Joey Chestnut

Who is Joey Chestnut?

Joey Chestnut is an American competitive eater and influencer who is active on YouTube, Instagram, TikTok and other social platforms. He was born on 25th November 1983 in Fulton County, Kentucky, United States. He is known for posting food challenges on his social media.   

Education of Joey Chestnut   

Joey grew up as any other average kid: playing games and preparing for a normal life. Since he obviously didn’t know that he would end up eating for money, Joey looked for an interesting major. Once he started attending San Jose State University, Joey decided on an engineering degree. While his major didn’t offer many minoring choices, Joey decided on construction management. Joey did well at school, but he didn’t have a lot of free time, which prevented him from finding a job. But it eventually paid off when he graduated with a bachelor’s degree in engineering.   

Early career of Joey Chestnut  

Even though he was already an adult, Joey didn’t reveal his talent any time soon. It was eventually brought up by Joey’s brother, who discovered his talent and pushed him to attend his first contest. It all began because of Joey’s studies. Since he had to focus on his studies and therefore didn’t have much money, Joey was going home every weekend. Not only he had a hard time buying his own food, but also, he didn’t know any better cook than his mom. One weekend, Joey’s brother, Will, noticed that he was gulping his food as if it was his last. While his brother already saw his future, Joey was still unsure.   

He always thought that he just had a big appetite, as he was able to eat three bowls of his mom’s pasta and go for a burger the minute he finished eating. Eventually, Will told Joey that he should try competitive eating because it could earn him a lot of money. Joey wasn’t exactly thrilled about the idea but wasn’t really resistant either. After all, all he had to do was stay at a hotel for free and eat as much lobster as he could. For a complete novice, Joey ranked pretty high and proved that he had something in him. From that point, Joey’s life turned upside down as he learned that people were willing to pay him for eating.   

Why is Joey Chestnut famous?   

Joey officially became a part of the competitive eating world in 2005 when he decided to take part in California’s World Deep Fried Asparagus Eating Championship. Even though he wasn’t prepared, Joey ranked third, right after world-famous competitive eaters: Takeru Kobayashi and Sonya Thomas. While taking third place might not sound like a big deal, Joey was competing with the world’s best competitive players before his career even started. In the same year, Joey attended World Grilled Cheese Eating Championship, where he competed as well. While he only attended the contest to win, Joey didn’t expect to break a world record as well. But after this achievement, Joey broke several more world records.   

Is Joey Chestnut healthy?   

Since he became famous in the competitive eating world, Joey had to start caring about his health more. He cared for his health as any other person, but he realised that eating this much food might need a little more preparation. Just to be safe, Joey began searching for a doctor, who would help him take care of his overworked stomach. But every doctor he met immediately began telling Joey that he was going to rapture his stomach and die. Everyone kept telling him that competitive eating wasn’t healthy. This approach made Joey almost angry because it made him realise that people weren’t seeing his career as a legitimate sport. Running marathons isn’t healthy as well, but doctors are willing to help those athletes as much as they can. Eventually, Joey found one doctor who assured him that his stomach won’t rapture as long as he wasn’t going to use any drugs. Since Joey didn’t plan on doing that, he began training for his other achievements.    

Joey Chestnut – Hotdog Eating Champ  

While he had broken several records during his career, Joey was always focused on one particular event. Every year on the 4th of July, there is being held the Nathan’s Hot Dog Eating Contest on Coney Island. And every year since 2005, Joey always attended the event as a competitor. When he first attended the hotdog eating contest, Joey ended up third, right after Kobayashi and Sonya. Takeru Kobayashi was an expected winner since he had won every year’s contest since 2001. The better was the surprise when Joey attended the competition for the third time and beat Kobayashi in his own game in 2007.  

Once he won, he wasn’t going to stop. Joey began winning one competition after another and breaking several world records in the process. Since he began winning every Nathan’s Hot Dog Contest, people began to know him as a hotdog-eating champion. Sometime during the winning series, Joey got the nickname "Jaws" for his specific way of eating. Once he secured his title as the Hotdog King, Joey began challenging his strongest opponent: himself. Every year, Joey began trying to beat his own record, and he succeeded many times. In 2013, Joey ate incredible 69 hotdogs and happily continued his winning streak. His only setback came in 2015 when Joey was beaten by a novice on the scene, Matt Stonie. Joey accepted his defeat, but the next year he came even more prepared. Joey’s personal and world record was determined in 2021 when Joey ate 76 hotdogs.   

