Tonight on “MasterChef,” the remaining nine home cooks are tasked with firing up their grills and preparing a restaurant quality barbecue plate that is guaranteed to impress the judges. Then, the chefs face their biggest challenge yet: a 55-foot wall. The chef with immunity is tasked with pairing contestants to cook on opposite sides of the wall, where they must rely on great communication in order to save themselves from a double elimination in the all-new “Patio Grilling Challenge / The Wall” two-hour episode of “MasterChef: United Tastes of America” airing Wednesday, September 6 (8:00-10:00 PM ET/PT) on FOX.
Entering its 13th season with an all-new theme, “MasterChef: United Tastes of America” sees Gordon Ramsay, acclaimed chef Aarón Sánchez and renowned restaurateur Joe Bastianich returning for the ultimate cook-off, as the top home cooks from four parts of America (West, Northeast, Midwest and South) battle it out for their region. The home cooks will face a multitude of cooking trials, including a State Fair challenge, a series of iconic Mystery Box challenges, cooking a meal at Dodger Stadium, and the fan-favorite Tag Team event, where they must create a Michelin-star quality three-course meal! Only one home cook will win it all and take home the cash prize of $250,000 and the title of America’s MasterChef.
SEE Lizzie Hartman (‘MasterChef 13’) on how cooking pulled her out of depression and ‘changed the entire trajectory of my life’
8:00 p.m. — Previously on “MasterChef”! The chefs faced their toughest Mystery Box challenge yet – fish! When the chefs with immunity are able to switch up the other contestants’ type of fish, the competition really fired up. Then, the top 10 home chefs were challenged by season 11 winner Kelsey Murphy to take traditional stadium food to new heights. In the end, James Barfield and Lizzie Hartman were eliminated from the competition.
8:05 p.m. — The contestants are taken outside the MasterChef kitchen to the outdoor barbecue stations. It’s a patio grilling challenge! After struggling the past couple challenges, nobody seems more excited to see these grills than Grant. As the holder of the immunity challenge, Brynn will sit back and watch this one play out. Gordon explains the challenge today is to create an elevated version of any dish they would find at any summer barbecue back home. It should be plated with restaurant quality. Next, he explains why there are only seven grills for eight home cooks. Brynn gets to choose one of them to sit back and safety with her. Will she pick someone she considers to be weak? Or will she choose one of her closest friends? Brynn decides to target her biggest competition, so she saves Reagan, who she apparently doesn’t see as a threat. Now the remaining seven have one hour to cook an amazing backyard BBQ dish. There are no more immunity pins this season, but the winner will have a big advantage in the next challenge. Let’s go!
8:10 p.m. — Sav looks a little out of her comfort zone on the grill. She grew up grilling with her dad, but he did most of the work. Aarón says he will favor people who go with big, bold flavors and show off as many elements as they can. MD is going with red snapper and shrimp, hoping to show off her island flavors. She doesn’t quite understand how to use the gas grill and is more comfortable on a charcoal grill. Wayne is going with a Mexican-style surf-n-turf, which could have some harsh scrutiny from Aarón. Jennifer is a little nervous about her protein, but she hopes the judges will love her flavor profile.
8:30 p.m. — Kennedy looks calm as usual, showing the judges her elk tenderloin. Joe says she has set the bar high for herself and he hopes she can exceed that. Kolby tells Gordon he’s feeling a little down after being in the bottom last week. Gordon tells him to forget it and move forward. He’s a talented chef. Later on, Kolby gets nervous about the cook on his steak. He can’t tell if it’s cooked through, but his shrimp look beautiful. Next, Gordon gives Sav a pep talk and tells her she deserves to be there as much as anyone else. Hopefully that helps elevate her confidence. Over at Wayne’s station, Aarón seems impressed with his Mexican menu, which is a good sign. They’re a bit more concerned about MD, who didn’t marinate her snapper. Joe tells her he’s concerned she’s about to overcook her shrimp.
