Buying Wholesale Cakes

Business By pieceofcake20 Updated 16 Oct 2010 , 6:18pm by Sonal

pieceofcake20 Posted 28 Jul 2009 , 6:46pm
post #1 of 41

Has any of you ever considered purchasing pre-made cakes. I know it's cheating and blah blah blah but I'm so strapped for time and would like to use the limited time I do have to do what I love-decorate. If you do purchase your cakes, where do you get them from?

40 replies
__Jamie__ Posted 28 Jul 2009 , 6:52pm
post #2 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by pieceofcake20

Has any of you ever considered purchasing pre-made cakes.




icon_confused.gif No. That's half of the passion right there. The baking. I'm sure you will find some folks who don't give two hoots about the inside of the cake, just what it looks like on the outside. (In fact, I know one locally who actually said that to a potential customer, that it didn't matter what it tastes like, it's what it looks like that counts!" icon_lol.gificon_lol.gif And do you think she knew she was telling this to a personal chef? Probably not! icon_lol.gif

pieceofcake20 Posted 28 Jul 2009 , 7:15pm
post #3 of 41

It's not half the passion for me. I hate actually baking the cakes, letting them cool, wrapping them, cleaning up after baking them. The problem is I want them to taste great. As much as I hate making my own buttercream and fondant, I still make those to b/c I can't find and store bought that meets my taste standards. So I make everything from scratch. I want to cut a corner somewhere as long as I don't have to sacrifice taste.

__Jamie__ Posted 28 Jul 2009 , 7:20pm
post #4 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by pieceofcake20

It's not half the passion for me.




Right, my bad. I should have said it's half the passion for me.

pieceofcake20 Posted 28 Jul 2009 , 7:26pm
post #5 of 41

I do have a passion for eating them though. Hehe.

LaBellaFlor Posted 28 Jul 2009 , 7:31pm
post #6 of 41

No, I've never considered pre-made cakes. I think I would do a cake mix, before I do that. You can probably ask Wal-Mart if they would sell you undecorated cakes. I know people buy "buttercream" from them, so I don't see why they wouldn't sell you cake. I hope you at least tell your clients the truth if they ask about your actual cake. I see so many people on this site argue that cake mix cakes are just as good as scratch, but then ask what they should say if someone asks them if they make their cakes from scratch. If you think a mix is just as good, why not the TRUTH. They come up with all sorts of fancy answers instead of just "No, its from a cake mix".

PinkZiab Posted 28 Jul 2009 , 8:04pm
post #7 of 41

Not a snowball's chance in hell. I'm a classically-trained pastry chef, and I wear that title proudly. That would be like throwing all of my training and hard work into the trash can. The decorating--while I LOVE it and it is one of my true passions--is only a small part of what I do. Those pre-made cakes might taste "fine" or "good enough," but I pride myself on my cakes, pastries, fillings and desserts being OUTSTANDING.

I love to make beautiful cakes, but to me, the taste is MORE important than the decoration, not the other way around.

pieceofcake20 Posted 28 Jul 2009 , 8:16pm
post #8 of 41

Although I do respect everyone's opinion on why they wouldn't consider it, all i really need to know is where I can buy them from. I would like to try one out.

Texas_Rose Posted 28 Jul 2009 , 8:20pm
post #9 of 41

I read before that you can buy frozen undecorated cakes at Sam's Club and cut them to the sizes that you need.

It doesn't sound like a bad experiment...but how many grocery store cakes have you ever tasted and thought, "Wow, I can't wait to taste that again!"

__Jamie__ Posted 28 Jul 2009 , 8:21pm
post #10 of 41

I know you just want an answer to this part of your question:

Quote:
Originally Posted by pieceofcake20

If you do purchase your cakes, where do you get them from?




But due to the scandalous (just kidding icon_biggrin.gif) nature of this question, also yours, I am sure the opinions are gonna keep coming. icon_lol.gif

Quote:
Originally Posted by pieceofcake20

Has any of you ever considered purchasing pre-made cakes. I know it's cheating and blah blah blah


LaBellaFlor Posted 28 Jul 2009 , 8:24pm
post #11 of 41

Your the one that asked if we would consider it and we're answering your question. I answered both of them.

