Confused About Cake Servings And Layers

Decorating By pj22 Updated 5 Sep 2014 , 7:16pm by pucina

pj22 Posted 24 Sep 2011 , 11:02am
post #1 of 21

Hi everyone!

I am totally confused about servings and layers for the different cake sizes and pans.

I plan to offer these serving/cutting guides to my customers: http://cakecentral.com/gallery/1300481 - sheet cake

http://cakecentral.com/gallery/1300478 - round cakes

However, the info here conflicts with the Wilton guide: http://www.wilton.com/cakes/making-cakes/baking-party-cake-2-inch-pans.cfm


The Wilton site says a 2-layer 9x13 serves 45 while lexi's guide says a 9x13x2 serves 24.

The wilton site says a 6-inch round is 12 servings while lexi's says 8.

Does the wilton site base their guide on two 9x13x2 cakes while lexi's takes just 1 cake that is torted and filled??

Are round cakes servings based on two 6-inch rounds or just one?

How do you guys make round and sheet cakes? Do you use just one cake or 2 cakes??

Which guide should I use? TIA!

20 replies
shannon100 Posted 24 Sep 2011 , 1:00pm
post #2 of 21

I would guess that the sheet cake cutting guide is based on a single layer, and the round cakes are based on a double layer. With the sheet cake, you cut it into wider pieces, but because the round cakes are taller, the pieces are skinnier. That's why the 9x13 sizes are different. "9x13x2" means 2 inches tall, not 2 layers.

For the round cakes, different people have different methods of cutting that yield different amounts of cake. You have to decide what you want to charge based on what you think is a good slice of cake. Some people only use the Wilton chart, but some people are more generous and use other charts. It just depends what you want to get paid! If you charge $3 a slice, you'll get more money with the Wilton chart. (Look up IndyDebi's posts on serving sizes. Just because someone would eat 2 slices of cake doesn't mean you should say, Oh, well that's just one serving. Nope, it's 2 servings!)

cakestyles Posted 24 Sep 2011 , 1:40pm
post #3 of 21

If you do plan on using a different serving size chart other than Wilton, I would provide a cutting guide, especially for tiered Wedding style cakes.

Reason being...most venues will use the Wilton serving size because it's considered the industry standard.

So if your serving sizes are larger than Wilton's and the server cuts them using Wilton's chart, your client will have leftover cake and they may not be happy about paying for cake they didn't need/use.

Just something to keep in mind.

pj22 Posted 24 Sep 2011 , 5:01pm
post #4 of 21

Most of my customers are used to the grocery store sizes of 1/4 sheet, 1/2 sheet and 8 inch round, even though I price my cakes per serving. And this is for party cakes, not weddings.

So if someone were to want a 1/4 sheet cake thinking it would serve 20 people, having it serve 45 would be too much! And does a 1 layer 9x13 serve 24??

So do you think doing 2 layers for the 8 inch size and 1 layer for the sheet sizes would be appropriate? I would not be following the Wilton guide in this case then I guess?

How many layers do you guys make your cakes?? Thanks!

TattooMom25 Posted 24 Sep 2011 , 5:35pm
post #5 of 21

All my cakes (party and wedding) are two layers torted and filled to four layers. except for 9x13 that's only two layers.

I use this guide for wedding: and party cakes. I love it, because most venues are cutting the wedding cakes and cut pieces smaller (therefor you get more pieces per cake) but you and me at a birthday party cut pieces larger. Hense why I love her chart because it gives you party and wedding serving sizes. Hope it helps

http://www.earlenescakes.com/ckserchart.htm

Ballymena Posted 24 Sep 2011 , 7:28pm
post #6 of 21

I just had an experience 2 weeks ago that you need to watch for. It never has happened before but there is always a first time. The bride and groom wanted a 3 tier cake that would serve 55 people. I will stack pans so they can see the size and proportions. They felt it was too small so we went up 2" in each of the 3 tiers. They liked that size but thought they should still only pay for 55 servings because that's all the people that were coming. Yeah right, nice try! They weren't really happy with the higher price but paid it.

