Britt Rescigno, the New Jersey chef who cooked her way to the semi-finals of “Tournament of Champions” last year, is heading back to the Food Network kitchen.

The fifth season of the show, hosted by Guy Fieri, premieres at 8 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 18. Rescigno will be one of 32 chefs from the East and West coasts competing in a bracket-style competition for a prize of $150,000.

The winning chefs from the show’s first four seasons are among the competitors, including New York City’s renowned Maneet Chauhan, who defeated Rescigno in season four.

“My life has changed forever,” Rescigno told the Asbury Park Press after the loss. “There’s no going back. There’s only going forward, and now that I have such a fan base, they are the ones pushing me to want to be better, to make the best food I can.”

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Contestant Britt Rescigno, as seen last year on "Tournament of Champions."

Contestant Britt Rescigno, as seen last year on “Tournament of Champions.”

Recisgno had success on the Food Network prior to “Tournament of Champions.” She won “Chopped” in 2019,” “Beat Bobby Flay” in 2022 with her grandmother’s chicken and dumpling recipe, and “Guy’s Grocery Games” in February 2023.

On this season of “Tournament of Champions,” she will be cooking against big names, including “Top Chef” alumni Eric Adjepong, Brooke Williamson, Michael Voltaggio, Kelsey Barnard Clark, Dale Talde, Karen Akunowicz and Antonia Lofaso, among others.

“Each battle will feature blind judging by some of the biggest names in the food world as the competitors watch their critiques from backstage,” reads a Food Network food release. “After eight weeks and 31 grueling head-to-head battles, one talented chef will win it all and be crowned champion.”

Rescigno, a Culinary Institute of America graduate who grew up in New Gretna and recently moved to Idaho, has been busy since the show’s last season. She cooked with Fieri and other chefs for a fundraiser to support Maui fire relief efforts, collaborated on a beer with Ship Bottom Brewery, and held pop-up dinners in Long Branch, at Doyle’s Pour House in Tuckerton, and Sad Boyz in New Gretna.

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Gabriela L. Laracca contributed to this story.

Sarah Griesemer joined the USA TODAY NETWORK New Jersey in 2003 and has been writing all things food since 2014. Send restaurant tips to [email protected], follow on Instagram at Jersey Shore Eats and subscribe to our Jersey Shore Eats newsletter.

This article originally appeared on Asbury Park Press: NJ native Britt Rescigno returns to Tournament of Champions

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