De Laurentiis, a self-proclaimed chocoholic, studied at Le Cordon Bleu in Paris, France with aspirations of becoming a pastry chef. After returning to the United States, she became a professional chef working in several Los Angeles restaurants, notably the Wolfgang Puck-owned Spago. She later worked as a food stylist and was contacted by the Food Network after styling a piece in Food & Wine Magazine in 2001.
Her cooking program, Everyday Italian, has been broadcast on the Food Network since 2003. On her Chefography (Food Network biography show) episode, she admitted that she never wanted to be in her "family business" of show business. She also shared that she felt very uncomfortable in front of the camera when she first started hosting Everyday Italian, but since then, she has become more relaxed and a little bit more open on air. She now enjoys being in the spotlight and has become one of Food Network's most popular television personalities. When the show first aired, the Food Network received emails accusing the network of hiring a model or actress pretending to cook instead of a real chef.Giada was featured on "The Food Network Awards".
De Laurentiis began hosting Behind The Bash, in October 2005, which explores the catering process behind big event extravaganzas such as the Grammys. On a November 2006 episode of Iron Chef America, she and Bobby Flay faced off against, and were defeated by, Rachael Ray and Mario Batali. In January 2007, a third De Laurentiis-hosted show, the travelogue Giada's Weekend Getaways debuted on the Food Network. On this show, she travels to a featured locale (such as Seattle, South Beach, San Francisco, Napa or Jackson Hole, Wyoming) and visits her favorite culinary finds.
De Laurentiis is the current spokesperson for the pasta manufacturer Barilla.