bake - March/April 2020 - 58

Graduation
W

hether a child is just finishing kindergarten, a young adult
has completed the four-year journey of high school, or an
older adult has made his or her way through the rigors of acquiring
a college degree, graduations call for big celebrations.
While traditions will always be important to graduation ceremonies, that's no reason for the after-party to follow suit. Non-traditional desserts are becoming a norm for these celebrations. Sheet cakes
remain popular for these events, but many bakery customers are
thinking smaller.
"People are doing less or smaller cakes and then serving cupcakes, cookies, or donuts," says Lynn Schurman, owner of Cold
Spring Bakery in Cold Spring, Minnesota.
It's clear that alternative forms of graduation cakes are on the rise
this season. There are plenty of non-traditional options at your disposal. Offering alternatives such as cake pops or cupcakes at your
bakery allows your customers to pick something that will stand out
at their planned celebration.
Houston's Three Brothers Bakery suggests going with a cupcake
tower to show off smaller bites. "Imagine small bite-sized cupcakes
decorated with either vanilla or chocolate icing and displayed on a
tiered stand? Cupcakes are the perfect sized dessert to give all of
your party guests a small sweet infusion," the bakery says.
Cupcakes can be arranged in a special pattern, or can be combined with a sheet cake for a stunning design. "We're also trying to
figure out if there are other kinds of desserts that can be incorporated," Schurman says. "Not all graduation parties are doing cakes
anymore. They're looking for other options."
Cake pops are another fun play on the format. Full cakes can
58

2020

058_BA_MarApr20_Cake Feature.indd 58

sometimes be too much for a group, may not be completely eaten,
and can occasionally go to waste. Cake pops can be enjoyed by
adults and children alike, and they're more easily stored for future
eating. Additionally, with many people watching their waistlines
come the spring season, smaller bites are encouraged.
You can offer a variety of flavors for cake pops (including popular
options like red velvet and funfetti) and still display a wealth of
creativity. For instance, at Guanajuato Bakery in Fort Worth, Texas,
cake pops are dipped in chocolate, drizzled with bright colors, and
covered in BakeMark's unicorn sprinkles, creating an exciting treat
for customers.
Another cute option for cake pops is to top them with miniature
decorations. Customize these treats with little edible graduation
caps or scrolls. These decorations can be showcased as part of
larger displays.
Mini dessert bars are also a growing trend, as customers are
drawn to variety in products and flavors. Just like how weddings are
trending towards dessert bars, so too can graduation celebrations.
Whatever school colors are being utilized will pop when appearing on a multiple treat showcase. Macarons, cookie sandwiches,
donuts, and other smaller items can be combined with cupcakes or
cake pops for an appetizing arrangement.
Colors are another important aspect of graduation desserts.
Trendy visuals can make your cakes stand out with customers.
Pantone Color Institute's color of the year for 2020 is Classic Blue,
described as a "calming shade of azure" or reminiscent of the sky
at dusk. Since Pantone colors heavily influence cake design, expect
this color to appear in spring cakes.

©ARINA HABICH - STOCK.ADOBE.COM

CAKES GO ALTERNATIVE

THE GRADUATION ISSUE

3/26/2020 2:33:33 PM



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