"My food style is simple; take ingredients and recipes that will bring people together, combine them in a way that is interesting but achievable."
Ben attributes his love of food to his grandmother, “She was an amazing cook, a true grandmother. Before you said hello to her you’d be in the pantry looking at what she’d baked.” Growing up on the North West coast of Tasmania, Ben was the second of four children; family being, and still, an important aspect of his life. “As a child we used to go on family camping trips and we would take out Dad’s boat, go fishing and cook the fish. We would go diving for Abalone and cook it on the campfire".
Cooking has always been a passion for Ben. “Cooking with friends, is always better. Cooking has always been the way I open up, if mum, dad or my brothers and sister ever wanted to have a deep and meaningful chat they would get me in the kitchen.”
In saying this, cooking was not where Ben headed initially- his passion for teaching took priority. Wanting the best of both worlds, Ben discovered ways in which he could incorporate cooking into his classroom, “I used to use food to teach chemistry, there are just over 100 elements on the periodic table, that is your pantry, and with that we have built the world around us. There are thousand of ingredients in the world of food, imagine the things we can create with that, some just like the world of chemistry won’t go together but some will create flavours and textures that make life worth living.”
Deciding to take a risk and enter Masterchef Season 4, Ben was highly successful in the series which became a true turning point for his passion for food. The experience allowed him to refine his skills, immerse himself in food and be taught by some of the most experienced chefs in the business. Since the show, opportunities to continue working with food have been widespread with Ben appearing on national TV shows, doing guest appearances, becoming Brand Ambassador for a number of brands, and featuring as a celebrity chef on numerous occasions at different national events.
Ben’s strengths are in Mexican and Seafood cooking, however he is always keen to explore new, fresh ingredients and combinations of flavours. Ben’s first cookbook, Mexican Craving, was launched in November 2013. His second book, Tasmanian Trail, was released in September, 2014.
Ben went on to begin a successful media career with his TV show 'Ben's Menu' airing on channel 10 for 3 seasons and being shortlisted for a Logie award in 2015. He then featured on SBS Food Network's 'Andy and Ben Eat Australia', with friend Andy Allan whom he met and formed a bond with during his time on Masterchef. Most recently, Ben and his wife Sally have started their own production company, Cultivate Productions. With the help of 12 local Tasmanian employees, Ben has produced and delivered his own TV Show, Food Lab, that aired on Network 10 in 2017 exploring the science behind cooking. Food Lab series 2 has recently aired on the SBS Food Network, a 13 week, 65 episode series that empowers viewers to become better cooks, and better scientists.
Ben’s personality and down to Earth approach has made him popular with people of all ages. His philosophy is unassuming; “My food style is simple; take ingredients and recipes that will bring people together, combine them in a way that is interesting but achievable. Above all cook it because you love it; this is what food is all about”.
For more information on Ben’s TV shows and events, please visit