Now, Ballymaloe’s Rachel is hotly tipped to take her place after she was spotted at a location for a screen test of the next series in London in recent days. She was photographed chatting with production staff.
Bake Off is the most-watched show on British TV with audiences of up to 16 million, making up nine of the top ten most watched programmes in 2016.
If Allen lands the job, it would send her already successful career into orbit.
She has written several culinary books, including two on baking, and is no stranger to TV, having fronted several shows on RTE, as well as the Good Food Channel’s Market Kitchen.
She could not be contacted by phone, but her husband Isaac said the couple could not comment on the speculation.
Bake Off presenters Mel Giedroyc and Sue Perkins also left the show, but judge Paul Hollywood has remained. He was also spotted at the London venue this week, along with Michelin-starred chefs Michel Roux Jr and Frances Atkins.
If Allen gets the job, she will have big shoes to fill. Mary Berry was a judge on the show for seven years and voted Judge of the Year at the British National Television Awards this week.
The production company behind the new Bake Off series, Love Productions, says that applications have been pouring in from potential contestants in recent weeks.