Is Pampered Chef an MLM? Review

Most people have heard of Pampered Chef.  After all, they’ve been successful for 40 years, and they’re still going strong!  Not everyone knows that this world-famous company is an MLM. Is Pampered Chef an MLM will explain what an observant Home Economics teacher, busy working moms, and Warren Buffet have in common.  Making money figures heavily in the story, so keep reading.

What is Pampered Chef?

Pampered Chef is an American company known for premium quality kitchen tools, cookbooks, and food products.  All of their products are intended for in-home use. Pampered Chef products are sold directly through in-home presentations, catalog sales, and online shows by Independent Consultants.

You may enjoy this short video which gives you a quick overview of Pampered Chef.

Is Pampered Chef Worth the Price?

Guarantees for the products range from limited to life-time, depending on the item in question.  From my own personal experience, if you take decent care of your kitchen tools, they’re going to last for many years.

I’m not affiliated with the company, and I’ve never been a consultant.  However, I’ve attended lots of Cooking Shows over the years and own quite a few pieces.  I love these products! Here’s why:

  • They look good
  • They work well
  • They hold up well

I know some people think that it’s no big deal to buy a cheap version of an item every year or so, instead of spending more on a well-made quality tool.  That’s usually a false economy. The well-made item ends up costing less in the long run and provides joy that the cheap knock-off just can’t.

So, yes.  The cost of the products you’ll be selling are definitely worth the price.

The Pampered Chef Collection

According to Pampered Chef, they have almost 500 items in their product line.  It’s interesting to note that 90% of these products are exclusive Pampered Chef items.

Here’s a rundown of the categories:

  • Bakeware
  • Bundles and Sets
  • Cooking Tools
  • Cookware
  • Cutlery
  • Electrics
  • Entertaining
  • Foods
  • Frozen Treats
  • Outdoor
  • Stoneware
  • Storage & Cleaning

With a product line this extensive, everyone should be able to find a couple of products that they need in their kitchen.

Pampered Chef

Doris Christopher was really onto something when she started Pampered Chef from the basement of her Chicago home.  By 1980, women were entering the job force in large numbers. Home cooked meals and family dinners around the table were becoming a challenge  for women all across the country.

As a Home Economics teacher, Mrs. Christopher realized that quality kitchen tools could help make family meal time special and keep the tradition alive in more homes.  Warren Buffet’s Berkshire Hathaway Corportation acquired the company in 2002. Mrs. Christopher remains in the position of Chairman of the Board of the company her vision made possible .

The Pampered Chef Opportunity

It’s pretty simple to get started with Pampered Chef.  You just click on the Be a Consultant button on the website.

You’ll then be prompted to fill out a few pages, including:

  • Personal Info
  • Kit Selection
  • Recruiter Info
  • eBiz Tools
  • Billing Info

How Much Does It Cost to Join Pampered Chef?

Is Pampered Chef an MLM? Review

As you can see, you have a choice of three different kits.  They include:

  • Starter Kit – $99.00 U.S.
  • Deluxe Kit – $159 U.S.
  • Ultimate Kit – $259 U.S.

The chart below shows exactly what’s included in each kit.

Is Pampered Chef an MLM? Review


Like all MLM companies, you receive your training from the consultant who signed you up, or the consultant you get assigned to at the time you fill out the online application and pay for your kit.

If you’re lucky, you’ll have someone with the time and knowledge to give you a good start.

Pampered Chef also offers independent online training and team meetings.

The Business Model

Pampered Chef provides four ways for an Independent Consultant to earn money.

  • Cooking Shows (This has been the foundation of the Pampered Chef model)
  • Catalog Sales (Provide catalogs and a window for ordering to the invited guests)
  • Online Sales.  (Lots of consultants conduct show through Facebook)
  • Sponsoring.  (By sponsoring others, you build a team and earn bonuses on your teams sales and purchases.)
    • There are nine consultant career levels progressing from Pampered Chef Consultant to National Executive Director.

Can You Make a Living with Pampered Chef?

Like most other business opportunities, a lot of the answer depends on you!  Let me ask you three questions:

  1. How motivated are you?
  2. How much experience do you have in sales?
  3. How much time do you have to invest on a regular basis?

These three factors will play a big part in your success.

If you check the chart below, you’ll see that you can make a nice part-time income through sales alone.   Monthly sales up to $749 will get you into the 20% commission range.  Selling between $750 and $1249 will bump you into the 22% zone.

Is Pampered Chef an MLM? Review

However, your personal sales aren’t the whole story.  If you’re planning on this business providing a full-time income, you need to build a team.  That’s where the real income comes from.   I you take another look at the chart, you’ll see that you will never earn over 45% on your own personal sale.

Once you’ve sold to your group of family and friends, you’re going to need another way to keeping the money coming in, and team building is the MLM solution to that problem.  The only way to move that percentage rate higher to to earn bonuses on the sales made by the members of your team.

Growing large teams and moving through the nine consultant levels available to Pampered Chef consultants will be mandatory if you want to enjoy a consistent, full-time income.

More to Consider

A quick check shows that some Pampered Chef products are available on Amazon and EBay.  I’m not sure how much this will impact potential sales.

