How to Save Money on Your UK Wedding Cake
Wedding cakes can be an expensive line item in your wedding budget, costing hundreds or even thousands of pounds. A cheap option is obviously to make the cake yourself from scratch, if you have the skills, the time or the inclination. However, you might consider looking to the high street to find a decent cake at a decent price.
Firstly – look at the traditional supermarkets. All of the supermarkets – Morrisons, Asda, Tesco etc. do a range of what they call “special occasion” cakes ranging from a very reasonable £10-20. Now that all of these supermarkets have a ‘finest’ collection, they also tend to do well iced, tasty rich fruit cakes. These are usually available in different sizes too, so you can layer them if you want to create a more traditional tiered cake.
Generally, the supermarket cakes are well presented but come only in plain white, which means that you will need to decorate them yourself. Luckily, this is easy to do! By browsing eBay or Hobbycraft, you can find tier holders and a selection of glitters, cake gems and foliage at very reasonable prices. For a white cake, rather than going overboard, you could always opt for some very simple green foliage (that is safe to put on a cake!) and a wedding topper – a sugar figurine of a bride and groom or something else that you like.
Waitrose supply some high quality cakes that are already iced and decorated. The same goes for Debenhams and John Lewis. These cost a bit more than the standard supermarket cakes, because they look slightly more special and professional, but they cost much less than a completely bespoke cake.
You might also consider a trip to Marks and Spencer, as they have a good selection of cakes – they offer a special service where they will make cakes to order for you. A whole selection of cake bases can be found ranging from sponge cakes to fruit cakes and even chocolate cakes. You can specify the size and the design on the cake and you can leave it white and plain to decorate yourself, or ask them to add some sugar flowers and other decoration. The price is around £150 or so for a 3 tier cake, which compares very well to the prices that wedding cake designers will charge you. Like the other supermarkets, they also have a pre-packed range that you can buy and stack yourself.
At the very top-end of the high street, Selfridges and Harvey Nichols both have exquisite food halls and – not surprisingly – an excellent selection of pre-packed cakes. Selfridges also has a made-to-order service, which can work out very well.
Finally, if you are on a tight budget, don’t dismiss the idea of using good quality cupcakes or chocolate pots arranged in a tiered display that you could serve as dessert or leave on display for guests to help themselves later on in proceedings. You could even bin the idea of “cake” altogether and opt for Krispy Kreme doughnuts (arranged in tiers of course) or for a more continental croquembouche!