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Baking a cake versus buying

(57 Posts)
TaterTots Mon 26-Sep-16 14:44:06

A former colleague has posted on FB about a bake sale at her children's school. Some parents have brought in shop bought cakes and she has taken exception to this. Her argument is that a crap homemade cake is still better than a shop bought one.

Predictably, it has kicked off. Some responses are simply pointing out that it could be a time issue rather than lack of baking skills. However, others are a bit more vitriolic - 'How can you judge someone's parenting skills based on whether they bake or not?!?' etc. - which strikes me as a bit extreme.

What do you think? I regularly bake for bake sales at work and would never buy cakes for them - defeats the object for me. However, this is strictly voluntary - if I was a parent and it was a school thing I might feel 'obliged'; in which case if my rock buns were actually like rocks, I might be heading to Greggs cake

SlitherAdict Mon 26-Sep-16 14:47:44

I once made lovely orange frosted carrot cakes for the school bake sale. They sold them for 10p , same price as the shop baked cakes. Not done it again.

FeelingSmurfy Mon 26-Sep-16 14:48:09

All has the same result in bringing money in for the school so I don't see the problem

Shop bought cakes can be cheaper too, the money saved could be given to the children to buy the cakes! It can be annoying spending x amount making a cake and then seeing it sold for less than it cost you to make. You would have been better off just cutting the middle man out and donating what you would have spent making it

I like baking, but not everyone does

Rrross1ges Mon 26-Sep-16 14:48:28

I bake and would always make homemade for a bake sale but I'm a fussy bugger and would rather eat shop bought from a place with a hygiene rating than some random who lets their dog lick the spoon. God, I'm horrible and picky.

myfriendnigel Mon 26-Sep-16 14:49:30

If I tried to make a cake no one would buy it.Its not in my skill set. I don't Refuse to eat shop bought cakes and I've never met anyone that does.Sometimes shop bought ones taste nicer than some peoples home made ones, as contrary to popular believe the cake doesn't always taste better if you've put 6 hours into making it.Therefore home made, shop bought-it would all be the same to me as long as the money was going to a good cause.
It's an odd sort of snobbery, in my opinion, to make a big fuss about that kind of thing.

Assam Mon 26-Sep-16 14:50:40

Shop bought cakes are sometimes easier for a cake sale. They're more 'packaged' you don't have to faff about with cutting it, napkins & crumbs etc
I get round it by doing flapjacks or crispy squares kids seem to prefer them & sell first

Cherylene Mon 26-Sep-16 14:52:03

I got fed up of the charging less that the ingredients bit.

For events, we used to buy in the value flour etc, and a few mums with food hygiene certs used to make some cakes/mince pies/sausage rolls/cream scones then we would sell them for a proper amount.

We also sold packets of biscuits made by reception grin

AnnaMarlowe Mon 26-Sep-16 14:57:54

I regularly work a 70 hour week. Being asked to contribute cakes is my worst nightmare because it usually means I'll have to fit them in somewhere around 2am. I'm also not the world's best baker so my efforts (which really will have been an effort to fit in) will then be scorned by those who have more time and skill.

It's enough to make you weep. I'd happily buy shop bought if it was acceptable at our school.

Baking does seem to be one of those areas which is incredibly competitive. Your friend openly criticising other parents on FB is crass though.

weeblueberry Mon 26-Sep-16 14:59:04

Well it's all very well if you've got the time, ability and inclination to bake.

Personally I love baking and get a lot of enjoyment from it but frankly if you've got three kids and it's just YET another thing to add to the stuff the school requests of you well then isn't a shop bought cake better than saying 'sorry I didn't have time'?

You're asked to bring cake. Bring cake. If you can manage home made, great. If not buy cakes. The school are getting the money regardless which is, obviously, the bottom line.

phillipp Mon 26-Sep-16 15:02:48

It really doesn't matter.

I occasionally bake them. I work for myself and enjoy baking. When I was full time employed I bought them or, now, if I can't move work around I buy them.

Quite honestly I am not going to turn down work to bake a cake that I dont Even get to eat.

Sounds like the woman on FB is a judgy twat though.

NotCitrus Mon 26-Sep-16 15:08:53

If the bought cakes are wrapped, then if they don't sell (which they don't as fast as the home-made ones), then they can be saved and used for school PTA activities - like events when they are trying to get the hard-to-reach parents in.

I sometimes make cake (usually the classic chocolate crispie ones with some mini eggs on) but often just buy some for my kids - if bakers bring say 10 cupcakes each you don't want every single parent bringing them!
Also helps if you can split the offerings into Popular Kids Cakes for Max 50p, and Really Naice Cake For Mummies Who Will Pay £2 - May Contain Booze.

Former OP colleague is a tactless twat.

