I'm Flabbergasted!!!!

Decorating By candoo Updated 16 Jun 2010 , 6:45am by margaretb

candoo Posted 21 May 2010 , 11:28pm
post #1 of 68

OMGoodness!!!! My husband just figured up (for the 1st time) that EACH BATCH of icing costs $8.90.

For the SMALLEST (8" AND 6") 2- tiered cake, I use 2-2.5 batches of icing. That means that at least $18 if that cake is JUST THE COST OF ICING!!! The cost of the cake is $7-$8. The cake box is $1, and the 2 boards that I use are $2. The fondant cost for this size cake is AT LEAST $5-$8. So that is a total of $33- $37.

I charge $60 for this cake with fondant work. It takes me at least 3-4 hrs to make and decorate one of these. So that means my 3-4 hrs of work makes me around $25. Maybe I should apply at McDonald's?????? I would make more per hr, apparently!

I honestly had NO IDEA that I had that much cost!! (I had figured about 20 bucks in cost for a cake this size). WOW! I'm still in shock...

67 replies
candoo Posted 21 May 2010 , 11:29pm
post #2 of 68

$18 OF that cake, not if...

Elcee Posted 21 May 2010 , 11:36pm
post #3 of 68

Wow, that seems like a lot...I can make a batch of icing for less than $5. Do you live in a high cost area?

candoo Posted 21 May 2010 , 11:39pm
post #4 of 68

I don't think so... I would have thought my area was LOW cost, if anything. I use brand name shortening and Dream Whip in it- that's what adds the biggest portion of the cost.

kansaslaura Posted 21 May 2010 , 11:53pm
post #5 of 68

Wow....how much frosting do you put on? That seems like A LOT!

sweetcakes Posted 21 May 2010 , 11:54pm
post #6 of 68

you'd be surprised at how much cake batter, icing recipes, fllings all cost to make, then add on the box, the foil, the board, a little for over head, it all adds up. Cakeboss really opened my eyes to this. I wish everyone looked at what it was really costing them.

candoo Posted 22 May 2010 , 12:06am
post #7 of 68

kansaslaura- I don't think I put more than average???
Sweetcakes- I wish I had figured this b4 now!!!!

kimblyd Posted 22 May 2010 , 12:16am
post #8 of 68

Yup.

I only do free cakes, but a while back I decided to figure out what my little hobby was actually costing me. I came up with a $1.00 per serving.

People are shocked when I tell them that they can buy a Wal-Mart cake for less than it costs me just for ingredients. icon_eek.gif

This is one case where home-made is definitely not cheaper.

leily Posted 22 May 2010 , 1:14am
post #9 of 68

it's great that you shared your experience. A lot of people don't take the time to actually figure up what a cake cost them. They just charge a number and then divide that total by how many hours they put into it. Which may sound good for an hourly rate, but as you found out, at your prices you are not even making minimum wage.

cheatize Posted 22 May 2010 , 2:42am
post #10 of 68

Yup, yup, ayup. My frosting isn't that high but it all adds up, doesn't it? I created an Excel file for myself so I can just input the amounts used and labor hours (estimated) and it gives me the cost of the cake. It needs updated since grocery prices have risen, but a year ago the average overhead costs alone for a 3 tier cake was $13.80. Just for overhead- and I don't have a storefront.

tesso Posted 22 May 2010 , 3:02am
post #11 of 68

oh yeah, this little hobby can suck the life out of your wallet. I did a wedding cake for a friend at cost. It was 160.00 dollars just for the ingredients !!! I have to hand it to her she didnt bat an eye, she hauled out her checkbook and said, you can depoist this today, girlfriend. IT is good when your friends actually know WHAT & HOW MUCH goes into a cake. icon_biggrin.gificon_wink.gif

Petro Posted 28 May 2010 , 3:20pm
post #12 of 68

I'm in the same boat with my cost and pricing. My husband constantly reminds me of my ingredient costs and that I'm under pricing. I'vr been charging $45 for a 9-6 and it cost me $23-30 just for ingredients (including fondant). I know that's way too low. I'd love to charge more and it make it really worth my time but pricing is just the toughest part for me.

