Kids Baking Championship contestants share their best and worst baking moments


Are you a fan of Kids Baking Championship on the Food Network? Three contestants from Season 6 share their best and worst baking moments.

Watching Food Network’s Kids Baking Championship can be entertaining and a little intimidating. Baking isn’t like cooking. It requires knowledge, skill and creativity. This year’s group of contestants are completely inspiring.

In Season 6, twelve contestants, ages 9 to 13, look to earn the title Kids Baking Champion. While judges Duff Goldman and Valerie Bertinelli offer constructive advice after the challenges, these kids have more baking knowledge than most adults. From honey cheesecakes to delicate macarons, the young bakers have some amazing talents.

Through the Kids Baking Championship season, these bakers take popular desserts and add a little fun twist. For example, the honey cheesecake episode featured colorful animal prints. And, last week’s episode featured marcarons decorated with faces. Overall, this Food Network show puts the fun in baking.

As the season starts to heat up, I recently spoke with three of this season’s contestants, Jenna Alnatur, Nyah Rosado and Karthik Vemparala.

Jenna Alnatur

Jenna Alnatur began baking with her mom. What started with a birthday cake has grown into a baking passion. This self taught baker has scoured Food Network and YouTube for baking secrets. While she has a goal of being a professional baker or a surgeon, her tenacity will get her far.

Below is a transcript of our interview.

Jenna Alnatur, contestant on Food Network’s Kids Baking Championship, photo provided by Food Network

Cristine Struble: What has been your worst baking disaster?

Jenna Alnatur: My worst baking disaster was when I made an apple pie and it burned in the oven and set off the fire alarm.

CS: Do you like savory flavors in desserts?

JA: I don’t like savory that much in my desserts. You should keep savory food savory and sweet desserts sweet.

CS: Macarons are very hard to make, you love making them. Why do you not like eating them?

JA: The reason I don’t like tasting macarons is because I don’t do almonds and also I don’t eat 80 percent of what I bake.

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CS: If you could only eat one dessert for the rest of your life, what would that dessert be?

JA: I would eat chocolate chip cookies because who doesn’t love chocolate chip cookies!

CS: What advice would you give a kid who wants to learn how to bake?

JA: My advice would be don’t expect everything to come out perfect it takes a lot of practice and take everything step by step also don’t forget to enjoy it and have fun!

CS: What is one thing that you’ve learned from your fellow Kids’ Baking Championship?

JA: The thing I’ve learned from the Kids Baking Championship contestants is that everybody has different ways of baking and they could possibly change your baking style, and don’t be afraid of mess ups, just keep trying, you’ll get it.

Karthik Vemparala

Sometimes life’s unexpected occurences can be quite life changing. After being stuck in a hotel for Hurricane Matthew, Karthik turned to the Food Network as entertainment. Karthik enjoys both the precision and complexity in baking. But, there are a few flavors, like nuts, that don’t make the favorite list.

Below is a transcript of our interview.

Contestant Karthik Vemparala poses for a photo, as seen on Kids Baking Championship, Season 6. photo provided by Food Network

Cristine Struble: What was the first dessert that you learned to bake?

Karthik Vemparala: The first dessert I learned to make was a vanilla cake with my mom. It was actually my grandma’s recipe!

CS: If someone gives you a dessert with nuts, do you pick the nuts out, eat the nuts anyway or skip dessert all together?

KV: I tend to separate nuts from desserts as I think they have a weird texture when in desserts. But I do like them by themselves.

CS: What’s the hardest dessert for you to make?

KV: For me, the hardest dessert to make is a perfect cake on the inside and out. It takes a lot of practice and testing to get a perfectly moist and fluffy cake, and have a beautiful exterior. I actually had to do countless tests of different recipes and techniques.

CS: If you could only eat one dessert for the rest of your life, what would that dessert be?

KV: I could definitely live on cheesecake for the rest of my life!!!

CS: What’s one baking tip that anyone can master?

KV: One of the biggest tips I learned while baking is that all your ingredients, especially dairy, need to be room temperature(with the exception of pie crusts). A lot of people roll their eyes and go “it’s fine they can be cold”, but it’s really not. You run the risk of curdling you batters or frostings, and ending up with a bad texture and sometimes flavor.

CS: What is one thing that you’ve learned from your fellow Kids’ Baking Championship contestants?

KV: One thing I learned from my fellow bakers is that they bake a lot more than I do. Everyone else bakes maybe twice or thrice a week, but I’m lucky If I get to bake every week. I started to bake more, and actually got the idea and confidence to start a business from them.

Nyah Rosado

Food bloggers can inspire even young bakers to experiment in the kitchen. Nyah looked to Rosanna Pansino and Yolando Gamp for baking tips and inspiration. While she is totally self-taught, she loves to keep learning in the kitchen. Even though baking is her passion, she finds time to be play some of her favorite sports.

Below is a transcript of our interview.

Nyah Rosado, contestant on Food Network’s Kids Baking Championship, photo provided by Food Network

CS: What was the first recipe that you learned to bake?

Nyah Rosado: The first recipe that I learned bake was mini pumpkin and apple pies. I made them in a cupcake tin and they actually tasted really good. They didn’t look the best though. The crust was store-bought and the fillings were homemade with pumpkin puree and sliced apples. This is when I started to see that making homemade desserts were so fun.

CS: You are a self-taught baker, what’s the best tip that you can give an aspiring kid baker?

NR: My best tip for other kid bakers is, “keep trying”. You are not going to make a perfect dessert every time. With every try you can add or take away an ingredient to test some things out. For example, I like making macarons, but something always goes wrong. I re-make them another day and focus on improving and working on the mistake I made last time.

CS: What’s your favorite dessert to make?

NR: My favorite dessert to make are cupcakes. They are easy and you can create so many types. Playing around with flavor pairings and frostings is my favorite part, plus if you can’t think of a big flavor, then chocolate is my #1 go to.

CS: In this season, you had to make blondies. What’s the secret to great blondies?

NR: My blondies were not a big hit. They were very underbaked. I had added too much butter so they did not bake in time. I remade them at home and they turned out really good. I made sure I used the right amount of butter.

CS: Are there any desserts that you refuse to make?

NR: There aren’t any desserts that I refuse to make. I love a good challenge and when I take my time and focus, my desserts turn out really great and taste delicious. Some desserts might be hard but I can figure out a way to make it work. I also haven’t been baking for that long so there are plenty of desserts I still want to learn to bake.

CS: What is one thing that you’ve learned from your fellow Kids’ Baking Championship contestants?

NR: One thing that I learned from my fellow contestants is, having a friend by your side can make baking so much more fun. When you have a friend with you, then they can motivate you, and make you laugh. You have more fun and a good time. That’s one of the great things about being on Kids Baking Championship having a kitchen big enough for you and all your friends to bake and have fun.

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Thank you to all the Kids Baking Championship contestants for chatting with me.

Tune into Food Network’s Kid Baking Championship on Mondays at 9 p.m. ET/PT.