Joey Chestnut – Major Eating League  

Once he proved his incredible talent to the world, Joey got an offer to become a member of the Major Eating League, which is an organisation ensuring a safe environment for all eating contests. This membership allowed Joey to travel to other countries holding eating contests and to take part in them. During his career and his membership, Joey had broken 55 world records in eating categories. While Takeru Kobayashi was seen as the world’s best eater for a long time, Joey not only took his place but also secured his position for many years ahead. On the official website of Major League Eating, Joey is described as the greatest eater in history. In his bio, he is also said to be an American hero and a national treasure.   

Joey Chestnut – Lifestyle  

As with any other famous competitive eater, Joey had to answer one question many times. The question always sounded the same: how does he keep his figure while eating so much food? And while the question might sound justified, the answer is pretty simple. Joey isn’t fat because he controls his diet besides competitions and shows. Joey spent many years training his stomach to handle those enormous amounts of food. At the same time, he figured out how much food he should eat in the meantime so he wouldn’t gain unnecessary weight. Whenever he’s done training, Joey usually lasts on protein supplements and water until he feels that he has digested everything.   

Personal life of Joey Chestnut   

Joey’s dating history before his entrance to eating competitions is clouded by mystery. Once he became famous in the competitive eating world, Joey confirmed that he noticed seeing the same women in every one of his competitions. While proving that he had many ladies to choose from, Joey stayed single for another few years. Once he claimed his victory at Nathan’s Hot Dog Eating Contest in 2014, Joey got down on one knee and proposed to another competitive eater, Neslie Ricasa.   

For the following months, those two became the power couple of competitive eating. Neslie’s rank even got better as she was getting advice from the best champion himself. Their romance continued until 2015 when they split up just weeks before their wedding date. Since Joey was grieving his love, he did what many other heartbroken people often do: he ate for comfort. Just a few days after the breakup, Joey went head down into training, as eating was something he could control.   

Joey Chestnut on YouTube  

Joey created his self-titled YouTube channel in 2006, briefly after he became a member of Major League Eating. Since that time, Joey has come a long way and become the number 1 of competitive eating in the process. In his YouTube bio, Joey skipped between pride and humbleness. In the first part, Joey confirmed that he was the best competitive eater in the world. Right after that sentence, Joey added that he was just a goofy dude who loves to eat and travel.  

The fact that Joey loves to eat is clear to anyone visiting his channel. His most popular video is Most Big Macs Ever Eaten by One Person / Joey Chestnut Sets New World Record, with over 8,7 million views. In the said video, Joey had a cheat day, and he wanted to try eating the most Big Macs he possibly could. Since it was his childhood dream, Joey prepared thoroughly for the day. In the end, he finished up all 32 burgers in 38 minutes with a big smile on his face.   

Joey Chestnut on TikTok   

While other competitive eaters were usually more popular on YouTube, where they could post their whole performances, Joey found his audience on TikTok. Since he became Nathan’s Hot Dog Eating champion several years in a row, Joey became irreversibly connected to hot dogs. In this case, the internet did Joey’s work for him and made him famous. Joey’s connection to hot dogs became so popular that it became a meme. Instead of fighting it, Joey embraced his new role as “that hot dog guy” and adapted his TikTok content to the meme. Since then, Joey’s account has gone viral, attracting millions of new fans. As soon as he got used to it, Joey began uploading more content, including challenges and pranks on people.   

How much does Joey Chestnut earn? Net worth  

As of 2023, his net worth is estimated to be over 2,5 million US dollars. Even though he is popular on YouTube, Joey makes more money from TikTok, where he often posts advertisements. Besides posting ads, Joey agreed to several brand deals which he promotes in his videos. While he makes some money from social media, competitive eating is Joey’s main source of income. Not only he has benefits as the number 1 in the world, but he often collects the main cash prizes for contests.   

Interesting facts about Joey Chestnut   

  • As of 2023, he is 39 years old.   
  • His zodiac sign is Sagittarius.   
  • His height is 6’0’’ or 180 cm.   
  • His weight is 104 kilograms or 229 lbs.   
  • He got into competitive eating because of his brother, Will.   
  • He studied engineering at San Jose State University.   
  • His first eating contest was California’s World Deep Fried Asparagus Eating Championship in 2005. 
  • He has attended every Nathan’s Hot Dog Eating Contest on Coney Island since 2005.   
  • He won every hot dog eating contest from 2007 to 2021. His only setback came in 2015 when he was defeated by Matt Stonie.   
  • He is the best competitive eater in the world. As confirmed by Major League Eating.   
  • He currently holds over 40 world records.   
  • He has over 1,1 million followers on TikTok, with an additional 300 thousand subscribers on YouTube.   
  • His most popular video is Most Big Macs Ever Eaten by One Person / Joey Chestnut Sets New World Record, with over 8,7 million views.  
  • As of 2023, his net worth is estimated to be over 2,5 million US dollars.