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  • Premiered: 
    July 10, 2018
    (Click date to see TV listings for that day)

  • Network: PBS
  • Category: Series
  • Genre: Documentary
  • Type: Live Action
  • Concept: 
  • Subject Matter:
  • Tags: food, restaurant, travel

Buy This Show on DVD or Watch Online

  • Click a button to buy a DVD at Amazon
  • Season 1
    • Amazon
  • Season 2
    • Amazon
Legal Full Episodes
Not Available Online
(That We Know Of)

Plot Synopsis

Hosted and executive produced by Marcus Samuelsson, NO PASSPORT REQUIRED is a six-part docuseries that follows the chef as he travels to under-explored parts of American cities to showcase the people, places, and culinary flavors of immigrant communities. Each week Marcus -- an immigrant himself -- visits a new city to discover the dynamic and creative ways a particular community has made its mark. A vibrant portrait of America today, NO PASSPORT REQUIRED features musicians, poets, chefs, business owners, artists, community leaders and home cooks who have enhanced the nation's culture and cuisine. From Detroit, where Marcus meets Middle Eastern immigrants who call the city home, to the Ethiopian community in Washington, D.C., NO PASSPORT REQUIRED showcases how food can bring Americans -- old and new -- together around the table. In New Orleans, Marcus learns how Vietnamese culinary traditions have fully integrated into the fabric of the city, taking center stage with long-established French and African influences. In New York, he's shown how the Indo-Guyanese culture thrives in a small enclave of Queens, and how this one community has taken the best of its Indian, Caribbean and colonial heritage and incorporated those influences into its customs and cuisine. In Chicago, Marcus ventures into the city's Mexican neighborhoods and discovers their impact on the area's food and cultural landscape. Going beyond the borders of South Beach, he also meets with members of Miami's proud Haitian community.
PBS kicked off the sophomore season of NO PASSPORT REQUIRED on Friday, December 13, 2019 at 9pm with a special preview, followed by the official Season 2 premiere on Monday, January 20, 2020 at 9pm (check local listings). "I'm so happy to present this second season of NO PASSPORT REQUIRED," said Samuelsson. "We have only begun to scratch the surface of the amazing range of immigrant cultures and cuisines found in the U.S. It's exciting to go on this journey once again and bring attention to these diverse communities that contribute so much to our nation." Episodes include:

"Seattle" (Friday, December 13, 2019 @ 9pm; Season 2 Sneak Peek): Marcus explores Seattle's thriving Filipino community, learning about their longstanding connection to the city and meeting young Filipino-American chefs who are bringing their passion to the city's vibrant food scene. Along the way, he discovers how their cuisine combines the unique flavors of the island nation's complex history, which includes Chinese, Spanish, Japanese and American influences. Come along as Marcus visits a variety of restaurants -- from food trucks to a trendy speakeasy to cutting-edge fine dining establishments -- and samples delicacies including chicken adobo, oyster ceviche, pork blood stew and a unique but tasty cheesecake made with purple yam.

"Los Angeles" (Monday, January 20, 2020 @ 9pm; Season 2 Premiere): Marcus visits Los Angeles, where the largest Armenian community outside of the homeland thrives in the foothills north of downtown L.A. Resilient and entrepreneurial, Armenians are scattered across the world, and Marcus meets Armenians from Russia, Lebanon, Syria, Ethiopia and Egypt. From lule kabob -- the dish that holds the diaspora together -- to Ghapama, pumpkin stuffed with apricots, rice, Aleppo peppers and other trimmings, Marcus learns what sets this diverse cuisine apart. Thousands of years old and full of tradition, food is a source of pride and cultural identity that has helped Armenians survive. Passed down from one generation to the next, traditional recipes are now being reinvented by young chefs, while a new generation is being introduced to the history and foodways of their grandparents.

"Houston" (Monday, January 27, 2020 @ 9pm): Marcus goes to Houston, America's most diverse city, to explore West African food. While many may be unfamiliar with Nigerian, Senegalese or Liberian cooking, West African foodways were brought to this country through slavery, and dishes like jollof rice and yams are the foundation for soul food. From pepper soup to the iconic Nigerian suya -- grilled meat skewers with peanut and other spices -- Marcus learns about the big, bold tastes of this unique cuisine and meets innovative chefs who are pushing hard to bring the taste of West African food to mainstream America.

"Philadelphia" (Monday, February 3, 2020 @ 9pm): Marcus is embraced by the Italian American community in Philadelphia, where strolling down its famous 9th Street feels like walking back in time. Cooking with chefs and restaurant owners, he discovers that Italian food is deeply rooted in traditional craftsmanship and methods passed down for generations. Proud of their heritage and culture, chefs tell stories of their ancestors, who overcame adversity and founded family businesses that have lasted for decades, even centuries. Baked into the lasagna, Neapolitan pizza, veal parmesan and pasta dishes is the concept of "la famiglia," where everyone comes together around a table to enjoy food and share experiences. New chefs find a way to honor the past but gently push the boundaries by focusing on regional cuisine, exciting American palates to the possibilities of what Italian food can be.

"Las Vegas" (Monday, February 10, 2020 @ 9pm): From the city's famed Strip, with its neon-lit casinos, to modest shopping malls, Marcus explores the deep-rooted Chinese community in Las Vegas and samples their surprising diverse food traditions. With the help of chefs from many of the various regions of China, he learns how to make hand-pulled noodles and Peking duck, tastes regional favorites like Toothpick Lamb and Mongolian hotpot, and enjoys a Taiwanese breakfast feast of xiao long bao, beef noodle soup and oyster pancakes. Marcus also investigates the traditions of herbal medicine and teas, watches local musicians play traditional instruments, and meets with the newest wave of young Chinese American chefs who are transforming their parents' cuisine into something fresh and uniquely their own.

"Boston" (Monday, February 17, 2020 @ 9pm): Marcus visits the greater Boston area to learn more about the Portuguese, Brazilian, and Cape Verdean diasporas that have made this bustling port city their home. These three distinct Portuguese-speaking communities -- comprised of over a million people in Massachusetts -- reflect the reach of a once-mighty empire, stretching from islands in the mid-Atlantic and off the coast of West Africa to South America. While learning about this often painful history, Marcus tastes the food of the chefs who are continuing and transforming these traditions -- sampling Portuguese chowder with halibut on a fishing boat, visiting a Portuguese marketplace where he tastes the dried cod known as bacalhau, learning the history of the Afro-Brazilian martial art capoeira over acai bowls, tasting Cape Verdean specialties like cachupa and jagacida, and, of course, heading to a churrascaria for lots and lots of meat.

Production & Distribution

  • Produced by Vox Media (aka Vox Entertainment)