Ship a Cake
Shipping a cake is a rather risky procedure. With the handling that the package may go through while in transit, there is no guarantee that the cake will arrive in as perfect condition as it was when it left the shipper. However, observing the proper packing methods will allow for better chances of being able to successfully ship a cake to another destination.
- Frost the cake with a stiff icing. If shipping cake with icing, check that the icing used is the stiff kind. Cake shipping methods usually work best with cakes that use fondant icing, since the fondant would hold its shape better even when subjected to a warm shipping trip. Shipping is not advised for cakes which are fluffy and have a lot of frosting, as this would be more likely to be messy, and the frosting would tend to melt in warmer temperatures.
- Freeze the cake prior to shipping to set the icing and help the cake hold its shape. The cool temperature will also maintain the freshness of the cake. Once you are ready to pack the cake for shipping, carefully wrap the frozen cake in plastic saran wrap from top to bottom, making sure that the plastic is wrapped firmly enough to provide ample support to the cake. After, wrap the cake in aluminum foil to maintain the cold temperature.
- Place the wrapped cake in a pre-cooled Styrofoam cooler. Surround the cake with gel packs to help keep it cool while in transit, and Styrofoam packaging peanuts to cushion the cake and prevent too much movement. If a Styrofoam cooler is not available, you may also place the cake in a sturdy cardboard cake box. For added protection, wrap the Styrofoam cooler or cake box further in bubble wrap.
- Carefully place the cake package in a sturdy corrugated cardboard box. Place Styrofoam peanuts around the cake package on all sides, as well as on the bottom of the box. Fill the box with the peanuts such that it becomes a sturdy insulation, ensuring that the cake package does not move around.
- Seal the corrugated box shut with two-inch wide, pressure-sensitive plastic tape. Do not use cellophane tape or masking tape, as these may be removed easily. Apply multiple layers of tape to all the seams.
- Note which side of the box is up. Mark the box with “THIS SIDE UP” and with an arrow pointing up, by using stickers or by writing it with a permanent marker. Make sure to do this on each side of the box. Mark the box with “Fragile” and “Perishable” as well.
- Choose a shipping service that would ship the cake the same day or overnight, whenever possible. This will minimize the transit time and the chances of the cake getting damaged. Also consider getting insurance for the shipment.
- The key to shipping a cake is to pack it in a lot of layers. Make sure that the layers are sturdy enough to keep the cake stable.
- If you must ship a cake with frosting, it would be best to pack the cake unfrosted, and include the icing in a separate container.
- In spite of all the precautionary measures, there is no 100% guarantee that no part of the cake will get damaged while in transit. Some of the icing may still smear, or a few of the decorations may get crushed.
Things You’ll Need
- Cake to be shipped
- Plastic saran wrap
- Aluminum foil
- Styrofoam cooler which can fit the cake
- Cake box
- Gel packs
- Styrofoam packaging peanuts
- Corrugated shipping box
- Two-inch pressure sensitive plastic tape
- Permanent marker