Everything We Know About MasterChef Australia: Fans & Favourites

Last year, we were spoiled with both a regular and celebrity version of MasterChef Australia. And in 2022, the TV kitchen gods are treating us to yet another format of the popular cooking show, so whip out your aprons everybody.
Channel 10 is bringing back the reality show that has made the likes of Poh Ling Yeow, Sarah Tiong, Adam Liaw and Khanh Ong famous with MasterChef Australia: Fans & Favourites.
Image courtesy of Channel 10
MasterChef Australia: Foodies vs Favourites judges Jock Zonfrillo, Melissa Leong and Andy Allen
It's a delicious combo of everything a MasterChef fan could ever dream of, because the cast features 12 fresh-faced foodies (and who doesn't love discovering next-gen chefs to follow on TikTok and Instagram?) who will go up against 12 of our favourites, who've already got a special place in our hearts from their previous stints in the MasterChef kitchen.
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Here is everything we know about the 2022 season, MasterChef Australia: Fans & Favourites, plus the latest trailer (watch below):

Who Is In The Cast?

Image courtesy of Channel 10
The cast of MasterChef Australia: Fans & Favourites
Channel 10 has revealed the top 24 competing on the show. Coming from all walks of life with different levels of culinary experience, this MasterChef cast is going to make for an epic season.

Favourites:

Minoli De Silva

Minoli De Silva is one of the more fresh faces from the MasterChef franchise that we see returning to the show. Starring in the 2021 series, the chemical engineer proudly plucked inspiration from her Sri Lankan heritage when cooking on TV, and had quite the personal back story to share as well.
After being diagnosed with breast cancer in 2016 at age 29, she lost her sense of taste and when she eventually got it back, grew a greater appreciation for food and cooking.
You can follow Minoli Se Dilva on Instagram here.

Sarah Todd

Since appearing on the sixth season of MasterChef in 2014, Sarah has forged a name for herself in the food industry in Australia and beyond.
As well as being the proud co-owner of two eateries in India called The Wine Rack and Antares Restaurant & Beach Club in Goa, she has two cookbooks and has maintained a solid television career with cooking shows airing on SBS and Foxtel.
The mother of one initially established a career in modelling when she was discovered at the age of 18, before tapping into her love for cooking and international cuisines by studying at the acclaimed culinary arts program, Le Cordon Bleu.
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You can follow Sarah Todd on Instagram here.

Julie Goodwin

Who can forget the OG MasterChef queen? Julie Goodwin won the first-ever season of MasterChef back in 2009, where she was up against Poh Ling Yeow in a nail-biting grand finale.
Since then she's released a slew of recipe books with a family-friendly focus, has created her own cooking school and unsurprisingly, made multiple guest appearances on MasterChef.
The 51-year-old also swapped the kitchen for the jungle in 2015 when she appeared on I'm A Celebrity... Get Me Out Of Here!
According to judge Melissa Leong, the competition is very hot this season and even Goodwin was nervous about returning to the game.
"Julie walked into the kitchen absolutely quaking in her boots," Leong tells Refinery29 Australia, explaining that the fresh talent in the kitchen is not to be underestimated.
"Because she knew that in her season what she needed to win was so full of love — and continues to be — but in terms of refinement and technique, what people are doing now just at home for fun versus what she needed to win are very different things."
You can follow Julie Goodwin on Instagram here.

Alvin Quah

Alvin is another name from the MasterChef hall of fame, after appearing in the second season back in 2010. Born in Kuala Lumpur with Chinese-Malaysian heritage, he is very passionate about making Malaysian cuisine as renowned as Chinese and Thai food is.
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Like many of his fellow co-stars, he managed to make a foray into further television work, hosting the cooking show Malaysia Kitchen in 2016. Now it's time to brace yourself for Alvin's TV comeback.
You can follow Alvin Quah on Instagram here.

