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Cake costs

I was recently in a discussion about the cost of carrot cake versus chocolate cake on a restaurant menu. Which would you expect to pay more for?

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  1. which one is sourced and which one is made in house?

    5 Replies
    1. re: HillJ

      I say carrot cake would cost more...way more dense. There are many more variables in making chocolate cake, an all cocoa cake is really not expensive however one made with chocolate can be very costly.

      1. re: HillJ

        Both made in house. The carrot fairly standard without nuts. The chocolate cake batter is cocoa based. However the frosting and filling use dark chocolate.

        1. re: holypeaches

          Easily, the chocolate cake cost more. In my experience, carrot cakes use oil, while chocolate cakes use butter. Right there is a discrepancy in price. Secondly, if they are using dark chocolate for the filling and frosting (with more butter) and the carrot cake isn't even using nuts, even if it has a cream cheese frosting, the cost of the carrot cake is literally a fraction of the chocolate one.

          1. re: pitterpatter

            I agree completely with ppatter.

            1. re: pitterpatter

              That's the way I see it. The restaurant charges $6 for carrot cake and $8 for chocolate. Someone was upset because they felt the carrot cake should be more expensive because "it has so much more going on". I tried to explain its the expense of the ingredients that determines the price.

        2. "I was recently in a discussion about the cost of carrot cake versus chocolate cake on a restaurant menu. "

          Don't most restaurants charge one price for desserts? I can see a bakery charging different prices for baked goods, but most restaurants I go to here in the NYC area have one set price for dessert.

          If we are talking back-of-the-house costs though, I would think a good chocolate cake would cost more to produce than a carrot cake.

          1. The chocolate cake should cost more.

            The preparation is more difficult, also usually involves more steps (and icing) and the ingredients are more expensive ( chocolate vs. carrots).

            1. Chocolate cake is way costlier to make than carrot cake. Carrot cake is one of the cheapest cakes around, especially if you don't use nuts or raisins - just oil, flour, sugar, a little spice and some grated carrots (which are dirt cheap). The frosting is usually cream cheese, butter and sugar, which aren't dirt cheap but not nearly as expensive as chocolate and cream, which form the base of many chocolate frostings.

              2 Replies
              1. re: biondanonima

                It really depends. My favorite carrot cake is from the silver palate, it calls for cooked carrot purée, coconut, pineapple, walnuts...And smothered in a cream cheese icing. I have to say that it is time consuming and quite costly. On the other hand my favorite chocolate cake recipe is made with cocoa and is dirt cheap to make. I don't like rich and brownie like chocolate cakes. Chocolate prices vary enormously so you could definitely spend a king's ransom on baking the ultimate chocolate cake.

                1. re: biondanonima

                  It's a carrot cake with raisins and no nuts. It is oil based and iced with a standard cream cheese frosting. Nothing organic or fancy like pineapple. The chocolate cake itself is prepared with cocoa powder and butter. The filling is whipped heavy cream combined with chocolate and the icing is butter and chocolate. Of course more ingredients are used for each component.

                2. It depends on the quality of the ingredients. If you are using high quality chocolate for both the cake and frosting, it might cost more than a carrot cake. If you are using organic ingredients, ie heirloom carrots, nuts etc, then the carrot cake might be more costly. You should make both and get back to us!

                  1. So many interesting replies. Both could cost the same, choc more; carrot cake more. So the answer is: it depends.

                    I remember tasting peanut butter that had edible gold swirled into it once. Never thought I'd see $100.00 designer PB...but there's a market for everything.

                    In my area you can purchase a carrot cake for $12.00 - $35.00 depending on what town your bakery is located. Chocolate cakes run $11.- 40. depending on whether or not the cake is baked in-house or sourced.

                    But, when I'm in the mood for cake I want excellent flavor, crumb and moisture...and then I'm willing to pay any price.