Whoever wins this year’s ’Great British Bake Off’, one thing is for certain, they can look forward to huge things.
But what ever happened to the other winners of ‘Bake Off’ past?
Edd Kimber (Winner, 2010)
Straight after being crowned the winner of the first ever ‘Bake Off’, Edd quit his day job as a debt collector for Yorkshire Bank (which he hated) to follow his baking dream with a job in Raymond Blanc’s restaurant Le Manoir as a pastry chef (what else?).
He’s gone on to carve himself a career as a food writer with articles appearing in BBC Good Food magazine and on his blog theboywhobakes.co.uk. In 2011, he published his first cookbook (he’s gone on to write another two), ran a pop-up bakery in Fortnum & Mason and was also the resident baker on ‘The Alan Titchmarsh Show’.
“Bake Off changed [my life] in the most amazing way. It allowed me to follow my passion and fulfil my dreams in a way I never imagined,” he said.
Joanne Wheatley (Winner, 2011)
After winning the second series of ‘Bake Off’, Jo started her own cooking school. Based at her home in Essex, Jo teaches classes on home-baking such as bread making and cupcake decorating. She has also published two cookbooks, ‘A Passion For Cooking’ and ‘Home Baking’ and was a regular food columnist for The Sun and Sainsbury’s Magazine. Now Jo is planning to open her own café, country pub and restaurant.
John Whaite (Winner, 2012)
John hasn’t stopped working since winning series three. As well as publishing six cookbooks, he earned a patisserie diploma from Le Cordon Bleu, launched his own online chocolate shop The Hungry Dog Artisan Chocolates and his own cookery school, John Whaite’s Kitchen. On top of all that he was also the resident baker on Lorraine Kelly’s morning show and co-hosted ITV’s daytime series ‘Chopping Block’, alongside celebrity chef, Rosemary Shrager.
John was studying for his law exams when he won ‘Bake Off’ at the age of 23 and returned to his studies in September this year to pursue his dream of becoming a family law barrister. He said: “Much as I relish every moment of the food industry, which allows me to express creativity, I have missed the critical thinking required in law.”
Frances Quinn (Winner, 2013)
Frances, who won the fourth series in 2013, is best remembered for her highly creative designs and has gone on to share her skills at shows and festivals around the UK. Many of her recipes have appeared in newspapers and magazines and she’s also popped up on TV and radio shows since her win. Her first book ‘Quinntessential Baking’ hit the shelves in 2016 and she now bakes for big names including Clare Balding and Jools Holland as well as high profile commissions, which included creating a cake to commemorate The Shard’s first anniversary.
Nancy Birtwhistle (Winner, 2014)
Former GP surgery manager Nancy has gone on to launch her own baking website www.nancybirtwhistle.co.uk where she shares recipes with fans.
She is still in demand for everything from cookery demonstrations to after-dinner speaking, and is currently writing an encyclopedia of baking. She also manages to find time to campaign for charity organisation Love Food Hate Waste.
Nadiya Hussain (Winner, 2015)
After winning ‘Bake Off’ in 2015, Nadiya has certainly stuck to her declaration that ‘I can, I will’ to go on to become the most successful winner ever and become a household name in the process.
Nadiya has been a regular fixture on UK television screens, fronting her very own documentary ‘The Chronicles Of Nadiya’, as well as hosting ‘Nadiya’s British Food Adventure’, ‘The Big Family Cooking Showdown’ and ‘Nadiya’s Family Favourites’. The mum-of-three has also written two cookbooks, two children’s story and recipe books and even a novel.
She still manages to find time to bake, including the Queen’s 90th birthday cake. In 2017, Nadiya was named by Debrett’s as one of the 500 most influential people in the UK, and also made BBC News’ 100 Women list. Phew!
Candice Brown (Winner, 2016)
Candice left her job as a PE teacher after winning ‘Bake Off’ to focus on penning her first book, ‘Comfort: Delicious Bakes and Family Treats’. She’s also written columns for The Times and regularly appeared on ‘This Morning’ to cook up a treat or two.
In 2018, she swapped icing cakes for the ice rink to appear on ITV’s ‘Dancing On Ice’, but wound up being voted off in the first week.
Sophie Faldo (Winner, 2017)
Since winning the show, Sophie has gone on to make baking her full-time career. As well creating wedding cakes for friends, Sophie also secured a big commission for HMS Belfast. She’s currently in the process of writing her first cookbook and has filmed several secret TV projects.
However, in an exclusive interview with HuffPost UK, the 33-year-old told us that life after ‘Bake Off’ hasn’t always been “bunting and rainbows”. She admitted: “I don’t think you can ever truly be ready. You just have to try and hope it doesn’t eat into you too much.”