Big Wedding Cake (All Wedding Cake Pros Needed)

Decorating By Carriemyvoice Updated 28 Mar 2005 , 8:45am by diane

Carriemyvoice Posted 23 Mar 2005 , 2:54pm
post #1 of 18

O boy am I really nervous. I have been asked to give a price on a wedding cake that will feed 250 people. icon_surprised.gif I have never made one this big before and she is wanting different flavors. I am going to give you guys the info she gave and ask for some help on this.

250 people
3 large square tiers no spacing in between
Cream Cheese Icing on all tiers
Different Flavor for each layer
Not saving topper
Ribbon around base of each layer to match wedding colors (mystic purple)
Not a lot of decoration on cake
Wants to use flowers from wedding for topper

Here is what I need help with
Can I do just three tiers that will feed that many people?
Is there such a thing as edible ribbon
Would pound cake in different flavors be the best for such a large heavy cake?
Please Help! Thanks Guys!

17 replies
thecakemaker Posted 23 Mar 2005 , 3:31pm
post #2 of 18

For an edible ribbon ~ use fondant. Or if they have the right color you could also use fruit by the foot or something like that. I used black fondant on my wedding cakes.


m0use Posted 23 Mar 2005 , 3:35pm
post #3 of 18

Can I do just three tiers that will feed that many people?

Yes you can. I figured out serving amounts based on the 2x1 cake serving
16" square will have 128 servings
14" square will have 98 servings
12" square will have 72 servings
10" square will have 50 servings
8" square will have 32 servings
So I came up with a couple of combinations for you:
A 12", 14", 16" square tiered cake you will have about 298 servings.
A 10", 14", 16" square tiered cake will give you about 276 servings.
A 8", 14", 16" square tiered cake will give you about 258 servings.
If you are charging by serving, I would not charge anything less than 2.00 per serving, if you do 250 servings multiplied by 2.00, it would cost them $500. I would not take anything less than that, 2 reasons being because you are doing cream cheese icing and they want a different flavor for each layer.

thecakemaker Posted 23 Mar 2005 , 3:39pm
post #4 of 18

m0use ~ to get those servings how high would each layer need to be?


Mchelle Posted 23 Mar 2005 , 3:41pm
post #5 of 18

I agree with mouse. That seems like a reasonable price, for all of the work that you are doing.

m0use Posted 23 Mar 2005 , 3:49pm
post #6 of 18

Oops- did not explain the serving size.
2- would be two inches long
1- would be one inch wide
I have yet to see height included in the serving size equation. So in theory you could have any type of layer cake, single double or heck even triple.
If you do a bigger serving size slice, you will have less servings per cake therefore needing more tiers. Or do a cake with a set number of tiers, and then make sheet cakes to get more servings, but not have all the height involved with the tiers.

thecakemaker Posted 23 Mar 2005 , 3:51pm
post #7 of 18

Thanks! Just wanted to clarify.


briansbaker Posted 23 Mar 2005 , 4:02pm
post #8 of 18

Mouse your good!!! Here is what I learned here on this site, if your not sure how to cut or how many servings your cake pan will serve. Just turn your cake pan upside down and with a ruler and marker, mark how it will be cut and that will determine how many people it will feed..
here is a diagram.. (cut and paste)
if this don't work, just go to and look for "how to cut a cake". Good Luck

briansbaker Posted 23 Mar 2005 , 4:16pm
post #9 of 18

Call some local cake shops and let them know exactly what you want for a cake..just like you described above and get a price quote or a "around what price" range. Go from there, it seems like the price above sounds right because this is a special request cake. You can't just go in a cake shop and pick this out of there "basic wedding cake list".
Especially with these needs :
serving for 250 people
she is wanting different flavors
Cream Cheese Icing on all tiers
Ribbon around base of each layer to match wedding colors (mystic purple)

Oh! by the way there was a discussion on ribbon once. I believe someone said if you want to use material to place wax paper behind it so that the icing wouldn't bleed through the ribbon.. I can't remember the other ideas..Anybody out there remember that forum?

m0use Posted 23 Mar 2005 , 5:00pm
post #10 of 18

Mouse your good!!!

Thank you. Just doing my best to help.


Here is what I learned here on this site, if your not sure how to cut or how many servings your cake pan will serve. Just turn your cake pan upside down and with a ruler and marker, mark how it will be cut and that will determine how many people it will feed..

I know I have suggested that before myself.
Here's one of the posts..go to page 2
Essentially you take the ribbon, place it between two pieces of wax paper and iron the ribbon and the wax paper all together so that the wax from the wax paper melts into the ribbon, this is supposed to help make it grease resistant and maybe even water resistant.

Carriemyvoice Posted 23 Mar 2005 , 5:49pm
post #11 of 18

Thanks for all of the responses. Wish me luck on this one. If she chooses to use me as her cake baker, I will definately post the picture.

tcturtleshell Posted 24 Mar 2005 , 5:50am
post #12 of 18

Briansbaker... the post about the ribbon was mine. LOL! My bride wants ribbon w/ glitter on it!! She's going to get it but she's gonna have to sign a release first! Just incase anyone gets sick.

I am doing a wedding cake in April for 200 servings. It sounds similar to what you described. I was going to do a (2" thick) 2-12",2-14", 2-16" round. I did a practice cake to see how it would look (it's on here under weddings, it's the Fire Dept cake) but that size to me made the cake to fat. Also there wasn't enough room between layers of the cake. I think each layer should be at least 4 inches larger then each layer. That's what I was told in classes. I have changed my mind on the size. The bride doesn't care what size it is or how many layers as long as it feeds 200. I decided on going w/ 1-3" deep for all the layers. The layers will be 8", 12", 16" enough cake for 232 people. It will look more elegant w/ the ribbon around it & flowers on top. So make sure you don't have the sizes so close it gives it a fat or pudgy look.

I don't know what the going price in LA is per slice but I am charging $1 a slice on basic cakes w/ buttercream icing, & $2 a slice on special cakes & cream cheese icing. No one here likes to pay the price the bakeries charge & then they don't want to pay mine either! Well we can't just give it away right!!! I think the biggest thing is to charge for your work!!! We're artists!!!! You should be paid good!!!

If anyone has any comments on what I said please comment. I'm learning too!!

Godiva Posted 26 Mar 2005 , 7:53pm
post #13 of 18

Serving size is crucial when determining what sizes to bake...Are you cutting them 1x2, or 1x3? ...If you bake 3" or 4" high, this does not change your equation. Depending on how generous your sizes are going to be, then you start doing your math...
But something crucial aswell is the final design and look of the cake. It needs to be evenly distributed, balanced. You need a med-small top to top with whatever you will use, in this case flowers. If your top is going to be 12", it will give it a rough appearance, unless you were to decorate it with objects as TC's lovely FD cake.
You may want to consider to make your very top tier no bigger than 8". Then from there do assign the distance between each tier...Either 2 or 3"s, or combination in 5, 7, 9, 12, 15 (2",2",3",3") separation.

As far as charging...Others will value your work as much as you do. If they want a cheap cake, send them to the bakery where they have 12 employees to make the cake using vegetable shortening! If they want the good stuff, you charge what YOUR WORK is worth. You always charge more than any bakery would. Also too, when you go to a restaurant, how much do they charge your for a piece of cake?? Is it not $3.25 and more? Well start your buttercream slices at $3 x slice. Here in NYC, I charge $4 for BTC, and start at $6 for fondant, and have set prices for specialty cakes. Those are my two cents.

I hope you get the job....And breathe in breathe out! icon_lol.gif

Happy Baking!

flayvurdfun Posted 26 Mar 2005 , 8:37pm
post #14 of 18

icon_surprised.gificon_eek.gif oh my I too hope you get the cake gig!!!! Have you called any bakeries around you???? I would think I would be armed with that if someone gasped when I gave them the price... I would want to have a slight better price then they would...but hey you are great so I imagine the bride would be very happy!!!

AngelWendy Posted 28 Mar 2005 , 1:52am
post #15 of 18

I think I'd say $350-$400 if I were doing that one, since it won't have a lot of decorating work involved on it. I want to charge more when I do a lot of that kind of thing - like fondant on top or gumpaste flowers, also more for lots of royal icing flowers. Cream cheese frosting isn't that much harder is it? Yes, definitely get the cost of those ingredients on top of the regular price, but not so much higher that it prices you out of the competition like a bakery.

Best of luck!

AngelWendy Posted 28 Mar 2005 , 2:00am
post #16 of 18

Well, I also read the post that said we should always charge higher than the bakery, but.. Well, I guess I'd be wary of that.. depending if you're licensed with the food quality helath department approved kitchen and all.

As far as pricing, you have to consider the going-rate in your area. While $6/slice for fondant might be right in NYC, I don't think it is in my small town. More than $1.50/slice for whatever would be too high here. I am thinking to set a price per serving fee and then charge set amounts more for certain decorating things - for diff. flavors, diff. frosting, fondant topping, royal icing flowers (per flower maybe or an amount for a certain style with X number of flowers), etc.

Something is telling me to remind you to get a contract signed and pre-payment for at least half in advance.

Best of luck!

kate Posted 28 Mar 2005 , 6:46am
post #17 of 18

I'm probably kinda late to add to this discussion, but here's my 2 cents anyway. Four inch high tiers are standard and what I prefer. I've even done taller and I like those too. I use the 2" pans and double them. The three inch tiers look too skimpy to me. I think 6" or 8" top tier looks nice with sizes graduating from there. If you do a 6,8,10,12 it looks nice but it's the tall tower look. If you do 6,9,12,15 then it doesn't look so towerish, also more room on the tops of tiers to work with. It really depends on what the bride likes. I like to stick with the same size difference with all the tiers, to me a symetrically pleasing cake looks more professional. A good way to get an idea of what it will look like is to stack your pans. Also look in magazines to see what you and your bride like.

diane Posted 28 Mar 2005 , 8:45am
post #18 of 18

be sure to post pictures! icon_lol.gif

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