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22 Naked & Semi Naked Wedding Cakes for Stylish Celebrations

A naked wedding cake is usually associated with rustic celebrations - but we're here to show you that an exposed sponge bake can work at all kinds of wedding, with the most beautiful designs from simply chic to full-on fabulous

semi naked wedding cake with ivory icing and candied fruit decoration
Unsplash/Melissa Walker Horn

semi naked wedding cake with ivory icing and candied fruit decoration
Unsplash/Melissa Walker Horn

Naked wedding cakes burst onto the wedding scene a few years ago as a trend at rustic weddings. Since then, naked and semi naked wedding cakes have come on leaps and bounds in terms of flavours and designs, making them the ultimate show-stopping treat whatepver your reception style.

From chic semi naked wedding cakes and fresh fruit decoration, to simple wedding cakes and unique flavour profiles, our round-up of the most indulgent naked wedding cakes has all the inspiration you need to help choose the perfect bake for your special day. 

We've also included a tutorial explaining how to make a naked wedding cake for couples who want to DIY their big-day-bake. Get ready for some gorgeous naked wedding cake inspiration - if you manage to get through it without getting serious cake cravings, you're stronger than we are!

Single Tier Naked Wedding Cakes

Naked wedding cakes don't always have to be huge and extravagant. These small wedding cakes are perfect for smaller, more intimate celebrations. Opting for a single tier wedding cake is also a great way to save money when planning your wedding!

1. Single Tier Semi Naked Wedding Cake

single tier semi naked wedding cake with white icing and lavender coloured flowers

Sleek and sophisticated, this single tier semi naked wedding cake looks too good to eat (almost...). We love the winter blooms and chic greenery used to decorate.

READ MORE: 63 Incredible Wedding Cake Ideas to Inspire You

2. Naked Wedding Cake With Piped Filling and Fresh Flowers

simple naked wedding cake with piped buttercream icing and white and green floral decoration

Flowers and naked wedding cakes are such a classic combination and this single tier bake is no exception. The simplicity of the design makes it versatile - it would complement almost any wedding theme!

3. One Tier Naked Wedding Cake With Whipped Buttercream

simple naked wedding cake with whipped buttercream and coconut flakes

It's the clever use of texture that makes this naked buttercream wedding cake so unique and tempting. First, you have that whipped buttercream filling, which looks plumped-up and moreish; then coconut curls that fall like delicate frills.

READ MORE: Spectacular Buttercream Wedding Cakes

4. Naked Wedding Cake with Chocolate Sponge

chocolate naked wedding cake with white piped buttercream filling

Sometimes it's best to let a great bake speak for itself. This chocolate sponge with a contrast filling needs no embellishments to make an impact. The piping technique adds texture and we just love a dramatic cake stand!

5. Single Tier Semi Naked 'Barely There' Wedding Cake 

semi naked wedding cake with clean, scraped icing and simple decoration

A floral naked wedding cake doesn't have to mean a riot of flowers. A single, beautiful floral arrangement can have plenty of impact without overwhelming the bake - this is particularly true if you're having a small wedding cake.

6. Summery Semi Naked Wedding Cake With Fresh Strawberries and Daisies

semi naked wedding cake with white icing and strawberries and daisies for decoration

The strawberry is the quintessential summer fruit in the UK. Pair them with a scattering of daisies, and you have a naked cake that calls to mind sunny days and Pimm's on the lawn.

READ MORE: 17 Stunning Summer Wedding Venues

7. Single Tier Naked Wedding Cake With Candied Orange

summery naked wedding cake with whipped filling and candied orange topping

Of course, berries aren't the only fruits that work well with a naked cake. As this bake shows, candied orange brings warmth to a simple sponge and there's nothing more tempting than bright colours on a summery wedding cake.

8. Single Tier Carrot Wedding Cake With Gold

semi naked carrot cake with lilac decoration and gold sprayed pecan toppings

We just had to include this delightful dessert for the unusual finish and the fact that it's carrot cake, a flavour not often tasted in wedding cakes (even though it should be). The gold pecans make for the perfect finishing touch and we love the lavender speckles on the side of the cake.

