The Truth About Veruska Samanez From Spring Baking Championship, Season 7

When the COVID-19 pandemic forced a near-total shutdown of the hospitality industry in March 2020, Veruska Samanez found herself out of a job. In an interview with LRM Online, Samanez said she had been working for Hyatt hotels for 10 years and was a pastry chef at the Park Hyatt in midtown Manhattan, when her boss gave her the bad news. But her boss also did her a favor around the same time. He gave a Food Network recruiter Samanez's phone number. Shortly after, Samanez got the call — an offer to become a contestant on season seven of Spring Baking Championship

"When I got the call, I knew it was something I couldn't turn down," she told LRM Online. Samanez also devoted more time during her pandemic break to her own baking business, Cake & Flourish (via PIX 11). In her bio on the Cake & Flourish website, Samanez said food was central to her family's life, and her earliest memories are of being in the kitchen. Her first dessert creation was a birthday cake for an aunt that was a "peaches and whip cream delight." From there, she went to the Culinary Institute of America and toured the world, learning her craft from top chefs. Her specialties, as she told LRM Online, are "pretty things, but also kind of weird and nerdy-themed cakes are definitely my jam."

Veruska Samanez befriended the other contestants on Spring Baking Championship

While Samanez wouldn't say anything to LRM Online about how far she advanced in season seven of Spring Baking Championship, she did dish generously on what it was like to be behind the scenes. Samanez said she made a lot of fast friends with the other contestants, "We still chat, and it's such a good, wholesome group, and also a very, very talented group of bakers. So it was a little intimidating." She also confessed to having a moment during her time on the Food Network show, when she was ready to give up. 

"There was once where I was like, 'I can't do this,' and actually one of the other competitors, she was like, 'Don't do this. Don't get in your head. You need to put your head down and keep working,'" Samanez recalled. "I thanked her afterwards." Samanez said she learned a lot about herself from being on Spring Baking Championship, "I think it showed me the kind of competitor that I am, the kind of baker that I am, and I was really happy with how both of those came out." Season seven of Spring Baking Championship premiered on Feb. 22. You can catch up with Samanez and the other contestants by tuning in to the Food Network on Monday evenings.