Adam Cooke — Rancho Cucamonga, California : Culinary skills do not come with the last name "Cooke" for Adam, though that might be the case for some of his 13 siblings. Adam is not an adventurous eater, refusing to try even the most-basic dishes, but he wants to overcome his reservations and cook a romantic meal for his wife.
Ann Odogwu — Houston : Ann is a native of Nigeria, where cooking is a big part of the culture, so she's ready to improve her culinary skills. Ann is the only one in her family who can't cook an edible meal, and she knows she needs to develop her independence in the kitchen. She also wants to make her family proud — especially her dad — in the process.
Mandy Thornton — Hanover, Massachusetts : Mandy is a young mother ready to take her first step into the kitchen. She is a self-proclaimed condiment queen and believes everything needs to be smothered in ketchup. But she's prepared to sacrifice her beloved ketchup in order to cook healthy meals for her daughter.
Brittany Lenore — Chicago : Brittany's contagious energy and enthusiasm have helped her in every aspect of her life, except in the kitchen. Since she recently relocated from her hometown, Chicago, to Los Angeles, she can no longer rely on her mom for home-cooked meals. Brittany needs to overcome her fear of hot, popping grease and learn to make a meal that doesn't put her in mortal danger.
Jeni Erdman (Dousman, Wis.) : Midwestern farmwife and mom Jeni is devoted to her husband and family, but she has made only three palatable meals for them in 25 years. She raises all kinds of animals on the farm and grows every kind of vegetable, but has no idea how to make them edible. Her hardworking husband comes home to a dinner of string cheese and beer most nights, and Jeni wants to change that — so this vivacious, friendly mom is prepared to get serious about cooking at Boot Camp.
Jake Michaels — Manteno, Illinois : Jake is a skilled musician who loves to show off his voice. While he might be confident onstage, he's useless in the kitchen. Jake's greatest accomplishment is microwaving a frozen pizza. He's ready to upgrade his culinary skills and cook a professional meal without missing a note.
Holgie Forrester (29 Palms, Calif.) : The last time sensational 66-year-old Holgie prepared a meal was the summer of 1969. She has a youthful, adventurous spirit and has been skydiving and swimming with snakes, but has never had any interest in cooking. She blames a deep-fried grilled cheese for a romantic breakup and even has trouble using the coffeemaker. Holgie wants nothing more than to make heart-healthy meals for her husband and relieve him from always having to do the cooking.
Stephen Hawkins — Temecula, California : Stephen is in his 60s but has cooked only one meal for his wife — and it made her sick. He has never used an oven and is scared of knives. As a father and grandfather, he's ready to learn some much-needed culinary skills and set an example for his family.