Kids Discover Talks with MasterChef Junior Winner Bryson McGlynn

by Alice Knisley Matthias

His idol Chef Ramsay tells him, “You did it, man!”

What do you cook for the judges if you are one of the final three contestants in the last round of competition of MasterChef Junior?

Bryson McGlynn decided to go with a dish that showed off his homemade Southern roots and wowed the judges with a plate of hush puppies. (Hush puppies are small, deep-fried round balls made of a cornmeal-based batter served as a side dish.)

McGlynn’s specialty item was on his menu for the season 9 finale of MasterChef Junior and Chef Gordon Ramsay praised the dish for being perfectly cooked on the inside.

There was a lot of pressure to perform well in the finale since Chef Ramsay is one of Bryson’s cooking idols.

How was it preparing dishes for the judges each week?

“It could go both ways!” says Bryson. “They can be tough when giving a critique, but they are also there to help us and make our dishes better.”

Kids Discover got the chance to talk with the MasterChef Junior champion! We asked about what it is like behind-the-scenes, coming up with the recipes for each challenge and how it feels to cook in front of the judges and a live audience.

The MasterChef Junior judges are award-winning chef, host and executive producer Gordon Ramsay, Tilly Ramsay, who joins her father, chef Aarón Sánchez and television host Daphne Oz. The chefs are home cooks between the ages of 8 and 13 who compete in a series of challenges for the title of MasterChef Junior.

The final three contestants made it through a series of challenges and tested their skills week after week when they came up with recipes and presented them to the judges for their critiques. The trio of talented chefs included Bryson, Michael Seegobin, both 11 years of age, and Remy Powell, the youngest contestant at age 10.

Bryson lives in Auburn, Alabama and is known by the nickname, Cheese Curd. He brought some “grilling game” to the MasterChef kitchen as a specialist who competes in BBQ and grill cooking competitions with his father, Mike.

His father is a native of Wisconsin and earned the nickname “Cheese” when he moved to Alabama, as a reference to someone who is from the part of the country called “America’s Dairyland.” Wisconsin is famous for their cheese!

Bryson just finished the sixth grade at Fox Run School in Opelika and he says his favorite subject is science. He was cooking up a storm each week during the competition but he had to do his school work on the set!

Bryson says cooking is like “hands-on science experiments” and he found the dessert round, and the baking skills, to be the toughest challenge.

The young chef looked to his hometown for inspiration again for the dessert challenge and made a creation that reminded him of a favorite peanut butter and chocolate pie he enjoys at a local restaurant.

“I decided to make something like that peanut butter and chocolate pie,” said Bryson. “My idea was to brighten it up and make it beautiful with gold leaf decoration.”

How did it feel when it got down to the last three young chefs?
“The final was extra fun because we got to know each other and it felt like we were all in it together.”

Working together through the rounds of competition in the famous kitchen helped the young chefs in the final round.

“For the finale, I was a little scared,” said Bryson. “But it felt like I was with two of my friends.”

You can cook like a MasterChef Junior with Bryson’s delicious dessert recipe that he shared with Kids Discover. Yum!

Fun new food word: Ganache.
How do you say this word? It sounds like “ ga-nosh.”

What is a ganache?
A ganache is a mixture of chocolate and warm cream. It is used as a type of glaze, sauce, or filling to cover cakes and decorate desserts.

Follow Bryson for more cooking ideas this summer on Instagram cookinwithcheesecurd, Bryson McGlynn (@cookinwithcheesecurd) | TikTok, Cookin With Cheese Curd’s Facebook Page

Caramel Salted Peanut Butter Monkey Bread with a Peanut Butter Ganache


  • 2 – 8 count cans buttermilk biscuits


  • Mini peanut butter cup candy
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 1/2 cup milk
  • ½ cup light brown sugar
  • 1 cup peanut butter
  • 1 stick butter
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract
  • ¼ cup creamy peanut butter
  • Spray canola oil
  • Coarse salt


  • Kitchen scissors
  • Small saucepan
  • Non-stick Bundt pan
  • Immersion blender


Monkey Bread:

  • Cut each biscuit into quarters (4 equal pieces)\
  • Flatten quarters by hand
  • Place peanut butter cup in middle of each quarter
  • Wrap peanut butter cup with quarter of biscuit and roll into a ball
  • Mix brown sugar, butter, and peanut butter and heat in a small saucepan until melted
    and smooth
  • Spray Bundt pan with canola oil
  • Place dough balls in Bundt pan evenly covering the bottom of the pan
  • Pour brown sugar and peanut butter sauce over dough balls
  • Place in oven at 350 degrees F
  • Check at 30 minute mark (Monkey Bread is finished when bread is turning golden brown.)

While monkey bread is cooking, make the ganache.


  • Mix powdered sugar, milk, and peanut butter with immersion blender
  • Add vanilla extract

To finish:

  • Remove monkey bread from oven
  • Flip pan over and remove bread
  • While bread is still warm, spoon ganache over the top
  • Sprinkle with a little coarse salt on top

Alice Knisley Matthias writes about food, garden, family and education. Her work appears in The New York Times, Allrecipes, Taste of Home, Food Network, Washington Post, Eating Well, The Kitchn, Delish, Birds and Blooms, Woman's Day, Redbook, Good Housekeeping, America's Test Kitchen, Boys' Life and Parade. Her book, "Tasty Snacks in a Snap!" is published by Scholastic for young readers. You can read her work at Home / Alice Knisley Matthias ( and follow her at Alice Knisley Matthias (@aliceknisleymatthias) • Instagram photos and videos and @AKnisleyMatth ( / Twitter (