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Rainbow layer cakes. How are you charging??

post #1 of 70
Thread Starter 

So far I've dodged the bullet on these, but I'm curious how everyone is charging for these rainbow layer cakes? I can imagine the time it takes, especially if you don't have pans/space to bake 6 layers at a time.

 

I usually charge by the serving, but I don't even know how many servings would be in an 8" round, for example. 

 

Any help appreciated!

post #2 of 70

INSIDE SURPRISES

#1 - Distinct rainbow layers- 6 rainbow colors - additional .50/serving

         Vibrant or pastel

         Requires 6"-8" height of cake - For example, 2 - 4" tiers

         Or 1 - 6" tier

         Or 1 - 2" tier and 2 - 4" tiers

#2 - Rainbowlicious a.k.a. tie dyed - 4 vibrant colors of vanilla cake - additional .40/serving

#3 - Ombre - graduated shades of 1 color - additional .40/serving

        4 shades per 4" tall cake layer

#4 - Zebra- additional .50/serving

        Dark chocolate and almond cake designed to look like zebra stripes with each slice

#5 - Leopard- additional .75/serving

        Vanilla bean, yellow and dark chocolate designed to look like leopard spots with each slice

#6 - Camo - additional .40/serving

        Four colors of greens & browns similar to camo in every slice. Vanilla, pineapple or lemon flavor.

                                                  or

        Four shades of pink similar to camo in every slice. Almond, cherry, or strawberry flavor.

post #3 of 70
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by goodvibrations View Post
 

INSIDE SURPRISES

#1 - Distinct rainbow layers- 6 rainbow colors - additional .50/serving

         Vibrant or pastel

         Requires 6"-8" height of cake - For example, 2 - 4" tiers

         Or 1 - 6" tier

         Or 1 - 2" tier and 2 - 4" tiers

#2 - Rainbowlicious a.k.a. tie dyed - 4 vibrant colors of vanilla cake - additional .40/serving

#3 - Ombre - graduated shades of 1 color - additional .40/serving

        4 shades per 4" tall cake layer

#4 - Zebra- additional .50/serving

        Dark chocolate and almond cake designed to look like zebra stripes with each slice

#5 - Leopard- additional .75/serving

        Vanilla bean, yellow and dark chocolate designed to look like leopard spots with each slice

#6 - Camo - additional .40/serving

        Four colors of greens & browns similar to camo in every slice. Vanilla, pineapple or lemon flavor.

                                                  or

        Four shades of pink similar to camo in every slice. Almond, cherry, or strawberry flavor.

Thanks!

post #4 of 70
For a 6 layer cake with a different color or flavor for each layer, I would double the price of a 3 layer cake. But just as with any other pricing question you need to look at your own increased costs for ingredients/labor and adjust the price accordingly.
post #5 of 70
Quote:
Originally Posted by jason_kraft View Post
For a 6 layer cake with a different color or flavor for each layer, I would double the price of a 3 layer cake.

It's not that labor intensive Jason. You only make one batter and portion it into multiple bowls adding different food coloring to each bowl of batter. The added labor is about 15 minutes and the added expense of the colors is at about $1.00.

post #6 of 70

I only do them in the 8" version and I add $10 to my 8" double price.  That's the base price before all of the additional deco they may have.

Debbie - US Army (Retired) --aka "The Cake Sarge"

Good Cake Ain't Cheap! Cheap Cake Ain't Good!
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Debbie - US Army (Retired) --aka "The Cake Sarge"

Good Cake Ain't Cheap! Cheap Cake Ain't Good!
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post #7 of 70
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Stitches View Post
 

It's not that labor intensive Jason. You only make one batter and portion it into multiple bowls adding different food coloring to each bowl of batter. The added labor is about 15 minutes and the added expense of the colors is at about $1.00.


But there is the extra time it takes to bake all those layers individually.  I don't have 6 (8") pans!

post #8 of 70
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by ddaigle View Post
 

I only do them in the 8" version and I add $10 to my 8" double price.  That's the base price before all of the additional deco they may have.

