Premiering Wednesday, May 30, on FOX
New batch of home cooks include bus driver, personal grocery shopper, country singer, pilot, model, firefighter, dishwasher & optometrist
In a "MasterChef" kitchen first, the judges will do battle when season nine of "MasterChef" premieres Wednesday, May 30 (8-10 p.m. ET/PT), on FOX. For the first time ever, the judges - host and award-winning chef Gordon Ramsay, acclaimed chef Aarón Sánchez and renowned restaurateur Joe Bastianich - will choose their favorite home cooks and mentor them throughout the competition.
Another all-new two-hour episode of "MasterChef" airs Wednesday, June 6 (8 p.m.). Then, the series makes its time period premiere on Wednesday, June 13 (8 p.m.), followed by the series premiere of "Gordon Ramsay's 24 Hours To Hell And Back" (9 p.m.).
In the season premiere, the nation's best home cooks travel to Los Angeles to compete for a spot in the Top 24. That's when the twist kicks in: The judges each will have eight aprons to hand out to the home cooks whom they deem worthy - and they will then mentor those contestants throughout the competition. However, as in all prior seasons, only one home cook will claim the "MasterChef" title and the $250,000 grand prize.
Hopefuls auditioned at "MasterChef" open casting calls in Chicago; Atlanta; Raleigh, North Carolina; Phoenix; New York City; Miami; Houston; Philadelphia; Las Vegas; Nashville; and Los Angeles. There, they proved they have the culinary skills to be the next "MasterChef".
Only one talented home cook will join "MasterChef" winners Dino Luciano (season eight); Shaun O'Neale (season seven); Claudia Sandoval (season six); Courtney Lapresi (season five); Luca Manfe (season four); Christine Ha (season three), the first-ever blind contestant; Jennifer Behm (season two); and Whitney Miller (season one) in the elite group of "MasterChef" titleholders.