Great British Bake Off Christmas specials will return in 2020 and the full line-up has been revealed

Bake Off Christmas special judge Paul Hollywood
(Image credit: Mark Bourdillion/Walt Disney Television via Getty Images)

Great British Bake Off has gone from strength to strength since the show first aired back in 2010 and the Bake Off Christmas Special is a key part of its yearly success.

Now 10 years and two channel moves later, The Great British Bake Off is still adding brightness to these dark autumn days. Fans may already be missing the popular baking show after the latest series ended last week.

This saw Bake Off contestant Peter Sawkins crowned as the first Scottish and youngest ever winner.

But never fear! The GBBO will be back this December for two festive specials, Channel 4 has confirmed. One will be at Christmas and one at New Year. 

This year’s show will see the return of a few familiar faces to the bake off tent - and one surprising replacement…

Who will be on the Bake Off Christmas special?

Fans of the show will be delighted to see the return of 2019, 2018 and 2017 contestants to the Bake Off tent this Christmas. 

Rosie Brandreth-Poynter and Jamie Finn from last year will be joined by 2018 finalist Ruby Bhogal and James Hillery from 2017. Each will be battling it out to go that step further and secure the accolade of Christmas Star Baker.

The GBBO Christmas special will be rounded off by singer Alexandra Burke’s performance of festive classic, Silent Night. 

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Who will be on the Bake Off New Year special?

And that’s not all as the New Year episode will see even more familiar faces vying for the top position.

Helena Garcia and Henry Bird from 2019 will be trying to snatch the GBBO crown from 2014 winner Nancy Birtwhistle and 2018 winner Rahul Mandal.

Who else will be returning for the Bake Off Christmas specials?

Everyone’s favourite stern judge Paul Hollywood and Prue Leith will be back casting their watchful eyes over the bakes. New presenter Matt Lucas, whose arrival in the GBBO tent this series has been praised by many, will be back to join them.

There is one surprising change in store, however. Noel Fielding, who has presented the show ever since its move to Channel 4 in 2017 will not be returning for the Bake Off Christmas special.

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It’s for a very good reason as the host was reportedly on paternity leave during filming after welcoming his daughter Iggy back in August. 

His place will be taken on the first of the Great British Bake Off festive specials by fellow comedian Tom Allen. Tom currently co-hosts Bake Off: The Professionals with former Bake Off contestant Liam Charles. 

Noel will be back for the GBBO New Year special. It will be great to have him back, ready to round off what has been a year of truly spectacular bakes. 

When will the Bake Off Christmas specials be on?

In previous years the GBBO Christmas special and New Year special have aired on Christmas Day and New Year’s Day respectively. This pattern might have been expected to continue, with the Radio Times suggesting that it’s likely the Great Christmas Bake Off will air between 21st-27th December.

While they suggest the Great New Year Bake Off will likely be shown between 28th December and 3rd January. 

As we wait for Channel 4 to confirm the final air-dates, we’ll just have to enjoy re-watching all previous GBBO festive specials.

Great British Bake Off festive specials will air on Channel 4. 

Emma Shacklock
Senior Lifestyle Writer

Emma is a Senior Lifestyle Writer with six years of experience working in digital publishing, ranging from book publishing to magazines. She currently looks after all things Lifestyle for Woman&Home,, and My Imperfect Life.