How To Price A Cake And Take Into Account Your Supplies.....

Decorating By abed Updated 29 Apr 2008 , 6:15pm by cakemommy

abed Posted 21 Mar 2008 , 3:31pm
post #1 of 29

How do CC members price the cost of a cake? How do you take into account your supplies like eggs, butter, etc and calculate? Help!!

28 replies
Lil_Belle Posted 21 Mar 2008 , 7:41pm
post #2 of 29

I price by serving. I know others do too but everytime I've done it that way I always end up making some profit. But I guess you could just do the math of how much 3 eggs would cost, but that would drive me insane XD. hope that makes some sense icon_smile.gif

loriana Posted 21 Mar 2008 , 7:52pm
post #3 of 29

Hey abed, I made a Home and Hobby matrix I will attached below. Good luck! PS- you will need to have Excel 97 or higher.

kakeladi Posted 21 Mar 2008 , 7:58pm
post #4 of 29

It's really not that hard to X3 your ingredients.
If you buy a dz eggs for $1.32 (the present price in my area) you divide that by 12 then X how many eggs you use per recipe. That would be 11 cents per egg; 2 per box mix = 22 cents for eggs.
A 5# bag of sugar will tell you 'approx' how many 1/2 cup servings per bag (or some similar info) - let's say 20 half-cups and you pd $2.39 for the bag - that would make each cup of sugar cost 24 cents. Don't forget to add in the cost of your board, the covering for it (doily), the box, etc.
Then add up all those #. Let's just say it comes to $4.21; X that by 3.5 to pay you for the oven, electric etc used and some time for your talenticon_smile.gif
So in the case that cake should sell for $14.74. I would round that up to $15 just to be sure I didn't forget something in the formula. Also keep your prices even so you don't have to keep lots of change on hand.
How many of you will go to another store because they are selling something for $14.98 or even 14.69 and the one you are at is selling the exact same thing for $15??
I dare say not many of youicon_smile.gif Now you don't have to keep loose change on hand. Makes it soooo much easier.
With a cake you want to charge by the serving, if that amount comes out to something like $123.56 are you going to charge that? Wouldn't it be sooooooo much simpler to round it out....either up or down?
The good thing about working out the costs is you only have to do it once -- that is until your prices go up a great deal.

Lil_Belle Posted 21 Mar 2008 , 8:08pm
post #5 of 29

kakeladi- a dozen eggs are only $1.32?!?! I'm so jealous, here it's around $5 icon_sad.gif stinky California...

MommyBunny Posted 21 Mar 2008 , 8:13pm
post #6 of 29

WOW kakeladi, you go girl, I gbet you were a math wizard in school. I just have a set price per slice and I made my daughter do the math. icon_biggrin.gif

And I agree....1.32 for eggs? Dang girl... ship me some at that price.


plbennett_8 Posted 22 Mar 2008 , 8:15am
post #7 of 29
Originally Posted by loriana

Hey abed, I made a Home and Hobby matrix I will attached below. Good luck! PS- you will need to have Excel 97 or higher.

Thanks! icon_biggrin.gif

HerBoudoir Posted 22 Mar 2008 , 1:27pm
post #8 of 29

I'm far from a professional baker, but I do sometimes charge to make special occasion cakes for friends/co-workers.

One of the big things I keep in mind if I'm not going to use all of a unit of an ingredient in the recipe is "am I going to use all of this elsewhere?".

For example...if I need 4 eggs for a recipe, I'm not going to hit them with the cost of a dozen eggs because I know I'll use the remainder. Same with flour, sugar, etc.

However, if I'm making something like a cheesecake, while it doesn't take a whole box of graham crackers for the crust, I'll charge them for the whole box. I don't buy graham crackers on a regular basis, and chances are, I have no use for the rest of the box.

Once I have the cost of ingredients, I add on what I want to make per hour times the number of hours it takes to make it (in my case, I charge $10 an hour for my time, which is very reasonable I think).

It adds up really fast, particularly as I do everything from scratch with best quality (or as much as is reasonable) ingredients.

mommyle Posted 22 Mar 2008 , 7:16pm
post #9 of 29

This is the pricing that I use. This gives you the cost of the cake. From there you need to decide if you also charge by the hour, add extra cost for decorations, etc. If you have any questions just PM me.

rozdei Posted 23 Mar 2008 , 3:29pm
post #10 of 29

loriana and mommyle,

Thanks so much for posting your spreadsheets. I have only made cakes for family and friends (just one paid cake so far) and have always wondered how much it actually costs me to make it (supply-wise). Thanks again.

abed Posted 25 Mar 2008 , 2:54pm
post #11 of 29

thanky you so much for all your wonderful advice and the great spreadsheet. That really helped a lot!!

lovetofrost Posted 28 Apr 2008 , 2:23pm
post #12 of 29

yes, thank you for sharing your spreadsheets. That is exactly what I was looking for.

indydebi Posted 28 Apr 2008 , 2:44pm
post #13 of 29

I do not like the "times 3" system. If I did the "times 3", then I'd be selling wedding cakes for $97 instead of $300. I'd be selling my drop cookies for $0.58/dozen instead of $6/dozen.

when figuring your costs, please remember that "costs" are more than just ingredients: time (payroll), utilities (cost to run your oven and refrigerator, mixer), insurance (if you're delivering cakes, you should have a commercial insurance policy or you are running the risk of actually driving with no insurance), cleaning supplies, etc etc etc.

"cost" is more than just flour and eggs.

cakebaker1957 Posted 28 Apr 2008 , 3:23pm
post #14 of 29
Originally Posted by mommyle

This is the pricing that I use. This gives you the cost of the cake. From there you need to decide if you also charge by the hour, add extra cost for decorations, etc. If you have any questions just PM me.

Hi im trying to print your list and when i do its ittty bitty cant read it give me a quick lesson on editing this If you would
Thanks told you im not computer smart icon_confused.gif

lovetofrost Posted 29 Apr 2008 , 1:16pm
post #15 of 29

maybe I missed something, but why do you multiply times 3.5? just wondering.

FromScratch Posted 29 Apr 2008 , 1:35pm
post #16 of 29

I'm with Debi.. the multiply times 3 isn't good enough. I want to make a decent hourly wage.. doing the times 3 doesn't do that for me.

bigmama1961 Posted 29 Apr 2008 , 1:51pm
post #17 of 29


FromScratch Posted 29 Apr 2008 , 2:39pm
post #18 of 29

Ooh.. I love the organic, free-range eggs from our local farm.. they are araucana chicken eggs so they have the pretty green shells and the yolks are bright orange and sooooo good. They sell them for $3/dozen though.. (well $2.75 but I always just give them $3). I save those for breakfast though.

cake-angel Posted 29 Apr 2008 , 2:41pm
post #19 of 29

Thank you so much for sharing this!! It is very helpful.

lovetofrost Posted 29 Apr 2008 , 2:56pm
post #20 of 29

so for those of you who don't like the x3 system, what do you do to ensure you are covering your overhead. I figured how much the ingredients cost me, but how do you know how much power, gas, water, labor, etc. thanks

FromScratch Posted 29 Apr 2008 , 3:16pm
post #21 of 29

I sat down and figured out how much I would like to make on my cakes.. I sat down and nailed down my serving chart and how much my recipes cost me to make. How long it takes me to shop for them, mix them, bake them, level-torte-fill, decorate. I based it on an 8" cake. 20 servings.. about 3 hours total for a basic cake.. some cakes are quicker and some take longer, but it all evens out. I charge $4/serving for BC and $5/serving for fondant and I am going to raise them next year. With the increase in gas costs and ingredient costs it has to happen. It costs me about $1/serving to make most of my BC cakes and a bit more for fondant. I charge 4x's my costs. That way I make a decent wage.

cakemommy Posted 29 Apr 2008 , 3:37pm
post #22 of 29

Thank you all for your matrixes icon_confused.gif and formulas for determining costs. My hubby has been telling me for a long time I need to sit down and do that.

I think I will sit down now and give it a whirl trying to make my own matrix with my costs. You have provided great layouts.

Thank you all!

The every changing costs of milk, eggs, and GAS!!!!!! It's really going to be difficult to recover costs without charging an arm and a leg for a basic decor cake. Delivery fees are going to go up!


FromScratch Posted 29 Apr 2008 , 4:43pm
post #23 of 29

Tell me about it! I offer free delivery within a 20 mile radius and I am going to have to stop doing that because of the gas costs.

cakemommy Posted 29 Apr 2008 , 4:59pm
post #24 of 29

Just curious there on the other side of the nation from me, what is a gal of regular unleaded? I have $3.75 Shell station in my town. Diesel is $4.59!!!!! Good thing my DH is leaving for a few months this week. Keep that cost down!!!!

sambugjoebear Posted 29 Apr 2008 , 5:17pm
post #25 of 29

It's $3.59 here where I live in Ohio for unleaded.

FromScratch Posted 29 Apr 2008 , 5:31pm
post #26 of 29

Gas was $3.53/gal last time I looked.. it's too depressing to look everyday.

luddroth Posted 29 Apr 2008 , 5:38pm
post #27 of 29

Hit $ 3.79 today in suburban NYC.

thecakebox Posted 29 Apr 2008 , 5:52pm
post #28 of 29

I win!! lol.. It was $3.95 last night at the "cheap" gas stations here is So Cal.

cakemommy Posted 29 Apr 2008 , 6:15pm
post #29 of 29

DING DING DING!!!!!! We have a winner! My niece lives in San Diego and calls me giving me temperature/fire updates and gas price updates!

I would still rather deliver a cake than have someone come pick it up and have it show up destroyed or smashed in any way! Just have to raise the delivery fee and consider if it's really worth it to deliver or even make a cake for someone who lives outside of 10 miles OR less!


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