As I’ve established in my review of Interview Cake, it’s a strong program for your interview preparation.
But maybe you don’t like some parts of it – the following could be criticized about the course:
- While not prohibitively expensive, access to Interview Cake isn't cheap, starting at $149 for 3 months
- It’s limited to around 50 hand-picked coding questions. You might be looking for a program with a larger library of problems to solve
- The section on interview tips and behavioral prep is limited. If you need more help in that area, Interview Cake’s program might not be enough
In this article you’ll learn all about IC’s competitors – and which of them you should choose depending on what kind of alternative you’re looking for.
Best Interview Cake Alternative for Data Structures & Algorithms: AlgoMonster
Like Interview Cake, AlgoMonster is great at teaching data structures & algorithms. It’s also text-based in the same way as IC is. That means it’s not superior if you prefer video instruction.
AlgoMonster’s pool of questions was created by Google Engineers – so at least on paper its founders are slightly more prestigious than Parker Phinney of Interview Cake. Note though that he has worked as a bootcamp instructor in the Bay Area, and the quality of questions and instruction at IC have been praised by its alumni.
With AlgoMonster, you’ll get:
- 160 hand-picked, tailored coding problems
- A real-time coding environment right on the platform
- 700 insightful illustrations to accompany the instructions
- Problem-solving patterns so you can handle any coding question
Pros of AlgoMonster vs Interview Cake:
Negatives of AlgoMonster compared to IC:
For pure data structures & algorithms instruction, AlgoMonster is on par with Interview Cake. IC’s questions are more tightly focused, and the coding interview tips and student community are a great bonus.
The main advantage of AlgoMonster over IC is the lower price point. I can recommend both courses equally, with AM ahead if you’re looking to save money, and Interview Cake winning if you’d like a community of peers to learn with.
A good option for beginners: Edabit
Edabit has a collection of coding challenges in 8 languages. Each challenge also contains information from other members about ways to solve the problems and additional resources.
You can create your own collection of challenges. Although Edabit doesn’t offer a specific “interview skill path”, you could create a repertoire of interview-relevant coding problems for yourself that way.
With Edabit, you’ll get:
- Over 10,000 different coding challenges
- A fun, gamified experience that has you level up and gain XP
- DSA, Algorithms & coding tutorials for complete beginners to advanced coders
The advantages of Edabit over Interview Cake:
Edabit’s disadvantages compared to IC:
I recommend Edabit if you’re at an early stage in your Software Developer career and looking for a fun way to master the basics step by step.
Learn coding interview skills while paying less: Udemy
Education giant Udemy has many courses on all topics of programming, and they’re even offering dedicated coding interview prep videos. This one does a good job of covering Data Structures & Algorithms, at a competitive price for lifetime access.
With Udemy’s interview prep course, you’ll get:
- A good introduction to Data Structures & Algorithms, progressing from the ground up
- 19+ hours of video lessons
- Brief sections on how to behave at your interview & negotiate a possible offer
On the plus side:
On the negative side:
If you’re not in a rush to be fully interview-ready, but want to dip your toes into coding interview prep – without having to think twice about the course fee – then Udemy’s course could be for you.
Simple Programmer’s course for coding AND behavioral interview prep
In the “Accelerate Your Software Developer Career Toolkit” by Simple Programmer I teach you how to approach the different types of coding questions, and I show you how to solve them on a whiteboard in multiple video courses.
But where the course has caused the biggest transformation in students is the behavioral aspect.
While most other courses brush over this subject, you’ll go deep into what it takes to act with confidence, answer behavioral questions most intelligently, and win over your interviewer.
With my coding interview prep course, you’ll get:
8-part video course on solving coding questions
8-part video course on tackling behavioral questions
Assessments, resources and checklists
Where Accelerate Your Career trumps Interview Cake:
The cons of SP’s program vs IC:
Interview Cake goes deep into solving tens of specific coding questions. I give you approaches and patterns for solving them.
Accelerate Your Software Developer Career has the best advice on personal presentation skills and conquering not just coding problems, but also the crucial behavioral type questions.
For interactive practice of Data Structure & Algorithms with a built-in IDE, go with something like Interview Cake.
To become a more skilled, charismatic and valuable programmer as a whole, winning at all aspects of your job hunt, choose the Career Accelerator Toolkit.
A decent alternative to prepare for a specific kind of interview: Educative
Another platform offering text-based instruction for solving coding interview questions is Educative.io of Grokking the Coding Interview fame.
With Educative, you’ll get:
- Data Structures & Algorithms fundamentals included in each skill path
- Around 200 hours of work, 700-900 lessons, and hundreds of quizzes, playgrounds & challenges, along with thousands of illustrations per course
- An affordable monthly subscription fee
Pros of Educative vs Interview Cake:
Educative’s cons vs IC:
With its wealth of coding problems, Educative reminds a bit of LeetCode, but with more thorough expert-created explanations.
I would recommend it if you’d like to drill on a high volume of questions.
The instructions are good, although they’re not using Interview Cake’s system of progressive clues and reminders.
Interview Kickstart as a deep specialization alternative to Interview Cake
It's the most thorough online program for coding interview preparation – read my full review of Interview Kickstart here. Depending on which career path you want to master, IK's courses span up to 18 weeks.
They're guaranteeing you'll get a job within the 6-month post-program support period – or 100% of your money back.
Be prepared to invest mid five figures into this bootcamp-style deep dive. That's playing in a whole other league than Interview Cake. But the average salary boost of an IK alumnus might make the investment worth it for you.
With Interview Kickstart, you’ll get:
- Taught by IK's team of 500+ experienced FAANG & Tier-1 interviewers with specialized expertise in different fields
- 17 available specializations in everything from Full Stack Engineering and Tech Program Management to Data Science and Machine Learning
- Six month support period with 1:1 career coaching and access to Interview Kickstarts network of companies
- Working alongside your peers in 4-18 week cohorts, and a 5000+ strong community of alumni
- The learning platform UpLevel to have all course materials, schedules, and 100s of hours of recorded lectures in one place
These factors might make Interview Kickstart a viable alternative:
IK is worse than Interview Cake in these regards:
If you're dead set on getting a significant promotion or entering a premium-pay Engineering discipline, Interview Kickstart is for you and will get you there (guaranteed by their exceptional refund policy.) Otherwise, stick with Interview Cake or any of its similarly-priced competitors.
You can't enroll in the program directly. They first make you go through a one-hour webinar with one of the founders to explain the skill paths and pricing in detail.