Masterchef Junior

Fox wants to keep cooking with kids, as its Gordon Ramsay competition series “MasterChef Junior” has been picked up for a third season — even before season two hits the air.

The net, Shine America and One Potato Two Potato jointly announced an eight-episode third season of the cooking series, which was a solid ratings performer last year. A second season was announced a few months ago, with production set to start this spring.

“MasterChef Junior” gives talented kids between the ages of eight and 13 the chance to showcase their culinary ability and passion for food through a series of delicious challenges. Host, executive producer and award-winning chef Ramsay is joined by restaurateur and winemaker Joe Bastianich (Del Posto, Eataly) and acclaimed chef Graham Elliot (Graham Elliot Bistro) on the judging panel.

During its first season, “MasterChef Junior” averaged 5.1 million total viewers and ranked No. 1 in its time period among adults 18-49 and other demos. It was especially popular in DVR playback, as its 50% lift from its “live + same-day” adults 18-49 to its “Live +7″ rating was the largest percentage gain of any unscripted series on the Big 4 networks.

“MasterChef Junior” is produced by Shine America and One Potato Two Potato, and is based on a format created by Franc Roddam and Shine. Shine International handles distribution for the “MasterChef” format. Elisabeth Murdoch, Eden Gaha, Paul Franklin, Robin Ashbrook, Gordon Ramsay, Adeline Ramage Rooney, Patricia Llewellyn and Ben Adler serve as executive producers.

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