Cake Boss: Next Great Baker



Mild reality battle with big personalities, wild sweets.

What parents need to know

Positive messages

Contestents are competing for the chance to win $50,000, a rather small
sum considering that they may have quit their jobs to participate in the
reality show. However, the bakers are skilled, and their hard work is evident in the show, as are the rewards for a job well done.

Positive role models

Unlike most reality shows, the competition and game playing in is not intense. There are several instances of
cooperation and cameraderie, and players who engage
in this behavior are shown to be strong and skilled. On the other
side of the coin, the one player who does attempt to sabotoge teammates
makes a poor cake


Some raised voices and yelling between contestants


One contestant makes a cake called "The Better Than Sex Cake." A different cake is described as "sexalicious."


Occasional swearing and iffy language, including "hell" and "sexalicious."


The show heavily promotes Buddy Valastro's business, Carlo's City Hall Bake Shop.

Drinking, drugs, & smoking
Not applicable

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that Cake Boss: Next Great Baker involves minor swearing, some raised voices and yelling between contestants, and moments of  stress, but is otherwise a rather mild reality competition. There is little questionable content in the show -- that is, unless your kids are on a sugar-free diet. In that case, the show is definitely not for them. Culinary-minded kids will enjoy the wild, imaginative cakes and the secrets behind butter cream, fondant, and other cake decorating ingredients.

What's the story?

In this spin-off of Buddy Valastro's first series Cake Boss, 10 pastry chefs compete for the opportunity to work at Valastro's Hoboken, NJ, bakery and win $50,000. Contestents compete in challenges in a manner similar to Top Chef: Just Desserts, but CAKE BOSS: NEXT GREAT BAKER employs a greater element of showmanship with its emphasis on over-the-top decorating techniques.

Is it any good?


While most reality shows go for the jugular, this one goes more for the belly. Audiences will likely be salivating over the yummy looking cakes. But while there's plenty of high temperature baking going on,  the show ulitmately has little fire. Then again, this may not be a serious fault. True, there are few shocking moments in the show, but there is something for everyone in the family. From clever decorating tips (use rice cereal treats for sculpting cake elements) to the use of pyrotechnics (one contestant fills his cakes with confetti, smoke, and even dynamite), every member of the family may have to scratch a baking itch after each episode ends.

Of course, what sets the show apart is the force of Valastro's personality, as
well as the personalities of the contestants, and personalities certainly abound. There's also a nice representation of diversity, too, with pastry chefs from a variety of backgrounds. But the formula of the show -- where contestants have to quit their jobs or leave their successful businesses to compete on this show -- makes little sense given the relatively small payout. The only logical answer is that contestants are hoping to capitalize on the show's publicity, which may or may not ultimately pan out.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about playing fair. What is sabotage? Why do reality show contestants sometimes use sabotage to try to win? Do you think that using sabotage techniques is a successful way to win a reality show? How common is sabotage in the real world? Do you think contestants are encouraged to be nasty on reality shows to boost ratings?

  • Why are these pastry chefs participating in the show? Since several of the bakers on the show have other primary careers, including electrical engineer and teacher, why do you think they quit their jobs to be on this reality show? Would you quit your job to participate on a reality show? Why or why not?

  • How do the pastry chefs use their imaginations? How do you think that being on a time limit and on camera, limits or enhances one's imagination? How do you think your imagination would function in a situation such as this?

TV details

Cast:Buddy Valastro, Dana Herbert, Gregory Paul Soriano
Genre:Reality TV
TV rating:TV-PG

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  • Not for Kids: Not age-appropriate for kids; not recommended for learning.

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Adult Written byTinyToya December 17, 2012

SO much food is WASTED!

I absolutely hate watching this show now. I watch it only to see the final reveals. Buddy is just too annoying to tolerate. He acts like he is a king gracing the presence of his subjects. Yes, he is a well-known baker, but he treats the contestants like they are beneath him (cutting them off, yelling at them, giving them unreasonable tasks). Even when someone makes something good he may shrug or smugly say: It's good. Not bad. Or something of that nature. He is also a bore to watch because he does not have much of a personality to show. He doesn't have that charisma that's needed to be a top notch host. The show itself has its usual fights between contestants, cursing (something to note), and extremely unfair challenges. I wouldn't watch this show with the kids because you never know who will curse or when something inappropriate may come up. FINALLY, the amount of food Buddy wastes is INTOLERABLE! There was a challenge in which cakes had to be made and piped correctly and if they were wrong (even a little bit) he threw them in the trash. His assistant Marissa (winner of the next great baker from a previous season) played along, throwing away cake after cake after cake (probably more than ten or twelve perfectly edible cakes). I was so angered by that. Why not just put them to the side and give them away to customers for free later or donate them? Don't waste food. He does this every season. He plows down ugly cakes, throws them off buildings, blows them up, you name it! I bet he thinks it's great drama for the show, but it just ticks people off! As you can tell, I don't like this show anymore.
What other families should know
Too much swearing
Adult Written byGayle002 August 15, 2014

The Next Great Baker should be renamed "The Biggest Waster"

I cannot believe the amount of perfectly good food that gets wasted on this show. They make these huge cakes, with perfectly good ingredients and what does he do? He blows them up, he throws them away, he runs them over with trucks? All for what? Showmanship? It's absolutely ridiculous!! There are people starving, people digging in the trash for something to be able to feed their kids and he is blowing it up for nothing! You know what would be really good to see on TV? Someone creating something amazing (like these cakes and deserts) and then GIVING BACK. DONATING what they don't use or eat to homeless shelters or hospitals of sick and struggling kids. That is what I would like to see on TV; something uplifting and heart warming, not this complete disregard and disrespect for something as valuable as food. I will never watch this show again. I would not want children to watch this show. I wouldn't want anyone to witness this and think that it is OK to do what this man does. It's disgusting.
What other families should know
Too much swearing
Too much consumerism
Teen, 14 years old Written byhklover14 March 10, 2013

carrer opportunities

It shows a good career opportunities for teens
What other families should know
Great messages
Great role models


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