5 Shows to Stream Now That You’ve Finished “The Great British Baking Show”

updated Jun 18, 2020
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Credit: Courtesy of Netflix

“The Great British Baking Show” has always been a gift. It is the television equivalent of self-care. But I’ve never appreciated it as much as I do now, when I need some great TV to get through the day.

If you haven’t already succumbed to the magic that is “The Great British Baking Show,” the baking competition series in which a dozen or so home bakers take on baking challenges inside a giant white tent in the English countryside with dreams of being the last baker standing, that’s definitely what you should be watching these days. It’s one of those rare soothing competition shows—the stakes are somewhat high, but mainly because everyone just wants to do their best. Things in the tent are kept pretty low key, even when baking disasters strike, and all the contestants are heartwarmingly supportive of one another. Since all the contestants are home bakers, it’s also inspiring for any amateur baker who may be watching. Plus, some of the breads, pastries, and cakes these people are asked to bake are so obscure, I feel like I’m always learning new things. It is the perfect show when you need something that’s just flat out nice.

Now, if you’ve already sped through all the “GBBS” Netflix has to offer (and since production on the new season is postponed) and are looking for your next “nice” show, I’m here to help. Any of the recommendations below should do the trick until the next round of bakers head into the tent. 

Making It

You know all that stuff I said up in the intro about “The Great British Baking Show” being a competition series that is soothing and nice and full of contestants who are kind to one another? NBC’s DIY-craft competition series “Making It” is basically that, just without the baking. And the hosts are Amy Poehler and Nick Offerman, so you get lots of laugh-out-loud moments. I’m not a DIY-er by any means, nor do I have an interest in becoming one, and yet watching these crafty contestants use their finely-honed skills and big imaginations to come up with some truly great projects in various mediums warms my little heart. My only knock against this lovable show is that there are too few episodes.
Streaming on Hulu and NBC.com

Zumbo’s Just Desserts

This Australian baking competition show, hosted by famed Australian baker and chef Adriano Zumbo and British cook Rachel Khoo, is the flashier cousin of “Baking Show.” That only seems natural given its Willy Wonka theme: The contestants are in a Wonka-esque factory and oh boy, THE COLORS, plus the desserts they’re tasked to make are extremely intricate, and focused a lot on the visuals. Yet still, there’s an overwhelming niceness to this show, and even though it looks like a lot of our more cutthroat competition series, there is a sense that everyone is in it together.
Streaming on Netflix

The Great Interior Design Challenge

Ah, yes, “The Great Interior Design Challenge“—the ultimate Laundry Show. You know a Laundry Show, right? That kind of show you can have on in the background as you do your laundry and don’t have to worry about missing any of it, because even if you walk away for a few minutes you’ll know exactly what’s going on when you return? “The Great Interior Design Challenge” is perfect for that. Like “The Great British Baking Show” this is a British import, this time with amateur interior designers (or, honestly, just people who enjoy interior designing as a hobby), competing in challenges three at a time in all different types of English homes. None of the room reveals are terribly surprising, but you’re always rooting for these designers to succeed. It’s super lowkey and might give you some inspo while you’re spending all your time in your own home.
Streaming on Netflix

Salt Fat Acid Heat

Looking for something that gives you the same feelings as “The Great British Baking Show” but not necessarily another competition show? Chef Samin Nosrat’s four-part Netflix series that deep dives into four essential elements of cooking is perfect. It’s gorgeously shot, easy to watch, and, like “Baking Show,” you’ll learn a whole lot. More than anything though, Nosrat’s joy and curiosity for food and cooking is infectious. You’ll be inspired to head into the kitchen in no time.
Streaming on Netflix

The Wine Show

This is another non-competition series that instantly lowers my blood pressure. Well, okay, first it raises it because, hello, the hosts are handsome actors Matthew Rhys and Matthew Goode. But then, after that initial shock, I am immediately calmed by their travels across the globe as they and wine experts they’ve enlisted attempt to soak up and then delve out as much knowledge about wine as possible. It’s fun, it’s light, it makes me feel like I’m not drinking alone while self-isolating.
Streaming on Hulu