Anniversary cake ideas can often be over the top and just insanely expensive, you have to feel for couples getting married now where an average priced wedding cake will cost you a few hundred and sadly these kind of prices can also be true for anniversary cakes.
However just because you haven't got lots of money it doesn't mean you can't have a fantastic anniversary cake and as it will be in lots of photos so you need it looking good!
Anniversary cakes don't just have to be fruit they can be whatever you want, the good thing about fruit cake is that it keeps for ages whereas a sponge will have to be made only a couple of days before.
The best way to save money on any celebration cake is to make it yourself, if that sends shivers down your spine - don't panic there are also other ways to save money but we will get to those in a minute - let's call those the cheats way!
If you are going to make the anniversary cake yourself then there are a number of different styles to choose from.
You could make a replica of the original wedding cake - lets hope it wasn't one of those with many layers and steps and fountains! You may find that the couple kept their topper which you could use again.
Or you could make a classic with tiers and have fresh flowers as your decorations or you could use the original cake topper, or have the anniversary that you are celebrating as your cake topper - a big 50, 40, 25 or the year that you are celebrating. You can buy anniversary cake toppers but you could make your own with iced cookies or fondant. Failing that you could buy number candles for the top!
Another anniversary cake idea that is very popular as a wedding cake at the moment is to have cupcakes. These you can have displayed on a cake stand and have them decorated to the anniversary theme. Gold decorated cupcakes for a 50th anniversary, a red sugar flower for a 40th anniversary or you could use fondant icing to make mini numbers for each cake. You can use craft rubber stamps on rolled out fondant and there is bound to be an anniversary stamp that you can use to make an imprint into the fondant and then cut them out using a cookie cutter for the top of each cake. You could use this method to create a monogram as well. Not every cupcake has to be the same flavor or decorated the same as you can display them alternately on each layer.
Not all of us can be blessed with great baking skills so here are some cheats that can help you put together your very own anniversary cake!
Go for a store bought cake - all of the stores have what they call celebration cakes in various sizes which you could use for tiers. All you would need is to decorate it yourself and this could be with an appropriate colored ribbon around the cake - e.g gold for 50th and then buy an anniversary cake topper or have flowers on the top. You can buy already made sugar flowers which you could decorate with, remember that less is more! This type of cake will cost a lot less than the few hundred of a professional cake maker.
Image: Marissa Bracke
Grocery stores also sell photo cakes and this is a fun alternative, you could have a photo from their wedding on the top of the cake and then add a colored ribbon to the side of the cake.
You could also have cupcakes as the anniversary cake, packet cake mix works well for this and then call in an army of helpers to decorate all of the cakes.
Check with your venue if they are going to charge a cake cutting fee as this can be a couple of dollars a slice, which would definitely blow the party budget if there is a lot. Cupcakes are a good way of getting round this or you could have a sheet cake pre cut by you.
If there are a lot of guests at the anniversary party you could have sheet cakes made - these are decorated with the same colored icing but not decorated and can then be cut for your guests. The beauty of having these cakes are that you don't have to have such a big cake for show which will save you money as it is the decorations that cost the time and money.
It is the decorations that will cost the money as some are so beautiful and take ages to create, save money by keeping your cake simple or by doing the decorations yourself.