! US Version
!! Season 1
* During the Wedding Team Challenge, the red team (consisting of chef's Lee did not choose) turned in a very strong performance, thanks in part to David's amazing palate. They won of course.
* Whitney managed to make perfect Chocolate Souffles despite not making any test versions despite the judge's concern.

!!Season 2
* In an earlier moment that season, Joe caught Christian eating his dish when he wasn't called up for the top 3 in a mystery box challenge, and ordered him to stop.
* Jennifer is getting praise from Ramsay regarding her risotto, and brings Christian down to taste. Christian however states he has had better, leading Ramsay to give him a ReasonYouSuckSpeech:
--> "Look at me, you may want to be (bleep) smart and start acting like an arrogant (bleep). But let me tell you something, it's cooked perfectly and it's seasoned beautifully. Your mashed potatoes are bland and so I want you to identify the difference, hoping that you've got the intelligence to take it to the next level and learn from it. Because all of sudden, over the last couple of weeks, you've shut down. Because you can't learn anymore and that's pretty obvious with the results you're putting on the plate."

!!Season 3
* [[DeafComposer Blind chef]] Christine is the epitome of ''awesome''.
** [[{{Jerkass}} Ryan]] tried to screw Christine by giving her a '''live Dungeness crab''' for the elimination test. Obviously, the [=MoA=] goes to Christine who not only completes her dish, albeit with some difficulty, but she made the winning dish of crab ceviche cocktail! Gordon Ramsay was so shocked by how it looks that he wondered if she was really blind.
*** The [=MoA=] also goes to Ramsay, who saw through Ryan's trick and forced him to taste her dish. Unlike season two's Christian when he was put in the same position, Ryan admitted that the dish was delicious.
*** Also, while she didn't make it into the top two, Monti used canned crab to make scotch eggs, which Ramsay thought was an insane idea until he and the rest of the judges tasted them and declared them delicious. It's especially noticeable after Gordon tastes it, as his chuckle and facial expression indicate that he was not expecting the dish to be that good.
** Early in the season, Christine is the captain in a team challenge. Thus far in team challenges (and even later on), captains struggle on trying to think of what Christine could do, due to her being blind, and often she gets stuck on just serving the food and maybe a bit of prepping and cooking. Also, she pretty much always gets picked last. That one early team challenge, however, had Christine herself as captain. After things started out chaotic, loud and messy, Christine got tired of that, put her foot down and took some serious charge, putting order in the kitchen, delegating tasks, keeping everybody focused and communicating while still doing prep and some cooking of her own. All of this was key to leading her team to victory.
*** And later in the season, during the final 6, Christine isn't picked last, instead being picked first by Becky, something Gordon Ramsay agreed with due to Christine's excellent palate, but Joe Bastianich thought it was a mistake because the specific team challenge was to cook in an actual fine dining restaurant. Joe mentioned a few times how he thought Christine would be a detriment to her team, but Christine proceeded to perform very well, helping her team win the challenge and making Joe eat his words.
** One of the elimination challenges in season 3 was to replicate one of Graham's dishes (which was eaten by President Obama). Christine, despite her lack of sight, not only was able to copy how the dish was plated (again causing Gordon to doubt whether or not she's really blind), she also wowed the judges so much Joe cast out doubts about her cooking ability and Gordon was at a loss of what to say to praise how good her dish was.
** [[spoiler:And of course, Christine winning season three.]]
* After Ryan and Tali both started grovelling at Ramsay whenever either of them was up for elimination, as well as Ryan's constant belittling of Monti and David, the two of them ended up being up for elimination together (meaning that one of them WILL go home). The judges, knowing another episode of lashing out and backstabbing was to ensue, instead refused to state which person was chosen for elimination and instead told them that both of them knew who it was and that said person should man up and hand over his apron.
* Episode 10 has the pizza stone challenge which Monti proceeds to make a bowl of soup and some bread.And even during the preparations, her bread exploded inside the oven. The fact that she ''won'' dish of the night with such simple dish is a testament of the sheer quality of her carrot soup and soda bread.

