How Many Wedding Cupcakes Do I Need?

Photo by Béria Lima

When you’re planning your wedding, finding the right balance between ensuring that everyone has enough to eat and that you’re not wasting money on uneaten food can be a real challenge. Typically, serving cupcakes eliminates some of the guesswork out of deciding on the amount of food to offer at a wedding for dessert; the single-serving size of a cupcake makes it simpler to estimate how much you’ll need than it is to try to guess how much cake your guests will eat. Still, many brides struggle with determining just how many cupcakes to buy.


Here are the key things that you should consider when deciding how many cupcakes to order for any wedding.

Guest List – Most bakeries will require you to submit your order 2 weeks to 2 months before your wedding date, so you’ll want to be sure you have your RSVP cards sent back to you before the deadline. In addition to the official head count based on the reply cards, it’s a good idea to add 10 percent of the number of guests who failed to reply. For example, if you have 20 outstanding RSVP cards, add 2 to your final count.

Wedding Professionals – Many contracts will stipulate that you must provide a meal for the photographer, videographer and other professionals who will be present at the event. While technically, you don’t have to serve them a cupcake, it is a nice gesture to include the professionals at dessert time as well. It is customary to invite the officiant (and his or her spouse, depending on your faith) to the reception, so make sure you adjust your headcount accordingly.

Style of the Meal – The type of dessert service that you’ll be offering has an impact on how many cupcakes your guests will eat. Typically, people are more hesitant to ask waiters for seconds, so the recommended amount for plated dessert service is 1.25 cupcakes per person, which will allow for any dropped treats and for those guests brave enough to request more. If your guests will be free to help themselves to the cupcakes, plan for 1.5 cupcakes per person, as your guests will be more likely to take seconds.

Other Desserts – If you will be serving a groom’s cake, having a chocolate fountain or offering any other types of desserts in addition to your cupcakes, you can plan to cut back to 1.25 cupcakes per person, even with self-service.

Once you know precisely how many cupcakes you’ll be ordering, you’ll be ready to find the right cupcake stand to form the perfect display. Totally Cupcake has stands available in a wide variety of sizes to handle every need. If you need assistance selecting a stand, contact us for help. We’ll do everything we can to make planning your wedding cupcake display easier.

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