Deb_ Posted 28 Jul 2009 , 8:26pm
post #12 of 41

Yeah I agree with the others. Remember that your name is connected to the entire cake, not just the decorating part.

Maybe you could partner with someone who enjoys the baking but not the decorating.

I've not tasted a decent mass produced wholesale cake yet and I'd hate for my clients to think that I make those things.

I'm with Jamie and Pink........for me the baking part is my passion.........LOL!!....if you don't believe me just look at my photos! icon_lol.gif They all tasted fantastic though!!!

pieceofcake20 Posted 28 Jul 2009 , 8:29pm
post #13 of 41

I have never tasted a cake from somewhere like Sam's that I've liked. I guess I'm hoping that there is someone who makes cakes just like we all do but then ships them. Homemade cakes via mail?

cindy1176 Posted 28 Jul 2009 , 8:29pm
post #14 of 41

One of the things I do to cut baking time for myself, is to pay one of my family members to bake my cake recipe. I taught her how to do exactly what I do, and then it cuts out the baking & cooling step for me if I am under the gun. She even does it at my house. Just a thought...

pieceofcake20 Posted 28 Jul 2009 , 8:38pm
post #15 of 41

I guess I need to seriously consider hiring someone to help out. My husband used to do the not-so-pleasant chores for me but he's all caked out. I'm turning down so many people b/c I don't have the time. I just don't know. BTW, sorry I don't have many pictures posted on here. My file sizes are always too big and i can't seem to get them down to a size that CC will accept.

indydebi Posted 28 Jul 2009 , 8:39pm
post #16 of 41

You can order uniced cakes from GFS. (I samples one of their cakes in-store one day and told them "The cake is ok, but your icing sucks." They quickly told me I could order cakes uniced.)

I think it's all about whatever you want to do. Buying premade icing ..... buying premade fondant ..... buying premade cakes. If someone can explain the difference, I'm all ears.

Personal preference. And I think you can come up with an argument for and against on every issue.

I've done it before. When I first got started, decades ago, I had a really busy month. I bought pre-baked cakes from the local bakery that month. I iced and decorated them.

And for the record, I DETEST the word "cheating" on here. "Cheating" implies doing something wrong ... something illegal .... something you can get busted for. Using a cake mix or a pre-baked cake is not illegal, last time I looked.

cindy1176 Posted 28 Jul 2009 , 8:47pm
post #17 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by indydebi

I think it's all about whatever you want to do. Buying premade icing ..... buying premade fondant ..... buying premade cakes. If someone can explain the difference, I'm all ears.

Personal preference. And I think you can come up with an argument for and against on every issue.

And for the record, I DETEST the word "cheating" on here. "Cheating" implies doing something wrong ... something illegal .... something you can get busted for. Using a cake mix or a pre-baked cake is not illegal, last time I looked.




Well said, as usual!

pieceofcake20 Posted 28 Jul 2009 , 8:54pm
post #18 of 41

I agree. Many successful companies do not manufacture every part that goes into their product. For example, I car manufacturer does not make the frame, seats, engines, windows, etc. If they can outsource one of the components and make a profit and still have a quality product then it makes good business sense to do so. Why should are industry be any different. If I can give my clients a great looking cake that taste good also, then who cares if I actually baked the cake or let someone bake it for me?

littlecake Posted 28 Jul 2009 , 10:42pm
post #19 of 41

the company that makes the cakes they sell at sams ,"telco" is owned by smuckers, so they aren't bad....the white and chocolate, if you add a simple syrup.

the carrot sucks tho.

thank you debi...i think cheating (the word) should be banned here...we all gotta do what works for us....and for everyone it'd different depending on what they are trying to do...all the self rightous crap sure does get old after awhile.

