We’ve talked about alternatives to flowers. Now, let’s talk about alternatives to wedding cakes. Sure, everyone loves cake, but why not surprise your guests with something a little different? It’s a fun way to put your personal stamp on your wedding.

Close Substitutes

Cupcakes – It’s cake without the hassle. You’re not limited to one flavor and one frosting, plus there’s a lot less mess when each guest can just come and grab one. They can be just as beautifully decorated as wedding cakes, and you can even stack them on tiers to look like one.

wedding cupcakes another alternative for wedding cakes

Petit fours – Again, why limit yourself to one flavor? Like cupcakes, you can get a lot more variety and none of the mess. Plus, they’re super classy.

Cake pops – It’s literally cake on stick. Does it get more fun? They’re bite-sized, easy to personalize, and, like petit fours and cupcakes, don’t require forks and plates.

No-Sweets Dessert

Cheese – Why not skip the elaborate frosted confections and opt for cheese and fruit instead?
Cheese as an after-dinner alternative to wedding cakes is gaining in popularity, and for couples who don’t have a big sweet tooth, it’s a great way to make your wedding unique. Stack cheese wheels for a tiered cake look, or create a beautiful cheese board buffet spread. Intimate Weddings shows off some fantastic cheese tables, and Martha Stewart shows you just how beautiful a cake made of cheese can be.

cheese and fruit table alternative for wedding cake

Fruit – Bowls of peaches and cream, carved melons, berries and melted chocolate for dipping (okay, okay, there are some sweets in that list) – big platters of fresh fruit for dessert may be just perfect for a summer wedding. Layer them on a tiered stand for a more wedding cake-like look or intersperse fresh flowers.

Branching Out

Pies – More whimsical than cake and usually less expensive, too. Pick a few of your favorite flavors, or tailor to the season. Apple and pumpkin pies in the fall; peach and raspberry pies in the summer; pecan and pear in the winter; strawberry rhubarb in the spring. You get the idea. There’s a lot to play with here. One pie per table or a table of pies. Full-size pies that you slice, or hand pies or pie-pockets to serve guests individually. Get more pie ideas from Bridal Guide.

pies more whimsical than wedding cakes

Donuts – Having a brunch wedding? Try donuts. They’re easy to serve, fun to display, and there will be something for everyone.

Candy table – It’s for the child in everyone. Just one big table filled with candy. Think big glass jars with metal scoops and labels. It’s easy to tailor to your theme or color palette, and if you provide bags or boxes for your guests, it doubles as a wedding favor. Check out these gorgeous candy tables at Huffington Post.

S’mores – Gourmet marshmallows are all the rage, and who doesn’t love a good s’more? Set out baskets of homemade (err…ordered fresh from the bakery) marshmallows in flavors like vanilla, chocolate and strawberry, bring in a whole bunch of artisan chocolate and stock up on graham crackers. Let guests roast them over the fire pit, or set up individual flames at the center of each table. For traditional s’mores, and other s’more-inspired desserts, Green Wedding Shoes has some great ideas.

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