Sheet Cake Sizes: How to Choose the Right Size Sheet Cake Pan

Sheet Cake Sizes: How to Choose the Right Size Sheet Cake Pan

Sheet cake is one of the best forms of cake to make for a crowd because it doesn’t require very much layering or structural support and it is easy to transport. Plus, a slice of sheet cake lends itself well to killed piping work or other edible decorations. That being said, it can be tricky to determine which size of sheet cake is best for your event. To learn about sheet cake sizes and how to calculate the number of servings per sheet cake, keep reading.

The Difference Between Full, Half, and Quarter Sheet Cake Sizes

how big is a half sheet cake

Most bakers think of orders in terms of full, half, and quarter sheet cake pans, which can actually mean a handful of different sizes. As a result, it’s best to discuss the number of servings and the size of each serving instead. From there, you can determine which size pan will work best for the application.

Buy Pans with Cohesive Sizing

Because size conversions can get confusing, one way you can simplify things is to choose pans that have lengths or widths that are divisible by each other. For example, if your “full” sheet pan is 18” x 24”, you should find a half size pan that’s 12” x 18” and a quarter pan that’s 9” x 12”, since those numbers divide evenly into each other.

Number of Servings Per Sheet Cake

When it comes to determining how many servings you can get out of your sheet cake, you’ll first need to decide how large you want each piece to be. Typically, 2” x 2” or 2” x 3” pieces are suitable sizes for each portion. To figure out how many servings you’ll yield from a given pan, simply follow the formula below.

Sheet Cake Servings Formula

Number of Servings = Pan Area ÷ Cake Serving Size Area

Pan Area = Pan Length x Pan Width

Cake Serving Size Area = Piece of Cake Length x Piece of Cake Width

Example Calculation

You have a 18″ x 26″ pan. To find the pan area, multiply the pan length by the pan width.

  • 18″ x 26″ pan = 468″2 pan area

You’re serving cake slices that measure 2″ x 2″. To find the cake serving size area, multiply the length and width of the cake slice.

  • 2″ x 2″ slice = 4″2 cake serving size area

Now you know that you have a 468″2 pan area and a 4″2 serving size area. To find the number of servings, divide the pan area by the serving size area.

  • 468″2 ÷ 4″2 = 117 servings

Choosing the Right Sheet Cake Pan for Your Needs

While sheet cake pans are available in a variety of materials and styles, the most important thing to consider while shopping is the size. Sheet pans are measured Length x Width x Height, with the height or depth generally ranging between 1 and 4 inches.

Select Your Pan Depth Based on Your Cake Layers

The depth of the pan is key to note whether you’re dealing with a single layer or double layered cake. If you want a single layer cake, use a deeper pan. If you’d like multiple layers, you have two options: use two shallow pans to bake two thinner cakes, or use one deep pan to create a tall cake that you can cut into layers once it cools.

You can also use a sheet pan extender to increase the height of your cake. Sheet pan extenders help to prevent your batter from overbaking while simultaneously creating perfectly straight edges.

Even though there’s no standard definition of a full, half, or quarter sized sheet cake, using inches to describe the size of your cake is always a safe bet. So, whether you’re filling a routine sheet cake order or stocking your bakery’s supplies for the very first time, we can help you find the proper sized pan for the job.