Cake potluck: ask family members to bake their signature sweets


In the comments to our post, "Let Them Eat Cinnamon Buns," Offbeat Bride Annaliese shared her wedding's alternative cake scenario: she asked family members to bake their signature sweets! The idea was so intriguing that I asked her to tell us more — and it turns out this is a great cake-alternative for those dealing with special needs eaters!

I have a genetic disorder called "PKU," (phenylketonuria) that forces me to be on a very low protein diet. Some of my guests have PKU as well, and we also had vegetarians, vegans, and people following a gluten-free diet in attendance.

We didn't ditch the cake all together but instead of shelling out $6/slice for a single cake that I'd have never been happy with (and that several guests couldn't eat), we asked family members to bake different cakes for us.

It was AWESOME. Each granny made their specialty, the dads both baked something, my mom, my sister-in-law, and a few aunts all pitched in and we ended up with a delicious and sentimental display of pretty much every cake we've ever loved. One cake was gluten free, another was vegan, and another was gluten free, vegan, AND low protein. A cake potluck was a great way to cater to all these needs!

Such a great idea! If you want to know more, you can head on over to see all the pictures from Annaliese's Rain-drenched Nerdtastic Texas Wedding.

  1. Our venue comes with a cake, but we're doing this for our sweets table, We asked a few select relatives to help out by making their signature dessert.

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  2. We wanted to do this, but our venue (and caterer) said no. This is a great idea if you're not nailed down by your venue's rules, but make sure to check. It has to do with liability of the food-stuffs that are served… if the food ends up making someone sick, the venue is still liable even if it was made and brought in by someone else. Wish we could do it, it looks like so much fun!

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    • Good point, check and see if they have a waiver you can fill out, ours had em ready to go as soon as we asked.

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  3. My fiance and I have decided to do a potluck reception (where we'll provide the main dish) because of budgetary reasons and also to maintain the feeling of community that we love.
    I hadn't, however, thought of doing desert that way- thanks for this idea!

  4. We just did something similar to this for our wedding on Saturday! We followed the "quilt cake" idea that's been posted on here previously & it was a HUGE hit. Saved us a TON of $$ on cake, involved our families/friends who all wanted to help with the wedding in some way, and the gluten-intolerant loved it too. We have several gluten intolerant relatives who were so excited to be able to eat cake at the wedding. As a tip-we labeled the cake flavors with circles of cardstock glued to a skewer & stuck in the cake.

  5. This is great! We did something very similar with pies and it went so well. Even though we had people coming in from out of town, 17 of our guests stepped up to bring pies! It was a great way for people to feel involved and it was so delicious. We spoke to the caterers ahead of time, so they were ready to receive the pies and make tags with each person's name. They even kept a list so that I could write thank-you cards. It's a bummer that some venues aren't as receptive.

  6. Me and my Fiance are having an outdoor wedding at his grandmothers house. We planned on doing this to save us loads. Money is way too tight for catering. :)

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