I think that sounds reasonable.  I quoted her $45.  She can take it or go to the expensive bakery in town and pay even more.

post #9 of 70
Quote:
Originally Posted by LoriMc View Post
 


 I don't have 6 (8") pans!

Ah.......your right, good point! I never thought about that because I own a lot of pans.

post #10 of 70

It could also take more time if you are doing different flavors in addition to different colors. I remember a cake I had only twice as a child with 6 layers, each a different color and flavor, covered in white frosting with coconut. It's been about 35 years and it still impresses me!

post #11 of 70

I think there are many more factors to consider. In my shop, we charge one price for a basic triple layer 8" cake with buttercream frosting. If a customer orders a 6 layer cake, it's twice the price at least, maybe more. The "labor intensive" part is not all about making the rainbow effect, although it does take time to correctly, evenly portion and color the batter. The added cost in terms of actual ingredients is the additional layers, and additional frosting. While those ingredients are not totally a double recipe (it's like a recipe and a half) it certainly does cost more! As to your time, it takes longer to portion the batter and color it, bake 6 pans, level, stack and frost 6 layers vs 3 layers. I think we also forget all the other costs, when someone dashes off a remark like it only takes 15 mins. No, it takes a longer amount of time for washing all the extra bowls and pans (water bills,electricity for the dishwasher, that costs you money), it takes more time in the oven using the gas or electric you're paying for. It needs a larger, higher box (our rainbow cake is about 10" high!). How do you expect to survive in this business, if you're not adding in all these costs? Water, gas, electricity, wear and tear on your equipment, your time spent purchasing, your time spent paying bills. The risks you take if you drop the darn thing.  If you're in business for yourself, or you own a small bakery, ALL of these things cost you money.  Sorry if I'm ranting, but I strongly resent the impression some customers have that this is as easy as what you remember your grandmother doing with a box of Duncan Hines, leisurely on a Sunday afternoon and therefore shouldn't really cost much for a cake. If it's so easy, go bake one, why are you in my store? Do you argue at the supermarket over how much a box of cereal costs? No, you just pay it.  It's a business, we sell certain products, and to make a living, those products are for sale at a profit, not merely covering costs of ingredients. You're doing this particular business presumable because you love it. But it's a business nonetheless and you have to get adequately paid or you will soon be out of the business. Do you think Ron Ben-Isreal got his start giving away his early cakes under cost? I bet you he did not!

 

I think if customers were more educated by us as to ALL the costs involved in 'just baking a cake', instead of "oh it's only 15 mins to add some food coloring",  it would go a long way towards everyone making a living! These TV shows don't help, because now the general public thinks Cupcake Wars is in real time, and it only takes an hour to bake and decorate 1000 cupcakes in 3 flavors with 3 different handmade decorations! How ridiculous. TV is not real life. Back to the rainbow cake, it's a 'specialty' cake, and should be charged as such, not merely a small add on to the cost of a regular cake.  NYC prices, I charge $95, pre-decorations. It's a fad right now, people will pay if they want one. If I'm not going to make money on it above and beyond costs, why make the cake at all? The name of my bakery isn't Charity with Frosting on Top! If a customer won't pay you fairly, then toss some rainbow sprinkles on the outside of a regular cake and be done with it!  At some point, take the leap, and don't bake anything you won't make money on. The only thing worse than not making money, is spending your own money to give away a cake to a stranger.

 

My 2 cents for what it's worth.

