You can make pretty cakes and cupcakes at home for fun or you can make them to sell as a small home business. There are so many gorgeous designs to explore and tasty recipes to use to make your cakes. Cake and cupcake decorating is a huge industry right now and a lot of people are opening bakeries that are dedicated to making these pretty little cakes.
Making Cupcakes at Home
You can start right at home in your own kitchen. A lot of people make cupcakes at home and then sell them at a flea market or swap meet to start their business. As people get used to buying your cupcakes at the flea market then they will start calling you at home to place orders for more. People know a good thing when they taste it, so they are not going to want to wait until they run into you again at the flea market.
How to Sell Pretty Cakes
There are a lot of ways you can sell your cakes and cupcakes to the public. First you have to get people to try your pretty cakes. Set up a booth at any public event. Most state fairs and community street events will have spaces for rent to people who sell their own homemade food or crafts. Rent a booth and stock it well for the event.
You can put your cakes in coolers and take them out as needed. Have a couple of each type on your table so people can see what you have to offer. As you sell those cupcakes and cake slices then replace them with new ones from the cooler.
Always have your business cards on the table next to the cakes so people can find you when they are remembering how good that cake tasted. They will give you a call and order more of your pretty cakes and cupcakes, especially if they have a special event coming up like an anniversary or a party.
Rent a booth at every event you hear about so people will get used to seeing your cakes. People will remember you and the more often they see you and try your cakes then the more likely they are to give you a call when they want to buy cupcakes and cakes.
Make Outrageous Cake Designs
With cakes these days, the more outrageous and incredible the design, the more people love to talk about it. Of course, you want photos of your cakes to go viral on Twitter and Facebook. This is the best advertising ever because it is free! All sorts of people are reached in the social networks and you don’t have to pay a dime for it. People will see how gorgeous and unique your pretty cake designs are and they will contact you for a cake when they need something unique.
There are incredible designs these days in cakes. You can make an entire scene from a movie out of cake and frosting or make a work of art like a chessboard. You can take online classes to learn how to make flowers and other objects out of frosting. Once you know the basics you can then apply your imagination to come up with unbelievably cool cakes and cupcakes to sell.
Cupcakes run the gambit from the fancy red velvet cupcake to the mini-cake decorated as a personal birthday cake. The personal birthday cake is a way for all the party guests to have the kind of cake they like the best. Everyone at the event does not have to eat the same cake! Everyone can eat their own mini birthday cake, each cake having its own scene created on top out of frosting.
For business parties the event coordinator will buy cupcakes that are designed to look like what the business sells. If the business is a movie theater then cupcakes can be made to look like little bags of popcorn. Special cupcake wrappers can be designed to look like popcorn bags and then the tops of the cupcakes are loaded with white and yellow mini marshmallows. The marshmallows look just like popcorn.
A florist’s party grand opening will want cupcakes that look like flowers on top of every cupcake. Some of the cakes or cupcakes can have huge daisy designs and some with big bird of paradise flowers or other flowers. A great variety can be made and when you bunch all the cupcakes together for display it looks like a garden or a huge bouquet.
Fun Cupcake Flavors
Really fun cupcake flavors take traditional cake types and turn them into unique, little cupcakes. Of course, everyone loves the red velvet cupcake, but there are more unique flavors like lemon curd, carrot cake and spice flavors. Your cupcakes don’t have to be just chocolate or vanilla. They can be orange, fudge, Oreo and applesauce!
Here are Some Crazy New Ideas for Cupcakes and Small Pretty Cakes
- Honey Cream – Honey cake with butter cream frosting
- Cinnamon Treat – Red velvet cake with red hot cinnamon frosting
- Gummy Bunny Carrot – Carrot cake with cream cheese frosting and gummy bear bunnies or carrots
- Eggnog Cupcakes – Rum cake with vanilla cream frosting
- Chocolate Orange – Orange cake with chocolate fudge frosting
- Banana Split Cupcakes – Vanilla cupcakes with banana frosting and a dot of jam on top
- Dipped Strawberry Cake – Strawberry cake with chocolate fudge frosting and decorated with dipped, fresh strawberries
- Lemon Drop Cupcakes – Lemon cake with lemon curd filling and topped with a strong lemon custard frosting
- Marmalade Cupcakes – Orange cake with marmalade filling and vanilla frosting decorated with dots of marmalade
Selling to Stores
Once you start doing a proper amount of business it’ll be time to move into a traditional bakery setting in order to make your masterpieces.
If you are at that in between stage where you are not quite making enough money to take on your own bakery location, you can lease someone else’s space. Many times other companies will allow you to lease a part of their space during their off hours. If they are closed on Sundays, you can go in and do all your baking on that day. It is a good way for the restaurant, bakery or doughnut shop to take in a little extra cash and share expenses. It is good for you because you don’t have to sign a lease on big overhead.
Another sublet type of idea is renting space inside a grocery store. A lot of grocery stores have small bakeries or kitchens inside their stores these days. You can offer to lease their bakery. This way, the grocery store can focus on selling groceries and stay out of the bakery business. Typically, grocers do best at selling food items, not cooking. So, they would likely want this headache removed from their to-do list. Leasing out the bakery is oftentimes the perfect solution for the cake maker and the grocery store.
Once you are approved with the health department and operating inside a legal food facility, you can start approaching small, local stores about carrying your cakes and cupcakes. Selling wholesale isn’t as lucrative as selling your creations retail, but you won’t have all the overhead of a retail location and extra sales staff. Many times selling wholesale turns out to be more profitable overall than selling retail because of that lack of retail location and retail business hours.
Unusual Pretty Cake Ideas
Sometimes to get a market edge in the cake business, you can cater to people with allergies or other special dietary needs. If you operate in a large city then there might be enough business to make all sugar-free cupcakes and pretty cakes. Or you can make your business kosher, non-diary or even bake only for dogs and cats!
Dog bakeries are big a trend now in larger cities. You make beautifully decorated cakes and cupcakes with great doggie favorites like peanut butter or bacon with liver. Doggie bakeries have highly decorated treats that are safe for dogs to eat. Customers come in with their pets so their dog can pick out whichever treat he wants and eat it right there on the spot. Bags of beautifully frosted dog cookies are usually on the checkout counter for the pet owners to take home for later.
Making Cakes for Profit
There are a lot of fun and unusual, pretty cake and cupcake ideas for starting a new business. You can make cakes that address unusual dietary needs, keep with the chocolate and vanilla standards or do something unique like seasonal treats. It is easy to start your new cake and cupcake business as home and slowly build it into a big business.