Have Your Cake and Eat It Too: Building and Using a Dummy Cake

It’s not cheating to decorate a fake cake. Dummy cakes, essentially styrofoam blocks, come in varying cake shapes and sizes, and can be incredibly effective for your bakery’s presentation. You can find them online, at a baking supplies shop, or you may even come across them in your local craft store. 

There are some great benefits of using a dummy cake in place of a real cake when it’s appropriate for the situation. Obviously, you wouldn’t use a dummy cake when people actually want to taste your cake. But if your bakery finds itself in a position that requires style over substance (i.e. a display case, promotional products, travel displays, etc.), you can produce an amazingly decorated cake at much lower cost, effort, and waste. Check out how your bakery can build and use a dummy cake. 

Use Cases

One of the more popular uses for a decorated dummy cake is for a bakery’s display case. If you use real cakes in your display case, in a couple of days they are going to look (and probably smell) a little funky. 

With a fake cake, you can showcase your talents without worry. Lots of people stop and stare at an impressive cake. Or even better, they take a picture and post it to social media with your bakery’s name. 

Speaking of pictures, a dummy cake is a solid asset for your custom cake portfolio. To save time and resources, decorate a dummy cake two different ways on either side for double the entries for your portfolio. Check out even more tips to create your bakery’s portfolio

Dummy cakes aren’t just for internal uses. You can offer them to your clients as well. You’re probably asking, “But why would they want a cake they can’t eat?”

So they can have your cake and eat it too. For example, many brides want a multi-tiered, heavily-decorated wedding cake, but are put off by the price. You can offer these budget-conscience brides the option to purchase everything they want, but on a dummy cake. For the purpose of pictures and best impressions a fake cake will do, then you can provide a sheet cake for them to serve to their guests. 

Building Your Dummy Cake

When you’re decorating a dummy cake, you can use the same types of icing you’d use on a real cake such as buttercream, fondant, or royal icing. For buttercream, you don’t need to crumb coat or level the sides. Feel free to apply the final coat of buttercream directly. However, fondant needs a little prep work. The small manufacturing lines or dents will show on the fondant if you don’t smooth them out first. A smooth, even coating of royal icing will do the trick. 

If you want to put together a multi-tiered dummy cake, you can simply hot glue the tiers on top of each other. Apply it consistently all around the top surface of the styrofoam and press firmly. With multiple tiers, you’ll need to patch up the joints with royal icing before covering it with fondant

You can even use a fake cake in conjunction with real cake to give it the multi-tiered look without the outcome of leftover cake slices. If the real cake is going on top of the dummy, then nothing out of the ordinary needs to happen. But if you want the dummy on top of real cake, the real cake will need support such as a wooden dowel rod. 

Reduce, Reuse, Recycle

Another great benefit of dummy cakes is the number of times you can reuse them! Just scrape off the icing, wash it and pat it dry. You should know that buttercream will be more difficult to clean because of the grease, but some bakers even wrap their blocks in cling wrap before covering with icing so that clean-up and reuse is super quick and easy.

Dummy cakes can be an efficient option when you don’t need to eat your cake. Looking for more ways to make your bakery efficient? BakeSmart bakery software can help you manage your entire operation efficiently.

Schedule a demo with BakeSmart and start conquering the chaos.

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