With hit BBC series ‘The Great British Bake Off’ returning to our screens a week tomorrow (Wednesday August 24), we take a look at the results of AGA’s recent Great British Cake Survey.
The study, which quizzed 2,000 UK adults, was carried out by One Poll on behalf of the range cooker manufacturer.
Perhaps not surprisingly, Great British Bake Off star Mary Berry topped the poll as the person who most inspires respondents to bake, followed by TV cooks Nigella Lawson, and Jamie Oliver.
When it comes to the best cake of all time, chocolate cake was number one. Next came carrot cake and then the Victoria sponge.
But while chocolate cake was voted the favourite of all time, it wasn’t chosen as the favourite to bake. That honour went to the Victoria sponge, with chocolate cake second and lemon drizzle third.
The survey showed that on average we bake five cakes per year, with women making almost double the number men do. But on average we eat five cakes per month, with women enjoying slightly more than men.
Those in the north-east eat the most (an average of 5.52 cakes per month) while those in Wales eat the least (4.49 per month).
The older we get, the more we enjoy tucking into cakes. Those over 55 eat an average of six cakes per month compared with 18-24-year-olds, who enjoy around four per month.
More than half of respondents (52%) prefer to tuck into a slice of cake in the afternoon, proving that the afternoon tea tradition is alive and well.
In fact when it comes to the preferred beverage accompaniment with cake, tea was the number one choice with more than half of respondents (51%), followed by coffee at 24%. Champagne or Prosecco was top of the poll for cold drinks.
For healthier bakes, just fewer than 60% of respondents use a sugar substitute. Honey topped the poll (28%), followed by maple syrup (14.7%).
AGA head of retail marketing Kathryn Lowe said: “We were fascinated by these results. We knew baking was a popular pastime, not least because our customers often tell us how much they love it. We thought we’d find out what’s new in baking and were heartened to see how the tradition of afternoon tea still seems to be going strong.”
William Higham, founder of consumer trends consultancy Next Big Thing added: “In an age of technology it’s important to balance ourselves with a bit of tradition. Yes, we might arrange to meet up via an app on our iPhones, but when we do, it’s likely to be for a cup of tea and a slice of cake.”
Most popular cakes to bake:
Lemon Drizzle Cake
Chocolate Fudge Cake
Coffee & Walnut Cake
Pineapple Upside Down Cake
Favourite cakes per region:
South East – Lemon Drizzle Cake
South West – Chocolate Cake
London – Carrot Cake
East Anglia – Lemon Drizzle
East Midlands – Victoria Sponge and Coffee & Walnut cake
North East – Chocolate Cake
North West – Chocolate Cake & Carrot Cake
West Midlands – Chocolate Cake
Yorkshire & Humberside – Chocolate Cake
Scotland – Carrot Cake
Wales – Chocolate Cake