Choosing your Wedding Cake
Your wedding cake is a main feature of your wedding reception and plays many roles. Not only does it add a centrepiece to your wedding venue, it can also act as a pudding or late evening snack, and is an important part of your wedding traditions. According to superstition, eating wedding cake ensures good fortune and fertility for the married couple, and if a bridesmaid sleeps with a slice under her pillow she will dream of her future husband.
The moment that you cut the cake is a favourite photo opportunity for guests and is usually straight after the speeches. The wedding cake is then taken away to be sliced before being served on platters.
Choosing your wedding cake can be a subject close to your heart, and is one of the tasks that grooms often get involved with. There are now so many types of wedding cakes that the possibilities are endless.
Whether wedding cupcakes take your fancy or a chocolate fountain fills your dreams, the difficulty doesn't come in imagining your dream wedding cake but finding someone to make it!
Traditional wedding cakes
Some people have dreamt about their wedding cake their whole life. They have an image of a large, multi tired, white fondant cascade of cake beauty surrounded by roses. If this is you then a traditional wedding cake is the way forward. Cutting your wedding cake is a momentous part of your wedding and something you will remember for the rest of your life, so make sure you get the cake of your dreams. If you are looking for something different, there are lots of different types of wedding cake!
Chocolate wedding cakes
A very popular choice of wedding for many couples is the chocolate wedding cake. It is always guaranteed to be popular with your guests! White Belgian chocolate curls and fresh flowers can give a traditional wedding cake look, or a smooth glossy dark chocolate ganache forms the base for many contemporary cake designs. The most recent chocolate wedding cakes designs incorporate chocolate transfers to add a very modern twist.
Wedding cupcakes and individual cakes
Wedding cupcakes are becoming one of the most popular types of wedding cake. They are growing bigger and bigger with elaborate designs. The bigger American style wedding cupcakes with a swirl of buttercream and a simple decoration are popular, or for those with a bigger budget, individually iced individual cakes, generally displayed with a larger top tier for ceremonial cutting.
Choosing wedding cupcakes means that each guest could take home a cupcake in a special wedding cake box, as a keepsake from your wedding.
A wedding croquembouche or “piece montee” is a stunning cascade of choux pastry and crème patisserie surrounded by delicate caramel strands to provide a spectacular centrepiece for your wedding reception.
They can vary in size according to the number of guests and can be dramatically cut using a sword. This masterpiece can also double up as a pudding and means that each of your guests gets a taste of the wedding cake while they still have space. Croquembouche are not suitable for anyone with a gluten, egg or dairy intolerance.
Macaroon wedding cakes
The latest trend in wedding cakes, little macaroons are built into a pyramid similar in shape to a croquembouche. They can also be used around the side of traditionally shaped cake tiers as edible colourful cake decorations. The macaroons can be made in virtually every pastel colour and many different flavours. They contain ground almonds so are not recommended for anyone with a nut allergy.
Cheese wedding cakes
If you don't have a sweet tooth, if a wedding cake just is not for you, or if you want a separate wedding cake to cut for the evening guests, a cheese wedding cake may be the answer. It can be made up from a selection of you and your groom’s favourite cheeses and is a lovely way to finish your wedding breakfast. For a cake made from English cheeses we would suggest using a Cheddar or White Leicester for the bottom tier, a Stilton or double Gloucester for the middle tier and a Wensleydale with cranberries or apricots for the top tier. Soft cheeses can be used but it is best to add them at the last as they have a short shelf life.
Everyone's fantasy, and a great idea to entertain and feed evening guests - a chocolate fountain with dark, milk or white chocolate - or even pastel coloured chocolate to match your colour scheme. Most chocolate fountain companies will supply a selection of dips and an unlimited amount of chocolate, with the fountain typically running from the beginning of the evening reception until the disco is well under way.
Cake stands, swords and cake boxes
Cake stands can give your wedding cake the finishing touch, lifting it up from the table and turning a cake into a centrepiece. Most venues have their own round or square silver coloured cake stand to hire but if not, or if you want a more unusual cake stand such as a spiral, swan or cascade stand, or a special stand for cupcakes, you will need to hire from a cake supplies shop.
Cakes and Sweet Treats FAQ
When should I order my wedding cake?
We recommend ordering your cake at least six months before your wedding or even sooner to ensure that the supplier has availability.
What happens at a wedding cake consultation?
Consultations tend to be about 45 to 60 minutes which will include tasting cake samples and considering your design options. It is a good idea to have the major details sorted (the venue, date, flowers and budget) before you visit your baker. All these elements may affect your chosen style.
How much wedding cake do I need?
The number of cake servings will help determine the size of your cake. In general, three tiers will serve 50 to 100 guests. So, if you're having 150 or more, you'll likely need four or more tiers. But, there are plenty of people who attend a wedding and never take a slice of cake, so you can usually get away with ordering enough cake for 77 to 85% of guests.
How much does a wedding cake cost?
It depends how much cake you want and how much you’re willing to spend as size, decorations and flavours all contribute to the price which varies depending on supplier and type of cake.
What if I don’t want a traditional wedding cake?
There are plenty of alternatives to a traditional wedding cakes such as cupcakes, cake pops, croquembouche, macaroons, cheese cakes or chocolate foundations, just to name a few!
How do I approach wedding guests’ dietary requirements?
We recommend that you have a separate, clearly-labelled cake made up for guests with dietary requirements, rather than including a special tier or layer in your regular cake, to avoid cross-contamination.