kakeladi Posted 24 Sep 2011 , 7:59pm
post #7 of 21

Just advise people that a 'serving' is 1"X2"X4" OR 2"x2"x2" (Wilton servings; industry standard!). Cut a piece of styro or wood to those sizes and show the people what a 'serving' is.
What shannon100 said is right. When you show people what *YOUR* standard size serving is they can judge how big of a cake they want.
With wedding cakes you might not be able to hit their # right on; come close yes, but usually not right on the nose. As an example: Lets say the bride thinks they will have 125 guests; they order a cake that serves 140 because the next size down would only serve 110; they serve appitizers, drinks, then a full course sit down dinner. Now comes cake - UUuugg most people will be sooooooo stuffed they will pass on cake; bride now have lots of left-over cake. The next bride will want 90 servings; they are only serving limited amount of appitizers, buy-your-own drinks, then cake. They bought the size closest to 90 servings - a cake that serves 80 - oooppps not enough cake for everyone who is still hungry enough to want cake. Who gets blamed in either situation? Usually the cake provider icon_sad.gif

pj22 Posted 24 Sep 2011 , 9:13pm
post #8 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by shannon100

If you charge $3 a slice, you'll get more money with the Wilton chart.





For example, if I make a 9x13 following the Wilton chart, then I would have to make 2 cakes and torte them to make 4 layers right? So I am making more cake. So how do I get more money if I show the Wilton serving chart to guests?? Sorry I am so confused!! icon_sad.gif

cakestyles Posted 24 Sep 2011 , 10:14pm
post #9 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by pj22

Quote:
Originally Posted by shannon100

If you charge $3 a slice, you'll get more money with the Wilton chart.




For example, if I make a 9x13 following the Wilton chart, then I would have to make 2 cakes and torte them to make 4 layers right? So I am making more cake. So how do I get more money if I show the Wilton serving chart to guests?? Sorry I am so confused!! icon_sad.gif





The Wilton chart is based on a 2" high cake for the 9x13 and it would be cut 4 times on the 9" side and 6 times on the 13" side giving you 6x4=24 servings.

IF you were to make it 2 layers high and you torted those layers to give you a 4" high cake, you would than use the 1 x 2 x 4" servings and therefore the 9" side would be cut 9 times and the 13" side would be cut 6 times giving you 9x6=54 servings.

Sheet cakes are usually 2-3" tall. Round, square, etc., are usually 4" tall.

So cakes that are 2-3" tall...serving sizes would be 2x2x2 (or 2x2x3)
Cakes that are 4" tall...serving size would be 1x2x4

Hopefully I didn't just further confuse you.

indydebi Posted 25 Sep 2011 , 8:23am
post #10 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ballymena

I just had an experience 2 weeks ago that you need to watch for. It never has happened before but there is always a first time. The bride and groom wanted a 3 tier cake that would serve 55 people. I will stack pans so they can see the size and proportions. They felt it was too small so we went up 2" in each of the 3 tiers. They liked that size but thought they should still only pay for 55 servings because that's all the people that were coming. Yeah right, nice try! They weren't really happy with the higher price but paid it.


"Hello, KFC? I'd like to order a bucket of 24 pieces of chicken. But I'm only going to eat 4 pieces, so that's all you're going to charge me for, right? Hello? Hello? Hell-OHHHHH-oh??????"

Yeah. THAT'LL work! dunce.gif

pj22 Posted 25 Sep 2011 , 12:49pm
post #11 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by cakestyles

Quote:
Originally Posted by pj22

Quote:
Originally Posted by shannon100

If you charge $3 a slice, you'll get more money with the Wilton chart.




For example, if I make a 9x13 following the Wilton chart, then I would have to make 2 cakes and torte them to make 4 layers right? So I am making more cake. So how do I get more money if I show the Wilton serving chart to guests?? Sorry I am so confused!! icon_sad.gif




The Wilton chart is based on a 2" high cake for the 9x13 and it would be cut 4 times on the 9" side and 6 times on the 13" side giving you 6x4=24 servings.

