Vikas Khanna

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Vikas Khanna
Doctorate ceremony.jpg
Chef Vikas Khanna receiving doctorate
Born (1971-11-14) 14 November 1971 (age 47)
EducationManipal Academy of Higher Education
Culinary career
Cooking styleIndian cuisine

Vikas Khanna (born 14 November 1971) is an Indian American Chef, restaurateur, cookbook writer, filmmaker and humanitarian. He is one of the judges of Star Plus series MasterChef India. He is based in New York City.

Early life and education[edit]

Khanna was born in Amritsar, India to Davinder and Bindu Khanna. He was born with misaligned feet and wasn't able to run until he was 13. He was inspired by his grandmother who loved to cook, and her kitchen became a part of his foundational training.

Khanna began developing recipes at a very young age and opened Lawrence Gardens Banquets to host weddings and family functions when he was 17. He graduated from the Manipal Academy of Higher Education in 1991.[1]

He has also studied at Cornell University, Culinary Institute of America and New York University.


While in India, Khanna worked for the Taj Hotels, Oberoi group, Welcome group, and Leela Group of Hotels.

Khanna had worked at Salaam Bombay and The Café at the Rubin Museum of Art in New York before he joined Junoon, an upscale Indian restaurant in Flatiron district of Manhattan. Junoon received a favorable review from Sam Sifton in The New York Times[2] in its inaugural year and has been awarded a Michelin star by the Michelin Guide for 6 consecutive years since 2011.

He has also worked with some of the most influential and award-winning chefs of the world like Gordon Ramsay, Eric Ripert, Bobby Flay and Jean-Georges Vongerichten.

Television shows[edit]

In 2011, Khanna hosted the 2nd season of MasterChef India, a series based on the original British version. He has been hosting all the seasons of the show since then. Khanna was invited as a guest judge on MasterChef Australia in Season 6.[3]

He has hosted four seasons of the show Twist of Taste on Fox Life.

Khanna was featured as a Consultant chef on the Gordon Ramsay TV series Kitchen Nightmares[4].

Khanna appeared as a judge and an Indian-cuisine specialist on the two-part season finale of Hell's Kitchen[5].

He has appeared on Throwdown! with Bobby Flay[6] as a judge and as a guest chef on The Martha Stewart Show.[7]

Film Production[edit]

Khanna has produced a documentary series named Holy Kitchens,[8] which explores the bond between faith and food. The series has been showcased at Harvard, Princeton, Columbia and Oxford Universities and Film Festivals.

His documentary “Kitchens of Gratitude” was featured at Marche du Film at the 69th Cannes Film Festival[9].

His directorial debut 'The Last Color' is a film about the daily struggles for survival on the streets of the ancient city of Banaras, India. The teaser of the film featuring veteran Indian actress Neena Gupta was released at the 71st Cannes Film Festival[10].


Khanna launched the foundation "South Asian Kid's Infinite Vision" (SAKIV)[11] to focus on worldwide issues that demand urgent action such as Tsunami Relief, Hurricanes of the Gulf Coast, Haiti. In collaboration with charitable institutions, such as Save the Children, the foundation has hosted many events worldwide - from The Great Pyramid of Giza in Egypt to the Taj Mahal in India.[12][13]

"Cooking for Life" founded by Khanna in 2001 in New York along with the world's top chefs[14] supports several social causes.

Vision of Palate is his award-winning[15] workshop developed to educate people with visual disabilities about the sense of taste, flavor and aromas.

On 14 May 2012, Khanna cooked for a fundraiser hosted for President Obama at the Rubin Museum of Art in New York City[16]

Khanna is the goodwill ambassador for Smile Foundation and supports the cause of malnutrition in India.[17] He has pledged to raise 1 million US dollars for the same.

Awards and Recognitions[edit]

  • Michelin star for his restaurant Junoon by Michelin Guide for 6 consecutive years.
  • Top 10 Chefs in the world by Deutsche Welle News and Gazette Review.[18][19]
  • Doctor of Philosophy (Honoris causa) Degree by the G D Goenka University.[20]
  • Doctorate in literature (Honoris causa) by D Y Patil University.[21]
  • James Beard Foundation Award nomination for his book Return to the Rivers in 2014[22].
  • "Rising Star" Chef Award by Star Chefs for his role in shaping the future of American Cuisine" (2011)[23].
  • GQ India Man of the year 2012 by GQ Magazine[24].
  • Featured in the list of Sexiest Man Alive by People Magazine in November 2011.
  • "Access to Freedom Award"[25] in 2005 from SATH.
  • The Shining Star Award from "Just One Break, Inc."[26]
  • Proclamation from the New York City Council for his outstanding contribution to the city, and was chosen "New Yorker of the Week" by NY1.
  • Featured on the cover of Men's Health India Magazine in 2012[27].
  • He was voted "New York's Hottest Chef" in a poll conducted by the New York Eater blog[28].


