07/09/2012 11:29 am ET Updated Sep 08, 2012

50 Shades Of Frosting (And Other Green Baking Tips)

Wedding cakes are large, expensive, and often do not taste as good as other desserts. The cupcake craze has been around for a while and shows no signs of stopping! Now that the green and DIY movements are joining forces, the cupcake has been reinvented in more than one way. Small cakes are the perfect solution and can double as wedding favors that guests can take home. From organic cupcakes to cake pops, personal desserts can easily be packed up and eaten at home.

If you want to bake your own wedding goodies, you can green everything from the ingredients to the presentation. This list of ideas starts in the kitchen and ends with a beautiful cupcake stand for your guests to "Ooh and Aah" over.

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1) Minimize your "Cookprint"

In her book, "Cooking Green: Reducing Your Carbon Footprint in the Kitchen," Kate Heyhoe defines "cookprint" as the entire environmental impact of a given meal, including the energy used to prepare it.

There are simple ways to reduce your cookprint while you bake in the kitchen. To start, use all natural baking products and delicious organic, seasonal and local ingredients. If you are baking desserts for your wedding, plan ahead. You can bake your desserts days or weeks before your wedding and freeze them.

If you have a summer garden, you can bake fruit filled cupcakes in several varieties! For something refreshing and different try making these mint brownies. Instead of using extract, use organic mint from your garden to flavor the frosting.

Heyhoe also suggests refraining from using your garbage disposal every day and using environmentally responsible cleaning materials, eco-friendly baking pans and other kitchen items.

2. 50 Shades of Frosting

Creating your own frosting colors from a basic food coloring kit is a resourceful and cost effective way to top off your cupcakes. You don't have to spend tons of money buying different frosting shades. You can make a large selection of colors right in your own home!

Glam up your cupcakes with these beautiful pastel frosting shades in every color. You can create these shades using just the basics of a food coloring kit: red, green, yellow and blue! Each color depends on the number of drops you use. Metallic colors could be added to this list, too. They would be perfect for a shimmery winter wedding or a glitzy summer soiree. To create metallic frosting, you use luster dust, a non-toxic edible powder that produces a high-sheen finish.

3. Dress Them Up!

Don't leave your cupcake out in the cold... cover them in eco-friendly wraps or liners. You can find great designs at Green Party Goods. You can also choose from a variety of cake wrappers, which are made from thicker paper and wrap around the cupcake liner for a fancy effect.

4. If You Like It Then You Should Have Put a Stick on It!

Cake Pops are the bite-sized counterpart of the cupcake. Not only are they easy to make, but your guests will be so busy popping them in their mouths that your dessert waste will be significantly less than with a large wedding cake! Guests will gobble these down. Use biodegradable sticks and organic ingredients to create these frosted delights.

5. It's All About the Presentation.

Now your cupcake stands can also be green. These recycled cupcake stands are adorable! You can make your own using antique vases and vintage plates with bright designs to match your color theme. These quirky cake holders are more sustainable than a plastic throwaway cupcake tower.

If you're planning a woodland wedding, a wooden cake stand is the perfect compliment. Made from fallen wood in Portland, Oregon, the cake stand features a beechwood bottom and a basswood top.

Now you have the green tips and tools to bake for your big day! If you decide to hire someone to create your confections, ask them to use local, seasonal, and organic ingredients for the greenest version possible. Good luck and happy baking!

50 Shades Of Frosting

The Green Bride Guide is the leading online resource for eco-friendly wedding ideas, product and services. Their Green Wedding Directory has over 1,500 green wedding service providers, such as restaurants that serve local, organic food and limousine companies that use hybrid vehicles. The Wedding Shop has a large selection of eco-friendly wedding invitations, favors, and reception décor. The site's Green Wedding Registry has over a thousand home goods and other gifts hand selected for their quality and environmental savings. For further information on the Green Bride Guide go to