How to Ship Cupcakes Step by Step

So you’ve just made a delicious batch of cupcakes and want to share. Great! But if you don’t ship them correctly, you might send off a jumbled wreck. Ditch the mess and ship fresh with a hardy cupcake box and ice packs.

Hey, there! My name is Michelle, and I am a cupcake-baking machine! Okay, not really. But I make a lot of cupcakes that sometimes need to be shipped. With my experience shipping cupcakes, I feel I have cracked the code on how to pack cupcakes for delivery and ship them.

While it might seem challenging to send fresh cupcakes in the mail, it’s actually pretty simple. As long as you have the right tools, those cupcakes will arrive as fresh as the day you made them. 

Let’s ship some cupcakes!

How to Ship Cupcakes

Before you even think about baking your cupcakes, you need to ensure you have all the equipment necessary to ship them. Don’t worry – it’s just a few things. Let’s take a closer look at the list:

  • Cupcake box
  • Cupcake inserts
  • Candy sticks
  • Ice packs
  • Shipping box
  • Tape
  • Ingredients for cupcakes

See? Simple. Now, let’s figure out how to make this work.

1. Make and Chill Your Cupcakes

The first step (obviously) is to make your cupcakes! Let your creativity loose and bring your cupcake masterpiece to life. You don’t need to do anything *special* while you’re baking and decorating.

But once you are done, and your cupcakes have cooled, don’t leave them on the counter. You want to keep them chilled. I suggest putting cupcakes in the freezer, but you can keep them in the fridge.

2. Place Cupcakes in the Cupcake Box

You don’t want to skip this step. Sure, other blogs might tell you that a cupcake box isn’t necessary. I disagree. A cupcake box is specifically designed to house cupcakes safely. They’re sturdier than other options, so your cupcakes won’t end up smashed.

You will also want some inserts, depending on the size of your cupcakes. Otherwise, your cakes will smoosh together. I like this pack because it comes with a box and various inserts, so you don’t have to buy everything separately. 

Once your box and inserts are ready, stick your cupcakes inside. Secure them in place with candy sticks. The stick should reach the top and bottom of the box, going through the center of your cupcake. Cut the sticks if necessary.

3. Secure in a Shipping Box

First, secure your cupcake box tightly with tape. Add any decorations to the cupcake box. For example, you might want to write “Happy Birthday” or “Happy Anniversary.” Some people will want to add ribbons, bows, and other fun decorations. 

Once secured, stick a few ice packs on top of the cupcake box. This will ensure that your cupcakes stay fresh while they are in transit. 

Lastly, set everything inside a small and secure shipping box. If there is extra space inside the shipping box, feel free to add some fillers. Bubble wrap works wonders for keeping everything safe and sound while on the go!

4. Ship Using Overnight Shipping

I’m sorry, but regular shipping isn’t going to cut it. You need to spend a few extra dollars for express or overnight shipping. The sooner the cupcakes reach their destinations, the fresher they’re going to be. That’s the goal after all, right? Cupcakes that taste brand new? Yup.


Pretty simple, right? All you need to do is pack your cupcakes properly and send them out. That’s it! If you still have questions, though, don’t worry. Below are some frequently asked questions you might want to know the answer to.

How can I ship cupcakes without damage?

The best way to ensure no damage to your precious cupcakes is to use a sturdy cupcake box, and candy sticks to keep them in place and surround the box with filler before sealing it in a shipping box.

How do you keep cupcakes fresh when shipped?

Sticking a few ice packs in the box is the easiest way to ensure the cupcakes stay fresh when shipped. Always make sure you’re opting for the fastest shipping option, too. Yes, you will have to pay extra, but it’s worth it to avoid dried-up, old cupcake deliveries.

Should I freeze cupcakes before shipping?

You should absolutely freeze cupcakes before shipping. Frozen cupcakes will be fresher upon delivery. So, when you’re done baking, decorating, and cooling, don’t hesitate to pop them into the freezer until they’re ready to be shipped (which should be the same day or the next day).

How do you ship cupcakes in a jar?

Shipping cupcakes in a jar? Layer your jar with cupcakes and frosting. Then, seal it tightly. Decorate the exterior as you please. Wrap it generously with filler – lots of bubble wrap is a great option. Then, place it in a shipping box with an ice pack and use the fastest shipping method.

Final Words

Cupcakes are delicious. Share them with the world – it’s simple! All you need to do is place your frozen cupcakes into a cupcake box (complete with inserts). Secure with candy sticks. Secure and cover with ice packs and filler. Tape the shipping box tight and ship using the fastest shipping method.

Have you ever shipped cupcakes? What was your preferred method? Do you have any tips or tricks? Share below!

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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  • maureen

    what about a plastic cupcake container? will the frozen cupcakes, as they defrost, mold before reaching their destination?

    • Michelle

      Hi Maureen,
      I have never tried using plastic containers. I don’t see why it wouldn’t work, but don’t quote me on that! 🙂
      If you try it, let me know how it works out!

  • Bryanna Floyd

    Hi there! This blog post blew my mind because I thought cupcakes were one of the few treats that couldn’t be shipped! Could you explain more about using candy sticks to secure them in the box? That part lost me.

    Thank you!

    • Donna

      By candy sticks, I think they mean the white sticks you use to make chocolate lollipops. You can find these all over, especially candy making supply stores, or even stores like Michael’s, in the department that sells candy-making supplies.

      The candy stick needs to be a specific length: to touch the (inside) top of the cupcake box, going to through the center of the cupcake vertically, to the bottom of the cupcake where it touches the bottom of the box. (Just cut the stick to the length you need. Doing this prevents the cupcake from moving; it spears it in place. If the box is in a truck that hits a bump, the cupcake hopefully will not move-and the frosting won’t become all messed up.

    • Michelle

      Hi Bryanna,
      As mentioned by Donna, I am talking about the white sticks for lollipops. They should be long enough to touch the top and bottom of your box. Slide the cupcake down the candy stick so it “spears” it right down the middle. This will help to keep them in place and avoid messy shipments.
      Happy baking,