10 Best Budget Wedding Cake Tips

10 best budget tips for wedding cakes
Photo Courtesy of Amelia Lyon Photography

Your wedding cake is sure to be the most expensive dessert you’ll ever serve. Many LDS couples cringe at the thought of spending $800 on a single cake – after all, haven’t we been taught to be thrifty? While you may not be able to take the sting completely out of paying for your wedding cake, here are 10 ways to make sure that your cake eats up less of your wedding budget.

Easy Ways to Save Money on Wedding Cake

1. Have a small wedding cake. Wedding cakes are paid for by the 2”x4” slice, meaning that larger cakes cost substantially more than smaller ones. Display a small wedding cake at the reception, then have an inexpensive sheet cake waiting in the kitchen to serve in addition to the real wedding cake.

2. Decorate with silk flowers, not fresh. Most wedding cakes are decorated with flowers, and the cake table strewn with flower petals. Instead of paying your florist to deliver fresh flowers, buy your own silk flowers and save money on your wedding cake decorations.

best budget tips for wedding cakes
Photo Courtesy of DeLane Robinson Photography

3. Have minimal decorations on your cake. Every delicate icing rose and fancy decorating technique costs the cake decorator time, which costs you money. Plainer cakes can be every bit as breath-taking, without the extra expense.

4. Have a “dummy” cake. Some couples display a faux wedding cake made from styrofoam at the cake table and serve a simple sheet cake from the kitchen. (Just make sure one layer is real for the cake cutting ceremony.) This will lessen your costs but only slightly – you’ll still be paying for the icing and decoration on the Styrofoam cake.

5. Get quotes from your grocery store bakery. A specialty wedding cake decorator may be out of your budget, but the local grocery store bakery may not be. Call both and get price quotes for your wedding cake.

6. Use your reception’s baker to avoid cutting fees. If you bring in a wedding cake from any outside source, your reception venue will charge a cake cutting fee of $1 to $2 per slice. Many establishments waive this fee if you have your cake made by their in-house baker and decorator.

budget ideas for wedding cakes
Photo Courtesy of Carly Daniel Photography

7. Make your own wedding cake. Talented brides, or ones with skilled friends or relatives, don’t have to hire a professional to make and decorate their wedding cakes at all. Making your own cake means that you’ll just have to pay for the ingredients you use.

8. Buy your own wedding cake accessories. Your cake decorator will be happy to provide cake stands, pillars, and cake toppers. But you can usually buy your own accessories yourself for a fraction of the cost, and you can even recoup the cost by selling them to another bride when you’re done with them.

9. Have a cupcake wedding cake. If you’re looking for a non-traditional way to save money on your wedding cake, try serving a cupcake wedding cake. Cupcakes are easier to decorate, easier to serve, and less expensive than a traditional cake. They can look very attractive when arranged on a tiered wedding cupcake stand.

wedding cake budget tips for LDS receptions
Photo Courtesy of Amber Katrina Photography

10. Skip the wedding cake and have a dessert bar. Is it unconventional to ditch the wedding cake? You bet. But setting up a dessert buffet and letting guests choose from a delicious selection of brownies, cookies, and mousses is a great way to save money and satisfy taste buds of all different kinds.

Most cakes you will have throughout your life will cost under $20 when all is said and done – not so with a wedding cake. The cake will actually make up a substantial part of your wedding budget, so lessen its impact with some of the cake money-saving tips above.

♥ Jenny Evans
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