If you have ever been to a bakery, you likely know what a half sheet cake size is and have probably had one at a celebration before. It is a popular choice for birthday parties, graduations, baby showers or any special occasion. Since they are popular for celebrating special occasions, they can be beautifully decorated with custom text added to them.
Bakeries and grocery stores generally sell half sheet cakes for special orders. Some places will even have pre-made cakes ready to purchase that you can add text to. Before you order a half sheet cake, you should know what size it is so you can make sure you have enough cake.
What is a Half Sheet Cake?
A half sheet cake is a large rectangular cake that is commonly served for large gatherings of people. It can either be a single or double layer of cake. A double layer cake is a great way to get more servings out of your cake.
You will most commonly see half sheet cakes in white, yellow, marble or chocolate flavors. They are most commonly decorated with delicious buttercream frosting. However, some bakeries offer more flavors of cake and frosting to choose from.
Benefits of a Half Sheet Cake
Though round cakes can be great for small gatherings, half sheet cakes are often a better choice for when you have a larger group of people. With a half sheet cake, it is much easier to cut equal slices of cakes thanks to its large rectangular size. The slices will also be neater and easier to serve.
How Big is a Half Sheet Cake Size?
A half sheet cake size can vary depending on where you get it from. When you get a half sheet cake from a bakery, it is generally either 15 inches by 11 inches, 15 1/2 inches by 10 1/2 inches or even as big as 16 inches by 12 inches. Since home ovens are smaller than bakery or grocery store ovens, a home half sheet cake will likely measure 13 inches by 9 inches.
Depending on how you slice it, a half sheet cake will likely serve between 18 to 40 people. A double layer half sheet cake will allow you to get larger pieces, so it is a good option if you are serving a larger amount of people.
Full Sheet and Quarter Sheet Cakes
A full sheet cake is ideal for big gatherings of people, such as corporate events and large parties. They generally measure 18 inches by 24 inches. A full sheet cake will typically serve 64 to 96 people.
Quarter sheets cakes are great for smaller gatherings, like birthday parties and barbecues. A quarter sheet cake typically measures 13 inches by 9 inches. It will generally serve 16 to 24 people.
Making Your Own Half Sheet Cakes
If you want to save a trip to the grocery store or bakery, you can make your own half sheet cakes at home. You can either use sheet cake recipes, that call for a 13-inch by 9-inch pan, or use cake mix.
If you use a boxed cake mix to make a half sheet cake, you will need three boxes of cake mix. For the two-layer cake, you’ll need six boxes of cake mix and two 13-inch by 9-inch pans. It is always best to cook layer cakes at the same time so they both get an even bake.
One of the great things about half sheet cake is that there is plenty of room to decorate and personalize it. Buttercream is generally the most common frosting to use as it tastes great and is easy to work with. If you are frosting your own half sheet cake, you will likely need six cups of frosting for a single layer and 8-10 cups for a double layer cake.
For adding words, it is generally recommended to use a #2 piping tip. This will create elegant lettering, without the words looking bulky. A #21 piping tip is recommended for frosting borders and a #127, 122 and 349 piping tips are great for making flowers.
If you don’t feel confident in your piping skills, cake stencils are a great alternative for creating elegant designs. Cake stencils can be easy to use and you can create many different beautiful designs with them. They can also be reused which is great too.
How to Store a Half Sheet Cake
Since a half sheet cake size is considerably large, it is not always easy to store. If you are wanting to store your cake whole, you might want to invest in a large cake box. They are easy to transport and can even be reused if desired.
For storing leftover cake, it is best to store it in an airtight container at room temperature for up to five days. You can also store leftover cake covered in the refrigerator for up to a week. In addition, you can also freeze your cake up to three months, tightly covered in plastic wrap.
If you use cream cheese frosting, you should store it in the fridge whenever you are not serving it. Cake with cream cheese frosting can last in the fridge for up to three days. You can also keep it in the freezer for up to one month.
The Perfect Party Cake
If you are having a get together with anywhere from 18 to 40 people, a half sheet cake is a perfect size. Measuring approximately 15 inches by 11 inches, this size cake is perfect for birthday parties, graduations, and baby showers.
Thanks to its large, rectangular size, a half sheet cake is great for adding decorations and personalizing text. Though many bakeries and grocery stores sell half sheet cakes, you can also make your own from home. However, half sheet cakes you buy in a store or bakery will likely be larger than the ones you make at home.
Please comment if you have any questions or remarks regarding half sheet cake size!