Number Of Servings

By pinkyEm Updated 9 Feb 2009 , 12:25am by ziert003

pinkyEm Posted 8 Feb 2009 , 4:47pm
post #1 of 16

I'm confused and hope someone can help. I'm doing a wedding cake in a couple weeks. It will be 3 round tiers to serve 100-130 people. This is for a VERRRRRYY indecisive bride so I have actually made most of the decisions for her. I told her not everyone eats cake but she's worried about running out of cake, so I decided to just make enough to serve the whole 130. She wouldn't mind having a sheet cake or 2 hiding in the back to make sure everyone gets cake but I want to try and not make the sheet cakes and just get it all in one cake. Anyhow...
Someone posted this link for me http://www.wilton.com/cakes/tiered-cakes/serving-amounts-all.cfm and after checking it out, I decided to go with the cake that serves 139, 16" 10" and 6". Now, I go to this page http://www.wilton.com/cakes/making-cakes/baking-party-cake-2-inch-pans.cfm (I use this page for all my cakes for consistency but both are Wilton.) to see how much batter I will need and I decide to do a little math on servings while I'm looking. Going by that page, a 16" 10" and 6" will only serve 117. How many people will those size tiers actually serve?
Sorry this was kind of long, I wanted to give details in hopes of getting the best answer. lol

15 replies
leily Posted 8 Feb 2009 , 4:56pm
post #2 of 16

The two serving charts you're looking at are giving you different numbers because they are considering a "serving" of cake a different size.

One is for what they call party size servings 1.5"x2"x4" (approx)
The other one is for wedding cake servings which they consider 1"x2"x4"

So really you need to decide how big of a slice of cake is for a serving. I find 90% of the time the 1x2x4 is a good size piece (no matter the event) So I consider all of my servings this size, if they want to cut bigger slices then they order more servings.

maisyone2 Posted 8 Feb 2009 , 5:14pm
post #3 of 16

The first chart is what you need to go by. Leily is correct in saying the second chart is for party servings.

Having said that...this is the amount of batter I use for each of those sizes:

This is using Duncan Hines Cake Mix...

16 x 2 round = 3 cake mixes per layer.
10 x 2 round = 1 1/2 mixes per layer.
6 x 2 round = 1/2 mix per layer.

You will need 10 cake mixes for the entire cake.

There is a difference in the amount of cake batter each brand of cake mix yields. Duncan Hines yields the most....Pillsbury yields the least....Betty Crocker is in between the other two. So if you are using other than Duncan Hines, adjust the amounts that I quoted above.

HTH

Gayle
SE MI

pinkyEm Posted 8 Feb 2009 , 5:24pm
post #4 of 16

I am not cutting and serving the cake. The servers at the venue are so hopefully they know what they are doing! I will go by the first link, 16"10"and 6" serve 139.

I use better crocker mix with the extender recipe found here for all my cakes and it makes 6 cups of batter. I already got the batter figured out, it was the serving sizes that were confusing me.

Thanks!

indydebi Posted 8 Feb 2009 , 5:36pm
post #5 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by leily

So really you need to decide how big of a slice of cake is for a serving. I find 90% of the time the 1x2x4 is a good size piece (no matter the event) So I consider all of my servings this size, if they want to cut bigger slices then they order more servings.

Absolutey agree. Plus if you are charging by the serving, (a) you get more money with the 1x2x4 because there are more servings in the cake (b) you SHOULD be charging more for the party size serving since they are getting 50% more cake in each slice as compared to the industry standard size of 1x2x4. I also find that most places cut in the 1x2x4 size anyway.

As you get more into this, you'll need to decide what your standard serving size is and set your pricing based on that. Doens't matter how you decide on what size you decide on, but pick one and stick with it. Dont' allow your customer to dictate how big a piece they should get for your price.

"Letting your customers set your standards is a dangerous game, because the race to the bottom is pretty easy to win. Setting your own standards, and living up to them, is a better way to profit."
-----Seth Godin

pinkyEm Posted 8 Feb 2009 , 5:44pm
post #6 of 16

My customer is my aunt and price is not an issue

Running out of cake is her issue. Again, I'm not cutting the cake myself, the venue servers are. I guess I can tell them what size to cut but I'm not going to supervise them or anything, they do LOTS of weddings at this place and usually the cake is included so hopefully they just know what they are doing. If I don't get a piece, I won't be hurt, I don't even eat cake. lol I'll actually be glad when this whole thing is over.

indydebi Posted 8 Feb 2009 , 5:53pm
post #7 of 16

Oh, it's for family! Do you know how many people they invited? The "not everyone eats cake" theory just doesn't hold water. Not everyone eats salad; not everyone eats bread/rolls; not everyone eats broccoli ..... but when the food order is placed, it's placed to include at least one serving of each of these for each person. Why wouldn't you do the same with the dessert?

Your aunt is normal, though! My cousin got married and her dad was terrified of running out of cake. I made the cake under the deal of "you buy the stuff and I'll make it". I kept telling him he was going to have plenty, but he continued to be afraid of running out. I think it was the only wedding I ever did sheet cakes for ... in addition to the 3-tier with 6 satellite cakes!

He ended up with 4 sheet cakes .... 200 servings ... left over. And yes, I DID keep making fun of him for it!

pinkyEm Posted 8 Feb 2009 , 6:02pm
post #8 of 16

This is why I have decided to make the cake for 130. First, about 90 people were coming. So I planned a 90 person cake. Then they thought about 100. So I planned that cake. A couple days ago it was 100-130. I don't think they actually know. (This wedding is in 2 weeks and they STILL don't have it all planned out!) I may even do a small sheet cake just in case, although I'd like to avoid that.