!!Season 4
* During the Season 3 auditions, the three judges were treated to the energetic Luca, who just got a huge boost of confidence from his mother appearing unannounced (it actually made him squee like a little girl in happiness). However, the judges were unimpressed, but Gordon told Luca to go back to cooking, because the auditions would be open again for next season. [[spoiler: Luca did get back to cooking, and not only won an apron the second time, but would end up going on to win the whole competition. In season 5, it's revealed that not only has he become an accomplished chef in his own right, but now has his own catering company.]] Now that's one hell of a comeback.
* One of the Mystery Box challenges has Gordon, Graham and Joe introduce a guest that will be cooking with the contestants. The guest turns out to be... Gordon Ramsay, in his chef attire:
** Once the contents of the Mystery box are revealed (black cod, with an assortment of spices) Gordon takes 30 minutes doing things like talk to his fellow judges, observe the contestants and drink tea. The last 30 minutes he spends preparing, cooking, and plating his dish, showing the contestants the expertise of a world class chef. When the contestants taste his creation, they say it was absolutely delicious.
** In a meta-fridge way, Gordon has chewed out at least one Chef for preparing their dish too early (in season 1) as food can cook while sitting on the plate and completely changes flavour when it goes cold. This means that the 30 minutes might not have just been for show, but Gordon actually planned it because he knew he must prep and cook the cod in the remaining 30 minutes for the best taste (He has repeatedly stated that he takes only 10 minutes to cook a perfect portion of salmon, as any more will result in a burnt skin and dry flesh, while any less would result in...well raw salmon). The tea break was just icing on the cake.
* Episode 11 had Gordon and Joe finally putting Krissi in her place. After antagonizing and bullying everyone for nine episodes straight, Krissi becomes Lynn's direct target by getting assigned a catfish. She finally gets harsh reviews for a badly made catfish with a muddy taste. Not only did Joe called her out on her arrogant attitude, later told her to have the balls to say whatever she's whispering behind his back to his face. For many having to put up with her bullying during the season, this comes as a well deserved catharsis moment.

!!Season 5
* Episode 4: The contestants are tasked with creating a box of twelve donuts, and Francis L. decides to create twelve different kinds of donuts (in his words: "Go big, or go BIGGER!"); when the judges learn of his plan, they think he's crazy, and do not expect it to work. When Ramsay opens his box, he admits to being [[MindScrew mind-screwed]] at the sight, and after tasting a donut flavored with prosciutto, stout, and maple syrup, Ramsay says it's amazing. Usually, when the judges predict someone's dish will be bad, it will be bad, so seeing Francis L. defy the judges' expectations is pretty damn awesome.
* Episode 8: Cutter standing up to Joe Bastianich. Joe's been getting a lot of heat this season for twisting certain contestants' words and making them look bad, so seeing someone finally take him to task felt quite satisfying. On the other hand, some others felt that Cutter was being disrespectful and needed to keep his mouth shut, especially considering he was only getting mixed reviews instead of outright bad ones (whereas Dan, who eventually went home, received terrible reviews but took it like an adult). Some people speculated that this was why Cutter stayed - he showed he had passion and cared about his food, while Dan's nonchalant acceptance made it seem like he'd given up.
** Seeing Christine absolutely ''own'' her role as the leader of the Red Team was definitely awesome - she solved problems and didn't let anything leave the kitchen that wasn't 100% perfect, leading her team to victory.
** Gordon offered a choice to Willie - he could either save himself from the pressure test (forcing the entire Blue Team to take part instead), or he could save three people (and he would have to compete in the pressure test). He gracefully accepted responsibility for the Blue Team's loss and chose to save Daniel, Victoria and Francis L., and then easily won the pressure test.
** Although somewhat counter-intuitively, saving only himself would have ultimately been ''better'' for the rest of the team, as with more people cooking, everyone's odds of remaining in the competition go up. Still a classy move.
* Cutter ''winning'' the pressure test with his truffles, which is very impressive because he has been weak with desserts (except for his panna cota) and chocolate is such a temperamental ingredient to work with, especially with time constraints. Gordon is so impressed that he insists Cutter take them up onto the balcony and share them with the other chefs. Even Joe grudgingly admitted they were great!
* Episode 14: Jaimee and Leslie were paired together to make dim sum, and they spent the majority of the challenge arguing with each other, and everyone thought they had set themselves up for disaster...which made it even more impressive when they had by far the best food of the challenge, only receiving a few minor nitpicks while the other teams made dishes that looked horrific and tasted mediocre at best. TeethClenchedTeamwork taken UpToEleven.
* Similarly, earlier in the season, Leslie and Ahran had been bitter rivals and he couldn't even get her name right. Then, in episode 7, they were forced to work together in a paired challenge, did well, and hugged.

!!Season 6
* In the ninth episode of season 6, the contestants were tasked with replicating Gordon's Beef Wellington dish after tasting it. Hetal, a vegetarian, could not taste the Wellington and had to rely solely on look and other contestants. When the time came to present, Hetal (along with Christopher, her unknown partner) presented her Wellington over Christopher's as Hetal's had sauce. In a total surprise (especially considering she was nearly eliminated two episodes earlier for failing to make a good Salisbury steak), Gordon loved her Beef Wellington, saying it was perfect. And a good thing too, as Christopher's received heavy panning for its size and raw pastry.
* In Episode 10 after Tommy won the challenge, he was given the right to rescue two people from the pressure test- one before cooking and one after cooking. His first save was to save Claudia, his closest friend. However, she turned him down to show what she could do. This risk was rewarded when she wowed the judges with her dish.

!!Season 7
* Episode 6, contestant Alejandro manages to shell a lobster ''better than Ramsay did in his demo'' by extracting meat from the blade (which Gordon didn't do in the demo), wowing everyone including Ramsay himself.
* Episode 10, Dan, after a pep talk from Ramsay, managed to rein his blue team in during the farming team challenge. He kept a level head, and even told David to trim off any burnt parts they had on their dish. They of course won in one of the few blow outs the competition had.
* David winning the team challenge by memorizing the number patterns of the order tickets, putting in good use his expertise as a Professional Poker Player.

