Cooking Events

For all three days of the Gilroy Garlic Festival, you'll find exciting competitions and celebrity chef demonstrations on the Challenge Butter Cook-Off Stage.

Michael Symon  

Don't Miss in 2018!

MasterChef Season 7 Winner Shaun O'Neale, Olympic Champion Brian Boitano, and Iron Chef Michael Symon

Live on the Challenge Butter Cook-Off Stage

Click on the links below to learn more about each event:



Friday July 27, 2018
Master of Ceremonies: Shaun O'Neale
MasterChef Season 7 Winner
10:30 am Garlic Discussion Q&A
Brian Jones, OLAM Garlic Production Manager
11:00 am Champions for Charity
Master of Ceremonies: MasterChef Season 7 Winner Shaun O'Neale
Four teams of local police, firefighters, military and EMTs will compete for a prize of $3,000 to be donated to the charity of their choice.
1:30 pm Champions for Charity Winner Announced (Shaun O'Neale)
2:00 pm Garlic Chef Jr. Cook-Off
A brand-new competition for aspiring young chefs under age 18
4:00 pm Celebrating 40 Years of Family Fun
Gilroy Garlic Festival Founder Don Christopher
4:15 pm Garlic Chef Jr. Cook-Off Winner Announced (Shaun O'Neale)
4:30 pm Celebrity Chef: Shaun O'Neale
MasterChef Season 7 Winner
5:30 pm Dewey Lucero
Wild Groves


Saturday July 28, 2018
10:00 am Great Garlic Cook-Off
Masters of Ceremonies: Brian Boitano and Wendy Brodie

Eight non-professional chefs from across the country prepare their own original garlic recipes for the chance to win $5,000 and the coveted garlic crown.
12:15 pm Great Garlic Cook-Off Winners Announced
(Brian Boitano and Wendy Brodie)
 12:30 pm Celebrity Chef: Brian Boitano
Olympic Gold Medalist and Food Network star
2:00 pm Adam Sanchez and Ann Zyburra
Chefs/Owners of The Milias Restaurant in Gilroy
3:00 pm Austin Cobb
Executive Chef at The Strand House, Manhattan Beach
4:00 pm Annie Smith
Chef for Girl Power 2 Cure, Food Fighters Season 1
5:00 pm SakaBozzo
Gilroy Garlic Festival past Presidents and longtime cooking duo Gene Sakahara and Sam Bozzo
6:00 pm Gilroy Garli-Que BBQ Challenge Awards


Sunday July 29, 2018
Morning Master of Ceremonies: Michael Symon
10:00 am Local Celebrity Chefs: Gloria Melone and John Melone
The family of Gilroy Garlic Festival founder Rudy Melone share favorite recipes
11:00 am Alexis Higgins
MasterChef Junior Season 3 contestant
12:00 pm Garlic Showdown
Master of Ceremonies: Michael Symon
Professional chefs compete in an Iron Chef-style contest for $3,000 and the ultimate bragging rights.
2:45 pm Garlic Showdown Winner Announced (Michael Symon)
3:00 pm Celebrity Chef: Michael Symon
Iron Chef and Co-Host of "The Chew"
4:00 pm Jason Ryczek
Executive Chef, Farallon Restaurant, San Francisco
5:00 pm Garlic Discussion Q&A
Brian Jones, OLAM Garlic Production Manager


The Gilroy Garlic Festival exclusively features California-grown garlic.