READ MORE: 55 Unique Wedding Cake Flavours

Two Tier Naked Wedding Cakes

One tier not enough for you? Double up on the fun with these incredible two tier naked wedding cakes.

9. Semi Naked Wedding Cake With Pink Icing

Add a bit of colour to your wedding with this fun pink design. We love the unusual combination of such a strong pink colour mixed with green leaves - it really stands out. If you're having macaron wedding favours, this cake could be the perfect pick for you.

10. Semi Naked Wedding Cake With Fresh Fig Decoration

semi naked wedding cake with fresh figs as decoration

Don't be afraid to think outside the box when it comes to decorating your wedding cake with fruit. As seen here, figs can make for glorious statement décor.

11. Semi Naked Drip Wedding Cake With Two Tiers

drip wedding cake with two tiers and semi naked icing detail in a peach colour

Keeping with the fig theme... Fresh figs, pomegranates and cherries adorn this beautifully crafted semi naked drip wedding cake. The drips of icing and scattered fruit work so well together. Your guests will be itching to tuck in to this delightful two tier wedding cake.

12. White Floral Semi Naked Wedding Cake With Two Tiers

semi naked chocolate wedding cake with crisp white icing and floral decoration

Stylish couples will swoon over this sophisticated and romantic wedding cake design. The simple colour palette is crisp and chic and we love the subtle streaks of cake that just peep through the icing.

13. Semi Naked Wedding Cake With Macarons

The gold leaf decorations give this beautiful semi naked gold wedding cake the high-end look that so many couples seek and we love the addition of macarons - they are the perfect way to add glamour to any wedding cake!

14. Two Tier Semi Naked Wedding Cake With Fresh Fruit

naked winter wedding cake

With florals as a running theme, we couldn't help but show off this wintery wedding cake from Nicky Tesler Cakes. The carefully placed fresh floral decorations add the perfect pop of colour this beautiful wedding cake deserves.

15. Semi Naked Chocolate Wedding Cake With Green Florals

semi naked wedding cake with two tiers and greenery decor

If you want to keep your colour palette simple on your special day, opt for a green and white combination like the one used on this perfect two tier wedding cake.

READ MORE: Gorgeous Rustic Wedding Cakes

Three Tier Naked Wedding Cakes

Why stop at two when you can have a three-tier naked wedding cake! Opting for a wedding cake with three tiers will add a show-stopping element to your dessert table and ensure plenty of leftovers for you and your guests to graze on.

16. Three Tier Semi Naked Wedding Cake With Ivory Buttercream

The smudge-effect icing here feels so chic, and we love the way the cake is decorated with just four repeating elements. It's a look that wouldn't be out of place at contemporary city wedding or a smart country house celebration.

READ MORE: Perfect Pearl Wedding Cakes

17. Three Tier Naked Wedding Cake With White and Pink Roses

classic semi naked wedding cake with roses and icing to decorate

If you're planning on featuring flowers heavily in your wedding, why not use the same blooms included in your bouquet and venue décor on your wedding cake as well? The white and dusty pink roses make perfect embellishments for this three tier wedding cake and we love that there's three different flavours incorporated too!

18. Semi Naked Wedding Cake With Autumnal Decorations

autumnal semi naked wedding cake with orange florals as decoration

Think foliage, and most people imagine greenery. However, leaves in autumn hues of brown and orange add real warmth to a naked cake, and incorporating these colours roots a wedding in this beautiful season.

READ MORE: The Most Delicious Chocolate Wedding Cakes

19. Winter Themed Semi Naked Wedding Cake

semi naked wedding cake with winter flowers, figs and berries

Couples planning a winter wedding should consider choosing florals like the one adorning this wedding cake. The combination of dark berries and winter blooms make this semi naked wedding cake the perfect choice for a frosty celebration.

20. Three Tier Double Flavour Naked Wedding Cake

summery naked wedding cake with fresh flowers and bright coloured fruit

Who says naked cakes have to be one single flavour? This multi-layer bake has both chocolate and vanilla, making it a real crowd-pleaser. We love the fresh decorations as well - who needs a unique wedding cake topper when you have all fruits and florals that this cake does!?

