BAKE Off is back on screens with a fresh crop of competitors gunning for the Star Baker title.
The Channel 4 show delighted fans with the opening episode of the 2023 series – which saw presenter Alison Hammond, 48, make her programme debut.
The entirety of the Bake Off 2023 line-up will have their sights set on the winning title – with the champs securing a cake stand and flowers rather than a cash prize.
Yet many show winners use their flair for food to boost their bank balance, with former Bake Off champions now going on to be millionaires.
He we track those who have taken the biggest bite of the Bake Off cherry.
1. NADIYA HUSSAIN – £5m
The Queen of cakes (okay maybe the Princess, after Mary Berry) has gone from strength to strength since she won GBBO in 2015.
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With a personality as warm as freshly baked bread, Nadiya, 38, has presented eight TV series, including BBC2’s The Big Family Cooking Showdown and regularly appeared as a panellist on Loose Women.
In 2020, Nadiya launched her own show Nadiya Bakes, in which she shows viewers how to create classic bakes but with modern twists.
A year later, the Luton-born star began hosting Nadiya's Fast Flavours which looks at simple and quick recipes for the everyday person.
In February 2022, the mum-of-three sat down for an hour-long conversation with Kate Garraway on Life Stories, talking in-depth about her life, career and struggles with bullying and mental health.
Nadiya has sold nearly 600,000 books, including cookbooks, her autobiography and two children’s books to add to her money pot.
She recently told The Sun how she has worked "ten times harder" for her fortune after battling racism.
Nadiya told The Sun's Fabulous magazine the secret of her success was because "I am who I am."
She said: "I don’t pretend to be strong all the time, because I’m not.
“Also, I think people like cake!”
Her bestsellers – Nadiya Bakes, Time to Eat, Nadiya’s British Food Adventure and Nadiya’s Family Favourites – are likely to have earned £1.1m, with another £750,000 from her other titles.
One of her stand-out moments was baking the late Queen's 90th birthday cake.
Nadiya also has her own online commercial range, which includes items like cake stands and storage jars, and has trademarks for 18 classes of goods.
2. JOHN WHAITE – £600k
We’ve seen this cheeky face a lot since he was named GBBO champion in 2012, when he was just a nipper aged 23.
John, 34, regularly appears on cooking slots on ITV1’s This Morning and Lorraine, as well as Channel 4’s Packed Lunch.
After leaving the tent, John enrolled in a law degree and was left feeling “suicidal” when he later dropped out.
He briefly relocated to Canada and worked on a farm, before returning to do classes at the famous Le Cordon Bleu cookery school.
He now passes those skills down to others at his own cookery school in a converted barn on his family’s farm in Wrightington, Lancashire, which he opened in 2016. He also has a book publishing company, Flour & Eggs.
From showstopper to Strictly, his book sales, excluding lockdown and e-book sales, are likely to amount to just over £100,000.
He then swapped cheesecakes for the Cha Cha Cha as he’ll be the first ever male Strictly star to be paired with a same-sex partner in 2021.
This year, opened up about how he fell victim to the so-called Strictly curse despite being engaged to partner Paul Atkins.
He admitted he "fell in love" with partner Johannes Radebe in a series which saw the couple come runner-up in the contest.
Speaking of the Strictly curse he told The Times:
he told The Times: "I fell in love with him [Johannes].
"I can't speak for him – because I'm not allowed to, legally – but it felt like there was love there.
"We had such similar stories growing up – the homophobia, the bullying, coming out, coming to terms with our sexuality – as any queer kid would."
3. CANDICE BROWN – £500k
The pouting pub owner, known on the show for her varying shades of lipstick, has carved out a nice slice of the Bake Off pie.
She and her brother Ben have bought a pub, the Green Man in Eversholt, Bedfordshire, and Candice, 38, has set up a media company since becoming champion in 2016.
Her earnings comprise £111,008 in dividend pay, £337,385 in business assets and £50,000 in royalties from cookbooks.
She has popped up on all sorts of TV shows and dabbled in reality TV with Dancing on Ice, in which she was eliminated first in 2018.
Despite going through the toughest time of her life, with her livelihood at stake during successive lockdowns, splitting from her husband, Liam Macauley, and being diagnosed with ADHD, Candice has come out smiling, with her second book Happy Cooking.