Michael Weldon

It was a pretty close call in 2011 when Michael finished as runner-up to Kate Bracks in the MasterChef season 3 finale. He's now a co-host of Farm To Fork, a Channel 10 food show that counts fellow MasterChef star Courtney Roulston as a host.
Hailing from South Australia, he also works as a development chef at retail giant Coles. But in my opinion, all you really need to know is where to find Michael's social media, because his incredible food snaps are going to make your mouth water in seconds.
You can follow Michael Weldon on Instagram here.

Mindy Woods

Season four MasterChef star Mindy Woods is back to showcase world-class ingredients and dishes. The proud Bundjalung woman of the Widjabul Wia bul clan is very passionate about raising awareness around the use of the world’s oldest living ingredients.
She's the owner of Karkalla, a Byron Bay restaurant that prides itself on using ancient, native ingredients. “What I'm really trying to do is connect people with Indigenous culture through our food, which is really special to me,” she previously told Refinery29 Australia.
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You can follow Mindy Woods on Instagram here.

Billie McKay

Billie was named the winner of MasterChef Australia's seventh season in 2015, and then moved to London to work in Heston Blumenthal’s famed three-Michelin star restaurant, The Fat Duck.
After returning home to NSW, she's focused on her passion for cheesemaking on the family dairy farm and it's going to be exciting to see just what she whips up when in the MasterChef kitchen this time around.
You can follow Billie McKay on Instagram here.

Sashi Cheliah

We have another former winner on our hands with Sashi, who took out the top position in Season 10 in 2018.
He's since forged a successful career in food with restaurants in Melbourne and Adelaide that particularly lean in to his expertise around Indian, Malaysian and Chinese cuisine.
You might also remember his brief return to screens in 2020 when he supported his son Ryan competing in Junior MasterChef Australia. No doubt Sashi's family will be cheering him on when he returns this season.
You can follow Sashi Cheliah on Instagram here.

Aldo Ortado

It will be a reunion of sorts for Aldo and Sashi as they competed against each other in season 10.
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Aldo's been around food ever since his childhood growing up in the Italian province of Bacoli. After bringing that love for food to MasterChef four years ago, he's opened pop-up restaurants in Sydney and appeared on numerous cooking segments on TV.
You can follow Aldo Ortado on Instagram here.

Christina Batista

Christina made it to finals week on MasterChef in season 5 back in 2013, but now almost 10 years later, she intends to go home with the winner's trophy this time around.
She credits her large Portuguese family with encouraging her creativity in the kitchen, and speaking of creativity, has been filming engaging new videos on TikTok that provide quick and easy recipes and cooking tips. Sign us up!
You can follow Christina Batista on Instagram here.

John Carasig

If you have a sweet tooth you're in for a treat when John returns to the show because he's known for his precision and technique when it comes to delicious desserts.
The chef originally from season 7 takes pride in incorporating flavours from his Filipino heritage as well, and something tells us he'll be one to watch in Fans vs Favourites.
You can follow John Carasig on Instagram here.

Tommy Pham

Tommy was on the most recent season just last year, placing seventh and leaving the show just before finals week. Now, he's jumping right back into the MasterChef game.
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The NSW-based chef and father is particularly impressed the judges with his Vietnamese-style flavours, and after spending some time following the competition to learn new skills and techniques, Tommy's ready for round two.
You can follow Tommy Pham on Instagram here.

Fans:

Jenn Lee

She may be a dentist by trade, but Jenn Lee is just waiting to sink her teeth into the world of cooking on MasterChef. Born in Taiwan as the middle of three girls, Jenn and her family moved to Brisbane when she was six.
She definitely loves tapping into her culture when in the kitchen, having learnt to cook from her grandmothers over the years when returning to Taiwan for annual family holidays.
Jenn is just as excited as us for her TV debut, writing on her Instagram account, "Who knew this little dreamer would ever make it onto the most amazing cooking show in the world! I'm so excited for this incredible journey to come."
You can follow Jenn Lee on Instagram here.

