The 53-year-old Michelin star chef made the announcement after talks broke down with the TV channel saying: 'This hasn't been an easy decision for me to make. I love working with the BBC, and am very proud of how we have built up the popularity and success of these two iconic shows.'
At goodtoknow we're really going to miss Michel on our screens so we thought we'd pay tribute to him by rounding up the 5 things we are going to miss the most about Mr Roux Jr...
1. The food
As a double Michelin star winner, Michel was not just there as a judge, they also made sure they got a little cooking out of him too! His effortless way of creating mind-blowing dishes made us want to drop everything and visit one of his restaurants (not that we could afford it!)... maybe we'll just have to give one his recipes a go instead. See our Michel Roux Jr recipes here.
2. His amazing facial expressionsOne of the many joys of MasterChef is the judges 'reaction' shots, Gregg Wallace is pretty good but nothing can compare to Michel's wonderful facial expressions when contestants cook up their various experiments. Here's an absolute classic:
3. His technical challengesWhen Michel says professional, he means professional. He wasn't about to let any old chef pass through his kitchen so his technical challenges always sorted out the exceptional chefs from the weak. Can't prepare a lobster? Get out! Can't make a perfect mousse in minutes? See you later! Michel always managed to find the talented chefs with his perfectly-pitched tasks.
4. His constant smile
Some talent show judges take their jobs a little too seriously (we're looking at your Mr Cowell!) but Michel always looked like he was having the time of this life. His smile was nearly always on full and if the contestants really pleased him, they even got a cheeky wink!
5. His rapport with Monica
Michel and his sous chef Monica are like two peas in a pod - you can't have one without the other! When we heard the news about Michel leaving we thought that would be the end for the formidable female chef too - but thankfully she'll be staying alongside current judge Gregg Wallace. How will she cope without Michel? How will we cope?
Where to next?
Michel Roux JR recipes
Who took part in Celebrity MasterChef 2013?