How To Start Selling Food from Home: A Beginner's Guide (2023)

Starting ahome food business can beabig decision forayoung entrepreneur. Aside from thefact that thesteps involved can betricky toexecute successfully, thefood industry isalso strict onwhat andwho enters it. This isdue tothehigh regard forsafety since whatever food item you sell can affect thehealth ofthepeople who eat it.

Despite thechallenges infront ofyou, ifyou believe selling food from home istheright business idea foryou, then we’re here tohelp! Let ushelp you get toknow some ofthebasics onhow tostart selling food from home. This guide will discuss all thesteps you need totake, from what tonote inyour business plan, togetting abusiness license, home/kitchen verification, andmarketing even your food.

Let’s dive right in!

Step 1:Have aSolid Business Plan

So, you’ve decided tostart selling your food products from your home kitchen. Awesome! And getting started will beapiece ofcake, right? Well, whether ornot you are actually selling cake, there’s more toselling food than just deciding tofollow your grandmother’s recipe andmake millions onabeloved staple. While most home food selling businesses are theresult ofpassion orhobby forcooking orbaking, you still need tohave asolid business plan tobesuccessful attheactual selling part. Below are afew things toconsider when making your business plan:

Know what you are selling

Finding your food niche isanimportant part ofselling food from ahome kitchen. Doyou have afamily recipe that you think can take themarket bystorm? Ifnot, doyou have afood product with theability tohave aprofound effect onthemarket, orrevolutionize acertain niche? For example, food such asasugarless cake that tastes asgood asanyother? Ifyou fall into thecategory ofyoung entrepreneurs with arecipe that can take themarket bystorm, you can move tothenext step. However, ifyou’re anentrepreneur with apassion forwhat you do, but noproduct idea, below are possible food trends you can use tojumpstart your creativity:

  • Gourmet dishes
  • Dietary restrictions e.g., allergen-free, gluten-free, nut-free.
  • Vegan, vegetarian
  • Candy, Packaged snacks
  • Baked good ingredient kits
  • Coffee andtea

After gaining some understanding ofwhat you want tosell, you should focus onthespecific food product you want tostart making. This isbecause, inyour food niche, you (and your coworkers ifyou have them) should bevery familiar with your product andniche. And thebest way tobecome anexpert istostart small—with only one product tolearn about. Being anexpert will give you anedge inthemarket.

Market research

Now that you have that perfect food product inmind, you shouldn’t test its viability before rushing into themarket atfull force. Todothis, you need toresearch your market toknow how your product will fare inareal-life situation where it’s being sold. Possible questions you should look toanswer include:

Isthere amarket forthis product?

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Having theright recipe isnot enough. You have toknow whether there are people out there that will buy your food.

The market might besaturated. How isyour product different?

Nomatter how well-executed your dish is, thelikelihood that someone already has such abrilliant idea like yours andisselling theexact food/food product isfairly high. Therefore, you should expect some level ofmarket saturation. However, quality can give you anedge inanyhome food selling business. Therefore, you should consider thedifferences your product has from other products onthemarket, its potential, andhow you might make iteven more unique.

Isthere anuntapped niche?

Ifyou think your niche istoo saturated foryour product idea tomake asplash, you can either improve onyour food product orfind adifferent, untapped niche. Before you consider this option, you might want tonote that different products perform better infront ofdifferent audiences andthat expanding your marketplace, say, through using anecommerce platform, can open you uptoawider range ofpotential customers.

Get toknow your competitors

Another part ofeffective market research isgetting toknow your competitors. The level ofengagement you will get foryour store depends onthequality you offer, andthecompetition you have. While it’s true that thehigher your quality with respect toprice (aka thebetter value formoney that your customers perceive), thebetter your engagement will likely be. However, themore competition you have, thefewer people will notice andultimately choose your product. So, tobeeffective here, you must beable toanswer thefollowing questions:

  • Are there other people selling thefood you sell from home orare there big enterprises selling thesame food products inyour area?
  • Will competition affect thedemand foryour specific food?
  • What will set your food item apart from other products inthemarket?

