MasterChef Canada Season 1: Where Are the Contestants Now?

The inaugural season of the much-loved cooking reality series, ‘MasterChef Canada,’ premiered in 2014 on CTV. With Michael Bonacini, Alvin Leung, and Claudio Aprile heading the esteemed judge’s panel, the season saw young Eric Chong, a Chinese-Canadian university student, get crowned the first-ever winner of ‘MasterChef Canada,’ leaving behind fourteen equally worthy home cooks. With a decade gone since the season came to pass, ardent fans of the hit cooking reality series can’t help but wonder where the participants of season 1 are.

Eric Chong is Now a Chef and Partner of a Restaurant in Toronto

After becoming the first MasterChef from Canada, Eric put aside his chemical engineering degree from McMaster University and concentrated on his culinary passion. He began training to be a professional chef under Alvin Leung’s mentorship. The two traveled the length and breadth of Asia, with Eric even working at Alvin’s Bo Innovation, a 3-star Michelin restaurant. He also worked for some time in Buca King St’s kitchen in Toronto. Thereafter, Alvin and Eric partnered to open Toronto’s R&D (Rebel & Demon) Restaurant in 2015.

The modern eatery is known for its renditions of traditional Canadian dishes and Asian flavors. Eric has even performed as the co-host of ‘Wok the World’ in seasons 1 and 2. He appeared as a guest judge in seasons 2, 3, and 5 of ‘MasterChef Canada’ while competing in the All-Star Family Edition. In 2022, Eric joined hands with Colin Henderson, the Chef de Cuisine of Café Boulud at the Four Seasons Hotel Toronto, for a one-night-only collaboration dinner. In December 2023, Eric shared that he and Alvin were preparing to open a new food joint soon.

On the personal front, Eric got married to the love of his life, Jen Cheng, on August 28, 2021. The couple became pet parents to Arlo, an adorable purebred Havanese, in December 2021. The pair announced that they were expecting their first child together in October 2023 and subsequently welcomed their baby boy, Jacob Chong, on February 23, 2024.

Marida Mohammed Prefers to Keep Her Life Private

The season 1 runner-up, Marida Mohammed, is a San Fernando, Trinidad native. She and her twin sister Narida relocated to Toronto in 2005. They had already started working on their cooking show ‘Twice De Spice’ when ‘MasterChef Canada’ happened. Even though they both had auditioned for the series, only Marida had managed to get through. After reaching the top 2, she returned to run ‘Twice De Spice’ as a social media page with her sister Narida. However, it has been a while since the sisters uploaded anything there.

Marida has been cooking for various charitable organizations over the years. Some of her collaborations so far have been with the Canadian Liver Foundation (2016) and Brandon’s Eye Research (2015). She has also catered for certain high-profile events, such as Hot & Spicy Festival Toronto (2017), Ottawa Food & Wine Show (2015), and Taste of the Caribbean Montreal (2015). Even though Marida has a social media presence, she prefers to keep things private and stays away from the limelight.

Kaila Klassen is Focused on Her Career as a Realtor

Kaila Klassen was the last elimination of the season. Reaching the top 3 for the West Kelowna, British Columbia native was quite a dream come true. In honoring her achievement, she decided to open an eatery. In 2014, she and her then-boyfriend Calgary celebrity chef Chris Shaften started Krafty Kitchen+Bar. However, their relationship soon soured, and they went their separate ways. This led Kaila to start her venture, Corx+Brix Bistro, in Bonitas Winery. However, there hasn’t been any update on the joint in recent times.

Meanwhile, Kaila has again chosen to shift her focus back to her career as a realtor. She joined Royal Lepage Kelowna in May 2022 as their real estate consultant. On the personal front, she got married to her long-time partner, Kelly Dhaliwal, in October 2022, in the presence of her family, friends, and beloved Bulldog, Mylo. While cooking was Kaila’s passion, it has now taken a back seat, as her social media profile seems to indicate.

