How to Cut a Wedding Cake

Aside from the beaming bride, the next most magical part of any wedding is the wedding cake – and the last thing you want to do is destroy it during the cutting process. To ensure those beautiful wedding cake slices, you need to know how to cut a wedding cake the right way.

Cutting a wedding cake isn’t too challenging. The ring and rectangle methods are recommended for round cakes with multiple tiers. You will want to use the square method for square cakes and the vertical/horizontal technique for heart-shaped wedding cakes.

Hey, everyone! My name’s Michelle, and I may not have tied the knot just yet, but I’ve been to my fair share of weddings. I’ve made a few wedding cakes in my day, too. That said, I know the best ways to cut a wedding cake, regardless of the shape or number of tiers.

Let’s discover how to cut a wedding cake (the right way for picture-perfect results)!

4 Ways to Cut a Wedding Cake

When it comes to cutting a wedding cake, you have a few different options. Really, the way you cut your cake will come down to the shape of your cake and how many tiers your sweet treat has. 

1. Ring Method (Best for Multiple Round Tiers)

The ring method is one of the best ways to cut a cake – especially if you have a round cake, two or three tiers, and a ginormous crowd of people to feed. That’s because this method breaks down the wedding cake into adorable yet classic slices for an incredible amount of people.

Step 1: Remove the layers. The first step is to remove all of the layers. You can do this by sliding your cake knife underneath the cake board and gently pulling it off the layer underneath. If you have a 1 tier cake, you can skip this step. 

Step 2: Cut a circle into the bottom layer of the cake. Next, you will want to cut a circle in the middle of the bottom layer of the cake. Ensure you leave enough room on the border to cut into slices.

Step 3: Cut 1-inch slices around the perimeter. For now, you will leave the inner circle alone. Focus on the border and slice them into 1-inch servings.

Step 4: Cut the inner circle into 1-inch wedges. Once the perimeter has successfully been sliced and distributed, move on to the inner circle. Cut them into 1-inch wedges and serve.

Step 5: Continue with the remaining tiers. Use the same process – cut an inner circle and start at the perimeter. The top tier may not require an inner circle.

Tip: Always clean your knife in-between cuts! This will ensure that there are no annoying and unsightly crumbs hanging around. It will also ensure a beautiful, clean-cut finish. 

2. Rectangle Method (Second Best Option for Multiple Round Tiers)

The ring method can be somewhat challenging. If you’re feeding a smaller crowd and don’t have to worry about serving a massive audience, you can opt for the rectangle method – and yes, it’s a method that works for round wedding cakes that are 1 tier or multiple tiers.

Step 1: Remove the layers. Just as in the technique mentioned above, you need to begin by removing the tiers using your cake knife. Continue sliding the tiers off until you’ve reached the bottom layer of the cake.

Step 2: Cut the cake in a straight line about an inch in. You will want to leave about half an inch on the end. This will ensure your cake stands up while slicing rather than falling over.

Step 3: Cut the cake into slices. You can decide how big you want your portions, but a wedding cake slice is usually one inch. 

Step 4: Continue cutting until that row is finished, then go on to the next. Follow the same procedure. Cut an inch inward and leave half an inch on the end. Cut 1-inch slices and move them onto the next row.

3. Square Method (Best for Square Cakes)

In the era of nontraditional relationships and wedding ceremonies, it’s unsurprising that untraditional wedding cakes are being ordered left and right – and the most popular option is square. Square cakes are infinitely easier to make and cut. Here’s how to do it.

Step 1: Cut the cake in a straight line one or two inches in. The “standard” is a single inch, but many wedding parties opt to go the two-inch route for square cakes. It’s up to you!

Step 2: Cut 1-inch slices. Go down the line, cutting 1-inch pieces to serve. Continue slicing until the row is finished.

Step 3: Continue cutting in rows and slices until the wedding cake is done! You will want to use the same technique. Cut a straight line one or two inches in, then slice it into 1-inch pieces to serve the guests. Clean your knife in between cuts!

4. Vertical and Horizontal Method (For Heart Cakes)

Weddings are all about love. Naturally, some people opt for heart-shaped wedding cakes. Sure, some might think it’s a little sappy – but who doesn’t want all the sap at their dream wedding? If you’re going the heart-shaped route, cutting is a bit trickier.

Step 1: Cut the heart in half vertically. I know it’s not the best look at a wedding, but it must be done to serve the wedding cake! 

Step 2: Cut the two halves in half. You should end up with four portions that are the same width.

Step 3: Cut the heart in half horizontally. When you’re done, you will have two separate sections of cake – the top and bottom of the heart.

Step 4: Cut horizontally from the middle into 1-inch segments. Starting at the middle cut, you want to slice above and underneath about one inch. This will create the perfect slice of cake for your guests.


Cutting a wedding cake? Yeah, not so tough after all. The best thing to do is try to be as precise as possible and take your time. Always clean the knife in between slices. Want to learn more? Here are a few frequently asked questions that might interest you.

How do you cut a tiered cake?

Cutting a tiered cake is simple. You can use the ring or rectangle technique mentioned above. The biggest thing to remember is that you should always start by removing the tiers. Don’t try to cut a wedding cake with the levels still intact. It will lead to a messy nightmare!

What layer of the cake do you cut into at a wedding?

The layer of cake that the bride and groom slice is the bottom layer. This can be surprising, as most people think the top tier should be the one cut, as it’s the top and focal point of the wedding cake. This will lead to problems, though. Always go with the bottom tier!

Do you cut the cake before or after the first dance?

It’s your wedding, so in reality, you can cut the cake whenever you want to. However, sticking to traditions, you will cut the cake after the first dance.

Cutting a Wedding Cake is Relatively Simple!

Cutting a wedding cake is easy. The most important thing to remember is that the cutting technique will change depending on the type of cake you’re cutting. Traditional round cakes can use the ring or rectangle method. Always clean the knife between cuts. Enjoy!

Have you ever sliced a wedding cake before? How’d you do it?

About Michelle
I have been a lover of sweets since day one. This led me on a self-taught baking journey starting at the age of 13. It's been over 10 years since the start of my baking adventures, and I’ve learned a lot along the way. Now, people rave about my delectable treats, whether it’s a chocolate cake or a strawberry crepe.

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