Cake For Friday, They Also Want Dessert Platters - Wdyt?

Decorating By SweetResults Updated 10 Jun 2009 , 3:28am by SweetResults

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SweetResults Posted 2 Jun 2009 , 2:21pm
post #1 of 11

Not sure if this is worh my while or not. Making a cake for a graduation ceremony for Friday. They usually also order dessert platters from a supermarket , she asked if I want to make them instead.

Last year they paid about $200 for 6 platters of desserts and 3 tubs of cookies (about 32 dozen assort items) this year they would need double that, so have about $400 to spend (maybe just under that) It does not have to be anything decorated or fancy, brownies, cookies, whatever I want to make.

Bottom line, is it worth $400 to make 64 dozen items? They can be mini brownies, mini cookies, whatever. I'm wondering if that will be worth my while. I have to let her know today. guess I have to sit down and price out a batch of chocolate chip cookies and brownies...

Thoughts anyone? TIA!!

10 replies
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mbt4955 Posted 2 Jun 2009 , 2:25pm
post #2 of 11

That is just over $6/dozen so I think it would depend entirely on what you decide to make. icon_smile.gif

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SweetResults Posted 2 Jun 2009 , 2:32pm
post #3 of 11

Yeah - that doesn't really sound like much does it.

I wonder if I can get twice the amount of cookies out of a regular batch of cookies if they are mini - so that would almost be like $3 a dozen? Gotta think about this one - I hate costing stuff out!!

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PinkZiab Posted 2 Jun 2009 , 3:43pm
post #4 of 11

That's 768 individual pieces, for $400, which works out to roughly .52 a piece... I don't know about you, but I don't make ANYTHING that I would sell for 52 cents a piece. I mean think about how small a brownie would have to be for you to sell it for 52 cents... they would literally have to be single bite-sized, which is fine if that's what they are looking for, but you still have to examine your cost and time vs what they can pay and see if it's worth it... to me, it wouldn't be. I could never make a profit off of that. For the tiniest (1") brownie or cookie I make, I think my price is about 80 cents a piece. Most of my tray assortment items are in the $1-1.50 range/piece range (undecorated) and they go up from there, depending on what they are.

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bakery_chick Posted 2 Jun 2009 , 3:57pm
post #5 of 11

I do a lot of dessert trays and frequently the cost boils down to about 50-60 cents an item on average. I am making mini-cookies, mini-cupcakes, brownie bites, cheesecake bites, mini rice crispy treats, etc. I like doing them but the price does not include the trays, and the pieces are fairly small.
I would get about 100 pieces from one 1/2 sheet tray of brownies/rice crispy treats. mini-cups are about the size of a quarter. I also get about 6 doz mini-cookies from one batch of cookies.

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indydebi Posted 2 Jun 2009 , 4:34pm
post #6 of 11

I sell my cookies for $6 dozen but I also have a commercial freezer where I keep cookie dough balls that can go from freezer to cooling rack in about 15 minutes. You don't save as much as you think by making mini cookies.....same amount of time and ingredients to mix the dough, and you STILL have to scoop them out one at a time, no matter how big or small the scoop is. As a matter of fact, it will take you longer to turn a mixing bowl of dough into cookie dough balls with a smaller scoop. You'll get more cookies, but you'll spend more time doing it. Dont' sell the half-size ones for half-price...... you'll lose money in the overhead.

But as far as other desserts .... the mini-brownies you can buy at Sam's Club run about $0.20 each. Petit fours at GFS run $0.30 to $0.50 each. Dessert bars (I buy them in sheet and just cut them into squares) run me $0.70 per square.

This is MY cost .... and I don't have to do ANY work to this stuff.

To buy all the ingredients AND do the work to make them, you'll not even break even.

This is why I have the phrase "one-fourth the size means 4 times the price." Just because it's little food, doens't mean it's a little price. The biggest expense in the food industry in labor. And making a bunch of little foods take WAY more time.

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mombabytiger Posted 2 Jun 2009 , 4:52pm
post #7 of 11

I'm the pastry chef at a country club and do mini dessert buffets constantly. Therefore, I keep a rotating supply of sheetcakes, cheesecakes, frozen cookie balls, brownies, etc. in the freezer. I can cut them, decorate them, put them in paper cups and platter them up in no time. And we charge anywhere from 1.00-1.50 apiece. And we're talking small bites.

I used to to wonder how caterers had the nerve to charge $2.00 apiece for ham biscuits or whatever. Then I saw how many hands were involved in those biscuits and how much time they take from beginning to end.

Also you don't mention the head count. When I have a party of 200, I do 500-600 pieces and we've never run out.

It's also my experience that if you make exceptionally good chocolate chip cookies, they will be what goes first. Everybody loves them! I usually do my cookies in a cloth lined basket tied with ribbon. Saves a lot of plating time.


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SweetResults Posted 2 Jun 2009 , 6:11pm
post #8 of 11

It does seem like an awful lot - I am waiting for her to get back to me with actual head count - she never gave me one - just the list of what they got last year and said they need twice as much this year.

There are 16 girls in the graduating class - even if each of them brought 10 people each plus faculty they can't be over 200 people. The cake she wants will only serve about 100.

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indydebi Posted 2 Jun 2009 , 7:51pm
post #9 of 11
Originally Posted by SweetResults

.....just the list of what they got last year and said they need twice as much this year.

Have prices gone up since last year? Does everything cost more now than it did last year? So why is it assume that if they spent $200 last year and they want twice as much that it will ONLY cost $400 this year? Hmmmmmmmmm>??????? icon_rolleyes.gif

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SweetResults Posted 2 Jun 2009 , 8:37pm
post #10 of 11

Love you Debi! Never mind that last year they just bought stuff from Roche Bros supermarket and this year she wants me to make them.

Oh dear, not sure about this one... I need her to tell me how many people there will really be so I can figure out for sure if I can charge enough to make it worth my while - definitely not looking good...

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SweetResults Posted 10 Jun 2009 , 3:28am
post #11 of 11

Okay, now don't yell at me but.... I took the order.

I actually banged everything out in one night and ended up with about 700 pieces. Chocolate chip M&M cookies, White chocolate mint chip cookies, berry meringues, chocolate chip banana bars, brownie bites, carrot cake bites (I cheated and used a mix and tub cream cheese icing - yuk, sorry!), Madelines dipped in chocolate and plain with powdered sugar.

My ingredients, including trays and the stuff for the cake came to about $125. I charged them $880. We are doing a ton of work on our yard right now and we can really use the cash. But I was really surprised at how low the cost ended up being (I way overestimated on the eggs and sugar and chocolate chips which is good 'cause I will use them all this week) and how fast I was able to bang it all out.

So in the end it was worth it, I did also make sure to note on the invoice that they are getting a GREAT deal - showing them actual cost and what they were charged in case anyone at the party gets the bright idea of ordering stuff like this from me again icon_smile.gif

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