Sweetmaker Posted 30 Jul 2009 , 5:17pm
post #20 of 41

I work for Kroger (Ralphs here in Ca) Our cakes are made at the main warehouse in LA and shipped to all the stores. All we do is decorate. I don't consider it cheating just saving time for each in store bakery. Most of our bakery clerks don't actually bake well at home anyway. Most of our products are thaw and sell. We do get the frozen bread doughs that are pre-shaped and ready to thaw proof and bake. Most customers think we have big mixers in the back and all this stuff that we sell just sitting around in the back waiting for them to come and buy. We just get a shipment of frozen baked goods that we thaw and put our labels on and put out. Smash the boxes and clean up the paper. Big deal we aren't pastry chef's here.

So in light of the op yes you can buy an undecorated sheet cake from our grocery, for the same cost as the decorated one, my advice is to get the box and board with it to recoup your cost. I have done this on occasion when pressed for time. I don't like to however because you don't actually know how long that cake has been in the freezer, or how "fresh" tasting it is going to be.

I have also seen undecorated cakes in Smart n Final's freezer section for sale.

Hope this helps and also educates you!
Gwen
Sweetmaker

flourpowerMN Posted 30 Jul 2009 , 6:03pm
post #21 of 41

Pieceofcake...do you have a community college in your earea? Many schools offer culinary degress...I'm sure there are students out there that would like to hone their techniques. If they can get course credit for it, you might even be able to get them for free (like an internship).

It sounds like having someone else doing the baking for you worked in the past, so if you can, stick with what works. That way you have more control over the finished product.

CakesByLJ Posted 30 Jul 2009 , 7:50pm
post #22 of 41

pieceofcake.. there are obviously many ways to reach your destination. I know thousands of wholesale cakes are being sold to retailers today, and tomorrow someone else will be buying them... from Sam's club, WalMart, and many major grocery stores. Probably many other bakeries as well. So, if it works for you...... go for it~!
I recently bought 3 cases of half sheet cakes from Sam's for a class I taught. Incidently, I also bought a bucket of their buttercream icing to use with the cakes. The students had a great time, learned how to make a sculpted cake, and I didn't have to bake a thing.. icon_biggrin.gif

No-goodLazyBum Posted 3 Aug 2009 , 1:39am
post #23 of 41

This is late in the conversation but I have considered pre-made cakes on many occasions. Since I have two different lines of cakes, pride or credibility is no issue. Something for everyone.

costumeczar Posted 3 Aug 2009 , 1:49am
post #24 of 41

It's not "cheating" unless you tell your customer that it's from scratch and that you made it yourself after you bought it premade from Sam's Club.

BCJean Posted 3 Aug 2009 , 2:12am
post #25 of 41

Yes, you could purchase your cakes elsewhere and sell them. You would need to be consistent though. You couldn't use your own scratch recipe 90% of the time, then when you got too busy purchase the cakes. If someone buys a cake from you they are entitled to expect the same quality with their next purchase.

The comparison of cakes to automobiles I don't follow. Yes the auto companies have parts made in different areas but it is parts made to their specifications not just whatever the company happens to have lying around. Now, if you were to give your recipe to a bakery and have them bake the cakes for you then I would say you could call it your cake.

The grocery store cakes may or may not be as good as what you bake but they are the same and the customer knows what to expect. Keep in mind also they are selling their cakes really cheap so the customer is more forgiving on the taste and texture. The same as they don't get upset if the icing isn't completely smooth. They are not looking for perfection they are looking for a cake for a cheap price. I feel the same about the icings used.

Personally I think you should raise your prices and sell to the customer who really wants an awesome cake, baked and decorated by you. The rest of them could then go to the grocery store for theirs and you would end up with the same amount of pay for doing fewer cakes.

Rose_N_Crantz Posted 3 Aug 2009 , 2:57am
post #26 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by BCJean


The grocery store cakes may or may not be as good as what you bake but they are the same and the customer knows what to expect. Keep in mind also they are selling their cakes really cheap so the customer is more forgiving on the taste and texture. The same as they don't get upset if the icing isn't completely smooth. They are not looking for perfection they are looking for a cake for a cheap price. I feel the same about the icings used.




