Wedding season has arrived, and brides across the country are preparing for that special walk down the aisle - the bakery aisle, that is, at their local grocery stores.
From Publix - a supermarket chain with over 40 wedding cake options - to Walmart, bakery departments have had a customer base among engaged couples for years. And now more than ever, betrothed couples have welcomed supermarket cakes as a practical, budget-friendly option for the big day.
Related: 40+ Amazing Groom's Cakes
"I think it's a great idea," said newlywed Lindsay Armstrong, who purchased a $45 cake from a local, NYC bakery for her April wedding. "I know it's a lot of work and it's complicated [to bake a wedding cake], but I'd rather spend the money on something else."
Armstrong's mother-in-law purchased a sheet cake from Costco for the couple's smaller celebration in Cleveland, and other supermarkets offer similar options. At Giant Food Stores, customers can choose up to three tiers and from four different cake flavors, two types of icing, a variety of toppers and also have the option to match the cake's color to the wedding décor. Ranging in price from $120 to $280, the cakes are priced at a fraction of the cost of their traditional bakery alternatives.
Safeway supermarkets have been catering to brides for over 15 years, with cakes priced between $160 to $1,030. Steve Gallgher, a baker at Safeway in Mount Airy, M.D., expects to have four or five wedding cake customers this summer. He works with three decorators who work to customize the experience for each couple.
"We had a customer last week, but they didn't make a decision yet," said Gallgher. But he insists it's not a case of supermarket-cake skepticism.
"The bride wants cupcakes and the groom wants a wedding cake - they can't seem to agree!" he said.
Other supermarket chains, like Alberstons, have similar services in their bakery department. Some supermarkets even offer fondant icing. You might have to opt for buttercream and ditch the fondant icing, but we love the idea of stashing that extra cash!
Tell us: Would you buy your wedding cake from a supermarket?
- Paulette Safdieh
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