8:35 p.m. — Time has elapsed and the judges decide they’ll taste everyone’s dishes today. First up is Grant’s Double-Cut Pork Chops with Spicy Tomato Sauce, Charred Broccolini and Herb Polenta. Aarón is impressed with his ambition. The pork is cooked nicely, but Gordon says the dish could do without the polenta. Aarón disagrees and says “everything is spot on.” Joe calls it “quite good.” Next up is Kennedy’s Coffee Rubbed Elk Tenderloin with Forest Mushroom Medley and Carrot Puree. Joe immediately notices the elk is overcooked and calls the plating “amateurish.” Gordon calls it Kennedy’s most lackluster dish of the competition. Aarón says the sauce is completely lost.
8:45 p.m. — Next up is MD’s Steamed Red Snapper with Palapa Grilled Shrimp, Papaya Salad and Grilled Sweet Potato. Joe says it looks sloppy and unfocused. Aarón says it’s hard to get grill flavor when the food is wrapped in banana leaf. Gordon says she should have grilled the fish and it’s overcooked. MD simply missed the mark on this dish. Up now is Wayne’s New York Strip & Jumbo Prawns with Spicy Mexican Rice and Salsa Verde Cruda Sauce. The steak is cooked perfectly. Joe says he “nailed it.” Aarón loves the marinade. Gordon says Wayne played the grill like a piano. Next is Jennifer’s Memphis Rubbed Pork Chop with Alabama White BBQ Sauce, Sweet Potato Puree and Grilled Baby Gem Lettuce & Mushrooms. Gordon says it looks “elegant.” The pork is slightly overcooked, but well seasoned. Joe says it’s missing a bit of attitude, but if it were properly seasoned it might be one of the best.
8:52 p.m. — Kolby is up with his Filet Mignon & BBQ Shrimp with Corn Ribs and Sweet Potato Casserole. Joe loves the presentation. Aarón loves how big and bold the shrimp are. Gordon says the steak is cooked beautifully, but the sweet potatoes are “way too sweet.” Joe says he nailed the grilling on the proteins. Last up is Sav’s Whiskey Marinated Steak with Pontchartrain Sauce, Buttered Crab, Wilted Spinach and Grilled Oysters. Aarón has never seen barbecued oysters on a composted dish and the crab is overcooked. Meanwhile, the steak is slightly undercooked. Gordon likes the grill marks and sauce, her dish is just badly finished. Aarón says she was “too ambitious.” Joe calls the oysters a “flop.”
9:00 p.m. — After a short deliberation, the judges name Wayne the winner of this challenge. He will receive a major advantage in the next challenge. Next, Gordon tells Jennifer, Grant and Kolby they cooked outstanding dishes and they’ll be safe. That means Kennedy, MD and Sav are the bottom three. After another deliberation, the judges eliminate MD. Joe says she was one of the best parts of this season because she brought a region of the states we don’t often see. MD is disappointed, but happy she had an opportunity to show she can do more than bake donuts.
SEE ‘MasterChef 13’ power rankings: Who will win ‘The United Tastes of America’?
9:05 p.m. — The home cooks return to the MasterChef kitchen to learn their next challenge is the classic Wall competition. They will be paired up in teams and tasked with using their communication skills to cook identical dishes — while a 55-foot wall separates them. As the winner of the previous challenge, Wayne will pick the teams. This is how they stack up: Kenny & Sav, Brynn & Kolby, Jennifer & Reagan and Wayne & Grant. Each team gets some time in the pantry to strategize their dish. It will be their only time face-to-face. The dishes should look and taste the exact same. Their 60 minutes starts now!
9:15 p.m. — As the teams talk things out, it’s clear who the alphas are. Wayne tells Grant the menu, Brynn takes control over Kolby, Kennedy lays out her plans with Sav and Reagan and Jennifer are just completely in sync. They grab ingredients and head out to the wall. Gordon thinks Wayne misfired in pairing Kennedy with Sav, because Sav will simply follow Kennedy’s direction. Joe points out that Brynn and Kolby are the only two that have never worked together. The judges also seem concerned that Wayne chose the wrong partner in Grant because they’re both alpha males. Next, Wayne and Grant realize they forgot eggs, a major component for the sauce they planned for the sauce. They decide to do a white wine portobello mushroom sauce instead.