Tammara Behl Now Runs a Catering Service

Tammara Behl was working at the Calgary Board of Education when she decided to leave her stable job and follow her passion for cooking. Despite the risk involved, she has not had to look back and has only gone from strength to strength. She founded Chef Tammara’s Catering and has also taken on the role of an Independent Advanced Director in Pampered Chef.

Her social media profiles are brimming with the delectable dishes she whips up for her clients. There are occasional glimpses of her equally fun and wholesome family life, consisting of her teenage daughters and adorable pets, Freddie the cat and Peaches the dog. Tammara has also started working as a teacher at the Learning Potential Foundation since February 2024.

Mike Green Has a Flourishing Career as a Food Writer

Before coming on the show, Mike worked as a freelance journalist with CBC Radio Manitoba’s ‘Weekend Morning Show.’ He would discuss culinary trends and food-to-table stories with producers, chefs, Manitoba farmers, and restaurant owners. After finishing in the top 5 of his season, Mike returned to do what he knew best – talk and write about food!

Since August 2014, he has been employed with Economic Development Winnipeg Inc. as their Content & Communications Manager. Mike also writes for Tourism Winnipeg and PegCityGrub. However, when it comes to his personal life, Mike, a father of two, prefers to keep his life private and away from the public eye.

Pino DiCerbo is Now a Host on a Well-Known Food Channel

Pino DiCerbo, the chef known for his rustic Italian cooking, now hosts ‘VegHeadz’ and ‘Global Veggies’ on Gusto TV. Before his career as a host on television, he worked as a private chef and culinary educator. He also worked with several fundraisers and even hosted the ‘Kids in the Kitchen’ program in several schools in Toronto. Pino’s social media profile is filled with all sorts of authentic Italian cuisine that he often whips up with the help of his beloved mother and Nona. He previously ran a YouTube channel under ‘Pino Di Cerbo: Cucina Rustica,’ but it’s been a while since the page has been updated.

Julie Miguel is a Cooking Expert on a Major Food Network

After coming seventh on the show, Julie Miguel’s culinary career skyrocketed. She shifted her focus to her blog, ‘Daily Tiramisu.’ The page is dedicated to helping home cooks feel empowered to cook difficult recipes easily. The proud home cook has worked on broadening her culinary expertise by completing a culinary training and Chinese culture program in China in May 2016. In the same year, she and her friend started ‘The Happy Kitchen’ which was designed to help teach the youth necessary survival skills.

Over the years, Julie has made numerous appearances on television as a cooking segment presenter and for hosting live cooking sessions. As of now, she is a cooking expert on City TV’s ‘Cityline.’ Meanwhile, her son, Dean, also seems to be following in his mother’s footsteps as he whipped up her signature meatballs in a brand collaboration.

Danielle Cardozo Has Chosen to Stay Away From the Spotlight

Danielle Cardozo (now Eaton) is an employment development officer from Fernie, British Columbia. After getting eliminated from the show, she flew to Tel Aviv, Israel, to train under chef Alexander Lachnish. As Danielle continued working on her public relations firm, she chose to buy Soulfood, a troubled restaurant in Mount Baker Hotel, Cranbrook, amid the COVID-19 outbreak. Despite initial setbacks, the restaurant did get off to a flier. As of 2024, she works with the Tobacco Plains Indian Band as its Chief Administrative Officer. However, Danielle now prefers to maintain a low profile.

Carly Tennant Prefers to Lead a Quiet Life

Carly Tennant, a bubbly and energetic retail clothing store owner from Vancouver, British Columbia, was eliminated in the ninth position. After her stint on the cooking show ended, Carly chose to close her womenswear shop and instead take her culinary expertise to Cannibal Cafe, a well-known burger joint in Vancouver, B.C. Carly has since then gone a little low-key. Her social media profile seems to suggest that she has likely reopened her womenswear shop. The mother of one is in a happy space, and that can be seen through the fun and goofy pictures she often shares.

