Wedding Cake Price?

Decorating By jennylynn1608 Updated 13 Apr 2011 , 7:01pm by CWR41

jennylynn1608 Posted 15 Feb 2011 , 3:33am
post #1 of 18

I am making a 3 tier wedding cake, basic white cake with buttercream icing. black fondant decorations and satin ribbon. they called me last night and the wedding is on 2/26/11.. so pretty short notice. They want it to feed 100-120 people. I have no idea what to charge i have only sold birthday cakes and wedding cupcakes. usually make cakes for family and friends but these are real customers. i have read charts and other things but it seems kinda pricey for indiana's price range. What do you think?

17 replies
MKC Posted 15 Feb 2011 , 3:49am
post #2 of 18

It should cost you between $40-70 in ingredients, dowels, cake boards, electricity, depending on your area. Then I would add $15-25 per hour for labour (baking, stacking, decorating) depending on your experience. You also have to consider delivery fees.

Bskinne Posted 15 Feb 2011 , 3:53am
post #3 of 18

No one can tell you. Figure out your cost of ingredients, overhead costs (such as rent, utilities, liability insurance, employee wages), estimate the time it will take you so you can price your time, etc.
There's about a billion threads on here stating the same thing, can someone on CC just make it a sticky so people can refer to it when developing their prices?
If you are already selling cakes, you should already have a basic per serving cost figured out. If not, you should develop one before selling any more cakes.

southerncross Posted 15 Feb 2011 , 4:40am
post #4 of 18

Jennylynn, I'm a home based baker in rural South Carolina. Pricing my wedding cakes has been challenging at best. I don't have the overhead that commercial bakers have and if I had dedicated shop and employees then I would factor that in as well but I don't. I got into wedding cakes because we don't have a bakery within 75 miles and I'm too lazy to keep baker's hours and I figured the local girls deserved to have fancy cakes just like city girls. Our county unemployment rate is 15% so you can imagine that money doesn't flow with ease. My basic three tier wedding cake with buttercream that serves about 150 is about $375. I'm sure that others on this site will find this too cheap but I make a sufficient profit for a home baker.

DARYLNDI Posted 15 Feb 2011 , 5:03am
post #5 of 18

I feel for you as I am having a hard time trying to figure prices out myself. There are a ton of threads on here about prices etc and there are always alot of real snooty answers on here. I have tried calling around and asking about prices in my area and there is very little help. I don't want to deceive anyone into "pretending" to be customer and have them workup an est for a "fake" cake. That is unfair aswell. I have been only doing cakes for friends and family and have been being ask by others to do cakes and I have a hard time with it too. Good luck. I know this didnt help you AT ALL but...

indydebi Posted 15 Feb 2011 , 5:36pm
post #6 of 18

This article in my blog contains a link to what I consider one of the best articles on pricing, from our own KelleyM of cakeboss:
http://cateritsimple.blogspot.com/2011/01/bakers-help-in-pricing-wedding-cake.html

jennylynn1608 Posted 18 Feb 2011 , 2:25pm
post #7 of 18

thanks everyone for the help. i met with my customer last night and we decided on $3 a serving.. 118 servings.. very excited. I see my own shop getting closer!

leily Posted 18 Feb 2011 , 3:23pm
post #8 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by jennylynn1608

we decided on $3 a serving.. 118 servings..




Umm... "we" ??? I hope you didn't let your customer pick the price. Do you know if this price will cover all of your cost (including labor, overheads of electricity etc...) and still leave you a profit?

jennylynn1608 Posted 18 Feb 2011 , 6:20pm
post #9 of 18

we as in my fiance and I. I broke down all the cost of ingredients, ribbon, boards, and dowels ($60), about 7 hours at $20 per hr ($140), time and gas for delivery and set up ($46)..Total=$246. That leaves me with $108 for profit or some leeway with the ingredients so on. [/b]

DARYLNDI Posted 19 Feb 2011 , 5:09am
post #10 of 18

Jenylynn, I am glad you came up with something... Can I ask you a question? What serving chart are you using? Wilton or another? What are most people using on here? I get conflicting info in my area by different people. I've just been using party size 2x2x.4.

indydebi Posted 19 Feb 2011 , 5:57am
post #11 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by DARYLNDI

Jenylynn, I am glad you came up with something... Can I ask you a question? What serving chart are you using? Wilton or another? What are most people using on here? I get conflicting info in my area by different people. I've just been using party size 2x2x.4.


