WEDDING CAKE PRICES
HOW MUCH DOES A WEDDING CAKE COST?
With so many different elements to consider, there’s a world of choice when it comes to choosing your style of wedding cake. From a more simple rustic naked cake to a multi tiered extravaganza dressed with hundreds of sugar flowers, it’s hardly surprising to know that it won't just be the size of your wedding cake that will affect its final price tag. The location, expertise and experience of your cake artist will also affect the price too.
Choosing your wedding cake will definitely be one of the most enjoyable parts of your whole wedding planning process (although we are slightly biased!). But how much does a wedding cake actually cost?
Here’s our guide to wedding cake prices (as of 2022). We'll go through the styles of wedding cake you can get for your budget, be it £100 or £1000.
HOW MUCH DO COUPLES SPEND ON THE CAKE?
Do you plan on your wedding cake being a stunning piece of edible art for all to be in awe over before the all important cake cutting photographs (but maybe doesn’t need to feed every single guest?) Or will you’ll be using it in place of a dessert for your guests, so definitely need a piece for everyone? Generally, it’s accepted that the cake should feed around 75% of your guests, as not everyone will want (or have room for) a piece, so bear this in mind when thinking of the size to choose.
According to online reports, currently the average spend on a wedding cake is around £350. Wedding budget experts advise that couples allocate approximately 5% of their whole wedding spend (not including honeymoon) on the wedding cake. This figure is obviously only a guideline, for instance big fans of cake (who isn’t?) may want to allocate more than this, but if neither of you have a sweet tooth or don’t consider the wedding cake an important factor, then maybe you’d want to spend less than the advised 5%.
WHAT AFFECTS THE PRICE OF CAKE?
Size and portions
Consider that you are going to a café or tea rooms for a slice of cake, how much would you expect to spend? You’d be right to to expect to spend around £4 - £6 depending on where in the country you were buying it. Multiply this by your number of guests that you want to serve. Then consider that this is just for a slice of cake. No decoration, no delivery, no set up, no design consultation and sketch from an experienced cake artist, just the cake.
Region and venue location – As with many other things, London and the South East tend to have higher prices than those around the rest of the country, and the same is true for wedding cakes. Especially in Central London, where delivery, congestion charges and parking need to be considered.
Cake makers generally add a delivery cost based on a round trip so it may be worth looking at cake makers close to the venue rather than close to your home.
The Overall Design
The cake price will be reflective of the time it will take your cake artist to create. A design with many handmade sugar flowers, ruffles, stencilling, piping and other intricacies will take a great deal of time and will of course increase the cost of your wedding cake. Even an experienced cake artist can spend over an hour to make one sugar flower, so it’s only natural that this will add to the price. When buying a wedding cake you are paying for your cake artist’s time and skill.
Picasso was at a Paris market when an admirer approached and asked if he could do a quick sketch on a paper napkin for her.
Picasso politely agreed, promptly created a drawing, and handed back the napkin — but not before asking for a million Francs.
The lady was shocked: “How can you ask for so much? It took you five minutes to draw this!”
“No”, Picasso replied, “It took me 40 years to draw this in five minutes.”
MATCHING YOUR CAKE TO YOUR BUDGET
Wedding Cakes Up to £150
For less than £100, you can expect a very simple single tier semi naked, naked or buttercream wedding cake. At this price you forgo the option for personalised details but it will give you a small, simple and rustic wedding cake to serve around 25 people. Fresh flowers can always be added to your cake (check with your florist for safety of flowers – many are toxic, including gypsophila)
Wedding Cakes for £150 – £300
In this bracket you'll get a few more options, perhaps a more detailed single tier, maybe sugarpasted with some personalised detailing. Or a more simple two tier naked, semi naked or buttercream design that would serve around 50 guests.
Wedding Cakes for £300 – £400
Spending around £400 would give you a simple, three tier cake to serve around 100 guests. At this price, expect your cake to be covered in buttercream or semi naked rather than sugarpaste. Sugar flowers will add to this price so for floral decoration consider faux silk flowers or real flowers (again check with florist for safety)
Wedding Cakes for £450 – £600
Spending within this bracket will see your design options really open up and would be the starting range for a 3 tier sugarpaste cake to serve around 80-100 guests. At this price, expect to see more personalised design aspects than a wedding cake in the lower price brackets.
Wedding Cakes for £700 – £800
At this budget your cake options become wide and couples can expect to have a bespoke wedding cake with intricate sugar work and/or decorated with a collection of sugar flowers. At this bracket expect at least a 3 or 4 tiered cake (each tier 6 inches tall) to serve around 80 - 100
Wedding Cakes for £800 – £1,000
Wedding cakes in this bracket will most likely include some elaborate and labour intensive aspects to your design, such as sugar flower sprays, hand piping, hand-painted elements. At this price expect a four tier creation, or a more simply designed five tier. If a centrepiece wedding cake is something you are after then this is the budget to plug for. Wedding cakes in this bracket will be admired and remembered by all your guests and will really stand out as a piece of edible art at your reception, not to mention in your photographs.
A Note on Sugar Flowers
Sugar flowers take your cake artist hours and hours of work, they are not designed to be consumed as they contain internal wires for structure and are made of special sugar paste that sets hard and doesn’t taste as good as it looks! Therefore it is advised that you carefully take the sugarflowers from your cake before serving and keep them as a memento of your day.. Some couples choose to buy a glass dome to display their sugarflowers in their homes for many, many years to come – they won’t wilt and need no watering!