingly perfect condition, under a glass dome. It turns out that Big Mac tells us a lot about Iceland’s economy and national identity. Our friends at the Atlas Obscura podcast explore the world’s strange, incredible, and wondrous places — and this week they’re bringing us two of their best...

Mark as Played

"Flirting over food is really the best way to flirt," says actor Alan Alda, and he would know. He met his wife, Arlene, at a dinner party in college. A rum cake fell off the top of a refrigerator, and Arlene and Alan were the only ones to grab a fork and eat it off the floor. More than sixty years later, they’re still married. Their secret? Good communication. Alan and Arlene advise Dan on how to communicate with his own family abo...

Mark as Played
February 6, 2023 28 mins

When the French chef Jean-Robert de Cavel died in December, hundreds of chefs wore their white coats to his memorial service in downtown Cincinnati. It was a testament to how many people Jean-Robert had inspired in the thirty years he lived in the city. So how did this fancy French chef end up in Cincinnati — and why did he stay? We hear about Jean-Robert’s unlikely love affair with his adopted city, and we talk with food writer Ke...

Mark as Played
January 30, 2023 35 mins

We’re entering the third wave of meat alternatives. First, there was the Gardenburger — a hockey puck-like object that made it less annoying to be a vegetarian at a barbecue. Next came the meat substitutes that really tried to replicate the look, feel, and experience of meat, like Impossible Foods and Beyond Meat. Now lab-grown meat, once the stuff of science fiction, is on the horizon, edging towards feasibility. After billions of...

Mark as Played

The number one question Dan has gotten since inventing cascatelli is: Are you going to invent another pasta shape? The answer is probably not — the sequel is never as good as the original. Instead, he gets a better idea: find some old, obscure shapes that he loves, make a tweak or two, and team up with Sfoglini to produce them. But first he has to figure out which shapes, and how to get his hands on them. That requires a lot of tas...

Mark as Played
January 13, 2023 31 mins

This week, a federal regulator called gas stoves a “hidden hazard,” saying a ban on them was in the realm of possibility. President Biden and the Consumer Product Safety Commission quickly walked back that statement, but not before it ignited a firestorm among Republican politicians. So why the big kerfuffle over gas stoves? In 2021, we investigated the debate over gas vs. electric stoves, including the ad campaigns that have fuele...

Mark as Played

From the show about a thirst trap chef at a Chicago Italian beef joint, to a movie about a luxury restaurant planning to kill its customers, 2022 was the year of ambitious, experimental, and downright weird food TV and movies. This week, comedian and TV writer Ashley Ray (who hosts the podcast “TV I Say”) breaks down some of the most talked about food shows and movies of the past year, including The Bear, Julia, Atlanta, and The Me...

Mark as Played

Popular Podcasts

    Current and classic episodes, featuring compelling true-crime mysteries, powerful documentaries and in-depth investigations.

    Crime Junkie

    If you can never get enough true crime... Congratulations, you’ve found your people.


    In order to tell the story of a crime, you have to turn back time. Every season, Investigative journalist Delia D'Ambra digs deep into a mind-bending mystery with the hopes of reigniting interest in a decades old homicide case.


    It’s a lighthearted nightmare in here, weirdos! Morbid is a true crime, creepy history and all things spooky podcast hosted by an autopsy technician and a hairstylist. Join us for a heavy dose of research with a dash of comedy thrown in for flavor.


    Unforgettable true crime mysteries, exclusive newsmaker interviews, hard-hitting investigative reports and in-depth coverage of high profile stories.

Advertise With Us

For You

    Music, radio and podcasts, all free. Listen online or download the iHeart App.


    © 2023 iHeartMedia, Inc.