1. Ayurveda - The Science of Food and Life

2. Mango Mia - Celebrating the tropical world of Mangoes

3. The Cuisine of Gandhi - Based on the beliefs of the Legend

4. The Spice Story of India

5. New York Chefs Cooking for Life

6. Modern Indian Cooking

7. Flavors First: An Indian Chef's Culinary Journey

8. My Great India Cookbook

9. Khanna Sutra: Food Lessons in Love

10. Everyone Can Cook

11. Savour Mumbai: A Culinary Journey Through India's Melting Pot

12. Young Chefs

13. Return to the Rivers - Recipes and Memories of the Himalayan River Valleys

14. Bliss of Spices - The Essence of Indian Kitchen

15. Hymns from the Soil - A Vegetarian Saga

16. Amritsar - Flavours of the Golden city

17. The Magic Rolling Pin

18. World Feast - My Favourite Kitchen

19. MasterChef India Cookbook

20. Shaken & Stirred - 101 non-alcoholic blends

21. Timeless Legacy - His Holiness the Dalai Lama

22. The Milk Moustache

23. UTSAV - A Culinary Epic of Indian Festivals

24. Indian Harvest - Classic and Contemporary Vegetarian Dishes

25. Essence of Seasoning - My All Time Favorite Recipes

26. Mocktails, Punches, and Shrubs

27. My First Kitchen

28. A Tree Named Ganga

29. POEATRY - Poems from the heart of farms and a kitchen

30. PÃTRA - Heritage of the Indian Kitchen

31. The Last Color

32. The Wholesome Grain

See also[edit]


  1. ^ Correspondent, Staff; Correspondent, Staff (5 February 2012). "Vikas Khanna goes down memory lane". Retrieved 16 July 2018.
  2. ^ [1] Archived 15 July 2014 at the Wayback Machine.
  3. ^ Ten, Network. "MasterChef India Pressure Test". TenPlay - MasterChef India Pressure Test. Retrieved 27 November 2018.
  4. ^ Dillons, retrieved 2018-11-27
  5. ^ "'Hell's Kitchen' recap: The season finale". Retrieved 2018-11-27.
  6. ^ VikasKhannaGroup (2010-07-05), Vikas Khanna, retrieved 2018-11-27
  7. ^ "Fresh Roti Indian Bread with Shrimp". Retrieved 27 November 2018.
  8. ^ "Holy Kitchens". Retrieved 27 November 2018. External link in |website= (help)
  9. ^ "Cannes 2016: Chef Vikas Khanna Screens Documentary on Food". News18. Retrieved 2018-11-27.
  10. ^ "Four-in-a-row for celebrity Chef Vikas Khanna at Cannes". Retrieved 2018-11-27.
  11. ^ "sakiv - Vikas Khanna Foundation". Retrieved 16 July 2018.
  12. ^ "sakiv - Soul of Taj". Retrieved 16 July 2018.
  13. ^ "sakiv - Past Events". Retrieved 16 July 2018.
  14. ^ "sakiv - Supporting Chefs". Retrieved 16 July 2018.
  15. ^ "Past workshops". Retrieved 27 November 2018.
  16. ^ "Chef Prepares Meal for Obama to Kick Off Campaign". Retrieved 27 November 2018.
  17. ^ "Cook for a Smile". Smile Foundation. Retrieved 27 November 2018.
  18. ^ (, Deutsche Welle. "Jamie Oliver and 10 other iconic chefs | DW | 11.11.2015". DW.COM. Retrieved 2018-11-26.
  19. ^ Deml, Jessica (2017-04-22). "Top 10 Chefs In The World - The Best in 2018 - Gazette Review". Gazette Review. Retrieved 2018-11-26.
  20. ^ "Chef Vikas Khanna receives honorary doctorate from G.D Goenka University". 9 February 2018. Retrieved 16 July 2018.
  21. ^ "12th Convocation Ceremony 2018 - D. Y. Patil University". D. Y. Patil University. Retrieved 2018-11-27.
  22. ^ "The Complete 2014 JBF Award Nominees". Retrieved 2018-11-27.
  23. ^ "Chef Vikas Khanna of Junoon |". Retrieved 2018-11-27.
  24. ^ "GQ Men of the Year 2012 : Part 2". GQ India. 2012-10-29. Retrieved 2018-11-27.
  25. ^ "Rolling Rains Report:: Vikas Khanna Promotes Accessibility & Hospitality Worldwide". Retrieved 16 July 2018.
  26. ^ "Archived copy" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 7 September 2008. Retrieved 23 July 2009.
  27. ^ "Cut, chisel, sizzle... : Cover Stories - Menshealth". Retrieved 2018-11-27.
  28. ^ "Junoon's Vikas Khanna is New York's Hottest Chef". Eater NY. Retrieved 2018-11-27.

External links[edit]