MasterChef Junior Contestant Goes Global

by | Jan 2024

Social Media Influencer Ariana Feygin

Photos: Ariana Feygin

Ariana Feygin discovers her passion while living and cooking abroad.

It’s been about 10 years since Excelsior native Ariana Feygin auditioned for season six of MasterChef Junior (2018) and six years since competing on the show when she was 12 years old.

Although she placed in the top 10, Feygin has done anything but take a back seat to the kitchen. In fact, she keeps turning up the heat. Now 19 years old and living in Barcelona, Spain, Feygin continues to cook for an even wider audience than during her MasterChef Junior days.

Feygin started creating content for social media during the pandemic when she shared her love of cooking with her then small following. Since that time, she’s made over 600 cooking videos, and her TikTok account has gained 2.6 million followers. “I absolutely love it. It’s enabled me to do so many things,” she says. “It’s my dream job.”

Carefully curated tablescapes showcase Ariana Feygin’s style.

Carefully curated tablescapes showcase Ariana Feygin’s style.

Each week, Feygin dreams up “fun, whimsical content” to share with her followers. From carnival-themed goodies to an elevated end-of-summer picnic, she is never short on original ideas.

“I have always loved to romanticize life and take my day-to-day life and make it really fun,” she says.

Followers can expect to find foodie tableaus in Ariana Feygin’s social media content.

Followers can expect to find foodie tableaus in Ariana Feygin’s social media content.

In Barcelona, she’s more than just familiarized herself with local shops, especially the grocery store she frequents almost daily. “I’m friends with all the people there, and I’ve been able to cook with people here and learn a lot,” she says.

Feygin radiates joy and originality and credits the city as her muse. “Living in Barcelona is inspiring. There’s so much art and creativity, so many cultures … walking around and looking into the windows of shops, seeing color palettes and fashion. I love the artistic side of content creation,” she says.

When she’s not whipping up her latest inspired dish, Feygin indulges in the closest corner store’s guilty pleasure—junk food. “I’ve uncovered the perfect formula: something salty, something sweet or chocolate, a sour candy and a refreshing drink,” she says. “It’s the best and worst thing ever because they’re open all the time.”

And what pairs better with guilty pleasure junk food than cooking competition shows? Feygin is hooked on Netflix’s Five Star Chef, which features seven professional chefs competing to become the executive chef at The Langham, London—a luxury hotel.

Next up for Feygin? She hopes to discover more of her personal and cooking styles before considering authoring a cookbook and is passionate about exploring more long-form content. “I want to show more of life and the things I love and connect with the audience on a deeper level,” she says.

And although her days of competing might be over, despite her “fire of desire to compete,” Feygin would love to host a game show-style cooking program. “I love cooking shows that are more of a game show or contest, so you get to know the people,” she says.

Take a look back at our August 2018 article on Ariana Feygin.

Take a look back at our August 2018 article on Ariana Feygin.

Dine Around Europe

In addition to Spain, Feygin has mastered the ease of traveling in Europe, with passport stamps from Croatia, England, France, Germany, Greece, Poland and Switzerland. “I’ve always loved to experience other cultures and cook food from other countries,” she says. “I’ve been able to learn from so many people.” She remembers her favorite meals in other countries as coming from restaurants that are “family owned gems” or somewhere the locals recommend.

Dine Around Minnesota

Although Feygin is living abroad, a part of her heart (and stomach) will always be in Minnesota. She offers her top restaurant recommendations:

  • 6Smith (Wayzata)
  • Demi (Minneapolis)
  • Latt14 Asian Eatery (Golden Valley)

Instagram: @arianafeygin
TikTok: arianafeygin
YouTube: Ariana Feygin


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