Results from the Nestle Hottest Bakers National survey, conducted by Colmar Brunton, shows that 85% of us bake and have baked something from scratch during the past twelve months.

Results showed that:

  • Almost all of us are confident bakers who think our own home baking tastes better than store bought
  • Females are the baking queens, doing more baking than their male counterparts and baking mums are our most important teachers
  • Men are baking – though not as confidently or frequently and are more likely than women to buy rather than bake when they need to bring a “plate”

Overall the frequency of baking is reported to be on the increase with 41% of surveyed female bakers doing so at least weekly, while in total 75% of bakers surveyed have baked something from scratch within the past month.

Despite the widespread increase across different demographics, mums still set the standard with many considering their mum to be a better baker than themselves. While 23% of bakers surveyed think they are better than their mums at baking, 39% of those surveyed rate themselves as good as Mum, and 36% of those surveyed rate themselves as not as good, there were some clear gender differences.

Men were less likely than women to say they were better than their mums. Only 15% of men surveyed say they are better than their mum, whereas 56% of males surveyed say their baking skills were inferior to their mums. Of all male and female bakers, 68% of those surveyed reported that mum had a role in teaching them to bake far more than those who were taught at school.

When a “plate” is needed few women would fake it, with 93% of surveyed baking women reporting that they would bake themselves, 13% of those surveyed buying something and a very small 3% surveyed getting someone else to do it.
 
Men on the other hand were far more likely to buy something (27% surveyed) or get someone else to make it (14% surveyed) although 74% surveyed did report that they would bake something themselves.

Paula Midgley, winner of Nestlé New Zealand’s Hottest Home Baker, says baking for her is about enjoyment of the process and the end results.
 
“It was great to see that most people bake because they think it tastes better than the store-bought alternative and because they enjoy it. That’s me too.

“Baking can also be a family activity, it was traditionally seen as something Mum did to fill the ‘tins’ for the week ahead but it can also be a fun and educational activity for the kids,” says Midgely.

Knowing what is in their food and cost savings were important to people, but surprisingly less so than taste and the enjoyment of home baking.

Nestlé spokesperson Maurice Gunnell says he is not surprised that Mums are still seen as the best bakers, but cautions people to look towards the younger generations to spot the longer term trends.

“Baking has traditionally been associated with women but men are also coming into their own with 89% of surveyed male home bakers saying they are either very or quite confident bakers.”

“Overall the increased frequency of baking is reflected in sales of baking ingredients with some ingredients more popular than others. Our own NESTLÉ Cocoa and Cooking Chocolate sales grew about two times ahead of the category growth last year showing that people are looking for quality ingredients to get the best result for their home baking,” says Gunnell.

Those old family recipes are living on with around 50% of bakers surveyed having a favourite recipe that has been passed down through the generations.

Cakes are the most popular baked item with 27% of respondents baking cakes most. Muffins and biscuits followed at 23% and 18% respectively. Not surprisingly, during these health conscious times, pastries are the least popular baked item.

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