9:30 p.m. — So far the judges seem most impressed with the conception of Kennedy & Sav’s dish. With Reagan & Jennifer, they seem most concerned about their ability to plate similarly. Jennifer is elegant, while Reagan is more rustic. Joe and Aarón are very concerned about Wayne & Grant’s sauce. They’re even more concerned about Brynn & Kolby, whose salmon dish with red sauce doesn’t seem cohesive. The communication between Kolby and Brynn begins breaking down. Will two of “MasterChef’s” top home cooks end up on the chopping block tonight? Time begins to wind down and it’s time to start plating. Everyone is firing on all cylinders and this is definitely one of the most stressful challenges this season. Time is up and it’s time to find out which team was in sync and who will be heading home.
9:40 p.m. — Wayne & Grant are up first with their Pan Seared Filet Mignon with Pomme Puree, Buffalo Carrots and White Wine Sauce & Mushrooms. Visually, they’re close to identical. Joe is impressed with the consistency. Both steaks are cooked beautifully and the mashed potatoes are delicious. The cream sauce doesn’t make sense, but their carrots are spot on. Next up is Jennifer & Reagan’s Seared Scallops with Cheese Grits, Roasted Asparagus and Carrot Puree. Aarón says their is consistency in the imperfection, and he’s not sure if he should applaud them for that or take them to task. The sear on the scallops is nice, but Jennifer’s are slightly undercooked. Their carrot puree is bland and Jennifer’s grits are better than Reagan’s. Joe says Reagan’s dish is more flavorful overall.
9:45 p.m. — Next up are Kennedy & Sav with their Seared Scallops with Parsnip Puree, Wilted Spinach and Pancetta and Lemon Dill Beurre Blanc. They look nearly identical. Kennedy’s sauce is broken, but Sav’s looks creamy and delicious. The scallops on both plates are pretty close to perfect. Aarón appreciates the concept. Joe thinks they did a great job, but prefers Sav’s version.
9:53 p.m. — Next is Brynn & Kolby’s Crispy Skin Salmon with Parsnip Puree, Braised Fennel and Raspberry & Pear Red Wine Sauce. Joe immediately says the dishes look very different. Gordon compliments the pairing of salmon and parsnip puree, but the sauce on the outside looks “bizarre.” Kolby’s salmon is undercooked, but Brynn’s is perfect. The rest of her dish just doesn’t make sense. Kolby’s is pretty much an overall disaster. Brynn is shocked that Kolby’s salmon was undercooked because she was under the impression she began cooking hers 30 seconds after Kolby.
10:00 p.m. — The judges step away to deliberate. They first reveal that Kennedy & Sav are safe and then proclaim Wayne & Grant the best pair of the night. Next they announce the team of two leaving the competition are Brynn & Kolby. Wow! Both were in my top four and I’m shocked to see them both bounced in the same challenge. What a shot from Wayne! Gordon says Brynn & Kolby just missed the mark. Brynn says her experience was “unbelievable” and she continues to keep going. Kolby says he never felt like he belonged anywhere until he got here. This elimination is tough for him. Lots of tears shed with this double elimination! Next week the Top 6 will battle it out in a Hell’s Kitchen restaurant takeover and then the Season 13 semi-finals!
Be sure to make your predictions to influence our reality TV racetrack odds. You can keep changing your predictions until just before the next episode airs on FOX. You’ll compete to win eternal bragging rights and a spot on our “MasterChef” leaderboard. See our contest rules and sound off with other fans in our reality TV forum. Read more Gold Derby entertainment news.
SIGN UP for Gold Derby’s free newsletter with latest predictions