Season 20 of “American Idol” ended in May 2022, which means that 20 people have won the popular singing competition to date. Even though not all of these winners are necessarily huge stars or well-known names, most of them have still done well in some way. Even though the last few winners are still getting famous and rich, many of the winners who came before them have become millionaires through their music and other businesses.
Who the top two are probably doesn’t come as much of a surprise, but the wealthier one doesn’t always have the most going on. It’s also not a given that the American Idol winners who are the most well-known are also the ones with the highest net worth. Who is getting a lot of money since they won first place?
Here are the American Idol winners with the most money, from least to most.
5. Chris Daughtry – Net Worth $8.5 Million
Chris Daughtry was on American Idol in season 5. He did not, however, win the contest. He ended up coming in fourth place.
Chris has loved music since he was 16 years old, which is why he decided to try out for the show. After he was kicked off, RCA Records signed him, and a few months later, his first album came out under the name Daughtry.
As soon as his album came out, it went to the top of the charts. He was even nominated for a Grammy for the single “It’s Not Over.” Home, Over You, and Gone were also big hits from his album.
After the first album by his band was such a big hit, he worked with Sevendust, Chad Kroeger, Slash, Theory of a Deadman, Carlos Santana, Vince Gill, and Brad Arnold.
Daughtry went on to make three more albums after their first one. The band put out Leave This Town in 2009, Break the Spell in 2011, and Baptized in 2013. He even tried acting and had small parts on CSI: NY, Studio City, The Passion: Live, and Troliz. He has a net worth of $8.5 million right now.
4. Jordin Sparks – Net Worth $10 Million
In season 5 of American Idol, Jordin Sparks went on stage for the first time. She had never had any formal vocal training.
She had talent ever since she was a little girl. She ended up winning American Idol, and she was the show’s youngest winner ever.
When she was 17, right after she won, she put out her first album. She put out a single called “No Air,” which featured Chris Brown. It became the single by an American Idol contestant that sold the most copies.
After the success of her first album, she went on to make three more. In 2009, Battlefield came out, and in 2015, Right Here Right Now did. In 2010, she was the star of her own tour, and in 2007 and 2008, she was on two American Idol tours.
She also opened for the Jonas Brothers and Britney Spears on their successful tours in 2009 and 2009. Jordin was up for 11 important awards, and she won 9 of them. She played herself and other people on several TV shows, was the main character in six movies and worked on Broadway in 2010. Jordin is worth $10 million dollars.
3. Jennifer Hudson – Net Worth $18 Million
Jennifer Hudson was a finalist on the third season of American Idol, even though she didn’t win. She put out three albums after American Idol. Her self-titled album came out in 2008. I Remember Me came out in 2011, and JHUD came out in 2014.
Jennifer’s biggest break in movies came when she was chosen to play Effie White in Dreamgirls. She got the part of Louise in Sex and the City after Dreamgirls, and her career took off from there.
Since she won American Idol, she has been in a lot of TV shows and movies. So far in her career, she has been nominated for 37 awards and won an amazing 38 awards. Jennifer’s weight was a problem for a long time, but after she became a spokesperson for Jenny Craig, she lost a lot of weight and now looks great.
Jennifer had a lot of luck and fame, but she also had a major tragedy. William Balfour, who was married to her sister, killed her mother, her brother, and her nephew. She says it was the hardest thing she’s ever been through.
After the tragedy, she was there for her sister, who had lost her son, and she started a foundation to fight domestic violence in the name of her mother, her brother, and her nephew. Balfour was taken into custody, charged, and given a life sentence without the chance of parole.
Jennifer says that the sentence was a relief, but she knows that it won’t bring her family back, so the news is bittersweet. Jennifer is worth $18 million dollars.
2. Kelly Clarkson – $25 Million
Kelly was the first American Idol winner. Just a few months after she won, she became a famous singer all over the world.
She is the only American Idol contestant to be number one in both the US and UK. During her career, she has sold more than 10.02 million albums in the US and more than 20 million albums around the world.
After releasing her first self-titled album in 2003, she went on to release Breakaway in 2004, My December in 2007, All I Ever Wanted in 2009, Stronger in 2011, Wrapped in Red in 2013, and Piece By Piece in 2015.
She was the main act on 7 tours. Over the years, she has been on TV shows both as herself and as other people. Kelly is worth $25 million dollars.
1. Carrie Underwood – $45 Million
Since season 4 of American Idol, when Carrie was a contestant, she has become the princess of country music. Since her time on American Idol, she has put out several hit albums, including Some Hearts in 2005, Carnival Ride in 2007, Play On in 2009, Blown Away in 2012, and Storyteller in 2015.
She also led five tours as the main act. In just one year, she sang at 83 concerts. Carrie has won a lot of music and video awards over the course of her career.
Carrie Underwood was also the focus of a Behind the Music episode on VH1. Carrie is the most successful contestant on American Idol, and she is worth more than $45 million.