Julie Goodwin is the epitome of the busy Australian mum and the nation’s favourite home cook. In 2009, a record-breaking 4 million Australians tuned in to watch her become the first ever winner of ‘MasterChef’. Viewers loved her honesty, sense of humour and humble cooking style, and when her first cookbook, Our Family Table, was published, she became one of Australia’s best-selling authors; her book held the number one slot in the book charts for over 10 weeks. Julie’s family-focused style of cooking and ‘mum next door’ persona made her hugely popular. Shortly after winning ‘MasterChef’, Julie became a regular guest on Nine’s top-rated breakfast show ‘Today’ and contributed the first of her regular recipe columns for Australian Women’s Weekly.
A native Sydneysider, Julie’s first career was as a youth worker. She spent many years presenting workshops in schools across Australia before working at a juvenile detention centre on Sydney’s Central Coast. After having three boys in quick succession, Julie and her husband Michael started their own IT company, which they built into a success through hard work and determination. Cooking for friends and family was always a passion for Julie, and an enjoyable way to bring everyone together around the table.
In 2008, Julie’s love of cooking led her to apply for the first series of ‘MasterChef’, and before long viewers were falling in love with her cooking and straight-shooting sense of humour. Julie’s own television series, ‘Home Cooked’, aired on Channel Nine in 2010, and a second book with Random House titled Heart of the Home was published the following year.
In 2012, Julie dusted off her MasterChef apron for charity and appeared in ‘MasterChef All Stars’. She finished in the top four, winning an incredible $20,000 in the process. After giving $5,000 to a fellow contestant for their charity, Julie donated $15,000 to Oxfam. Her third cookbook, Gather, was released in late March 2013. It celebrates food that brings people together around the family table.
6 years on having turned her MasterChef win into a hugely successful media career with TV, books, and columns etc. Julie Goodwin is still a household name. Her three boys are now young adults leading active and more independent lives, her family IT business has grown and moved into larger premises and this year Julie launched her first solo project ‘Julie’s Place – Cooking School’ on the Central Coast NSW.
In November 2014 Julie released her new book 20/20 meals, showing how to feed a family of 4 for $20 with cooking in 20 minutes. Julie will release another book with Hachette Australia in October 2015
2015 saw Julie take up the challenge and take part in Australia’s first series of ‘I’m A Celebrity Get Me Out Of Here’. Once again her warmth, humour and determination won the hearts of fans around the country.
Julie has developed wonderful relationships with all of her partners and continues her regular column with Australian Women’s Weekly. Always one to get behind a good cause, Julie currently supports several charities and is a proud ambassador for the McGrath Foundation, Oxfam and ChildFund. She lives on the NSW Central Coast with her husband and three sons.