Antoni Porowski Talks Baking, "Queer Eye," and Betty Crocker's New Contest

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One of the best parts of any celebration is the cake. Whether it's a birthday, anniversary, wedding, or graduation, if there's cake, we're there. The best part is that it doesn't always have to be a specialty cake to be delicious. After all, Betty Crocker has been successfully creating its signature recipes and mixes for 100 years. Yes, exactly a century ago — since October 21, 1921.

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To celebrate this momentous occasion, the brand is hosting a #CallMeBettyCrocker recipe contest that will allow three fans to receive a customized Betty Crocker box with their very own recipe on it. To enter, you can submit a recipe to CallMeBettyCrocker.com and ensure that your ingredients include at least one eligible Betty Crocker product. In addition, participants need to share the story behind the recipe and how they use it to celebrate.

Mock version of #CallMeBettyCrocker recipe contest box.

Plus, we're not the only ones excited to see how the contest pans out. So is Antoni Porowski, the food expert on Netflix's revival of ​Queer Eye.​ "I'm a very nostalgic person," Porowski tells Hunker. "Working with a brand [like Betty Crocker] that has had a role in my youth is something that's cool and a full-circle moment that's like, 'Pinch me,'" Porowski says.

As part of the campaign, Porowski came up with his own self-proclaimed "wacky recipe" to celebrate his dog Neon's birthday. Since he doesn't know how old she is, he made a Betty Crocker cake decorated to cover every possible age: 3 years old, 37 years old, a graduate.

For Porowski, baking isn't something he does every day, but to celebrate something special. However, when he does bake, he goes all out.

"I love to ham it up by going to a drugstore like a CVS, get all my favorite candy bars, chop them up, and throw them in [the cake batter]," Porowski says. "It's kind of fun. I don't like to be precious or too pretentious about it."

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“With Betty Crocker’s brownie mix, instead of adding water, add some leftover coffee,” Antoni advises. “I learned this from Ina [Garten] — not personally, but from watching ​Barefoot Contessa​. Adding coffee to anything that has chocolate just rounds out the flavor beautifully.”

Having fun and experimenting with baking is something many are familiar with — especially since the start of the pandemic. Getting in the kitchen to whip up a sweet treat was something we could all do to take our minds off of what was going on in the world. Even if it was just for an hour or so.

In the same vein as baking, many people spent hours in front of the television watching Netflix. Of course, Porowski is no stranger to Netflix thanks to ​Queer Eye​. Right before the pandemic, the show's sixth season actually began filming in Austin, Texas, but quickly had to come to a halt for safety reasons.

However, in April 2021, the team was fortunately able to restart filming, and Porowski was glad to be back with his cast mates to change the lives of Austin's heroes. Fans can now expect the new season to premiere in early 2022.

Not only has Porowski changed lives on television, but his being out publicly as sexually fluid has had a positive impact on his fans. Considering that National Coming Out Day just happened on October 11, we asked Porowski about his advice for people who are considering coming out.

"Personally, I can only speak for myself, but if you have friends who have checked the boxes of empathetic and non-judgmental, find the ones that you feel like you're not going to be judged by, and just start having conversations," Porowski shares. "There is no right way to come out. It's so easy to go on Instagram and to see these big coming-out posts and to feel less than, but you can also feel inspired. Just remember to be gentle with yourself. There's no pressure. You don't have to make a decision today. You're allowed to change your mind. You're the decision maker. It's your life at the end of the day."

To catch more of Porowski, find him taking over Betty Crocker's social channels as he celebrates #CallMeBettyCrocker. Starting on October 21, fans can enter on CallMeBettyCrocker.com through December 21. Even for those who don't win, 25 lucky second-placers will walk away with a gift bag full of plateware, including the iconic red spoon, apparel, free Betty Crocker cookie and cake mixes, and more to continue the celebration at home.

According to Betty Crocker, the submissions will be judged based on "creativity, connection to the contest theme of traditions and celebrations, and visual appeal." Winners will be notified in January 2022.

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Casey Clark is a freelance writer from New York City who specializes in commerce content with a focus on beauty, food, home and lifestyle content. Casey's work has been featured in Women's Health, Allure, Cosmopolitan, Eat This, Not That! and Forbes. When she's not writing, you can find her swatching the latest lipsticks or taking trips to Disney World.