Aldi’s Next Big Thing, Bowla - 1

Source: Aldi

Bowla founders Clayton and Hannah Worth on Aldi’s Next Big Thing

Six craft bakery brands, including Swansea-based Bowla, are looking to win a supermarket listing on the second series of Aldi’s Next Big Thing.

The independent suppliers, which were said to have beaten hundreds of other hopefuls, will be featured an episode set to air on Channel 4 next Tuesday (9 April) at 8pm.

The bakery category episode will join others focussing on dinner, party, world, and confectionery screening on subsequent Tuesday nights.

In each show, products are presented to Aldi UK managing director of buying Julie Ashfield, who deliberates on factors such as price, packaging, shopper demand, and the ability to scale up, before shortlisting contestants down to just two.

The finalists are then given four weeks to address any feedback, with a follow-up home visit from TV hosts Anita Rani or Chris Bavin, who will report back their findings to Ashfield. The trio then taste test the improved products, before the Aldi buyer decides on the winner, which will appear as a Specialbuy in over 1,000 stores nationwide.

Winners from the first series, broadcasted in 2022, included West Sussex pie maker Mud Foods and Nottingham-based rum cake supplier Harrison & Griffiths.

“We eat with our eyes, especially in bakery,” commented Ashfield. “If it doesn’t look fresh and appealing it won’t sell.

“Aldi customers love to try something a little bit different, whether that be dessert flavoured doughnuts or French style treats. We’re looking for innovation, and products that our shoppers are going to love,” she added.

Here are the half dozen bakery businesses vying for a lucrative retail deal:


Sheffield-based couple Leeza Murina and Steve Jones founded their bakery in 2017, producing a ‘Baked in a Bun’ range based on a 200-year-old recipe for enriched dough. The brioche buns have gourmet savoury and sweet fillings such as Moroccan Hash, Sea Bass, Cod, Chicken & Chorizo, and Cardamon & Almond.

“My family has been baking since the 1800’s and I still use the same recipes today,” said Murina. “I always make it the way my mum and grandma would be proud of. Each of my pies are hand finished, so every pie has my personal touch.”



Clayton and Hannah Worth, the father and daughter team behind the ‘bowl with a roll’ innovation, have enjoyed promising growth of their business over the past 12 months.

Having set up its micro bakery site in Swansea Indoor Market, Bowla has since hosted a pop-up event at Mumbles Market, catered large corporate lunches, and started trials with delivery platforms, picking up multiple trade awards on the way.

Hannah told British Baker earlier this year that she wanted to be the next viral foodie item on TikTok. And now they have a supermarket listing in their crosshairs.

“We very much see [Bowla] as an event food for football matches and festivals,” she said. “We’ve only been trading a few months. To have our product stocked in Aldi would just be an incredible achievement.”


Flake Bake

Paul Williams and son Mike from Peckham in South London will be showcasing the bestselling beef flavour of their authentic Jamaican-style patties, which features spicy ground beef wrapped in a flaky crust. Other flavours on their patty range include chicken, lamb, salt fish and vegetable.

“My dad is what I would describe as an old school Jamaican, if you’re around him, you’re going to have a laugh,” said Mike Williams, adding his belief that they have the “best flaky pastry in the UK”.



Anja Hammond and Olly Martin from Nottingham were inspired by childhood baking memories and an obsession with Willy Wonka to create an edible cookie dough range in 2017. Containing no egg or raw flour, they are safe to eat straight out of the tub and can also be heated or baked. Available in 100% recyclable packaging with carbon neutral delivery, flavours include Gooey Choc Chip, Triple Choc Fudge, Vanilla, Funfetti, Red Velvet and new limited-edition Brownie Batter, Cookies & Cream, Cherry Bakewell, and Millionaire’s Shortbread.

“We were basically making cookies and found that we were eating the raw dough before it made it into the oven,” admitted Martin. “You can also bake it into cookies or you can create a hot cookie dough dessert parlour style product.”


WeeCook Kitchen

Scottish pie maker Hayley Wilkes, from Barry Downs in Angus, presents her hand-filled Fishwife Pie packed with Scottish haddock, local Arbroath Smokies (smoked haddock), and salmon, all bound together with a family recipe of fish stock and parsley sauce.

“In Scotland there’s a massive pie scene,” notes Wilkes, whose company has been shortlisted for Scottish Baker of the Year 2024/25. “Meat pies are traditionally very popular here, but our pies are different. Each is hand filled and hand finished.

“The Fishwife Pie, as a girl growing up in the 90s, is my homage to girl power,” she added. “It’s not like a normal fisherman’s pie. This is like the sassy, Scottish little sister of the fisherman’s pie – the next gen as it were.”


Wildcraft Bakery

This Leeds-based gluten-free bakery was founded by Mina Said-Allsopp, who will be accompanied by operations manager Alpchan Ural to put forward their Hedgerow Whoopie Pie to the judges. The gluten-free and vegan cakes are flavoured with wild spices and filled with rosewater buttercream and rose petal jam.

“When you remove eggs and dairy from the equation, all you have left to hold your baked goods together is hope and prayers,” commented Said-Allsopp.

“The Wildcraft Woopie is quite magical. It’s taken us nine years to perfect, to just walk into a store with my kids and see a Wildcraft Woopie on the shelf, it would mean all those 6am mornings, all those late nights, all that flour was worth it, because look where we are.”