Valerie Bertinelli's Estranged Husband Tom Vitale Was Once Such a Big Part of Her Food Network Show She Surprised Him With a Special Midwestern Menu


  • Valerie Bertinelli filed for divorce from her husband Tom Vitale, in May 2022, citing irreconcilable differences.
  • The Food Network star previously made Tom Vitale’s hometown favorites on Valerie’s Home Cooking.
  • Valerie Bertinelli made Ohio Turkey Chili, Fried Bologna Bites with Pickled Squash, Tomato and Bibb Lettuce Salad, and Vanilla and Coffee Cream Puffs.

Valerie Bertinelli and Tom Vitale, her husband of more than 10 years, are divorcing following a separation. However, long before calling it quits, Vitale occasionally joined Bertinelli on her Food Network show. Learn about their split. Plus, get details on the Midwestern dishes the cookbook author made.

Valerie Bertinelli called the decision to split from Tom Vitale ‘slow’ and ‘painful’

Bertinelli and Vitale met in 2004 and married in 2011. A decade later, in November 2021, the Hot in Cleveland star filed for legal separation, citing irreconcilable differences. Per USA Today, Bertinelli filed for divorce in May 2022, once again listing irreconcilable differences as the reason. 

In the memoir Enough Already: Learning to Love the Way I Am Today, Bertinelli described the decision behind the split as “a slow, painful one.”  

“We have drifted from the interests that made us a couple and found that those differences can’t be fixed,” she wrote. Adding that he’s “a good man,” Bertinelli said their split had “nothing to do with” her late ex-husband, Eddie Van Halen. 

She also noted problems in their marriage didn’t start until four or five years earlier. The “fissures,” as she put it, became more apparent during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. 

Valerie Bertinelli made chili and bologna bites for her husband on ‘Valerie’s Home Cooking’

Vitale inspired a 2017 episode of Bertinelli’s Food Network show. The cookbook author kicked off season 7 of Valerie’s Home Cooking with an episode titled “Tom’s Hometown Favorites.” She made some of Tom’s favorites from his home state of Ohio. 

According to Food Network, Bertinelli surprised Vitale with a spread of local dishes. She made Ohio Turkey Chili, which is served over pasta, as the main course. Plus, Bertinelli included chocolate, another ingredient not often found in chili.

Continuing with the regional cuisine, Bertinelli made Fried Bologna Bites. Essentially appetizer-sized fried bologna sandwiches, the actor-turned-Food Network star put the meat on top of sourdough bread rounds and garnished each one with fresh dill. She also served them with pickled squash. 

The Food Network also surprised Tom Vitale with salad and cream puffs

Bertinelli made more than chili and bologna bites on “Tom’s Hometown Favorites.” She also made Tomato and Bibb Lettuce Salad. The quickest dish on the menu, Bertinelli’s nine-ingredient salad took her 10 minutes to make. 

Finally, Bertinelli made Vanilla and Coffee Cream Puffs for dessert. Unlike the salad, the decadent treats meant a significant amount of time in the kitchen. Bertinelli had to make the cream puffs, pipe them out onto a sheet pan, and bake them before preparing the filling. 

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