Keyma Vasquez Montero

Image courtesy of Channel 10
MasterChef Australia: Fans & Favourites contestant Keyma Vasquez Montero
Mother-of-two, Keyma is looking forward to representing the
Latin and Spanish community on MasterChef. Hailing from the small Venezuelan town of Ciudad Guayana, she recalls every family gathering of her childhood centring around food.
Keep an eye out for her signature dishes which would incude empanadas, golfeados (cheesy rolls), reina pepiada arepas (chicken and avocado cornmeal cakes), chupe (chicken and corn soup) and torta tres leches (three milk cake).
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You can follow Keyma Vasquez Montero on Instagram here.

Chris Tran

He may be a marketing advisor from Victoria, but Chris has some great foodie connections up his sleeve. He's been able to learn a lot thanks to his dad who was a trained chef who specialised in European dishes, and his mum who prepared hearty and traditional Vietnamese food for the home.
His signature dish is dish is banh cuon, Vietnamese steamed rice noodles, and well, I'm hungry already at the mention of that.
You can follow Chris Tran on Instagram here.

Dulan Hapuarachchi

Another contestant who connects to his heritage through food is Dulan, a financial analyst from Victoria who was born in Sri Lanka’s capital Colombo before migrating to Australia at the age of 11 with his family.
The father-of-two day hopes to one day open a Sri Lankan inspired caféstyle restaurant with his wife who is a cocktail connoisseur. But in the meantime, he's just keen to soak up the MasterChef experience, saying on Instagram, "
"I’m still pinching myself!"
You can follow Dulan Hapuarachchi on Instagram here.

Ali Stoner

Victorian artist Ali is a self-proclaimed perfectionist, and with that in mind she intends to give her absolute all (that means at least 150%) when competing on MasterChef.
The mother-of-two leans towards more savoury over sweet, as is evident on her Instagram account that boasts inviting snaps of fresh produce whipped up into delightful snacks and bigger meals.
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You can follow Ali Stoner on Instagram here.

Daniel Lamble

Former FIFO worker Daniel is a firefighter who routinely prepares lunch and dinner for his fellow fireys. And something tells me he'll be on absolute fire this season of MasterChef, crediting his dad for teaching him the kitchen basics, and good ol' YouTube for the more advanced techniques.
Plus, Daniel's got a fun sense of humour if his social media is anything to go by, so I'm looking forward to him bringing some true entertainment value to our screens.
You can follow Daniel Lamble on Instagram here.

Montana Hughes

Considering TikTok is where it all happens these days, there was bound to be at least one TikToker on MasterChef this year. Queenslander Montana Hughes is the season's youngest competitor but she won't let age pose as a barrier in her plight to win the cooking show.
She actually auditioned for MasterChef back in 2019 but didn't make it to the top 24, and since then has been practising and sharing her foodie tips on her TikTok which has over 238,000 followers.
It's where she regularly uploads videos containing her cooking hacks for fans to replicate, where they easily whip up anything from the 'perfect steak' to iced coffee creme brulee and aquafaba mousse.
You can follow Montana Hughes on Instagram here and here and on TikTok here.
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Harry Tomlinson

Meet Harry, the barista and coffee roaster from Victoria who has dreams to follow in judge Melissa Leong's footsteps as a food writer.
She's well-versed with the hospitality industry as she's worked in the field since she was 16, and loves to trust her gut when in the kitchen. "Cooking, tasting, sipping," reads the first part of her Instagram bio, and it really says it all.
You can follow Harry Tomlinson on Instagram here.

Matt Landmark

The secondary school teacher from Victoria was born in South Africa before moving to the small town of Palmerston North on New Zealand’s North Island at the age of four.
Matt says family dinners while growing up were limited to staples but he's been able to explore more diverse flavours over the years and dreams of running his own small restaurant in the future.
You can follow Matt Landmark on Instagram here.

