What To Know About Costco's Cake Options Before Ordering

Costco's cakes are economical and perfect for feeding a crowd at any gathering. While many people enjoy the taste of Costco's cakes, the options are fairly limited. There are only two size options: A 10-inch round cake serving 16 people or a half-sheet cake serving 48 people. There are also just two flavors: A vanilla cake with vanilla cheesecake mousse filling and white buttercream icing, or a chocolate cake with chocolate mousse filling and chocolate buttercream icing. 


In addition to limited cake options, the cake ordering system is also restricted — and, many say, outdated — since there is no online or phone ordering available. Shoppers must place their order in person by filling out a cake ordering form at the store and sticking it in the slot box for the bakery to fulfill. At the bottom of the form is a spot to indicate the day and time you will come back to pick it up. (There is no call or email to let you know it's ready.) Costco asks for at least one day's advance notice for ordering. 

To personalize your cake, there are a variety of designs to choose from on the order form, which may vary based on location. Some decorations include balloons, a rainbow, roses, candles, a flag, a cross, a baby shower design, and a teddy bear. Costco cake decorators will also write a message of your choosing on the cake (included in the price).


Can you request customized designs?

Depending on location, some order forms might have the option to choose a "seasonal" design and a spot to write in the type of event. According to a Costco cake decorator on Reddit – in a thread questioning Costco's fill-in-the-blank spot on the ordering form – seasonal means Costco's pre-set holiday designs such as Christmas, Valentine's Day, etc. They shared: "Costco got very strict with our designs when they redid the cake program a couple years ago, so if it's not an approved Costco cake design, we can't do it. In other words, if you don't see it, we don't offer it. Of course some decorators will try to accommodate your requests, but I know at my bakery we're pretty strict on only doing Costco designs."


So, while you may be able to request a general holiday design, it's probably not worth your time trying to ask for a specific, non-Costco-approved design. In other words, stick with what's on the form. However, according to a Redditor on another Costco Subreddit thread about cake ordering, their local Costco cake decorator made a mash-up of designs — a bear holding a balloon — which impressed their fellow shoppers. It doesn't hurt to ask for a design mash-up that's unique but still within the parameters of the approved cake designs. Or, you can try this Costco muffin hack for effortless birthday cakes for something more unique.

How Costco cake lovers make it their own

If you want to switch things up and get creative, Costco's cakes make great blank canvases for putting your aspiring cake-decorating skills to work. Instead of turning to boxed cake mix for your next at-home creation, order a blank vanilla or chocolate cake from Costco and add a design yourself with icing. Or, transform the cake by re-frosting it with a fluffy homemade frosting. A Redditor in another Costco cake thread shared that their sister, a former professional cake decorator, "orders [the cakes] in all white, scrapes the frosting off and colors it, and then refrosts it any way she wants." This is a clever way to jazz up a plain cake and a great way to reduce the frosting if you prefer a naked cake.


Another suggestion is to purchase an edible cake image and add it to a plain Costco white cake. These images made from sugar or icing are easy to put on your cake — typically you peel the backing and place it on the cake, then add an icing border to make it look cohesive. This is a perfect way to customize a kid-friendly cake with a favorite character or popular image. 

Finally, weddings are expensive enough, so why not save money and make your cake from Costco's cost-friendly cakes? Get creative by stacking round cakes on top of a sheet cake like a pyramid, using cake boards and dowels to keep your masterpiece sturdy.