Now she also wants 260 decorated cookies as favors.

I'm going to have to pass on the cookies. She can pay a bakery for that!

I don't even care anymore, I just want enough cake. LOL

ziert003 Posted 8 Feb 2009 , 8:36pm
post #9 of 16

May I jump into this post with a related question?

I'm making a sculpted cake that will be approximately 18"w x 6" x 4"h when finished. The width and depth of the cake will vary from end to end. I see from a previous post that most servings are 1x2x4. So my cake is 4" in depth and 6" across so in theory I should get at least 18 pieces. I am I thinking correctly? I'm a math challenged individual.

My cake would be for a more informal party should I expect to serve larger pieces?

-K8memphis Posted 8 Feb 2009 , 9:06pm
post #10 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by ziert003

May I jump into this post with a related question?

I'm making a sculpted cake that will be approximately 18"w x 6" x 4"h when finished. The width and depth of the cake will vary from end to end. I see from a previous post that most servings are 1x2x4. So my cake is 4" in depth and 6" across so in theory I should get at least 18 pieces. I am I thinking correctly? I'm a math challenged individual.

My cake would be for a more informal party should I expect to serve larger pieces?

Wouldn't that be 18x3 for 54 servings?

The six inches across gets two long slices all the way down the 18 inch length to make three long cuts of cake to slice at one inch intervals woudl be the 18 x 3 = 54. Pretty sure my math is right.

-K8memphis Posted 8 Feb 2009 , 9:18pm
post #11 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by pinkyEm

I will go by the first link, 16"10"and 6" serve 139.

Then maybe these are the pans you already have or something but I think this size is a tad on the unusual.

I think the 10 and 16 are mismatched in size.

What about a 14square x 10round x6round or a 15x11x7 all round.

In other words, you've got a 3 inch ledge on the top of the 16 if you place the 10 inch cake in the middle of the sixteen--so you've got a lot of room for decor--so if you plan it to fill in that gap with the right decor then you'll be fine.

Just a passing thought. I'm not trying to worry you or be an idiot.

ziert003 Posted 8 Feb 2009 , 9:32pm
post #12 of 16

I should have explained better. It is a very, very odd shape. It is to resemble a specific medical device. Long story. But the shape is narrow at both ends and wide in the middle. Imagine the old pocket fisherman? or an elongated oval. The ends are only an inch at best across (width?). The middle section would only be 6" across. The cake would only be 4" tall but also sculpted down a bit on the sides. Plus I'm thinking a 1x2x4 piece might be too small for a party versus a wedding. I'm thinking my ideal size would be 1x4x4. So I would cut my end pieces thicker and my center pieces smaller. Doing this I end up with 16 pieces. Let me know if my thinking is completely off the rocker.

-K8memphis Posted 8 Feb 2009 , 9:51pm
post #13 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by ziert003

I should have explained better. It is a very, very odd shape. It is to resemble a specific medical device. Long story. But the shape is narrow at both ends and wide in the middle. Imagine the old pocket fisherman? or an elongated oval. The ends are only an inch at best across (width?). The middle section would only be 6" across. The cake would only be 4" tall but also sculpted down a bit on the sides. Plus I'm thinking a 1x2x4 piece might be too small for a party versus a wedding. I'm thinking my ideal size would be 1x4x4. So I would cut my end pieces thicker and my center pieces smaller. Doing this I end up with 16 pieces. Let me know if my thinking is completely off the rocker.

No no I shoulda read it better. You clearly said that it tapers.

It's not off the rocker but that's a large serving.

Now, I don't know why or how Wilton came up with party versus wedding servings. The deciding factor to moi is money. Generally a hostess, who is paying for this creation, wants to serve cake to everyone, not make a meal of it. The 1x2x4 is a very nice serving of cake. It's not really small--it's just that the "party size" is bigger.

You are proposing servings twice as big as a wedding serving. If that's what you want to serve go for it. But I mean are you selling this? You run the risk of getting cheated out of half your money that way too.

Typically, for a decorated cake, the very nice serving of cake, 1x2x4, will suffice very adequately. They want bigger servings they buy more cake.

It's hard to say how many servings you will have since I don't know the proportions of your sculpture--how much will be tapered off.

How many servings do you need?

ziert003 Posted 8 Feb 2009 , 10:40pm
post #14 of 16

I believe I only need 15. But I'm concerned it might be cutting it close. I do think you are correct in that there will be dinner served and this isn't the focus. I'm feeling a little more confident just talking through it. I didn't want to be embarrassed serving small pieces, as I will be attending the party, but I think this is the biggest I can make it without piecing two cakes together -- not something I'm comfortable doing.

-K8memphis Posted 8 Feb 2009 , 10:46pm
post #15 of 16
Quote:
Originally Posted by ziert003

I believe I only need 15. But I'm concerned it might be cutting it close. I do think you are correct in that there will be dinner served and this isn't the focus. I'm feeling a little more confident just talking through it. I didn't want to be embarrassed serving small pieces, as I will be attending the party, but I think this is the biggest I can make it without piecing two cakes together -- not something I'm comfortable doing.

You're fine--don't worry. You'll have plenty.

A one inch slice of cake that's four inches tall is normal. Look at a ruler at a one inch mark--that's a nice hunk of cake.
But you have way more cake than that--honest. No worries.

I want you to feel free to worry about the sculpture part.

ziert003 Posted 9 Feb 2009 , 12:25am
post #16 of 16

Thank you so much! I have moved on to worry about the sculpting part!!! The black base will be the next after that!