Nearly 30,000 hopefuls auditioned at MASTERCHEF's open casting calls in Atlanta, GA; Austin, TX; Boston, MA; Chicago, IL; Los Angeles, CA; Miami, FL; New York City, NY; San Francisco, CA; Savannah, GA; Seattle, WA; and Washington, DC. MASTERCHEF also hit the road for the first-ever food truck casting tour and made stops in cities throughout Arizona, Colorado and Utah. Only the best amateur cooks were flown to Los Angeles for a chance to compete for the coveted title of MASTERCHEF and the $250,000 grand prize. This season will feature contestants from all walks of life representing 23 states – including a stock broker, a professional opera singer, an emergency physician, a food photographer, a plastic surgeon, as well as the first blind cook to enter the competition – all with the hopes of turning their culinary dream into a reality.
In each episode, the hopefuls will prepare their signature dish and present them to the distinguished MASTERCHEF judging panel: Gordon Ramsay (Gordon Ramsay Steak, maze), Joe Bastianich (Del Posto, Eataly) and Graham Elliot (Graham Elliot, Grahamwich). The judges will taste for flavor, originality, creativity and presentation. But most importantly, the amateur cooks must demonstrate a genuine passion for food and a drive to win in order to earn a coveted white apron and move on to the next round.