Whether that special someone is graduating from high school or college, it’s an occasion that you want to celebrate in a special way. Graduation parties are your chance to pay tribute to the graduate, and it’s customary to serve a graduation cake along with or after the meal.
Today, almost every bakery has some kind of decorated graduation cakes available, so no matter where you live, there are sure to be at least a few options to choose from in your area. What’s the secret to choosing the best cakes for graduation celebrations? Follow these steps to get the perfect cake:
1. Get Your Guest List Together
Before you can start comparing graduation cake designs, you need to know how many people you need to serve. Generally, round cakes can feed a small crowd with 8 to 12 people.
Graduation sheet cakes will feed more. Depending on where you order from, a full sheet cake can usually be cut into anywhere from 60 to 100 slices. Most stores also offer quarter and half graduation sheet cake sizes.
2. Establish Your Budget
How much can you afford to spend on a cake? If you’re looking for something low cost, Walmart graduation cakes, Costco graduation cakes and Sam’s Club graduation cakes tend to be the least expensive. Other grocery stores usually offer mid-priced cakes, while cakes from independent bakeries will cost the most.
3. Decide on the Type of Design
There are a number of different types of popular designs for college and high school graduation cakes. You’ll need to decide which one will appeal most to the graduate.
Some people prefer a simple graduation cake with just some basic decorations. Graduation cakes for girls may feature flowers and a greeting, while graduation cakes for guys may have balloons or geometric shapes on them.
Graduation decorated cakes may include more elaborate decorations like plastic markers or flags. Some bakeries even offer special graduation sheet cake designs shaped like books or graduation caps. You can read our article on types of graduation themed cakes for more ideas.
4. Choose Your Greeting
Many graduation cake designs have room for some type of greeting. You’re free to write whatever you wish provided it will fit on the cake. Some common graduation cake messages include:
“Class of YEAR”
“Congratulations Class of YEAR”
“Way to go NAME”
“Congrats to the Grad”
Remember some graduation cake designs will not have room for a message. Check with your bakery if you’re unsure if you need to supply a greeting.
5. Find Out the School Colors
If you don’t already know what colors the college or high school uses for their sports uniforms, do some research to find out. It’s always a nice touch to make the graduation cake’s decorations the same colors as the school colors.
6. Pick a Cake Flavor
It’s usually best to think about the graduation round cake or graduation sheet cake ideas that you want to use to decorate the cake first so that you can select a bakery that can bring your ideal design to life at a price you can afford.
Once you’ve selected a bakery, you can decide what flavor of cake you prefer from the types that are available. Many people decide to go for chocolate, vanilla or marble because they appeal to a broad range of people. If you’re buying a sheet cake, you can sometimes have it made in two different flavors to give guests a choice. Albertsons graduation cakes are half white-half chocolate and perfect for large parties.
Some bakeries offer specialty flavors for their graduation cakes. Specialty flavors may not be favorites of everyone at the party, but if you think the guest of honor would like one of these flavors best, you might want to pick it. After all, it’s their special day!
7. Choose an Icing
Depending on where you buy your graduation cake, you may have the choice of the following icings:
– Whipped Icing. This icing is very sweet and has a soft fluffy consistency. It can spoil quickly in hot weather, so it’s usually not a good choice for outdoor graduation parties in the summer.
– Buttercream Icing. Made with real butter, buttercream is smooth and very creamy. It’s a favorite among many people and not quite as sweet as whipped icing. The frosting does have the same problems with heat as other kinds, so choose it with caution if you’re having an outdoor event in the summer.
– Cream Cheese Icing. Very rich and sweet, cream cheese icing is usually used on red velvet and carrot cakes and not on ordinary white and chocolate cakes. It is heat sensitive and has a strong taste that some people may not like.
– Fondant Icing. Not offered at all bakeries, fondant is a dense, less sweet icing made with corn syrup and sugar. It is not as sweet as other icings, but it also does not need to be refrigerated, so it might be your best bet for an outdoor graduation party where the cake will be in the sun for hours. Tesco graduation cakes can have a two-tier present design with a delicious fondant icing.
8. Choose a Filling
Depending on where you purchase your cake from and what kind you buy, you may have the option to select a filling to place inside the cake. With filled graduation cakes, the cake is sliced in two and filling is spread in-between the two pieces.
These types of cakes may cost more than the standard cakes, but they are often more filling and a little tastier. Most bakeries will give you a selection of fillings to choose from. For example, Publix graduation cakes come with more than 10 different filling options, including some unique ones like cannoli cream, guava, and rum pecan.
Have you recently celebrated a graduation or are you planning to celebrate one soon? We’d love to hear about your graduate cake! Tell us about your cake in the “Comments” section and let us know where you bought it. Your comments can help other readers find the best cakes for graduation party celebrations.