Recipes For Success

Advice

MasterChef is loved around the world - 60 countries to be precise! While all the chefs have a lot of culinary talent, it takes something truly special for them to be crowned the winner.

Magnet Masterchef

So, what sets them apart? Is there a recipe for success? Perhaps a secret formula? Or is it simply the choice of ingredients contestants choose that ensures they’re in with a chance of lifting that MasterChef trophy?

To find out, we analysed a sample of 1,254 ingredients from 123 recipes across the four most popular UK and US formats of the show to determine which ingredients future contestants should consider when creating their finale menu.

The Ultimate Ingredients

The recipes are in! The most commonly used ingredient across all four formats of the show analysed is in fact chocolate, appearing in 14% of all the winner’s final menus.

Things then take a fruity turn with both apples and raspberries featuring in 9% of the winning recipes and lemon and lime in 7%. Duck, lamb, and pigeon are the most commonly used meats by MasterChef champions.

Here’s the top 10 most commonly used ingredients in MasterChef:

1. Chocolate

2. Apples

3. Raspberry

4. Duck

5. Lamb

6. Lime

7. Pigeon

8. Beetroot

9. Lemon

10. Pistachio

Our analyses confirmed that the top three cooking methods across all shows are:

1. Pureeing

2. Roasting

3. Marinating

But what about the individual shows? How much do the winning ingredients differ depending on whether you’re entering MasterChef UK, or MasterChef US? And how different are the ingredients used by professional contestants versus celebrities?

Read on to find out.

Masterchef UK vs US

Chocolate comes out number one again, featuring in 18% of all winning recipes created in the last ten series.

Lobster is the meat of choice – 12% of the winning menus have contained this seafood staple. Other common meats include pigeon (11%), venison (9%), and lamb (9%).

Here’s the top 10 most commonly used ingredients in MasterChef UK:

1. Chocolate

2. Fennel

3. Lime

4. Lobster

5. Mango

6. Pigeon

7. Saffron

8. Venison

9. Carrot

10. Lamb

The top three cooking methods favoured by the amateur British chefs are:

1. Pureeing

2. Roasting

3. Smoking

While chocolate remains in the top three for American contestants, the most popular ingredient comes from a far unlikelier source. Yep, you guessed it – Quail. The gamey bird takes the top spot with 11% of chefs using it. Other choices of meat include pork, duck, and lamb; all of which feature in 7% of the winner’s recipes.

Here’s the top 10 most commonly used ingredients in MasterChef USA:

1. Quail

2. Lime

3. Chocolate

4. Mascarpone

5. Pork

6. Duck

7. Cherry

8. Raspberry

9. Lamb

10. Pistachio

The top three cooking methods favoured by the amateur American chefs are:

1. Braising

2. Searing

3. Poaching

Celebrity Masterchef UK

More traditional ingredients feature in the celebrities’ winning menus, including peas (20%), potatoes, onions, and butter (all 10%).

While three variations of meat feature in the top ten, they appear much lower down on the list than in any of the other formats analysed, with scallops being the most commonly used sea food at 7%.

Here’s the top 10 most commonly used ingredients in Celebrity MasterChef UK:

1. Pea

2. Apple

3. Potatoes

4. Onion

5. Butter

6. Scallops

7. Veal

8. Truffle

9. Pancetta

10. Almond

The top three cooking methods favoured by the celebrity amateurs are:

Braising

2. Searing

3. Poaching

Masterchef - The Professionals

Proving it really is the ingredient of winners, chocolate takes the top spot again, with 24% of all finalists’ menus containing it. Lemon (18%) and raspberries (15%) closely follow, with pigeon and beetroot rounding out the top five.

Banana makes its only appearance in the top ten, with the popular fruit appearing in 14% of all the winning recipes.

Here’s the top 10 most commonly used ingredients in MasterChef: The Professionals:

1. Chocolate

2. Lemon

3. Raspberries

4. Pigeon

5. Beetroot

6. Banana

7. Beef

8. Duck

9. Pistachio

10. Venison

The top three cooking methods favoured by the professionals are:

1. Roasting

2. Pureeing

3. Marinating

Inspired to create your own winning recipe? Check out our blog for more food and kitchen inspiration and for the best in kitchen design, head over to our kitchen planner.

The Most Commonly Used Ingredients

1. Chocolate
2. Apples
3. Raspberry
4. Duck
5. Lamb
6. Lime
7. Pigeon
8. Beetroot
9. Lemon
10. Pistachio