How much is the average wedding cake?
The average price for a bespoke wedding cake across the UK is £300 - £350. There are a few factors that dictate the cost of a wedding cake, including: size, complexity of design, quality, having each tier a different type of cake, unusual flavours, location and distance. In this post we’ll go though why and how much of an impact these points make, with a follow up post on how you can get your wedding cake for less.
This is an obvious one and has the greatest impact on the price of your cake. With each tier being roughly 50% larger than the one above it the price can increase very quickly. The increased quantity of ingredients has an impact (mainly butter, which is the single most expensive component of a cake) but also the amount of work, a 12” cake for example takes a disproportionately long time to make and decorate compared to a 10” cake.
This point relates to the quality of the craftsmanship and quality of the ingredients. Firstly, it takes time (a really long time) to create a flawless beautiful wedding cake. Even our rustic wedding cakes (semi naked and naked wedding cakes) take time to create that faultless barn worthy look. From perfectly smooth buttercream to arranging the flowers.
The cost of the ingredients is also worth noting. Yes, some ingredients such as flour and sugar are quite cheap and account for a large portion of the cake but butter for example, rich silky French butter at £10/kg is used in vast quantities in both the cakes and the fillings. At Harry Batten we use the best quality ingredients and when the option is available always source from local providers. The sugar comes from Norfolk, flour is locally milled and the eggs from chickens that can almost be heard from our kitchen.
There is a current trend within the wedding cake industry to have each tier of your wedding cake a different flavour, perfectly understandable, but this does add cost to the cake. At Harry Batten we charge £25 for each additional flavour you add, so if you’re having a 4 tier cake, this can add up to £75 onto the total price. The reason for this additional cost is simply because it’s a lot faster for us to mix a 4 tier cake batch in one go, rather than 4 separate batches, which then require 4 separate fillings.
Although it may not cost much more to create a wedding cake with an unusual flavour, there is a cost in developing that flavour - purchasing special ingredients and the many iterations of trial and error. For example, we were recently asked for a matcha and white chocolate mousse wedding cake. We had to experiment with different sponges, different fillings, explore whether they would hold up as a tiered cake and in a warm environment, obviously this cost is eliminated if you go for one of our more common flavours.
Location and Distance
The price of the cakes varies from region to region and enormously across the globe, but this is a UK specific post. Harry Batten is based in a rural location so we’re able to keep our costs lower than a London bakery for example. The rent on our premises is lower, the immediate access to local suppliers allows us to cut out the middle man, and we can deliver cakes in a far more economical way, because of this, if you are based in a city, it may be worthwhile sourcing your cake from the surrounding countryside. This leads us onto the second point, distance. Wedding cakes can’t be posted, and we don’t have a vast network of delivery drivers, so the further the cake has to travel the more expensive it will get. We deliver for free with 20km of the Harry Batten bakery, but after that its 45p/mile (government guideline)