She said: "Food has kept me going through my darkest days. I do it not just because I want to, but because I need to. Cooking is a saviour for me.”
4. DAVID ATHERTON – £500k
Even though David, 36, is one of the more recent champions, taking the title in 2019, he is one of the most successful GBBO contestants.
The sexy Yorkshireman and 2019 winner isn't just a great cook, he's also got a good heart.
As a former VSO (Voluntary Service Overseas) volunteer, he now works for the organisation as an International Health Adviser.
And the healthcare professional has been helping get the nation jabbed by becoming a Covid vaccinator.
In January 2020, he started writing a regular fitness and food column for The Guardian, Fit Food.
And last summer, he launched his children's book, My First Cookbook: Bake, Make and Learn to Cook, with pictures by illustrator Rachel Stubbs.
He posted a picture on Instagram ahead of its release and wrote: "My mum gave me a great start by giving me a love for the kitchen and making tasty healthy food. I loved making recipes from (yes you guessed it) my first cookbook, and since then I’ve had a book of kids recipes in my head, but little did I know I’d be able to publish it with one of my best friends @rachelstubbs_ an amazing children’s book illustrator!!!"
His second book – Good to Eat: Read food to nourish and sustain you for life, was published in May – while he has My First Green Cookbook for pre-order online.
Including advances, his estimated earnings from his books runs at £55,000.
He set up business, Nomadbaker, with husband Nik in September 2019 and bought a £330,000 South London flat last November, which has already increased in value by £38,000.
His recipe for almond and poppy seed cake was also contained in cookbook The Great British Bake Off: The Big Book of Amazing Cakes, with recipes by Paul Hollywood, Prue Leith and The Bakers (Sphere) £20.00
5. RUBY TANDOH – £125k
Despite her nerves in the competition, Ruby, 31, went all the way to the final in 2013, and has proved a firebrand ever since.
There was the spat with judge Paul Hollywood in which she slammed him as a "peacocking manchild" after it was announced he was the only member of the team to switch from the BBC to Channel 4.
She also told how the TV show theme tune now "makes me feel sick."
Ruby became embroiled in another spat with Saturday Kitchen anchor Matt Tebbutt after she branded him a "git" in a row over lemon juice.
Then, when she came out as gay in 2015, she blasted the "massive s***ing misogynists" who assumed she had flirted with Hollywood in the tent.
And true to form, she makes sure her finances are her own business – with no companies set up or trademarks registered.
However, our financial expert Alex Clarke puts her estimated earnings at £125,000 from book advances and sales.
Ruby landed a place in the prestigious Sunday Times Top Ten with her 2018 recipe book, Eat Up: Food, Appetite and Eating What You Want.
She has also produced an audio guide called Breaking Eggs and she has a new book out in October called Cook As You Are.
Her other titles are Crumb: The Baking Book and Flavour: Eat What You Love.
Ruby, who lives in Sheffield, south Yorkshire, with her wife Leah, is now a successful food writer.
In 2017, she spoke of how her anxiety can trap her inside her home for three or four days at a time.
She told The Times: "You just carry this stress in you like a weight. It eats away at you and takes all your energy."
Ruby has also spoken about overcoming an eating disorder.
6. EDD KIMBER – £100k
Edd, 38, was the first to lift the winner’s glass plate on GBBO, back in 2010, when it was still tucked away on BBC Two and “soggy bottom” hadn’t become a thing.
The debt collector quit his day job and soon released his first of four cookery books.
He keeps the bulk of his earnings under wraps, managing his The Boy Who Bakes website through a non-trading company and using his parents’ home in Bradford, West Yorks., for business admin purposes.
The main visible source of earnings is from books sales, which are estimated to have netted him £100,000.
Edd has authored six cookbooks, including Say It With Cake, The Boy Who Bakes and, most recently, Small Batch Bakes.
Along the way, Edd has worked at Raymond Blanc’s prestigious restaurant Le Manoir and had a stint as the resident baker on The Alan Titchmarsh Show.
We don’t often see him on TV, but Edd busies himself with writing for foodie mags like BBC Good Food and Delicious.
