Celebrity baker Buddy Valastro had five surgeries on his hand following an injury at his home bowling alley last year

By Vanessa Etienne
July 22, 2021 08:40 AM
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Buddy Valastro recovering at home in New Jersey with his family.
| Credit: Buddy Valastro/Instagram

Buddy Valastro is handing it to his family for their love and support following his debilitating injury.

On Wednesday, the 44-year-old Cake Boss star appeared on Entertainment Tonight from his Carlo's Bakery in New Jersey to discuss the aftermath of his gruesome hand accident at his home bowling alley.

On Sept. 20, 2020, Valastro was spending quality time with his family when the bowling pinsetter malfunctioned. As he fixed the issue, his right hand became lodged in the machine and a metal rod impaled his hand three times between his ring finger and middle finger.

After undergoing five reconstructive hand surgeries and physical therapy, the celebrity baker told ET that he is doing a lot better, attributing a lot of his recovery to his family's support and their ability to "step up."

Buddy Valastro
Buddy Valastro in the hospital on Sept. 23.
| Credit: Buddy Valastro/Facebook

"They definitely stepped up to the plate. In times of crisis, you don't know what people's reactions are going to be. 'How are we going to do this?' 'What are we going to do?'" Valastro told the outlet. "We all came together and I am so proud of my boys and thankful to my whole family."

Buddy and his wife Lisa Valastro share four children — daughter Sofia, 17, and sons Buddy Jr., 16, Marco, 13, and Carlo, 10.

"My wife, with the recovery, was amazing, my kids, my sisters, my brother-in-laws," Valatsro added. "But most of all, the fans. The love and support you get from everyone, it means a lot."

Since the debilitating accident, the baker told ET that, despite his love for bowling, he will "never go back" to the machinery where the injury occurred. Shortly after the accident last year, Valastro spoke to PEOPLE about the "nightmare" he experienced.

"I looked at my hand and blood was gushing everywhere," Valastro recalled. "It looked like a Halloween movie. [It] was the worst pain that I've ever encountered in my life."

The Cake Boss star said at first the scenario was so surreal, he thought it was all a "nightmare." But he said the situation put a lot of things into perspective for him.

"When you have circumstances like this, I feel like it tells you a lot," he said to PEOPLE in September. "The outpour of love and support and prayers from all the fans and everybody all over the world, it touches your heart."

Buddy Valastro and Duff Goldman return to the cake competition after Valastro's hand surgery
Credit: courtesy of Food Network and discovery+

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Now, Valastro has all his focus on season three of his hit competition series Buddy vs. Duff alongside Duff Goldman, which he filmed shortly after his fifth surgery. 

"My main goal was to be able to see if I could still make cakes to the level that I did. I'm like, whether we win or lose it really doesn't matter…And the fact that I was able to do it was amazing," he explained to Entertainment Tonight of the appearance. "And Duff actually was really supportive from day one. When I had the accident, he was one of the first people to call me. He's like, 'You gotta get better man because I want to beat your ass next season.'"

New episodes of Buddy vs. Duff air Sundays on Food Network and Discovery+.