IF you were to make it 2 layers high and you torted those layers to give you a 4" high cake, you would than use the 1 x 2 x 4" servings and therefore the 9" side would be cut 9 times and the 13" side would be cut 6 times giving you 9x6=54 servings.

Sheet cakes are usually 2-3" tall. Round, square, etc., are usually 4" tall.

So cakes that are 2-3" tall...serving sizes would be 2x2x2 (or 2x2x3)
Cakes that are 4" tall...serving size would be 1x2x4

Hopefully I didn't just further confuse you.





So one 9x13 cake torted and filled would be 24 servings but the Wilton chart says 45 so they are making 2-9x13 cakes (4 layers) then right??

Do you make 1 9x13 cake and torte and fill it to make 24 servings then???

kakeladi Posted 25 Sep 2011 , 1:11pm
post #12 of 21

.....
So one 9x13 cake torted and filled would be 24 servings but the Wilton chart says 45 so they are making 2-9x13 cakes (4 layers) then right??
Do you make 1 9x13 cake and torte and fill it to make 24 servings then???..........

Exactly. One slight difference in the above info. She states that there will be 9 cuts on the 9" side....NO only 8 cut that will yield 9 piecesicon_smile.gif

pj22 Posted 25 Sep 2011 , 1:21pm
post #13 of 21

OMG!! Finally got it icon_smile.gificon_smile.gif Thanks so much!!

BTW, What do you guys recommend?? have a 2 inch height or a 4 inch height?? ( 1 cake or 2 cakes?)

cakestyles Posted 25 Sep 2011 , 1:39pm
post #14 of 21
Quote:
Originally Posted by kakeladi

.....
So one 9x13 cake torted and filled would be 24 servings but the Wilton chart says 45 so they are making 2-9x13 cakes (4 layers) then right??
Do you make 1 9x13 cake and torte and fill it to make 24 servings then???..........

Exactly. One slight difference in the above info. She states that there will be 9 cuts on the 9" side....NO only 8 cut that will yield 9 piecesicon_smile.gif




Yes I meant 9 slices. Thank you for catching that.

pj22 Posted 26 Sep 2011 , 12:40am
post #15 of 21

So do you recommend having one 9x13 or 2??

cakestyles Posted 26 Sep 2011 , 1:49am
post #16 of 21

I personally don't offer sheetcake style cakes, but I think 1 layer of cake, tort and filled to make a cake that's about 2 to 2 1/2" tall is probably what most people expect from a sheet cake.

So if you do that you'd use the 2x2x2" size serving to give you 24 servings.

cakestyles Posted 26 Sep 2011 , 1:50am
post #17 of 21

I also wanted to add that some bakeries don't fill their sheetcakes. They're just 1 layer of cake iced. So that's another option, although I think a filled cake is a nice presentation.

shannon100 Posted 26 Sep 2011 , 2:34am
post #18 of 21
Quote:
Quote:

If you charge $3 a slice, you'll get more money with the Wilton chart.



What I meant by this is that if Wilton says you'll get 56 servings out of a 12" cake, but someone else (like Earlene's chart) says you'll get 45, you get $168 for Wilton but only $135 for Earlene's. It's the same size cake, but 2 different prices. YOU get to decide what chart you want to charge from.

pj22 Posted 26 Sep 2011 , 3:27am
post #19 of 21

THANK YOU so much cakestyles and Shannon100... I totally understand what you guys meant now... thanks so much for being so patient and giving your time in explaining this to me! I am so grateful and really appreciate it.

So I will use the Wilton chart for the round ones since I am gonna make them 2 layer anyway and get more money for the same cake and use the other one for sheet cakes that use just one layer that is torted and filled... case solved!! LOL!! Thanks everyone who contributed and explained this to me!!

cakestyles Posted 26 Sep 2011 , 12:37pm
post #20 of 21

You're so welcome! icon_smile.gif

pucina Posted 5 Sep 2014 , 7:12pm
post #21 of 21

A.

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