During lockdown, he started offering food photography and food styling services. His pictures have appeared in publications like Olive Magazine, Waitrose Magazine and BBC Good Food. He also shot all the photos for his fourth cookbook, One Tin Bakes.
Edd, who admits he still hasn’t mastered baking croissants, once said: “When the finale aired, I still remember people applauding the idea that a man could win a baking show.”
7. KIM-JOY HEWLETT – £100k
She was the cute and quirky 2019 finalist who could turn any bake into an adorable animal.
Kim-Joy, 32, may not have taken home the trophy – that honour went to Rahul Mandal, 36 – but we took her into our hearts.
The star has written cooking columns and does guest speaking engagements.
She has published two recipe books so far, Baking with Kim-Joy: Cute and creative bakes to make you smile and Christmas with Kim-Joy, which are estimated to have earned £60,000.
Her third was entitled Celebrate with Kim-Joy.
Kim-Joy, who lives in Leeds with her partner Nabil, is in business with two private companies – Kim-Joy’s Kitchen and Kim-Joy Limited, both set up in December 2018.
A former psychological wellbeing practitioner, she said: “Baking is one of those things that gives you a sense of purpose.”
She disagrees that baking has to be exact and says many of her kitchen triumphs have come from a culinary disaster.
She said: "A lot of my good ideas have come from complete mistakes and turned into something nice."
8. JAMES MORTON – £100k
Delicious Scottish accent? Check. Talented baker? Check. Doctor? Check.
No wonder James, 32, was so popular.
He didn't scoop the glass trophy but being a finalist spurred him on to launching a beer company, Out of Town Brewing, in his native Glasgow.
It was set up in 2016 but has since closed down.
It banked £24,028 in profits in its first year in business and held £15,742 on its books in last accounts before it stopped trading.
His website is called Baking James and, during lockdown, he became a dad for the first time, to baby Lily.
The bulk of his money comes from his five bestselling books, including Shetland Cooking on the Edge of the World, written with dad Tom; as well as Super Sourdough and Brew From Scratch.
His estimated earnings from his books, based on royalties and advances, are put at £80,000.
But what's most admirable is that he has continued his day job post Bake Off as an NHS doctor.
In his spare time, he builds bikes and cycles, according to his website – as well as ‘chasing after two large greyhounds.’
9. FRANCES QUINN – £90k
She was often criticised for too much style over substance, but Frances’ creative bakes made her 2013 Star Baker.
Since then, Frances, 41, has had the honour of baking for the likes of BBC sports presenter Clare Balding and iconic illustrator Quentin Blake.
She’s even been in the pages of Vogue magazine.
The former clothes designer has also taken her turn on daytime TV, published a recipe book, has worked with corporate partners like sports giant Nike, appeared at food festivals and holds a Guinness World Record for baking the world’s largest Jaffa Cake.
Her accounts for Frances Quinn Ltd, set up in 2013, show £34,977 in company assets. She has also made £50,000 in publishing royalties.
She now offers a bespoke cake and biscuit service to companies, charities and individuals.
Yet things took a turn in 2020 when she was barred from Waitrose for an alleged shoplifting offence.
Undercover store detectives moved in after staff suspected Frances of not paying for her shopping — including flour and eggs.
Police were called and Frances with a three-tiered wedding cake, was interviewed.
She was banned from the store, in Market Harborough, Leics, after agreeing to hand the items back.
10. NANCY BIRTWHISTLE – £65k
She might be best known for winning The Great British Bake Off in 2014, but did you know Nancy, 60, added another title to her awards this summer?
The Hull-born baker earned a silver in the World Marmalade Championships!
The former GP practice manager from Hull vowed to “take every opportunity going” after her victory.
Now a regular at food festivals, Nancy also writes a recipe blog, has published two books, Sizzle & Drizzle and Clean & Green, and campaigns for the anti-food-waste charity, Love Food Hate Waste.
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She has even given talks on a cruise.
Nancy, who has 10 grandchildren, has no private companies or trademarks listed.
Her income, driven by book royalties and publishing advances, is estimated at £65,000.
This year, she scooped her own series in a huge global TV deal – which will only boost her earnings.
She will front a brand new baking series for streaming giant The CW Network in the US.
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