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The Daily Dish Top Chef

Top Chef Season 17 Winner Melissa King Has the Sweetest Plans for Her $250,000 Prize

The All Stars L.A. winner is giving back with her prize money.

By Laura Rosenfeld

Melissa King's turn in Bravo's Top Chef Season 17 was history making. Not only did she earn more wins than any other contestant in Top Chef history, but as the winner of Season 17, she also got to take home the largest cash prize ever presented in the culinary competition, $250,000.

How to Watch

Watch the Top Chef Season 21 premiere on Wednesday, March 20 at 9/8c on Bravo and next day on Peacock.

But Melissa said she isn't looking to spoil herself with that money. "My original plan was I wanted to take my whole family on a vacation somewhere. But with COVID and quarantining and all that, it might be challenging this year to make that happen," she told The Daily Dish in an interview over the phone prior to the Top Chef Season 17 finale airing. "But I would like to treat my family, because they’ve just been so supportive my entire life with this goal and this passion to cook that I really want to just treat everyone to something real nice." 

She also plans to use some of the money toward some of her future professional endeavors. "The rest of the money I would say, I’d like to reinvest it in myself. I think that’s the right thing to do, reinvest it in some future projects," Melissa said. "I just soft launched a small-batch sauce line. And so, I’m hoping to kind of get a little more momentum on that and invest some of the money into that project."

Melissa said that her ultimate goal in anything she does is to have as many people be able to enjoy her food as possible. "That’s always just been my passion, how can I help you eat better? And how can I feed you? What are all the ways that I can make that happen?" she said. "So I have so many ideas for where this money can go." 

Want more Top Chef? Catch up on the latest season through the Bravo app.

Watch Melissa dish more on her winning season of Top Chef during her appearance on Watch What Happens Live with Andy Cohen: @ Home on June 18, below.

After Show: ‘Top Chef All-Stars’ Winner Dishes on Season
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