21. Three Tier Separate Naked Wedding Cakes

three naked wedding cakes separated onto a three-tier rustic wedding cake stand

As an alternative to a tall wedding cake with multiple layers, why not have several smaller cakes, each with a different flavour? The three-level stand brings them together and make it easily accessible for peckish guests who can't wait to tuck in!

READ MORE: The Newest Wedding Cake Trend You NEED To Know About

22. Three Tier Semi Naked Wedding Cake With Summer Blooms

summer naked wedding cake with white and yellow flowers as decoration
Nicky TeslerPhotography - David Jenkins

Add a summer feel to any semi naked or naked wedding cake with fresh flowers. We love the combination of colours used here and the gold cake topper complements the design perfectly!

Your Naked Wedding Cake Questions Answered

What is a Naked Wedding Cake?

"A classic naked cake is an undressed cake," explains Pia Cato of the award-winning Vanilla Pod Bakery. "It's a delicious sponge sandwiched with a filling and no external icing." You don't have to go fully 'naked' with your cake. Semi naked wedding cakes, with a thin layer of buttercream that lets the sponge peek out, are also very popular.

A non- or semi-iced cake may sound very plain - in fact, naked wedding cakes are anything but! If your dream wedding cakes involve plenty of decoration, having a plain base means the décor possibilities are even more exciting.

"My favourite thing about naked cakes is that they are so versatile," says Pia. "From boho chic to black tie affairs, naked and semi naked cakes look equally gorgeous in all types of settings. I like to think of the cake as the canvas and then design the decorations from there, whether that's using fresh flowers, fresh fruit or something completely different! I particularly like using separators too. These are placed in between the tiers and we fill the spaces with beautiful flowers and fresh fruit. It makes for an elegant but dramatic look." 

Naked wedding cakes don't just look amazing - they can give guests a taste sensation, too, and you can really get creative with the flavours. "One of our most popular options is a lemon-based bottom tier, Victoria Sandwich in the middle and a salted caramel top tier," says Pia. "A lot of our couples also opt for a delicious chocolate middle tier." 

To answer even more of your naked wedding cake FAQs, we spoke with Nicky Tesler, a wedding cake supplier based in West London. She gave us some insight into everything you need to know before making the all-important wedding cake decision.

How Much Does a Naked Wedding Cake Cost?

"With most wedding cake designers, there's a starting price for the size and finish on the cake (for example buttercream or sugar paste), with any additional decoration being extra. Naked and semi naked wedding cakes tend to be more cost effective. With a simple design, it is likely to be around 20% less than the same design with a sugar paste finish. It is worth noting that prices will vary, depending on the decoration - the more decorative elements, the higher the cost."

READ MORE: Wedding Cake Prices: How Much Does a Wedding Cake Cost?

What is the Difference Between a Naked and Semi Naked Wedding Cake?

When researching design ideas for your cake, the different terminology can become confusing. Some internet searches or inspiration websites using the terms naked and semi naked interchangeably, but there is a difference. A naked wedding cake is when there is no icing on the outside of the cake. This shows off the layers of sponge and filling between each tier. A semi naked wedding cake is when there is a thin, sometimes sparse, layer of buttercream on the outside of the cake, allowing parts of the sponge to peek through the icing.

How to Decorate a Naked Wedding Cake?

Fresh flowers and foliage are a popular choice for decorating a naked wedding cakes - just make sure you ask your florist to ensure that nothing toxic or poisonous is used! With this style of cake there is usually a misconception that there aren’t too many options for decoration, which just isn’t true. There are endless ways to decorate your wedding cake. You can choose between macarons, meringues, stencilling, piping and palette knife painting — just to name a few. Your cake designer can explore the different options with you during your consultation.

READ MORE: 30 Ways to Decorate a Plain Wedding Cake

How to Make a Naked Wedding Cake

Standing three tiers tall, this gorgeous naked wedding cake is proof that DIY can look amazing! Why not have a go yourself?

How to Make a Semi Naked Wedding Cake

Create your very own two-tier semi naked wedding cake with drip icing by following the steps outlined in this DIY wedding cake video. 

Now you have your wedding cake style down, here are 33 useful questions you need to ask your wedding cake maker.