Mondays are going to be hell for the 12 would-be restaurateurs trying to impress world-renowned chef Gordon Ramsay in the third serving of the sizzling unscripted series HELL'S KITCHEN. A former pro-soccer-player-turned-Michelin-starred-chef, Ramsay has conquered London's haute cuisine scene and recently opened his first U.S. restaurant. Now he's back to discover - or create - America's next culinary star. The heat is on and the stakes are high as the contestants endure Ramsay's hellishly intense culinary boot camp for a chance to win the grand prize and opportunity of a lifetime - the coveted title of Head Chef of the Terra Rossa restaurant at the Green Valley Ranch Resort, Spa and Casino in Las Vegas. Each week Ramsay will slice and dice the contestants, keeping only those who possess the right combination of ingredients to ensure success. In this pressure-cooker environment, only one thing is certain: if the contestants can't stand the heat, they'll have to get out of HELL'S KITCHEN.
After a disastrous opening night at HELL'S KITCHEN, the women deal with their defeat while both teams prepare for the next challenge. As temperatures inside the kitchen rise, one of the contestants starts to succumb to the pressure and might not have what it takes to survive chef Gordon Ramsay. Meanwhile, with the reward of precious time spent outside the kitchen with Chef Ramsay motivating both teams, the guys and girls face off in a challenge that tests their food preparation skills, with the losing team faced with an almost impossible undertaking. Chef Ramsay's temper is tested once again as both teams attempt to complete dinner service, two contestants are put on the chopping block and one is forced to leave.
The teams face off once again with a special challenge as they prepare breakfast for men and women of the armed forces who have come to dine at HELL'S KITCHEN. Not unlike a drill sergeant himself, Chef Ramsay pushes each team to serve the honored guests with impeccable quality, and the team leaders are given the perfect opportunity to either shine or crumble under the pressure. After demonstrating they can truly feed an army, the winning team is rewarded with a special day of rest and relaxation, while the losing team finds out what Kitchen Patrol, or KP, is really like in HELL'S KITCHEN. When one of the contestants falls seriously ill, the team must carry on, not knowing if their fallen comrade will be able to return. Later, Chef Ramsay's temper is pushed to the limits as the teams attempt to complete dinner service once again. When one team narrowly escapes serving a potentially toxic dish, a contestant is forced to leave.
After a disastrous dinner service the previous night, the remaining eight contestants are shocked to hear that their next challenge will have nothing to do with cooking. Emphasizing that the secret to being a good chef is having a discerning palate, Chef Ramsay pits the teams against each other in a HELL'S KITCHEN taste-test challenge. The blindfolded contestants go head-to-head to identify a selection of foods chosen by Chef Ramsay, relying not only on their taste buds, but also on their experience as chefs. When the losing team fails to identify some of the most commonplace food items, Chef Ramsay orders a grotesque taste-testing practice session that turns even some of the strongest contestants' stomachs. Meanwhile, the winning team members get to treat their palates to a unique dining experience with Chef Ramsay that is unlike anything they've ever experienced before. At the next dinner service, the contestants' fate lies in the hands of the customers, who will rate and critique the meals they are served that evening. As Chef Ramsay's insults abound, the criticism pushes some contestants dangerously close to their breaking point.
The seven remaining contestants are challenged to present a meal for a wedding reception taking place at HELL'S KITCHEN. The teams go shopping and race the clock to buy all of their ingredients on-time and under-budget. When it's time for the bride and groom to taste the entrées, one team makes a truly inadequate and embarrassing presentation, and Chef Ramsay needs all of his strength not to explode into a fit of fury in front of the guests of honor. At dinner service that night, the pressure is on as both teams race to make sure they do not disappoint the newlyweds or the hungry bridal party. But when a power struggle ensues in the kitchen, Chef Ramsay must find a solution or forever hold his peace.
After a decisive dinner service and a swift elimination the night before, the remaining six contestants prepare for their next challenge. Chef Ramsay informs them they must turn trays full of leftovers into delectable meals in just 30 minutes, a challenge he always gives his chefs to test their resourcefulness and creativity. It's a mad dash as each team sifts through the leftover ingredients in order to come up with one appetizer and two entrees tasty enough to impress Chef Ramsay. While one team fails to "wow" him, the winning team is elated at the challenge reward when they are given the ultimate chance for revenge on Chef Ramsay. At dinner service that evening, the competition gets serious as each team designs and executes its own original menu. When the HELL'S KITCHEN diners seem to be ordering mainly from one team's menu, lack of teamwork and poor communication may signal the end of one contestant's dream.
With only five chefs remaining in the competition, Chef Ramsay combines them into one team and they celebrate their survival thus far in HELL'S KITCHEN. Chef Ramsay tells the contestants that their next challenge will involve competing head-to-head with individual dishes to impress some very special trendsetters. The contestants are blindfolded and escorted off-site, only to find that the judges-of-honor are 100 hungry and very opinionated high school students. One chef handily wins the votes of the hungry high-schoolers and is rewarded with a special trip with Chef Ramsay and a contestant of their choosing to the Green Valley Ranch resort in Las Vegas, where they meet up with a familiar face. Back in HELL'S KITCHEN, the contestants prepare the restaurant for the upcoming dinner service. That evening, the job goes anything but smoothly as two contestants engage in a heated power struggle. After one too many mistakes, Chef Ramsay loses his patience, and in a fit of rage sends one contestant packing in the middle of dinner service. Then, at a very emotional elimination that evening, Chef Ramsay makes a heartfelt offer to a deserving contestant.
At their next challenge, Chef Ramsay instructs the Top 3 contestants to take a classic American dish and transform it into an entrée worthy of fine-dining, noting that special guests of honor will be judging their creations. In one of the most emotional reunions yet, the contestants learn that the greatest home-cooking experts they know - their very own mothers - have come to HELL'S KITCHEN to vote for their favorite entrée. Not knowing who made what, the mothers select a winner, who is treated to a memorable meal. That evening in a critical dinner service, Chef Ramsay informs the chefs that each of them will have a shot at running the kitchen in his place, so that he can separate the cooks from the leaders. To ensure that the chefs have a discerning eye and a desire for perfection not unlike his own, Chef Ramsay enlists the helps of the sous chefs to throw some wrenches into the preparations. While some contestants catch the mistakes before the sabotaged plates are served to the diners, others struggle to handle the hot plate. In one of the most difficult eliminations yet, Chef Ramsay chooses two finalists who will go on to compete for the Head Chef position.
It's down to the final stretch as the last two contestants are one dinner service away from being crowned the winner of HELL'S KITCHEN. After overcoming several failed tasks and watching Chef Ramsay eliminate their opponents, the final two face the ultimate test: to design and run their own restaurant. From the menu to the décor, they must combine cooking skills with creativity and passion to prove their worth to Ramsay.
In the much-anticipated season finale, the last two contestants come face-to-face to with Chef Ramsay to learn which of them he will designate winner of HELL'S KITCHEN. To complete their final challenge, Chef Ramsay brings in some helping hands to staff the dinner service, and tempers blaze as the competing chefs do their best to impress Chef Ramsay. See who survives the pressure cooker and becomes the new head chef at the Green Valley Ranch Resort, Spa and Casino in Las Vegas.