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The ARA Blog

10 Unique Wedding Cake Alternatives

Treats that are anything but traditional

Wedding cakes are a tradition for many weddings, but have you ever considered anything but? We’ve curated a list of our top ten ideas for wedding cake alternatives. After all, why should you settle for a traditional, mostly-white confection when this day should be uniquely yours?

Whether you’re a sweet or savoury tooth, we’ve got some truly unique ideas to add to the tail end of your wedding menu. Even better, we’ve linked to some amazing wedding suppliers who are not only here to execute your vision, but also to take stress away from your already long to-do-list. 

Below are 10 of our favourite alternative ideas to wedding cakes.

1. Glorious MOET Chandon Champagne Tower

Need we say more? Champagne towers are great crowd entertainers and a moment that is all about you and your significant other. We highly recommend getting a professional to set this up for your big day, last thing you want is for your bridal party to be setting up a fragile champagne tower a few hours before your ceremony. We’ve recommended some great suppliers around Australia to check out. If there is no room in the budget for such luxury, then consider DIY’ing, proceed at your own caution though as you’ve been warned!

Leave it to the professionals

Adelaide – Gold Champagne Towers; Sydney – Champagne Towers Sydney ; Melbourne – The Cocktail Queen

DIY

Sydney – Pretty Pedestals, Crystal Vintage Champagne Coupe, hire $2.50/glass 

Melbourne – DANN Event Hire, Cut Crystal Champagne Saucer, hire $3.00/glass

Adelaide – White Marquee, Champagne Saucer, hire $0.90/glass (simple quality)

IKEA – STORHET Champagne Coupe, buy $3.00/glass

IKEA – SÄLLSKAPLIG Patterned Champagne Coupe, buy $16.00/4 pack

Image captured by Taylor Kezia Photography, tower by Gold Champagne Towers

2. Doughnut Tower

Yum! Doughnut towers have officially made it to being a classic alternative to wedding cakes and we are 100% here with it. You can add a unique touch to your doughnut tower by arranging them into a mini stack then adding florals or spiking cute flags on top for a personal touch. Alternatively, do what one of our couples (Jade & Jake, coming soon) did and pair with a traditional wedding cake to finish. Guests can choose which dessert option they’d like to go with before ending the night on the dancefloor (pending COVID!).

Supplier Recommendations

Adelaide – Belle Torte; Sydney – The Naked Cake by Nicki Santalab; Melbourne – Mad About Cakes

Image captured by Dylan Lee Photography, Doughnut/Cake arrangement by Belle Torte

3. Dessert Table with assorted desserts

Do you consider yourself a sweet tooth, maybe having just one wedding cake isn’t enough? Then we highly recommend that you organise a dessert table for your guests instead. Perfect for all wedding sizes, from elopement size to big parties! This picturesque dessert table was organised for a picnic-style styled shoot but who’s saying you can’t use it as inspiration for your micro wedding? We love dessert tables as you can cater to all kinds of guests – think vegan, gluten-free etc – without missing out on the bursts of flavours that come with stacking multiple treats on your plate!

Supplier Recommendation

Adelaide – The Bake Space; Sydney – Soiree; Melbourne – Burnt Butter

Image captured by Valentina Perezimg, desserts by August and Oak Cake, cake by Baking with Loz, florals by Sweet Nothings Flowers

4. Granita Cart

A spicy take on the classic gelato cart, having a granita cart for your guests to indulge in post-ceremony is always a good idea! Pictured here is Pepi’s granita cart, an option that is ‘truly an all-out Italian affair’. Pepi’s serve their granitas straight into fresh lemon ‘cups’, adding to an already fresh and tangy flavour. We’ve also just realised that lemon granitas are not the only thing on their menu, they also have menus exploring grazing platters, pizzas, cheese wheel pasta… Mhmm… sign us up!

Supplier Recommendations

Pepi’s is a unique find only available to the city of Sydney, find out more about Pepi’s here. Image was taken directly from Pepi’s website.

5. Waffle Bar

I think you can see a theme going on here… pretty much anything that is considered a dessert could be used instead of a wedding cake. Why not hire one of Australia’s best waffle connoisseurs who have all sorts of flavours available. Think chocolate chips, strawberry drizzle, bananas, pretzels, cramael sauce… OK be right back, getting waffles…

Supplier Recommendations

Waffle caterers are surprisingly difficult to find, however, we did find suppliers in these two cities. Sydney – Wafflo; Brisbane – Letz Waffle

Let us know if you have anyone to recommend and we will add it into our list!

Image captured by Elizabeth Lloyd (USA)

6. Cheese Cake

This is for the savoury lovers out there – a literally CHEESE CAKE! Pair with a sweet or savoury grazing spread and your dessert menu is set for the evening. Or keep it simple with cheese wheels stacked on top of each other with cracker surrounding the base, we suggest heading to pinterest for more ideas!

Supplier recommendations

Adelaide – Graze Gourmet Platter Co; Sydney – Platter Up Co; Melbourne – Albert & Co (recommended by Hello May)

Image captured by Cassandra Lane (UK)

7. Pavlova Cake

An Aussie tradition every summer and definitely not bad idea. We’re loving how eat me drink me (UK) has modernised the traditional and sometimes-boring-looking pavlova with abstract textures and quirky-looking fruits. Just an idea,  we could even surround this statement piece with a grazing platter filled with fruits and chocolates? 

Supplier recommendations

Any suppliers we’ve recommended above for desserts and grazing platters would be able to achieve this for your wedding day.

Special mentions: Melbourne – Pav Queen ; Sydney – Poles Pattiserrie 

Image taken directly from the eat me drink me (UK) website.

8. Marina Machado has inspired us to think outside the box…

Marina Machado is a wedding cake designer that we have been following since we found one of her stunning artworks on our Instagram Explore page. Marina has a distinct hard-to-forget architectural look about her designs and she doesn’t just do cakes! Marina has worked with all sorts of different textures and techniques and her work is downright beautiful to say the least. You can check out Marina’s Instagram page by clicking on her profile above, we promise you won’t be disappointed!

9. Cocktails

…Duh! Cocktails are always a good idea, no matter if you’re having a wedding cake or not. Although I think your guests would be happy to pass on dessert if they heard cocktails were up for grabs. 

Supplier Recommendations

Adelaide – Vintage Caravan Bar ; Sydney – BarBae or Sydney Mobile Bar ; Melbourne – The Cocktail Cart

Image captured by Jason Morling, cocktails by Sabre Catering Events (Tasmania)

10. Culture-Inspired Desserts

“This one hits a little closer to home for me as I am Malaysian born and would have loved to share a little bit of my culture with our wedding guests. Our wedding brought together friends and family from my Malaysian side, as well as friends and family from both Matt and my Aussie side. I honestly just didn’t think about doing this, but this would have been such a unique addition to our wedding, a touch that would have truly described us as a couple.” Penny, co-founder of ARA Experience

The best part about this alternative option is you get to decide which desserts to display depending on which culture you’re from!

Of course, we won’t be able to recommend suppliers for this option as it depends on what type of desserts you’re looking to serve your guests. Your best bet is to ask your Aunties or Nonnas or YiaYias to see if they could create this burst of culture for your big day, or if they know anyone that could. Good luck!

Image captured by Louis Loo Photography (Malaysia), styled by Moments (Malaysia)

We hope you enjoyed this write up about our ten favourite wedding cake alternatives! Feel free to share this with your fiance to see what they have to say about anything on this list, or even a bride who you know is currently wedding planning! Either way, we are here to help with your wedding planning journey as well as custom making your wedding dress!