How To Save On Your Wedding Cake

Our top 10 tips to save on your wedding cake!

If your budget for the big day is over $50,000 this article is not for you! If you can afford to spend that much, you really shouldn’t worry too much about the cost of the cake, should you?
I am writing these tips for those of you that want to spend less than $10,00 and prefer to use their money for traveling, buying a house, paying for kids education, etc. These ten tips can apply to other celebration cakes too!

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Weddings can be quite expensive. I would even say some are ridiculously expensive.The average wedding cost according to the ASIC’s Money Smart is $36,200 and the budget planner on True Bride say the average cost for the wedding cake is $560. That means on average the cake represents only 1.5% of the total cost. That is not a lot when you think about it!

These are averages of course, but why is it so important to save money on the cake? This is a piece of art that will get a lot of compliments and will be remembered by the bride & groom and their guests for the look and amazing taste. They take hours and even days of work to create.

To be honest, it’s a little bit sad that the art of baking and cake decorating is so undervalued. A custom cake, made to order from scratch cannot be as cheap as a cake at the grocery or bakery. But hey! Every penny counts! So here is my top 10 tips to save on your wedding cake.
{I cannot guarantee that all the cake makers will apply the same price structure so please use the following list as a general guideline only.}

1. Prefer a simple design
That’s an obvious one, isn’t it? The more details there is on your cake, the longer it will take to be make. Time is money. That simple!

2. Choose regular flavours and buttercream
Do you know that the cost of ingredients can jumps substantially when you choose a chocolate mud cake instead of a sponge cake? It’s about a 25% more for the ingredients of a mud cake and the preparation and baking time is longer as well. Fondant is usually more expensive because of the cost of the fondant itself and the time required to cover the cake (and let’s be honest, not everyone likes it). Why not choose a buttercream covered cake?

3. Reduce the size
There is generally two sizes of serves : dessert/party (larger, 1.5 x 2 x 4 inches) or wedding/coffee (smaller 1 x 2 x 4 inches). Go for the wedding size, especially if there is already a dessert served with your meal package.
How many serves do you need? You are inviting 100 persons. That doesn’t mean all of them will be coming.  You can generally estimate that 85% of the invite will come back with a positive answer. So either you order your cake once you have the RSVPs or you estimate how many guests will actually come. Also, think that not everyone will eat cake.

4. Steer clear of the tired cake
The more tiers you have, the longer it will take to be make. Remember again, time is money! You also need to add the cost of the equipment to stack the cake because no, they don’t magically pille up one on top of each other. Two tier is not so bad but when you get to 4 and 5 tiers, that is a lot of work! What to do if you have a lot of people attending your wedding and can’t feed them all on a small cake. You can chose to have a kitchen cake. That is a cake that is not on display so the decorations should be less elaborate. In that case, less time = less money!

5. Take away cake
The delivery fees and set up at the venue can add up to the total bill. Because….. you guessed it, Time is money! Most simple two tier cakes can be pick up by you or someone else. Many cake makers will stack cakes that are 3 tier and over at the venue so you cannot avoid the delivery fees in this case. That brings you back to number 4, less tier = less expensive.
Have you thought of using the cake as favours? Your guests get to take away a piece of cake for the next day. You won’t have to spend hours thinking “What favours should we have?” and save the expense! You can get affordable boxes from ebay.

6. Pick the flowers wisely
If you want to save money, forget about a cascade of handmade sugar flowers. (Do I need to say it one more time? Time is money)! You would be better to have either a few sugar flowers or even artificial ones if you don’t want to break the bank. By the way, artificial flowers for you bouquet and decorations can save you a great lot of money. Plus you can even sell them afterwards!

7. Buy second hand
Well, not the cake!  The topper, decorations, flower, stand and knife 😉 There is plenty of bridal Facebook group where you can find miscellaneous articles for sale second hand.

8.  Think outside of the box
Remember number 4 about the tiers… Why not having seperate tiers? It could either be on one of those special cascading stands made for separate tier. Or even having multiple cakes of various sizes on a variety of stands and on a nice long table? You don’t need the biggest and tallest cake to impress. Just something that is unusual can do the trick! A word about the stand: you can sell them after your wedding as well!

9. Get baking…
If you or a friend or family member have some talent for baking, why not use it to your advantage? This would be the greatest wedding gift from this person! But be aware that if you have an acquaintance that sells cakes for a living, they might not be up for the whole “give cake for free”. *Addition from a reader* Make sure you check if your venue would allow a cake from a unlicensed kitchen.

10. Surprise!
Some cake makers will offer a good price on a surprise design. For example if they want to add a style of cake to their portfolio. Try someone that is starting a business.

Extra tip for you (that has been suggested by my husband after proof reading my blog): Don’t get married!! Surprising advice from a married man who eats cake every weeks 😉

What will you do to keep the cost down of your wedding cake? 

– Tracy from Sugar Treat Home Baking –

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2 thoughts on “How To Save On Your Wedding Cake

  1. Wow! It is crazy how much more everything costs from when I got married years ago. My neighbor, who was in the catering business, offered to do my cake as a wedding gift. I accepted! … and it was beautiful! Anyway, great ideas on how to save money on the cake! I like how you have driven home that time is money. I will definitely remember that!!

    Liked by 1 person

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