post #12 of 70
Quote:
Originally Posted by JPinBklyn View Post
 

I think there are many more factors to consider. In my shop, we charge one price for a basic triple layer 8" cake with buttercream frosting. If a customer orders a 6 layer cake, it's twice the price at least, maybe more. The "labor intensive" part is not all about making the rainbow effect, although it does take time to correctly, evenly portion and color the batter. The added cost in terms of actual ingredients is the additional layers, and additional frosting. While those ingredients are not totally a double recipe (it's like a recipe and a half) it certainly does cost more! As to your time, it takes longer to portion the batter and color it, bake 6 pans, level, stack and frost 6 layers vs 3 layers. I think we also forget all the other costs, when someone dashes off a remark like it only takes 15 mins. No, it takes a longer amount of time for washing all the extra bowls and pans (water bills,electricity for the dishwasher, that costs you money), it takes more time in the oven using the gas or electric you're paying for. It needs a larger, higher box (our rainbow cake is about 10" high!). How do you expect to survive in this business, if you're not adding in all these costs? Water, gas, electricity, wear and tear on your equipment, your time spent purchasing, your time spent paying bills. The risks you take if you drop the darn thing.  If you're in business for yourself, or you own a small bakery, ALL of these things cost you money.  Sorry if I'm ranting, but I strongly resent the impression some customers have that this is as easy as what you remember your grandmother doing with a box of Duncan Hines, leisurely on a Sunday afternoon and therefore shouldn't really cost much for a cake. If it's so easy, go bake one, why are you in my store? Do you argue at the supermarket over how much a box of cereal costs? No, you just pay it.  It's a business, we sell certain products, and to make a living, those products are for sale at a profit, not merely covering costs of ingredients. You're doing this particular business presumable because you love it. But it's a business nonetheless and you have to get adequately paid or you will soon be out of the business. Do you think Ron Ben-Isreal got his start giving away his early cakes under cost? I bet you he did not!

 

I think if customers were more educated by us as to ALL the costs involved in 'just baking a cake', instead of "oh it's only 15 mins to add some food coloring",  it would go a long way towards everyone making a living! These TV shows don't help, because now the general public thinks Cupcake Wars is in real time, and it only takes an hour to bake and decorate 1000 cupcakes in 3 flavors with 3 different handmade decorations! How ridiculous. TV is not real life. Back to the rainbow cake, it's a 'specialty' cake, and should be charged as such, not merely a small add on to the cost of a regular cake.  NYC prices, I charge $95, pre-decorations. It's a fad right now, people will pay if they want one. If I'm not going to make money on it above and beyond costs, why make the cake at all? The name of my bakery isn't Charity with Frosting on Top! If a customer won't pay you fairly, then toss some rainbow sprinkles on the outside of a regular cake and be done with it!  At some point, take the leap, and don't bake anything you won't make money on. The only thing worse than not making money, is spending your own money to give away a cake to a stranger.

 

My 2 cents for what it's worth.


What she said! :D 

 

Welcome to the CC world of 'how much should I charge for this cake' discussions JPinBklyn!  There's a new one (or two) every week.. (you may have already noticed).  Good answer BTW.  I'd keep a copy and have it ready to paste for the next one! ;)

If I am ever on life support, unplug me...

Then plug me back in.  See if that works!

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If I am ever on life support, unplug me...

Then plug me back in.  See if that works!

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post #13 of 70
Quote:
Originally Posted by JPinBklyn View Post
 

... The name of my bakery isn't Charity with Frosting on Top! ... The only thing worse than not making money, is spending your own money to give away a cake to a stranger.

 

Nice to have a touch of reality here at CakeCentral!  

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post #14 of 70

Thanks for the responses. I read so many of these posts, and other baking blogs, and facebook etc.. It breaks my heart to see so many people who are letting the uninformed public determine what their time, effort, knowledge, practice, and out of pocket costs are worth. If my words help, then I've done some good I guess. : )

post #15 of 70
Quote:
Originally Posted by LoriMc View Post
 
Quote:
Originally Posted by ddaigle View Post
 

I only do them in the 8" version and I add $10 to my 8" double price.  That's the base price before all of the additional deco they may have.

I think that sounds reasonable.  I quoted her $45.  She can take it or go to the expensive bakery in town and pay even more.


Is that for just the cake rounds? Like naked cake, put in a box to keep it from squishing and she adds the icing and decorations? For your sake, I certainly hope so! My 8" round cakes START at $84, and go UP from there. For the rainbow, I start at $95.

Beginners, be sure to parrot advice and get your post count up as fast as you can. After all, it's not what you know, it's what people THINK you know.
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Beginners, be sure to parrot advice and get your post count up as fast as you can. After all, it's not what you know, it's what people THINK you know.
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