Runningupthathill82 Mon 26-Sep-16 15:09:58

I enjoy baking. However, I have two kids under three, a full time demanding job, and marathon training to fit in - on top of the usual cooking/cleaning/housework.

There is no bloody way I could find time to bake for a school thing unless I did it at 10pm and, quite frankly, I'd rather buy some "naice" buns from sainsburys and send those instead.

I don't give a shit if that's seen as "not good enough" or whatever. We all make time for different things and I wouldn't be able to make time for baking.

SaucyJack Mon 26-Sep-16 15:14:47

I do bake for school cake sales- but I do it entirely for my own pleasure.

It costs me more money than buying them, but it doesn't raise any more money for the school. And the kids don't give a shit either way as long as they get to eat 5 cakes in 5mins. Cake connoisseurs they are not.

specialsubject Mon 26-Sep-16 15:16:49

buy one unless you actually enjoy baking. Fuel and time are not free, and cake making kit is clutter if never used. And if you don't like baking (for me it is mess and boredom) why do it?

Starrystarrynight456 Mon 26-Sep-16 15:35:48

I think it's hugely depressing that people would criticise others' attempt at contributing to a fund raising bought or home made, both can be used to raise money. It's a bake sale....not Great British Bake Off.

I also think it's depressing that women pass judgement on other women in 2016 because they don't bake or just so happened not to have the time to bake that week...I know your OP says parents but I bet my house the criticism was aimed mainly at mums not dads.

I like baking on occasion but whether or not you'd get me to bring a home made cake to a bake sale would depend on what else I had on that others have said, if it's a busy work week it ain't going to happen as I sure as hell am not going to get up 2 hours earlier to please some judgemental parent when I could buy a decent cake from M&S. Your friend sounds like she leads a sad life if she gets so bothered by's a bloody bake sale. Who cares who brings what as long as the objective (raising funds not making other people feel like shit) is achieved.

Nousernameforme Mon 26-Sep-16 15:42:01

Yeah unless i have seen the inside of your kitchen I'm not buying cakes you have made, as someone said up thread i don't know how good your kitchen hygiene is. Plus shop bought are more reliable regarding cross contamination with nuts etc. So although I love to bake i don't do it for school

Waltermittythesequel Mon 26-Sep-16 15:47:20

Anyone who has a strong opinion on whether or not cakes are homemade at a school bake sale needs to get out more.


Cherylene Mon 26-Sep-16 15:48:41

I don't know why more people don't do it like I said upthread. Available people from the school association do the baking and costs etc are taken into account.

It is good practice for anyone who wants to run their own business, you get good quality control and it means people who do not have the time, expertise, or work can buy them and not faff about making duff cakes in the early hours.

You can do things like make a load toppers with the school logo on, then mass produce a load of cup cakes to put them on. I remember doing 100 pink icing covered hearts for the school disco that went down very quickly.

YelloDraw Mon 26-Sep-16 15:50:18

Life is too short.
Better to support and send in some shop bought cakes tan not to support at all?

YelloDraw Mon 26-Sep-16 15:51:59

I'll even let you into a little secret... we have baking competitions at work sometimes in the team. I always buy a cake. And bring it in my own cake tin and make sure it gets slightly bashed on the way.

No one has ever called me out on it yet!

SnipSnipMrBurgess Mon 26-Sep-16 15:53:16

I would never eat someones home made cakes, sorry.

I have sometimes made cakes for the sale at school at a push but I have enough to be getting on with. Life is too short.

I am a v active member of our PTA and would not slow to tell that person to get a grip. Anything anyone can do for your school is a benefit and should be greatly appreciated.

oldlaundbooth Mon 26-Sep-16 15:53:34

Bake sales for schools would do well to recruit the local WI who love baking etc and have free time to bake.

Lets face it, a homemade cake is great but not many people who are parents have the time/inclination after the daily grind.

WindPowerRanger Mon 26-Sep-16 15:55:10

Bought or made, it is a contribution. I think it is incredibly bad form to start telling parents off because you don't like the form their contribution takes. It is exactly the kind of meanness that puts a lot of parents off PTAs etc.

Plus, some children like the bought ones. Some need them because of dietary requirements-if they recognise shop cakes that they are allowed to have at home, they know they can buy them.

MargaretCavendish Mon 26-Sep-16 16:02:37

When I was in sixth form each form had a charity to raise money for, and holding a bake sale was a common way of doing it (I guess maybe it wouldn't be allowed now?). Pretty quickly people figured out that homemade cakes were far, far less popular than just selling fizzy laces by the handful...

Cherylene Mon 26-Sep-16 16:16:12

Pretty quickly people figured out that homemade cakes were far, far less popular than just selling fizzy laces by the handful...

Yes - I think the expectations and the realities of bake sales do not meet.

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