16 Single-Tier Wedding Cakes That'll Make You Rethink Layers

One-layer cakes don't have to be plain and boring—and we've got the proof.
maggie seaver the knot wedding planning expert
by Maggie Seaver
maggie seaver the knot wedding planning expert
Maggie Seaver
Wedding Planning Expert
  • Maggie Seaver is an Associate Digital Editor at RealSimple.com.
  • Maggie writes about life, career, health, and more.
  • Maggie was an editor at The Knot from 2015 to 2019.
Updated May 30, 2018

We know it's traditonal to see a towering masterpiece of tiers at a wedding reception, and it's safe to say multilayered wedding cakes won't be going out of style anytime soon. But you certainly don't need one. Not big into cake? Having a small, intimate wedding? Trying to impress your crowd with a sweet finale or include the timeless cake-cutting tradition without blowing your budget? A petite—or not-so-petite—single-tier cake could be just what you're looking for. These pared-down beauties are also an impressive dessert option for other wedding events like showers and rehearsals. And the best part about them? Your options for toppers and toppings are endless—fanciful buttercream rosettes, personalized cake toppers and statement blossoms (both handmade and fresh) and help this seemingly unassuming treat take center stage on any dessert table. From playful to preppy to utterly romantic, these 16 confections are so gorgeous and tasty they can pack a sweet punch with only one tier.

1. White Cake With Gold Polka Dots

Single tier wedding cakes simple white
Mon Petit Studio

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2. Bold Strips With Glittery Gold Accents

Single tier wedding cake navy white gold
JEFF + AMBER

From: A Modern, Kate Spade-Inspired Wedding at Clayton on the Park in Scottsdale, Arizona

3. Contemporary Brushtrokes

Single tier wedding cake simple colorful

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4. Rustic and Naked Cake With Festive Toppers

Single tier wedding cake rustic simple
SHEA CHRISTINE PHOTOGRAPHY

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5. Clean White Cake With 2-D Fondant Florals

Single tier wedding cake simple
MANGO STUDIOS

From: A Whimsical Garden-Inspired Wedding at the NoMad Hotel in New York, New York

6. Romantic White Drip Cake

Single tier wedding cake rustic simple
ASHLEY FISHER PHOTOGRAPHY

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7. Assorted Pastel Buttercream Tiers

SIngle tier wedding cakes assortment
MEADOW BROOK HALL

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8. Personalized, Textured Coconut Cake

Single tier wedding cakes simple coconut
LAUREN SCOTTI PHOTOGRAPHER

From: A Glam Desert Wedding at Frederick Loewe Estate in Palm Springs, California

9. Indulgent Berry Drip Cake

Single tier wedding cake rustic drip
Love & Light Photographs

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10. Confetti Cake With Pink Roses

Single tier wedding cake momofuku sprinkles
CASSI CLAIRE PHOTOGRAPHY

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11. Rustic Half-Naked Cake

Single tier wedding cake rustic
MARY ALICE HALL

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12. Pastel, Ruffled Buttercream

Single tier wedding cake buttercream
WILLA KVETA PHOTOGRAPHY

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13. Chocolatey S'Mores Cake With a Playful Topper

Single tier wedding cakes chocolate
CHAZ CRUZ PHOTOGRAPHER

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14. Statement Fondant Flowers

Single tier wedding cakes buttercream simple
ZSUZSI PAL PHOTOGRAPHY

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15. Decadent Caramel Drip Cake

Single tier wedding cake drip with roses
SHELLEY K PHOTOGRAPHY

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16. Champagne Buttercream Rosettes

Single tier wedding cake buttercream roses
PHOTO LOVE

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