Food Network officially announces Tournament of Champions III

Competitor Amanda Freitag with host Guy Fieri, as seen on Tournament of Champions, Season 1. photo provided by Food Network
Competitor Amanda Freitag with host Guy Fieri, as seen on Tournament of Champions, Season 1. photo provided by Food Network /

On Tuesday Food Network made official what every foodie worth their cast iron skillet already knew. Guy Fieri and his Tournament of Champions is coming back for a third round of edge of your seat cooking competition this February.

Deadline broke the news that the series had been officially renewed for a third season by Food Network, which shouldn’t come as any real surprise. The season finale of Tournament of Champions II brought in 11 million viewers, which for any cable network is considered almost Super Bowl type numbers.

However, Tournament of Champions III is going to see some changes from what viewers saw in the first two seasons. In particular everything about the competition series is getting bigger and more intense.

To begin with, all the episodes will be two hours long. That means each and every episode of Tournament of Champions III will be an event in and of itself with four battles per episode. In addition, the prize money has been increased to a very impressive $100,000, which should give the chefs plenty of incentive to win.

The brackets for Tournament of Champions are now double the size.

And boy are there going to be a lot of chefs. Because for Season 3, the number competing has been doubled. Instead of 16 chefs facing the Randomizer, there are going to be 32. That’s right. Each bracket has doubled in size and will see the chefs seeded No. 1 to No. 16.

According to Fieri, upping the ante just made the most sense when it came to bringing back Tournament of Champions for a third season.

"“I’m always telling people to ‘Go Big or Go Home’ but for Tournament of Champions III, that just wasn’t enough. I wanted to go even bigger so we’ve upped the ante this year with even more talented chefs, more intense competition and the biggest prize in the tournament’s history.”"

As for who is competing for the coveted belt, the list is pretty much a who’s who of superstars of the culinary world. For the East Coast we have (in alphabetical order):

Eric Adjepong, Einat Admony, Karen Akunowicz, Kelsey Barnard Clark, Madison Cowan, Tobias Dorzon, Tiffani Faison, Amanda Freitag, Richard Hales, Christian Petroni, Michael Psilakis, Aarthi Sampath, Justin Sutherland and Bryan Voltaggio as well as Darnell Ferguson and defending Season 2 champion Maneet Chauhan.

The West Coast bracket will include (again in alphabetical order):

Carlos Anthony, Shirley Chung, Chris Cosentino, Tiffany Derry, Elizabeth Falkner, Phillip Frankland Lee, Timothy Hollingsworth, Antonia Lofaso, Crista Luedtke, Brian Malarkey, Aaron May, Joe Sasto, Marcel Vigneron, Michael Voltaggio and Jet Tila as well as Season 1 winner Brooke Williamson.

As you can see, the brackets will include a fair mixture of new chefs as well as returning favorites. But with there now being 16 chefs on either side, it is going to make for some wild battles and what is sure to be some surprising upsets.

Tournament of Champions III will make its debut on Food Network on February 27 with the tournament concluding on April 17. Keep it here at Guilty Eats for all the best coverage of the season as it happens.

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