I speak from experience when I say the customer is looking for perfection no matter what they pay. I work at a customer service desk at a grocery store and I have had to give out free cakes to several people because the frosting isn't smooth, the writing looks bad, the border is sloppy, etc. Every time I want to say "Well, for a $16 cake, I think it looks pretty good." Customers don't see the price tag. In fact, a lot of people think that's too much for a half sheet. Yep, I typed right, a half sheet costs $16 at my store. But of course, it's not my job to educate, I only smile and hand out the refunds. . .

In regards to the OP, if that's what you want to do, go for it. Sam's Club will sell you four half sheets in a box or eight 10" rounds. Can't remember how much they cost but the flavors are white and chocolate. You can get carrot in only rounds and marble in only sheets. I agree with whoever up there said you don't know how long they've been sitting in the freezer though. I believe in our store's freezer the cake boxes are dated out into 2011. And I can say Sam's cake doesn't hold up to carving, as it's too soft. It's about only good for sheets and round cakes.

One closing thought. I have gotten used to scratch/doctored mix cake recipes lately. Not too long ago I had a slice of grocery store cake and I was completely overwhelmed by the chemical taste. So if your clients are used to your scratch/doctored mixes, they might not care for the change in recipe.

indydebi Posted 3 Aug 2009 , 3:11am
post #27 of 41
Quote:
Originally Posted by Rose_N_Crantz

I speak from experience when I say the customer is looking for perfection no matter what they pay.



Amen. Here's an update from a thread where the cookies were FREE and the person complained!! icon_eek.gif

http://forum.cakecentral.com/cake-decorating-ftopict-641705-.html

Quote:
Originally Posted by Rose_N_Crantz

One closing thought. I have gotten used to scratch/doctored mix cake recipes lately. Not too long ago I had a slice of grocery store cake and I was completely overwhelmed by the chemical taste. So if your clients are used to your scratch/doctored mixes, they might not care for the change in recipe.



Even tho' I'm a mix baker, I know exactly what you mean, on the cookie side. I've eaten the refrigerated cookie dough choc chip cookies all of my life, until I started doing cookies as a business. About a year ago, the grandkids were spending the weekend and I was in no mood to start up the mixer, so I just picked up some dough at the grocery.

Oh. My. God. I spit out that cookie so fast! I couldn't believe how NASTY it tasted after being used to my choc chippers. (daughter HATES it when I call 'em that so I do so just to tick her off! icon_lol.gif ) I couldn't believe I'd spent my life eating those and thinking they were actually GOOD.

Gefion Posted 3 Aug 2009 , 6:59am
post #28 of 41

I personally wouldn't want my name on a "pre-baked cake". Those bulk cakes are made from inferior ingredients and with chemicals added, all in the name of profit.

If you don't have a problem using frozen cakes, you can do "baking days" and bake up a months worth of cakes - put them in the freezer and voila. I do this often, even though I don't sell my cakes. It's worth the cost of an extra freezer if you really hate baking.

MichelleM77 Posted 3 Aug 2009 , 7:58pm
post #29 of 41

I would do it only if it were someone that was baking from scratch using a recipe I provided (or their own cakes from scratch if I liked them). I would love to outsource this part of it. I don't particularly like baking cookies either.

I believe in New York there is a gal (Lovin Sullivan Cakes) who outsources her baking to a local bakery because in New York she is allowed to decorate from home, but not bake.

yamber82 Posted 3 Aug 2009 , 8:34pm
post #30 of 41

i have been seriously considering hiring an assistant. i have a 1 year old and it seems to make the task take 10x as long. my mil watches him ususalyl once a week but she jsut recently went back to work so when she does watch him it's over night, so i'm up all night, then pooped when i get him back. it's not a very good set-up.

how much would you pay an assistant? i don't really make a lot of profit. it's so hard ot figure that part out. but i can only accomplish one cake a week right now. i have done 2 in a week before and it was just too hard and stressfull so i have been turning people away.

Quote by @%username% on %date%

%body%