Dale Kuda is the Owner of a Successful Clothing Line

Dale Kuda was known for his fun personality and humor on the show. After managing to reach the top 10, he got eliminated. In 2020, he opened a website in his name that acts as an underwear and fetish fashion brand. Even though he managed to go quite far on the show, Dale appears to have left his cooking days behind him. Despite his profile name saying ‘Dining With Dale,’ it doesn’t look like he’s focused on his culinary skills as of now since his social media profile is filled with content revolving around his brand offerings. A proud gay man, Dale was also in a happy and committed long-term relationship in 2019 with Kevin Charles, but it seems like the couple have parted ways.

Dora Cote is Now Concentrating on Her Plumbing Career

Dora Cote, a plumber from Edmonton, Alberta, didn’t get much time to showcase her culinary expertise as she got out in the eleventh position. However, not to lose hope, she participated again in season 7 but got eliminated in the first week itself. Dora then worked as an executive chef at Wainwright, Alberta’s Park & Trestle. While she has continued to dabble with her cooking, Dora has now shifted her focus back to plumbing again. In February 2022, she shared about becoming the first woman preparing to get trained as a Tech 1 Gas Fitter in Nova Scotia.

Josh Gale is Now Working as a Head Chef

Josh Gale was one of the initial eliminations of his season. Even though he got out early, Josh hasn’t let go of his food ambitions. He went on to work as the head chef at Nicli’s Next Door, followed by Wildebeest, Juniper, and Nicli Antica. After serving as the head chef in these established joints, he moved to the Tap & Barrel Group. Josh also works as a private chef, along with being a restaurant consultant and culinary collaborator. His social media profile is filled with all sorts of dishes he creates, as well as the creations that are a result of the collaborations, he does with various brands.

Danny Raposo is Now a Leading Cannabis Chef

Danny Raposo now lives in Ponta Delgada, Azores, and is known for incorporating cannabis into his dishes. Danny was initially introduced to cannabis when he’d gotten into an accident. After realizing that it helped more than tablets, he incorporated it into his dishes, and that worked wonders, leading him to establish Stoner Chef Inc. Danny is the founder of Put It In Ur Mouth Productions on YouTube, where he posts content revolving around cooking with cannabis, promotional and live videos as well as sponsorship videos in collaboration with celebrities across Canada. However, it’s been a while since the page has had any new content. He has also founded Munchalishus Medi Meals, an infused food company. On November 15, 2023, a tragedy occurred in the Raposo family as Danny was left heartbroken at the passing of his beloved mother, Olga M. Raposo.

Brooke Feldman Has Expanded Her Career as a Private Chef

Brooke Feldman, a Toronto-based make-up artist, was the second elimination of the season. She is now a successful private chef, catering to all sorts of clients and parties. Brooke is also a ballroom enthusiast and the Mother Dutchess at The House of Constantine. Her social media profile is filled with all sorts of dishes that she whips up for her guests. Brooke also shares snippets of her world, including minute details of how her life shaped up thanks to food and the people around her.

Meghan Toth Stays Away From the Limelight

Meghan Toth and Ben Miner were the surprise eliminations in the first episode. The stay-at-home mother didn’t get many chances to showcase her cooking expertise. However, she has still held onto her ambitions and founded Two Beans Catering Co. Meghan and her family now live in America. Since she’s chosen to go low-key and has preferred keeping her life private, not much is known about her current whereabouts.

Ben Miner is Now a Stand-Up Comic and Radio Show Host

Ben Miner was the first elimination of the season with Meghan Toth. Despite not being able to show the judges and viewers his cooking prowess, Ben hasn’t given up on his dreams and occasionally whips up dishes for his family and friends. He’s decided to stick to his original career as a comedian and continues to host stand-up comedy sessions. Ben is currently donning several hats at once in the Canadian comedy scene. While he now works as a stand-up and host at the SiriusXM Comedy Club, he is also the host of Joint Ventures on Canada Talks. On the personal front, Ben and his wife, Jennifer Fader, welcomed their son Kirby in April 2022.

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