Truth be told, I have a giant sweet tooth. And ever since I attended my first wedding as a little girl, I get a little giddy over sweet, delicious wedding cake.

But I shocked myself a little when we started to plan our 2013 wedding. We almost went with a dessert bar instead of a cake. (My husband says he “doesn’t have a sweet tooth”…oh my love, you’re funny.) We envisioned a spread of various desserts we both loved, and an ice cream bar featuring Blue Bell ice cream, a little nod to my Texas upbringing. But when discussing the idea with my mom, she expressed her love for a good old-fashioned wedding cake, and her love for the tradition of having one. I gave it some thought and in the end, we opted for a cake. (AND the ice cream bar.) Our wedding cake, prepared by Tiffany’s Baking Co. in Asheville where we got married, was five tiers of amazingness and I’m glad we had it.

All that said, cake isn’t for everyone. And some wedding traditions aren’t for everyone, too. There are so many options out there for every aspect of your wedding these days, including cakes and desserts. So if you’re on the fence about having a wedding cake or aren’t strongly tied to the idea of it, here are some fun alternatives to consider:

  • Dessert Bars: What’s not to love about this idea? Who doesn’t love to just sample tons of little desserts?! Offering a sampling of desserts and sweets isn’t a bad way to go. If your venue allows outside catering, it’s a great way to feature a fave dessert spot you have in town and to show off to your guests some of the local fare.If say ice cream is more your thing, do an ice cream bar. Offer a couple of flavors of ice cream and a small selection of toppings. Boom. Ice cream bar.
  • A Childhood Favorite: When one of my sister-in-laws got married two years ago, guests were all served small, individual strawberry shortcakes. This was a special treat she enjoyed with her dad when she was a little girl and she took a moment when it was served to share that special tie to her childhood with the guests. So not only was it tasty, it added a real personal touch.
  • Pie, Pretty Please: Once I had a bride who was originally from the northeast. Pie was more of a common dessert to her than cake. So, they served up pie at their reception. I loved it. She and her groom cut a little pie slice for them just as a couple would cut a cake. Then guests enjoyed various types of pie. Delicious.
  • Donuts…Not Just For Breakfast: There are some really amazing donut makers here in the Charlotte area, like Joe’s Doughs. I incorporated some of his donut amazingness into a styled shoot last year and it was a fun element to feature. (And we might have sampled all the goods after we were done shooting…) Go with a creative display of donuts instead of a cake. Or toward the end of the evening, serve up some donuts and a little coffee bar to go with it.
  • Piece of Cake:  This really isn’t a cake alternative per se. But I want to mention, that with all of these options, if having that picture of you and your new spouse cutting cake and serving it to each other is something that’s important to you, it’s still totally doable. You can always have a small cake that’s just for you and that purpose.

What do you think? Cake? No cake? Desserts?! So many options. And if the thought of all the options and decision making makes your head spin, give me a call. Hart & Co. is here to help and take the stress out of the planning process. It should be fun and you should enjoy it!