The contestants of this year’s Great Celebrity Bake Off have just been announced, with at least two plant-based stars joining the line-up.
Loose Women’s Coleen Nolan and Dragons’ Den entrepreneur Deborah Meaden, both of whom are known to follow plant-based diets, will be joining the likes of Friends star David Schwimmer, Olympian Tom Daley, and former Little Mix member Jesy Nelson.
Celebrity Bake Off is in aid of UK charity Stand Up To Cancer. It sees celebs take part in a mini version of the Channel 4 series, competing against each other to produce the best bakes.
There will be 20 celebrities in total competing, and the show will once again be hosted by Noel Fielding and Matt Lucas. This will be Lucas’ last appearance, as he announced last year that he’d be leaving the series.
Bake Off has traditionally been heavily reliant on animal products, and it’s not yet known whether Nolan and Meaden will bake with plant-based ingredients. Plant Based News has reached out to Channel 4 to confirm.
‘Great British Bake Off’ embraces veganism
In recent years, the show has slowly been embracing the rise in popularity of plant-based eating.
During the New Year special episode aired in January 2023, Prue Leith praised Veganuary to her fellow judge Paul Hollywood.
After one contestant created a plant-based Baked Alaska, she told him: “Veganuary has become really popular. And a lot of people go vegan for the whole of January. And you’ll love it.”
“I’m not saying I won’t,” Hollywood replied, before referring to the cake. “I’m just saying there’s a lot of elements in there which need adjusting.”
In 2021, Bake Off featured its first ever vegan contestant, a 19-year-old named Freya Cox. The show sparked huge controversy, however, after Cox was apparently made to use dairy buttercream in the “technical challenge.”
The decision was blasted by PETA at the time, with a spokesperson saying: “We’re in the midst of a vegan revolution, and the producers are taking the cake by not allowing contestants to ‘veganize’ recipes in the technical challenge.”
The Great Celebrity Bake Off will air on Channel 4 later this year.