Btw, I'm in south ga too!

mamawrobin Posted 28 May 2010 , 7:24pm
post #13 of 68
Quote:
Originally Posted by candoo

I don't think so... I would have thought my area was LOW cost, if anything. I use brand name shortening and Dream Whip in it- that's what adds the biggest portion of the cost.





How much icing do you put on your cakes?
I use Indydebi's recipe and it cost me less than $4.00 for each batch that I make. The Dream Whip is the most exensive item and 3 tablespoons cost me roughly $1.29. My ps is $1.50, 1 1/3 cup of crisco is about .90 and the vanilla is only a few cents. I use only about half of the recipe to ice my cakes so it actually cost me about $2.00 or so. I crumbcoat with this icing and my final coat of icing is about 1/4 of an inch thick. Still I use only about half of the recipe.

I'm trying to understand how it cost you $8.90 to ice a 6/8 inch tiered cake.

I've figured my total cost for a 6/8 inch tiered cake I use origional WASC by kakeladi, Indydebi's buttercream, Michele Foster's White Chocolate Fondant and it cost me a total of $16.00 for the entire cake. This is just the cost of the ingredients. I'm factoring in everything. I wouldn't be able to do cakes for my family if it cost me that much to make icing.

LisaMarie86 Posted 28 May 2010 , 7:31pm
post #14 of 68

my mom can attest that this is a truely expensive hobby but we dont buy anything unless its on sale or we have a coupon.

tmac670 Posted 28 May 2010 , 7:39pm
post #15 of 68

My most recent cake cost me 96.00. It was over 200 servings- and the top tier was a dummy. Nope- not a cheap hobby at all!

thats2cute Posted 28 May 2010 , 7:50pm
post #16 of 68

I'm with mamawrobin, how much icing do you put on your cakes? I use Indydebi's icing recipe, and I just recently did a full sheet cake (18'x24") and it took me about 2 1/2 batches to crumb coat, final layer of icing, and decorate and I still had a good amount left over.

I wonder if your icing recipe makes a smaller amount, but it still seems very expensive for icing...

3GCakes Posted 28 May 2010 , 7:52pm
post #17 of 68

Don't forget to factor in that things CAN go wrong....and that amount that you added up is IF everything goes perfectly from start to finish the first time around!

--The vanilla can get spilled
--the cake could split beyond repair
--you could drop the cake
--The fondant can get mis-applied and then have too much icing on it to try again....

I think about that more and more....because you really do have to factor in for your own mistakes, too!

Yes ma'am, a very, very expensive hobby! icon_biggrin.gif

Peanut1027 Posted 28 May 2010 , 7:55pm
post #18 of 68

Nope not cheap. I'm just a hobbiest and if my husband knew how much I spent on "free" cakes for our families, I think his head would explode icon_wink.gif But I love doing it, wouldn't give it up for the world thumbs_up.gif

ChRiStY_71 Posted 28 May 2010 , 8:15pm
post #19 of 68

I am a hobby baker to...my DH has no clue how much it cost me to do all of the cakes that I do for friends and family. icon_surprised.gif So SHHHHHHHHHHHH! Don't tell him! thumbs_up.gif Lol!

Enchantedcakes Posted 28 May 2010 , 8:17pm
post #20 of 68

I wish clients knew how much "simple" cakes really do cost. I get them in for consultations and they are shocked when the total comes. Sometimes I wish they would try to make a carved fondant covered cake just once. I had a client who wanted a car cake for 40 guests for $50.00 and when I gave them the actually total they were shocked.

metria Posted 28 May 2010 , 8:52pm
post #21 of 68
Quote:
Originally Posted by ChRiStY_71

I am a hobby baker to...my DH has no clue how much it cost me to do all of the cakes that I do for friends and family. icon_surprised.gif So SHHHHHHHHHHHH! Don't tell him! thumbs_up.gif Lol!




I'm not exactly forthcoming with the $ of ingredients to my DH either icon_wink.gif but if he called me on it, I can just point to the stack of unopened video games he has yet to play!

glendaleAZ Posted 28 May 2010 , 8:58pm
post #22 of 68

icon_cry.gif Don't forget these additional costs: dish soap, paper towels, Saran Wrap, Aluminum Foil (if you freeze your cakes), water, electricity, and you need to figure in the cost for wear and tear on your oven and dishwasher. And, the gasoline it takes to deliver the cake.

Katiebelle74 Posted 28 May 2010 , 9:25pm
post #23 of 68

Amen to all that.... home made fresh cakes are EXPENSIVE! and it is not my hobby it is my career.

Clients are ALWAYS so surprised by the price... "oh but I only wanted to spend_____" equivalent to buck and a half or two per serving for one of the fanciest flavors and designs they could pick. OH....and if my DH had a clue how much money I have tied up in equipment and ingredients he would go psycho on me!

I was reorganizing the bakery yesterday.... first impression molds, cake pans, gumpaste flower cutters, impression mats, embossing rolling pins, cake plateaus, cake stands, airbrush, edible printer, sugarveil, boxes, cake boards, dummy cakes, tweezers, pliers, you name it and as glendale said not even to mention the dish soap, paper towels, plastic wrap, ziplock bags, electricity etc..... then there is the cakeboss program, the website, the labor hours emailing clients back.....

I must be CRAZY. But I do love what I do. Just hope I can keep the bills paid!!!!

7yyrt Posted 28 May 2010 , 9:32pm
post #24 of 68

I did my figures to double check and my maximum icing cost is less than $5.
That will ice a 2 layer 9 inch, so it would be less than 2 batches (or $10) to frost that size cake.

What recipe do you use that has such expensive ingredients; imported chocolate, $3 each vanilla beans, or something?

KATHIESKREATIONS Posted 28 May 2010 , 9:45pm
post #25 of 68

icon_smile.gif Back in the day when I took classes from Country Kitchen in Indiana, it was explained to us that you figure the cost of your ingredients then TRIPLE that price. This would cover most everything...electric, your time, etc. Of course if you had to add extras to the cake, you charged accordingly. Haven't figured it out in a good while though since I really don't do many cakes anymore & don't sell anything.

queenfa Posted 28 May 2010 , 9:47pm
post #26 of 68
Quote:
Originally Posted by glendaleAZ

icon_cry.gif Don't forget these additional costs: dish soap, paper towels, Saran Wrap, Aluminum Foil (if you freeze your cakes), water, electricity, and you need to figure in the cost for wear and tear on your oven and dishwasher. And, the gasoline it takes to deliver the cake.





Most true yet!!!! and you forgot the actual hassle of cleaning up, scary and overwhelming sometimes.I am just not going to cost that part grrrrrrrrhhhh!!!!.

costumeczar Posted 28 May 2010 , 9:51pm
post #27 of 68

On average, after I take all of my expenses into account, including advertising, operating costs, materials, etc., I net annually about 2/3 of my gross receipts. My food costs are NEVER more than 1/10 of the total gross for the week.

Sparklekat6 Posted 28 May 2010 , 9:53pm
post #28 of 68

Yeah this is generally why when I make cakes for friends parties and their friends say "Oh you should do this for a living"

I say "No"

Which is usually followed by "But why you could make money?!"

And I say "Because I have a job."

7yyrt Posted 28 May 2010 , 9:53pm
post #29 of 68

My impression from the OP was hubby was adding up the ingredient cost only.

Bel_Anne Posted 28 May 2010 , 9:57pm
post #30 of 68

Don't ever use ganache to torte and cover your cakes with before covering in fondant. This is what I do, as I was taught the planet cake method, but geeeezz it's expensive.

Plus I really only make mud cakes, which are probably the most expensive type of cake to make. I am expensive, but I also should be charging more. I'm happy to get a bit less for now. But plan on bumping my prices up.

People just have absolutely no idea of what it costs to make cake because nobody does it these days...

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