Bake It Like Buddy

TV review by
Emily Ashby, Common Sense Media
Bake It Like Buddy TV Poster Image
Teams of family members vie for prizes in cake contest.

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this TV show.

Educational Value

While the show doesn't set out to educate viewers, they can pick up some baking tips from watching the contestants work.  

Positive Messages

As TV contests go, this one is cordial, pleasant. Teams are out to win, but also complimentary to their opponents, humble in victory. Family dynamics play out within some teams, which can lead to tense moments when there are disagreements or problems to be solved. Ultimately, though, emphasis is on teamwork, overcoming adversity in timed baking challenge.

Positive Role Models & Representations

Buddy Valastro and the guest judges are hands-off during most of the contest, but in some cases they offer balanced expert advice to both teams at critical moments. The bakers are skilled at what they do and imaginative in their creations. The interplay between family members reminds viewers of the value of sharing a hobby like baking with loved ones. All are good sports in victory and defeat.

Violence & Scariness
Sexy Stuff

Guest judges' accomplishments and businesses are mentioned in their introductions.


Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

Bakers occasionally use alcoholic beverages like champagne in their creations.


What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Bake It Like Buddy is a reality contest that pits two pairs of family members against each other to create cakes for seasonal, character, and other special themes. Teams include married couples, siblings, and grandparents and grandchildren, and their involvement emphasizes the value of working together on a hobby such as baking. Host Buddy Valastro offers the teams some guidance and tricks of the trade, which helps ensure impressive outcomes all around. He and his guest judges are honest and encouraging in their feedback, and they always point out both the good and the bad of each cake before rendering a verdict on the winner. This family-friendly series doesn't teach viewers in the traditional sense, but it does reflect the joy of sharing time and being productive with family.

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What's the story?

BAKE IT LIKE BUDDY challenges pairs of family members to create impressive and tasty themed cakes for a chance to win $1,000 cash and a new collection of baking supplies. Each episode sees two teams tackle a single task -- like elegant princess cakes or eye-popping amusement park cakes -- limited only by their imagination and the four hours on the contest clock. Host Buddy Valastro and two guest judges compare the confections' visual appeal and taste to determine the winning team.

Is it any good?

This series doesn't add much in the way of new flavor to the genre of food prep contests, but the teams' creativity and assembly processes are fun to watch nonetheless. All the staples you've come to expect from this type of show are there -- encouraging judges, tension that builds as the clock winds down and the competition heats up, and occasional drama between team members -- and regardless of the outcomes, all of the edible creations boast impressive wow factor.

What stands out here is that Bake It Like Buddy's format emphasizes the bonus camaraderie that comes of sharing your passion with a family member, whether that's a sibling, a parent, a grandchild, or a spouse. Even in the most trying moments, these teammates are family first, and their eagerness to weather the ups and downs of a kitchen contest with each other is a heartwarming takeaway from this otherwise routine show.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about the popularity of baking and cooking contests like this one. How effectively do shows like Bake It Like Buddy distinguish themselves from their counterparts? What factors contribute to a show's success in such a saturated market? Does this one stand out to you? If so, why?

  • How well do these family members work as teammates? Would you fare well in a competition with someone from your family as your partner? Who would be your best bet for a team endeavor? What character strengths of your own and of your partner's would be important in taking on a challenge like this show?

  • How does it feel to have your work or your performance judged by someone else? Do these contestants take criticism well? In what instances do you see them use criticism to improve? Is that something you do easily, or do you have a negative response to others' feedback? In what ways can series like this one be used to learn?

TV details

Our editors recommend

For kids who love cooking

Themes & Topics

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