Max Krapivsky

Max is actually familiar with the audition process after applying for the previous three season of MasterChef. It's now a case of fourth time lucky for the osteopath from Victoria.
What's Max's vision for his future foodie career? Well, he dreams of one day opening his very own dine-in bottle-o, an Aussie-centric wine and beer local with a small rotating chalk-board menu. Cheers to that!
You can follow Max Krapivsky on Instagram here.
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Melanie Persson

Image courtesy of Channel 10
MasterChef Australia: Fans & Favourites contestant Melanie Persson
Melanie Persson is a PhD student from Western Australia who's eager to show Australia that gluten free food can still be just as tasty after being diagnosed with coeliac disease five years ago.
Largely self-taught from television cooking shows and social media, Melanie is a massive fan of many well-known foodies including Massimo Bottura, Adam Liaw, Matt Adlard, Marion Grasby and Rick Stein.
You can follow Melanie Persson on Instagram here.

Steph Woon

The oldest of three daughters, Steph Woon's parents migrated to Australia from Malaysia, and food has always been a way for her family to connect.
The Victoria-based banking analyst dreams about opening a patisserie serving Japanese and southeast Asian inspired cakes and pastries. Mmm, I can't wait to see some samples of these desserts when she cooks on MasterChef.
You can follow Steph Woon on Instagram here.

Who Are The Judges?

Image courtesy of Channel 10
MasterChef Australia: Fans & Favourites judges Melissa Leong, Andy Allen and Jock Zonfrillo
Judges Melissa Leong, Jock Zonfrillo and Andy Allen will be judging the dishes once again. Writer Melissa, acclaimed chef Jock and former MasterChef winner himself, Andy, took over the judging reigns in 2020 from Gary Mehigan, George Calombaris and Matt Preston, who were on the program for 10 years.
The trio seems to be thrilled about the upcoming season, with Melissa recently saying she, Jock and Andy "couldn't be more excited".
"We are back for another action-packed season of thrills, chills and kitchen spills... we couldn’t be more pumped!" she said in a Channel 10 press release. "Add to that a handful of new MasterChef foodies going head-to-head with beloved characters from the MasterChef universe over the years… and then of course there’s JULIE GOODWIN!
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“If ever there was a time to feel connected through food, it’s now: MasterChef Australia is the hit of nostalgia, inspiration and feel-good fun we need as a nation and Jock, Andy and I couldn’t be more excited to serve up a generous and heartfelt serving to audiences in 2022."
There are also celebrity guest chefs and judges this season, including Reynold Poernomo, Adriano Zumbo, Curtis Stone and Shannon Bennett.
Image courtesy of Channel 10
Curtis Stone on MasterChef Australia: Fans & Favourites with Andy Allen, Melissa Leong and Jock Zonfrillo

What Is The Air Date?

The network has announced that MasterChef Australia: Fans & Favourites premieres on Monday, April 18 at 7.30pm on Channel 10 and 10 Play On Demand. The show comes after Channel 10's other popular reality series, I'm A Celebrity... Get Me Out Of Here! and Australian Survivor: Blood v Water.

Where Is It Filmed?

Filming of MasterChef Australia takes place at Centenary Hall, Royal Melbourne Showgrounds. Production has ramped up safety precautions over the last two years during COVID-19, and in the 2021 regular season, the cast was lucky enough to travel to the Northern Territory to film a few on-location episodes there.

What Is The Prize?

The winner of MasterChef Australia usually takes home a quarter of a million dollars which is a pretty sweet deal. In 2021, winner Justin Narayan's money prize came to $250,000, while first runner-up Pete Campbell scored $30,000 and second-runner-up Kishwar Chowdhury took home $20,000.
Remember to keep checking back here as we continue updating the behind-the-scenes details about the 2022 season of MasterChef Australia: Fans and Favourites.
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