The sixteen amateur cooks meet at the cafeteria in the L.A. Times building in downtown Los Angeles, California. gordon, Graham, and Joe discuss their first challenge to the group. They have two and a half hours of prep time, and two hours of cooking time to serve over 300 guests. The team captains were decided by the winners of the French cuisine challenge from the previous episode, Max is in charge of the Blue team, and Derrick is in charge of the Red team. Max chose his team based on experience, and speed in the kitchen. The Blue team consists of Max, Christian, Alejandra, Giuseppe, Tony, Tracy, Esther, and Jennifer. The Red team consists of Derrick, Suzy, Adrien, Erryn, Jennie, and Christine.
The losing team faces the first Pressure test of the season, and one person will be leaving MasterChef. The first things both teams decide on is their menu for the challenge. They each must create a salad, soup, pizza, best dish entree, and dessert. Each diner will try each dish, and cast their vote in either a Red box or a Blue box depending on which entree they preferred, the team with 3 out of 5 votes wins.
The contestants scurry to kitchens to start preparing, and cooking, both teams taking on different food choices than the other. The judges walk between both kitchens offering tips, suggestions, and advice. Suzy isn't impressed with her the lasagna that she made, but time runs out before they can decide on fixing any of the food. Giuseppe is lagging behind on serving his pizza, which forces him to send out empty blue plates to diners. Each diner that has an empty blue plate means that the Red team automatically gets the point for that round, and vice versa. Tony is also falling behind on the Red team, he quickly runs out of burger meat. Max, as team captain, tries to help by pre-cooking some of the hamburgers, but while transporting them to Tony he places them on a dirty cookie sheet that has bits of nuts on it, and Gordon tells him to throw them out.
The Blue team seems to be running out of food, so they quickly try to salvage whatever food they can find, such as chicken on the grill instead of burgers. The two hours run out, and both teams line up to find out who won the challenge. The Red team won on the salad course, the dessert course, and the pizza course. The Blue team won on the best dish course, and the soup course. The Blue team has lost the first group challenge, and must now face the first Pressure test of the season.
Both teams enter the MasterChef kitchen, with the Red team going up to the gallery to watch the Blue team face the Pressure test. For their pressure test, each contestant must make the perfect ravioli. The filling is already selected for them: spinach & ricotta cheese with a simple butter sauce. The judges will be examing their technique, precision, and culinary vision. They have one hour to prepare their stunning ravioli dishes. The contestants have access to the exact same ingredients, the judges will also be looking for the construction of the ravioli, their technique, and overall flavor.
Giuseppe, Tracy, Max, Alejandra, Christian, and Esther are all safe. Tony is eliminated, and Jennifer is safe.