2019 Rapid Fire Challenge: Meatless Monday Edition

MONDAY, AUGUST, 26, 2019, 3:30 PM - 5:00 PM, CENTER STAGE

Let's get meatless! Are you ready to bring on the veggies for a chance to win $1,000?! 

This year's Rapid Fire Challenge theme is Meatless Monday! Bring on your favorite dishes minus the meat! Chefs are encouraged to get creative and be ready for your one shining moment! 

The winner will be crowned the Western Foodservice & Hospitality Show Rapid Fire Champion, receive $1,000, bragging rights and gain exposure to over 100 media outlets including the Food & Beverage Magazine, Nation's Restaurant News, local television and radio affiliates, as well as, thousands of industry professionals! In addition, Meatless Monday will write a personality piece about the winner which will be sent in their weekly email newsletter, featured on their homepage and promoted via their social media channels. The winning recipe will accompany the piece, and will permanently be included in the Meatless Monday recipe database, crediting the winning chef and linking to his/her website. 

See the below details on how you can submit for your chance to compete! 


  • Submissions must include the title and recipe for your meatless dish, as well as, a video (only 1-2 minutes) submission of why you should be the champ (videos can be as simple as being shot with your smart phone). Please also include a bio and headshot (will be used to announce the top three chefs). Partially complete submissions will not be accepted. 
    TIP: Remember the videos will be used for voting so make sure they are clear, creative and sell yourself. 
  • Submissions open on Monday, May 20, 2019 and will close on Friday, June 21, 2019. They must be sent to Patricia Copela at patricia.copela@clarionevents.com  
  • Videos will be added to the Western Foodservice & Hospitality Expo co-located with the Healthy Food Expo Facebook page for peer voting for the Top 3 best meatless dish and presentation. Online peer voting will take place from Monday, June 24, 2019 until Friday, June 28, 2019. 
  • The final three competitors will be announced on Monday, July 1, 2019. The top three chefs must be available to do a culinary demonstration of their dish on Monday, August 26, 2019, 3:30 pm – 5:00 pm on Center Stage. 
  • At the show, the top three chefs will each be given a total of 20 minutes to demo their meatless dish for up to four esteemed judges. They should also plan on having samples available for about 30 - 50 audience members and press. 
  • The judges and audience will then crown the Rapid Fire Challenge: Meatless Monday Edition Champion! 




*Top 3 chosen chefs/restaurants are responsible for cost of their ingredients for the culinary demonstrations and samples, as well as travel to the show. 

2019 Rapid Fire Emcee...Shaun O'Neale

2019 Rapid Fire Emcee...Shaun O'Neale

Shaun O’Neale is a world-recognized chef currently residing in Las Vegas, NV.  A former DJ, Shaun was crowned Season 7 Champion of MasterChef on FOX in 2016 and completed his first cookbook in 2017 titled “My Modern American Table”.  He is a self-taught chef who developed his upscale, modern American style of cooking by reading cookbooks and traveling the world.

Since his MasterChef win, Shaun has been traveling and performing at some of the most recognizable culinary events all over the world.  As of the end of 2018, he has traveled to over 35 US cities and 7 countries including Italy, Ireland, Canada, the Caribbean and Costa Rica.  Shaun will also have performed at over 80 food festivals, expos and events with one of the highlights being a returning celebrity chef at both Disneyland’s and Disney World’s annual food festivals.  Shaun has worked with both MLB and NHL teams creating menus for their luxury suites.  He is a member of Macy’s Culinary Council and has performed several cooking demos with them throughout the US.

Shaun’s talents spread far beyond the entertainment world as he became Newcastle Brown Ale’s first culinary chef ambassador in 2018.  He was the only MasterChef winner to be featured on two additional seasons of the show, not including hosting the MasterChef Celebrity Showdown in 2017.  Shaun has also made appearances on Home and Family, Best in Food and starred in his own commercial for Morningstar Farms.

Shaun has strong ties in the culinary community and was married to his wife by none other than Chef Gordon Ramsay himself.  Beyond the kitchen, Shaun is passionate about traveling and reading up on culture and history.  His future plans include opening his first restaurant in his home city of Las Vegas, NV. 

Click here to learn more about Shaun


Rapid Fire Judges

Dana Smith, Campaign Director,
Meatless Monday

Leslie Durso,
Vegan Chef and Wellness Expert

 Seizan Dreux Ellis, Executive Chef, 
Café Gratitude 

Jenny Ross, Executive Chef, Tribest &
Consulting Chef, Jenny Ross Living Foods




Please contact Patricia Copela for more details on how to get involved at patricia.copela@clarionevents.com or 203.202.3823