There is a lot of food and cooking that takes place on MasterChef Junior, but that's not really what the show is about. What makes the show more than a bunch of kids competing for cooking stardom, are the hugs, the compliments, the tears (lots of tears), and the small life lessons in each episode. It's what makes this one, if not the best, food show on television right now.
The third season of MasterChef Junior began airing on Fox on January 3rd. If you're just tuning into this show this season, or have been a fan from the beginning, here are the 10 important life lessons you just might garner from this adorable show.
In other cooking shows, the competition generally doesn't matter that much. In MasterChef Junior, the competition really doesn't matter. The competitors in MasterChef Junior are kind, supportive, and confident without being bratty. It makes it that much harder to root for a single kid, because they are all champions of our hearts.
10 Important Life Lessons from MasterChef Junior
1. We're all winners because we wear aprons. - At the end of the first episode of season three of MasterChef Junior, a few of the kids have to go home. They are sad. Some of them cry. But they are so happy because they get to keep their white aprons from the show.
Remember that even when you fail or don't do as well as expected, you still tried. From a cooking perspective, that means that even if your dish didn't turn out as well as you wanted, you put on that apron and gave it a try. You too, are a winner, no matter what.
2. Know your strengths and weaknesses. - I love that all the kids in MasterChef Junior, without fail, say what they are good and bad at when it comes to cooking. They don't hesitate, and they don't feel bad saying it out loud. It's a unique kind of confidence that isn't pompous or self-deprecating in any way.
3. Be excited about everything and anything because LIFE, amiright? - Watching the kids get excited about the smallest things is probably my favorite part about the show. There is no fear in their excitement. I love, for example, when Abby adds jelly beans to her citrus pie in season two because "who doesn't love jelly beans?" So true Abby, so true.
4. Don't underestimate being kind to your competitors. - The kindness that the kids show to one another is the obvious difference between MasterChef Junior and all other cooking competitions. It isn't uncommon for a kid to be exited about winning a challenge and then immediately feel bad for one of the other kids who might not make it to the next round.
Your competitors are just friends and allies in disguise, don't forget!
5. We're not all A+ students all the time. Don't be so hard on yourself. - The hardest part about watching MasterChef Junior, compared to other cooking shows, is the truly devastating end of an episode where kids are sent home. They always cry. If you're like me, you probably cry too. Each time someone is sent home the other kids are so sweet and compliment the mini chef on their great cooking abilities. We can't all be perfect all the time, they say. So true!
Remember: You are stronger than you think you are. Don't be so hard on yourself when you don't do as well as you want in life, and keep trying!
6. Always say "thank you." - Saying "thank you" to your friends, fellow life competitors, and mentors is something we should all practice every day. The kids on MasterChef Junior are always saying "thank you" when someone compliments their dish, or their effort. It's a small daily reminder: Be grateful!
7. Less is more. - On season two of MasterChef Junior, 12-year-old Samuel makes some very interesting dishes, but sometimes they're more for show than taste. The judges recommend that next time he take two things off his plate before presenting his dish.
So, remember: Sometimes less is simply more.
8. Surround yourself with people who are better than you and who want to help you. - Instead of yelling at the kids when they mess up like in other cooking shows, the judges in MasterChef Junior are incredibly helpful, always suggesting little tips or alterations to the dish without being overly critical. Surround yourself with these kinds of people and you'll succeed at what you love.
9. Take risks. Never give up. - Some of the competitors on MasterChef Junior make bold, aggressive dishes. Some of them work out; some of them are total flops. But the kids never give up. Take risks in life and know that sometimes it won't work and that's OK.
10 Setbacks make you a better player in the game of life. - After a particularly hard challenge in season two of MasterChef Junior where a few cute kids were let go, Joe Bastianich makes this great speech about how important setbacks are, and how it makes you a better player at life. Face your challenges with a smile and know that it isn't the end.