!!Season 8
* Episode 5, Jason earns the rarest praise one can get out of Gordon Ramsay for his seafood dish. Unsurprisingly, he wins the Mystery Box that episode.
--> '''Gordon:''' "Wow. Wow, wow, wow. I mean, it's a work of art. You know, [[ICantBelieveImSayingThis I've never said this before]], but what would I change? Quite honestly? ''Nothing.'' Great job."
* Episode 7, during the Team Challenge, Eboni took charge as new captain of her red team after Cate demonstrated zero capacity for leadership, completely turning the tide and giving them the win.
* Episode 9, Eboni had another awesome moment when she proved Adam, Jeff and Brien wrong by making the best cannolis in the pressure test (next to Dino, who seems to be an Italian food expert), and it was the ''first'' time she ever made them. What's even better was that Jeff and Brien made the worst of the six, and were up for elimination. [[spoiler: Brien went home, which is even more satisfying when one considers that his buddy Adam tried to put his undeserving butt on the balcony. The judges overruled him and saved Yachecia, who made the best element in the team challenge. Adam was also the third person in the bottom three of that pressure test]].
* Episode 17, Jeff, Eboni, and Cate were in a pressure test with the goal to make a chocolate souffle. The end result was [[spoiler:all ''three'' of them made perfect souffle's causing the judges to announce that neither of them will be going home that night!]]

!!Season 9
* Episodes 1 and 2 had the best round of auditions so far, by adding the Mentor Team dynamic.
** Olusola, a bus driver from South Carolina, got high praise for her Jerk Snapper, to the point Gordon, Aarón ''and'' Joe give her an apron.
** Taylor, competing in the auditions for the ''third'' time, finally got her chance to impress Gordon. Not only that, her fellow duel competitors also got an apron from Aarón and Joe as well, meaning that the three of them passed.
** Cesar, S.J., Matt, and Ryan performed so good individually that ''all of them'' got selected, with S.J. and Cesar having the chance to choose between Gordon or Aarón.
* Darrick, in Episode 3 audition round where each cooks are doing dishes based on Gordon's dishes, did his sticky toffee pudding so great that Gordon put down ''all 3 of his remaining aprons'' for him [[note]]He can only really take one, but the point is made[[/note]].

!Masterchef Junior
* The premiere of Masterchef Junior has a few of these, as children aged 8 to 13 bust out amazing dishes in just one hour, some of them being dishes that contestants have struggled with or just completely failed at in the adult version of the show, such as French macaroons, molten lava cakes, sushi, and tortellinis.
* Much like in its first season, the second US season of Masterchef Junior starts off with children of ages 8 to 12 dishing out amazing dishes, though the most exceptional example goes to 9 year old Oona. After having one of the best dishes in the mystery box challenge, she moves on to make a crostini with chicken liver pate in the elimination challenge and ends up yet again in the best 3 dishes. What makes this particularly exceptional is that Oona had never made chicken liver pate before, she just decided she really wanted to make it, risking elimination, and she just nails it.
* The fourth episode of the second season of the Masterchef Junior has the young contestants needing to do perfect sunny side-up eggs in only ten minutes, and the number of perfect eggs they made would be the same number of ingredients they would have to use in the elimination challenge (not including the basic staples such as salt, pepper, butter, cream and oil). Eight year old Abby, the youngest contestant, went into the challenge with a big disadvantage, as with only two perfect eggs, she could only get two ingredients to prepare a full dish that could be served in a restaurant. Abby remained unfazed by this disadvantage and took salmon and asparagus, creating a dish of broiled salmon with asparagus five ways (boiled, sauteed, fried tops, fried bottoms, and a soup). The end result was perfectly cooked salmon, with every asparagus application being just as perfect (Joe Bastianich especially raved about the soup), and Abby ended up having one of the two best dishes of the night, as though there had never been a disadvantage at all.

! Australian version
[[Awesome/MasterChefAustralia Has its own page.]]

! Other versions
* In the second season of Masterchef Canada, Jennifer has been considered the weakest contestant from the very start. In the tenth episode, now the top 8 (with contestant Cody having just returned from being eliminated by winning an egg challenge), contestants must replicate judge Michael Bonacini's very technical and complex sea scallop mousse with lobster, and Jennifer returned from the pantry having forgotten to grab eggs, a key ingredient in creating mousse because it helps everything bind together. After a bit of a breakdown, Chef Bonacini talked to her and calmed her down. Jennifer did not bother asking any other contestants for any eggs, instead she decided to try making a roux as an attempt to substitute the eggs. Her improvised technique ended up being successful, with her mousse being near perfect. After the challenge, even though Jennifer did not win (Christopher won, with Jennifer having technically the second best dish), the judges called attention towards her, commending and congratulating her in her tenacity, determination and improvisation.