Costs displayed in graph are based on spend from thousands of couples who recently reported pricing for this service within their WeddingWire review. Pricing varies based on factors including, but not limited to, vendor’s experience, level of expertise, event guest count, date, and geographic region.
Having a wedding cake at your reception is one of the biggest (and sweetest!) traditions. But what does a wedding cake cost? While wedding cake prices do vary depending on the size and style of your cake, the average cost of a wedding cake in the U.S. is around $500 with most couples spending between $300 to $700. While this may sound like a lot for a dessert, you’d be surprised as to how much work goes into creating a gorgeous wedding cake.
Not surprisingly, the bigger and more elaborate a wedding cake is, the higher the cost of a wedding cake will be. A wedding cake featuring lots of design elements, including sugar flowers, fondant details, many tiers, and unique shapes, will cost more than a simpler cake with classic buttercream icing, a few fresh flowers, and fewer tiers. While your flavor choice likely won’t have an impact on your wedding cake’s price, requesting certain custom flavors may raise your wedding cake cost a bit.
The starting price of a wedding cake can vary depending on the type of frosting you prefer. Cakes covered in fondant, a sugary paste-like icing, tend to cost more than cakes covered in buttercream (frosting made from butter and sugar). Fondant is more durable than buttercream (and it won’t melt in the summertime!), but it’s generally thought of as less tasty. The starting price of a fondant wedding cake is usually about $5 per slice, while the starting price of a buttercream wedding cake is about $4 per slice. Again, these wedding cake prices will vary even more based on decorations, size, etc.
This varies from cake baker to cake baker. Usually, the cost of your wedding cake will include the cake itself, a design consultation where your baker will create a custom design just for your wedding, a caketasting, delivery and set up. Some cake bakers will also include supplies like cake stands, cake toppers, and cutting utensils, though you may have to provide these on your own. And some wedding cake prices include an extra top tier of your wedding cake or anniversary cake for you and your spouse to enjoy on your first anniversary.
About 54 percent of couples choose to serve an additional wedding dessert, aside from or in addition to wedding cake, at their receptions. Cake bakers may offer a variety of these alternative wedding desserts, including cupcakes, cake pops, cookies, pies, pastries, doughnuts, and more—the starting price for cupcakes is about $3 per cupcake. There are also groom’s cakes, which are a tradition particularly in the South. We’ve seen these groom’s cakes shaped like everything from sports paraphernalia to burritos!
We recommend hiring a wedding cake baker at least six months before your wedding day—these vendors do tend to book up quickly! Start by reading online reviews of wedding cake bakers near you, and selecting a few to interview (in person whenever possible). You’ll typically have a wedding cake tasting after you’ve booked your baker, where you’ll select your cake’s flavors.
When interviewing a wedding cake baker, there are several questions that are important to ask, including:
While you usually do not tip your cake baker, you should tip the delivery staff who delivers your wedding cake—usually about $5 to $20 per person. Be sure to factor in these tips to your wedding cake budget.
There are many ways to save money on your wedding cake cost without sacrificing having a gorgeous cake for your big day. Here are a few simple tips: