George Calombaris reveals all of Masterchef's behind the scenes tricks you don't see on screen.

Image: The Masterchef Australia judging panel.

We’re willing to bet everyone who’s watched an episode of Masterchef has experienced an inner monologue along these lines:

‘What happens to all that leftover food? How do the judges test everything without getting full? Does the food go cold by the time they get to the last dish? Does Matt Preston have a separate wardrobe just for his cravats?’

Earlier this year we learned the (surprisingly lovely) truth about the leftover food, and now, judge George Calombaris has kindly answered the rest — well, except the cravat conundrum. That, we may never know.

Speaking with Daily Mail Australia, Calombaris admitted the delicious ‘hot’ dishes we see him sampling on screen are usually stone cold. But there’s more than meets the eye.

“[The food] has always been cold and it always will be cold but we taste everything hot off-camera,” the Melbourne chef and restaurant owner explained.

“No one sees that apart from the three of us and the executive producer. We will go around the room and the three of us will taste everything hot out of [the contestants’] pot.”

Wait! You mean… reality TV has been deceiving us all this time? The horror.

George Calombaris has answered all our questions (Image: Instagram)


"It looks sexy on TV but it takes time to film. So when you see us tasting at the end, it's cold but I've already made the decision, I already know what it tastes like," he continued.

So, in other words, the tasting we see on telly is the judges pretending they're trying the food for the first time and reacting accordingly. Kind of like when you were a kid and had to act surprised on Christmas Day after 'accidentally' stumbling on your parents' pressie stash a month earlier.


As for what else Calombaris eats during filming — and how he approaches tasting so many rich and not necessarily 'healthy' dishes in a single day — the 37-year-old said he "plans himself" to avoid overdoing things.

"If I know I'm going to taste 20 dishes in a day, I’m not going to eat breakfast, lunch or dinner. It’s about understanding that ... I'm very strategic and very disciplined in how I taste and the timings of when I taste it as well," he explained to the Daily Mail.

"My job is to give the first contestant the same opportunities as the last, regardless of how much I've eaten or what I’ve eaten." (Post continues after gallery.)

Calombaris also shared his thoughts on fellow cooking show judge Pete Evans, saying the public should just "leave him alone" and focus on bigger issues than his paleo diet and controversial health comments.

"For me, I look at food like my religion and I have my beliefs in food. My theory is, that's his religion and if he's a Paleo person, who am I to judge him?" he said.

"Good on Pete. I think he looks way healthier to tell you the truth, so if that makes him feel good, go for it. For me, my beliefs in food is simple and I don't follow Paleo or anything."

Do you watch Masterchef? Is there anything you'd love to know about how it's filmed?