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7 Wedding Cake Alternative Ideas

I Hate Wedding Cake!

While I don't personally hate wedding cake, I have worked with a lot of couples who for one reason or another didn't want to serve a traditional wedding cake at the reception.A tiered tree display for wedding cupcakes

Here's a stereotypical experience: they roll a beautiful wedding cake out onto the floor. The bride and groom strike a cute pose as they cut it and delicately feed each other a piece, smear cake on their noses and kiss. Adorable.

A few minutes later the staff comes back with gorgeous plated slices of wedding cake and you're practically drooling. You take that first bite...the cake is dry as a mouthful of sandpaper, that beautiful fondant is thick as rubber tires and it tastes like straw.

Some couples choose a cake alternative because they don't like wedding cake. Others see their choice of dessert as an opportunity to add another unique touch to the wedding.

In any case, there are lots of ideas to consider...

1) Cupcakes

This is the most popular wedding cake alternatives. It's easy and inexpensive to serve multiple flavors of moist, delicious cupcakes instead of a wedding cake. Arrange them attractively on a tiered display and you've got a cute and yummy treat.

Guests love being able to choose from chocolate or vanilla and there's no need to wait for serving and plating. Plus, you can still have your baker whip up a mini cake for cutting if you'd like to feed each other.

2) Cake Buffet

Why force your guests to eat your favorite choice of cake when they can choose for a selection of dessert delicacies?

Instead of having one giant wedding cake, order several beautiful cakes for a tempting dessert buffet. Chocolate decadence, carrot cake, red velvet, pumpkin, peanut butter, tiramisu...anything you can dream up. Artful signs explaining the flavors add a cute, fun touch. Your guests will love choosing their personal favorite flavor and you won't have plates of wasted cake served to each table.

An impressive wedding cake buffet

Cake Buffet Photo

3) Pie Buffet

Don't like cake? How about a home baked pie instead?

One of our recent brides really did hate wedding cake. Shaking their fist in the face of wedding tradition, the couple had a "wedding pie" instead and offered an impressive pie buffet for guests to choose from.

With all those mouth-watering flavors to choose from: pecan pie, cherry, key lime, chocolate mousse, pumpkin, lemon, banana cream, old-fashioned apple...your guests will be in heaven.

An impressive wedding pie buffet

Pie Buffet Photo

4) Family Recipes

If you've got some talented bakers in the family, have them contribute a favorite recipe for a family dessert buffet. You can have your baker prepare your mother's famous brownie recipe, Aunt Betty's decadent macadamia nut chocolate-chip cookies, Grandma Alice's prize-winning banana cake. Or you can even bake them yourselves, if you like.

Treat your guests to an extravagant dessert buffet that's extra special because it offers a taste of your family's history.

5) Varied Dessert Buffet

Offer your guests a selection of pastries, cookies, canolis, puddings, pies and cakes to choose from. Tiered pudding or crème brulee served in wine or champagne glasses with berries are especially elegant and impressive.

An impressing wedding dessert buffet

Cake Buffet Photo

6) The "Fake" Cake

Arrange your favorite off the shelf treat into a wedding cake shaped display. For example, a stacked or tiered display of Sno Balls, Twinkies or donuts. It's sure to be the talk A Homer Simpson inspired donut groom's cakeo

f the wedding.

Check out this last minute groom's cake homage to Homer Simpson's donut obsession from one of our West Park weddings last summer. Guests couldn't stop talking about it!

7) Plated Desserts

Many wedding venues can accommodate served dessert options instead of the traditional wedding cake. Offer your guests their choice of three delicious, beautiful prepared plated desserts served right to their table.

The key to choosing an impressive, wedding worth cake alternative is PRESENTATION. Even a pile of Hostess cupcakes can be jaw-droppingly beautiful if it's arranged and decorated with style and creativity.

Ask your caterer and baker about some of your ideas, get creative and have fun with it!

Photo by Skinner Photography

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