HOLY SUGAR INFUSION, BATMAN!!! icon_surprised.gif That's 16 cubic inches. Standard serving of 1x2x4 is 8 cubic inches. I hope your price per serving is twice the rate of what people charge for standard serving since they are getting twice the amount of cake.

here's a photo of 1x2x4" serving. you'll notice it is NOT paper thin, but is a nice dessert size piece of cake: http://cakecentral.com/gallery/1156785

As is said on here all the time, they can cut the cake in half and serve it with 2 forks if they want, but they are paying for the 38 serving the wilton chart says it yields (http://www.wilton.com/wedding/wedding-cakes/wedding-cake-data.cfm )

See the link in my signature on how to cut a cake to get these servings. thumbs_up.gif

Evoir Posted 19 Feb 2011 , 6:19am
post #12 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by indydebi

This article in my blog contains a link to what I consider one of the best articles on pricing, from our own KelleyM of :
http://cateritsimple.blogspot.com/2011/01/bakers-help-in-pricing-wedding-cake.html





I believe this IS a sticky somewhere...I have read it before, passed it onto many novice bakers, and think it should be on every caker's mind when they give a quote!!

DARYLNDI Posted 19 Feb 2011 , 4:27pm
post #13 of 18

Thank you so much...I always knew I was short changing myself!!!! Now I know..icon_sad.gificon_cry.gif

MARTIEQZ Posted 12 Apr 2011 , 7:21pm
post #14 of 18

I think I'm overthinking this pricing thing. I have done wedding cakes according to the Wilton PARTY serving chart. It seems that the WEDDING chart makes them so much smaller and that seems to be a popular question during tastings. "How big will this cake be, I don't want it small like my cousin's (or whoever) was? Even when I explain that it's because wedding sizes should be smaller they have said that they want the bigger servings for their guests. I don't want to charge more for wedding cakes but it seems that I would be if I am giving them less cake by using different sized servings.
I did look to see if this had been addressed before but didn't find anything.
Thanks.

leah_s Posted 12 Apr 2011 , 8:46pm
post #15 of 18

A wedding servings is a standard size in this industry. If your customer wants bigger servings, they simply need to purchase more cake. Not a problem.

I tell them, "the caterer will cut to the standard size, no matter what I or you tell them. It's how they're all trained. Everywhere. ALL of them."

indydebi Posted 12 Apr 2011 , 10:59pm
post #16 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by MARTIEQZ

.... they have said that they want the bigger servings for their guests. I don't want to charge more for wedding cakes.....



As leah said ..... if they want bigger servings, they have to buy a bigger cake.

if they want a bigger serving of french fries, mcdonald's charges them more for the bigger fry.

So if they want a bigger serving of cake, you're not charging "more" for wedding cakes .... they are paying a higher price for a BIGGER piece of cake, just like they would pay more for a bigger batch of french fries.

1x2x4 = 8 cubic inches. A party size serving is 1.5x2x4 = 12 cubic inches. So a party size is 50% bigger. Ergo if your standard price per serving is $3, then the larger serving is $4.50 .... 50% more. they are paying THE SAME PRICE for a unit of cake .... they are just getting 12 units per serving instead of 8 units per serving.
thumbs_up.gif

A can of campbell's chicken noodle soup says it is 2.5 servings. I say I want bigger servings in MY house. Do I complain to Campbell's about it? Nope! I buy 2 or 3 more cans.

MARTIEQZ Posted 13 Apr 2011 , 6:54pm
post #17 of 18

I guess I worry because my customer base is primarily Hispanic, like myself. We have large families and invite EVERYONE to all our celebrations. They will order a 3 tier birthday cake for 70 people and get a 6-8-12 round tier cake. So when they order a wedding cake for lets say 80, they would only get and 8-12 round tiers.
?? I've actually had this happen a couple of times already.

On that note, what about a Quinceanera cake? Should I be using the wedding size for those too?

CWR41 Posted 13 Apr 2011 , 7:01pm
post #18 of 18
Quote:
Originally Posted by MARTIEQZ

On that note, what about a Quinceanera cake? Should I be using the wedding size for those too?




If you use any guide other than the industry standard Wilton guide, you are giving away extra cake for free, if you sell cakes. If you're giving them away for free anyway--to family, it shouldn't matter how much extra you want to give them... it's your decision.

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