Talented home cooks representing 23 states arrive in Los Angeles and begin competing for the title of MasterChef and the 0,000 grand prize in the Season 3 premiere. Each hopeful prepares a signature dish and presents it to judges Gordon Ramsay, Joe Bastianich and Graham Elliot, who will rate on flavor, originality, creativity and presentation.
Auditions continue in Los Angeles.
The judges continue to winnow down the competition in the final round of auditions, but the stakes are raised as the 36 remaining hopefuls are put to the ultimate test in an intense ground beef challenge. Those who impress the judges will earn a spot in the Top 18 and join the nation\'s best crop of amateur cooks.
The Top 18 contestants compete in their first mystery box challenge of the season and must create a unique and delicious dish using duck and bananas. Later, the remaining amateur cooks are forced out of their comfort zone when the judges challenge them to cook an outstanding dish using unusual and intimidating ingredients. Find out which contestants make the cut after the first emotional elimination round.
The remaining sixteen contestants visit military base Camp Pendleton, CA where they will work in teams to prepare a healthy and balanced meal for 200 servicemen and women.
Fifteen hopefuls remain, and they're tasked with creating unique dishes using unconventional - and unappetizing-cuts of meat in a challenge that tests their resourcefulness.
The judges plan a surprise trip for the amateur cooks, but the contestants are in for a rude awakening when the judges split them into teams to prepare hearty breakfast meals for hungry hotel guests. The teams must be organized and work efficiently, but tempers reach a new high during room service. Later, the losing team must prove they deserve to remain in the competition in an emotional elimination round.
In a budget-friendly mystery box challenge, the judges test the amateur cooks\' creativity by providing them with ingredients worth only twenty dollars. Despite the low-cost ingredients, the contestants must prove that they can prepare an impressive, high-quality dish. Later in the elimination round, the judges challenge the amateur cooks to recreate their favorite desserts. But the mood quickly turns sour when one more hopeful is sent home.
The 12 remaining hopefuls are split into three teams for a food-truck challenge that requires them to create budget-friendly meals for beachgoers.
Judge Graham Elliot joins the amateur cooks in the kitchen, taking part in a mystery-box challenge. Later, a double elimination sends two hopefuls home.
The remaining nine amateur cooks are faced with one of the most intimidating mystery box ingredients to date: \"uni,\" otherwise known as sea urchin. In a surprising twist, the contestants must incorporate the spiky culinary delicacy into their creations, and the amateur cook who presents the most exceptional uni dish will earn a significant advantage in the next round. Later in the elimination challenge, the winner of the mystery box challenge will assign each of the remaining contestants one of eight different types of fish.
The judges put on their cowboy boots and take the Top 8 finalists to a Southern California rodeo where they will work in teams to prepare, cook and serve a hearty steak meal for 101 hungry cowboys. The winning team advances to the next round of competition, while the other amateur cooks must hop back in the saddle and compete in a heated pressure test. With elimination at stake and only twenty minutes to prepare six eggs in four different ways, the intensity reaches a boiling point.
Celebrity chef Paula Deen joins the judging panel and selects the mystery box ingredients, which include traditional Southern staples and a comforting surprise - a family photo and a letter from home. The amateur cook who prepares the most delicious Southern-inspired dish will earn a priceless reward. Later, the winner of the previous challenge will couple the remaining six contestants who will work in pairs to cook a Japanese dish. Find out which amateur cooks will be on the chopping block in another emotional elimination round.
The Top Six finalists are in for a big surprise when the eight previously eliminated contestants return to the kitchen to compete for a chance to earn a spot back in the competition. The eager hopefuls will each select one ingredient to make up a mystery box, and they will be required to use all of the items to create a stunning dish that will prove that they deserve a second chance. After the contestants are whittled down, only two amateur cooks will compete head to head for a chance to win back their aprons.
Conclusion. The seven remaining hopefuls find shrimp in the mystery basket, and must make standout dishes with a very limited pantry. The winner then determines which savory ingredient the others will have to incorporate into desserts in the elimination round.
Conclusion. The six remaining hopefuls compete in a team challenge at Hatfield's, a Hollywood hot spot, where they attempt to replicate the acclaimed restaurant's signature dishes. Later, members of the losing team face off in an elimination challenge that requires them to prepare steak three different ways.
A game-changing twist surprises the five remaining hopefuls during a mystery-box challenge. Later, the wannabe chefs are tasked with re-creating one of Graham Elliot's signature dishes that he served to President Obama at his flagship restaurant.
In the most intimidating challenge of the season, the final four home cooks will split into two teams to prepare an exquisite three-course meal for the judges and three world-renowned chefs: Daniel Boulud, Alain Ducasse and Guy Savoy. The Michelin-starred guest judges will help critique each course and evaluate each dish's flavor, originality and culinary finesse. The winning pair will earn a spot in the Top 3, while the losing team will compete head-to-head in a heated pressure test featuring soufflé.
In the next mystery box challenge, the remaining three home cooks get a taste of what it means to be the next MASTERCHEF when they each receive a cookbook with their photo on the cover. The judges challenge each home cook to reflect on their culinary journey and create an outstanding dish that best embodies their personality and passion for food. Later, the winner of the mystery box challenge will get first pick at a pair of legs - chicken, lamb, or frog - and prepare a dish worthy of a spot in the Top Two. Find out who will move one step closer to a life-changing prize.
In their final challenge in the kitchen, the two home cooks will conceptualize and prepare the most important three-course meal of their lives. Later, the judges will reveal America's next, and the deserving home cook will walk away with a book deal and the 0,000 grand prize. Find out whose culinary dreams will turn into a reality.