MasterChef Season 5 Premieres Next Month; Features Contestant From Phoenix

MasterChef returns Monday, May 26.
MasterChef returns Monday, May 26.

Fox's hit television show featuring celebu-chef Gordon Ramsay, restaurateur and winemaker Joe Bastianich, and Michelin-starred chef Graham Elliot will return for its fifth season in May. The show, which searches for the country's best home cooks, will feature 30 contestants from 14 states competing to win the title of MasterChef, a cookbook deal, and the $250,000 grand prize.

The Season 5 contestants include Phoenix-resident Natanya Spears.

See also: Amy's Baking Company - A History of Kitchen Nightmares - The Original Story by Phoenix New Times

The new season of MasterChef will premiere on Monday, May 26, on Fox. During the first episode, 30 contestants will travel to Los Angeles, where they will present their "signature dishes" to the judging panel. The judges will taste for flavor, creativity, and presentation.

Other challenges throughout include preparing a meal for more than 500 servicemen and women on an Army base, making a three-course meal for a summer wedding, and taking over a legendary Hollywood restaurant.

Spears, 37, is the only contestant from Arizona and works as a construction coordinator. The show held a casting call at the Embassy Suites Biltmore in Phoenix last September. Other contestants hail from Alabama, California, Florida, Idaho, Texas, Ohio, New York, and Louisiana.

You can view the complete contestant list on the next page.

For more information check out the MasterChef Facebook page.


Alabama Birmingham, Elise Mayfield, e-learning administrator

Arizona Phoenix, Natanya Spears, construction coordinator

California Irvine, Gordon Houston, law student graduate Los Angeles, Daniel McGuffey, video game designer Malibu, Leslie Gilliams, stay-at-home dad Palo Alto, Ahran Cho, high school student Tarzana, Amy Pezeshkifar, graduate student Yorba Linda, Ruth Schreber Sanchez, stay-at-home mom

Florida Orlando, Francis Biondi, server

Idaho Star, Chandis Siwek, dietician intern

Illinois Chicago, Rickie Perez, food truck manager

Kentucky Lexington, Dan Wu, unemployed Pikeville, Corey Charles, winery manager

Louisiana Mandeville, Astrid Lavenia, food sales New Orleans, Christian Green, sales representative Thibidaux, Michael Williams, student

Michigan Detroit, Stephani Syfax-Shepherd, server

New York Brooklyn, Elizabeth Cauvel, advertising executive New York City, Francis Legge, music video director Queens, Jaimee Vitolo, bakery assistant Yonkers, Christine Silverstein, investment director

Ohio Columbus, Whitney Bray, call center representative Wilmington, Tyler Viars, hunting sales manager Youngstown, Kira Novak, medical recruiter

Pennsylvania Meadville, Gavin Edmondson, admissions counselor Philadelphia, Courtney Lapresi, aerial dancer

Texas Beaumont, Cutter Brewer, petroleum landman Houston, Willie Mike, church music director San Angelo, Victoria Scroggins, bartender

Wisconsin Muskego, Jordan Kaminski, college student

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