Final Thoughts

I really like this company.  They have great products.  However, I just don’t see how most folks will make more than a small part-time income.  And, the truth is, most don’t. Check the chart below for some startling facts about MLM success.

Is Pampered Chef an MLM? Review


The figures above are accurate.  Almost 88% of people who try their hand at an MLM make between $0 – $4,999 in the time they stay with it.  Most folks never see that $4,999 figure.  Most don’t even cover their expenses.  The number of people that make a livable income is tiny.

If you’re highly motivated, have lots of energy and a huge list of friends to call on, you could prove me wrong.  And, maybe you just want to be able to buy your own Pampered Chef products at a nice discount. Nothing wrong with that.

However if you’re considering this as  a full-time money-making option, take a closer look.  Like many MLM offerings, much of the real earning potential here rests on building your own little empire.  Besides the parties, passing out catalogs, and social media activity, you’ll have to continually recruit and train new consultants.

Do you really want to base your future on the work ethics and life situations of people you have little or no control over?  Not to mention having absolutely no say in how the company is run.

Pros and Cons of Pampered Chef


  • No inventory requirements
  • Purchases can be shipped directly to the customer
  • You’ll be selling quality products that everyone needs


  • Much of your income is dependent on the motivation and work ethic of the individuals on your team
  • You will constantly need to recruit and train group new consultants
  • You are working for someone else and have no control over the products or the earning structure

If you have a boatload of contacts, this may be a good option for you.  If you don’t have lots of friends and family to call on, or you hate the idea of constantly chasing them to place orders with you, it’s probably not a very good idea.

There are other options out there.

An Alternative to Becoming a Pampered Chef Consultant

Remember at the beginning when I told you that Doris Christopher started this company in her basement?  Many of our largest, most successful companies got their start the same way. The founders got an idea, found a little seed money, and started their business at their kitchen table or a space down in their basement.

Know what they all had in common?  They were working on something with a new twist.  It didn’t have to be something wildly new and different.  Just a new twist.

They weren’t following someone else’s dream.  They were putting their own spin on a topic that interested them.  And that’s what I’m suggesting you do.  Build something of your own with your personal signature on it.

Go Big

Why not go Big?  If Pampered Chef caught your eye, build your own cooking website and offer all the items that you enjoy using, know, and trust.  You won’t be limited to the products of one company either.  You can pick and choose products from any source you want.

I invite you to take a look at my #1 recommendation and then let your creativity soar!

You’ll get all the training that you need, won’t have to worry about recruiting or training other people, and you can work at your own pace whenever and wherever you choose.

Pampered Chef









  • No inventory requirements
  • Purchases can be shipped directly to the customer
  • You’ll be selling quality products that everyone needs


  • Much of your income is dependent on the motivation and work ethic of the individuals on your team
  • You will constantly need to recruit and train group new consultants
  • You are working for someone else and have no control over the products or the earning structure

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6 thoughts on “Is Pampered Chef an MLM? Review”

  1. Their beer bread is a go to of mine. This is probably the only MLM I ever buy from, and its usually just for the bread.  My mom got a great pizza stone from them years ago and still has it! I’ve never been pressured to buy anything or join, personally, but, that’s just my experience.  But, I think I would just join as this article has really explained a lot to me as I never had  formal knowledge about them and their services.

    Thanks a lot,



    • Hi David,

      Thanks for the kind words.  I’m glad the article was helpful.  I have one of those pizza stones too.  It’s been at least 15 years since I bought mine at a holiday fair at my former school.  Pampered Chef really does make quality products!  I’ve never tried their beer bread.  I’m going to have to find a consultant and place an order for some.

      Thanks for joining the conversation; I appreciate it!



  2. This is interesting. From my experience MLM’s are usually a bit shady and don’t sell actual quality products, but not this one. I think it’s as you said. There isn’t really much of long term serious income potential for most people. Maybe something interesting for like a mom to sell in a woman’s association group (but do it one time only and not more, else you’ll probably get kicked out of the woman’s association), but as far as people making a business and recruiting others, then no.

    • I suspect that many MLM companies make a large percentage of their income from lots of consultants making a few sales and then leaving.  The companies continue on because enough consultants are out there signing up new people to replace the ones who became discouraged and left.  I envision a huge revolving door when I think of the model that keep these companies alive.

      Thanks for joining the conversation; I appreciate it!

  3. Your review was really well written and explained. You gave me the chance to discover this company that looks pretty interesting. However, I’m not a fan of MLM companies… The network marketing part of trying to sell the company to others is the part I have the most difficulties with.

    MLM business model can definitely work for people good with network marketing and willing to invest a big part of their time (like for any business). Reaching out to people, talking, convincing can become things really tough and exhausting, and that is probably one of the reasons very few people succeed within MLM companies. BUT we know it works because these companies are still living today!

    Thank you for sharing, I might take a look at their products though!


    • Hi Audrey,

      Thanks for the kind words.  I agree that MLM looks like a very exhausting way to make a living.  It’s certainly not something that fits my personality.  You’re absolutely correct when you say MLM companies are still with us.  Some have been around for many years.  A few have been surviving and thriving for decades. 

      Thanks for joining the conversation; I appreciate it! 


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