Knowing your competition will help you inyour business plan. You can use their mistakes tobuild upyour game andupyour plan tobeadvantageous.

Step 2:Get theNecessary Permits

One ofthepopular questions young entrepreneurs ask is“can you sell food online without alicense?” The answer depends onthecountry you live andwant tosell in. However, inmany major developed countries, you need toget apermit ortwo before you can start ahome-based food-selling business. Therefore, after setting uptheright business plan, thenext thing todoistounderstand thepermits you’ll need todobusiness. For people living intheUnited States, you might need three: abusiness license, afood handling license, andakitchen inspection.

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Business license

Abusiness license isthepermit toget tofirst beable tosell food items topeople intheUnited States. You can check more ongetting abusiness license bychecking theUSSmall Business Administration.

Food handling license andkitchen inspection

Toapprove your business, food inspectors must check three areas ofyour home business:

Hygienic food handling

They will check forsafe food preparation, cooking, andstorage. They will also try tofind out whether you cool and/or reheat food items.

Home physical condition

They will check your home based onthefollowing criteria: cleanliness, ventilation, andpest control measures.

Food safety management

They will check forevidence that you adhere tofood safety precautions. For example, they will check ifyou have aHACCP (Hazard Analysis andCritical Control Points) system inplace.

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Tomake sure you donot encounter anyissues, everybody working with you will require training toanappropriate level. However, ifyou feel unsure about anything, you should check out our article ongetting abusiness license.


Another important requirement forselling food from home involves theneed forfood labeling. Any pre-packaged food must belabeled. What isrequired tobeonthefood label depends onyour state. However, therequired information may include best-before dates, nutritional information, allergen warnings, andcountry oforigin.

Knowing food hygiene, safety systems, allergens, andlabeling can help you inbeing legally compliant. Consequently, you would not have anyproblem legally.

Step 4:Marketing Your Home

Marketing your home food delivery business isanother important thing you should consider before getting off theground. But have nofear! We’re here tohelp you get thebasics down. One thing about selling food from home isyou cannot rely ontaste testing asamarketing tool. Therefore, you have toconnect toyour customers inanother way. Below are two important ways tomarket your home food delivery business.

Offline marketing

Your home food business will possibly kick off through offline marketing. Although thesuccess ofoffline marketing will depend highly onthequality ofservices you offer. You can also generate buzz locally bydoing thefollowing:

  • Participating infarmers markets
  • Partnering with restaurants tohost atasting event.
  • Hosting aprivate dinner/dessert forfood influencers.

Social media

Social media istheeasiest way tomarket your home-selling food business. You can use social media platforms such asFacebook, Twitter, WhatsApp, etc., toget your brand out toyour local environment.

The best thing about using social media isthat itisfree. Therefore, you can easily andcreatively put your business out. However, tointroduce your home business using social media, make sure thesocial media account has your business name andcontact details.

Step 4:Making Sales

After spending somuch time planning, themost important part ishow tomake sales from your newly founded food-selling business. There are two main ways tomake sales with this type ofbusiness model. You can leverage your food quality andfreshness andmake sales locally. However, forthewidest access topotential customers, ecommerce isyour best bet formaking your business really work foryou. Below are afew important ways ecommerce will help you.

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Gaining access tonew customers

Using thetool ofecommerce can expose your business tomultiple locations all over theworld wide web. But you shouldn’t consider your business and“either or.” You can sell tocustomers both through aphysical storefront andonline.

Review system

According tostatistics, before buying aproduct, 95% ofpeople check out some product andstore reviews. Therefore, byusing ecommerce, you can enjoy thereview features that ithas. Consequently, you can easily get reviews from your existing customers toconvince your potential customers that you can deliver quality services


Another thing you have toconsider with anecommerce orphysical ordering system ishow todeliver your products. You can make use ofdelivery companies, courier services, etc. However, choose thedelivery service that assures thefast delivery service needed inthefood industry. You can also utilize theoptions such aspre-order, pickup from your location, local delivery toboost your sales.

Final Thoughts

The food industry isachallenging business idea due toits regulation ofwhat andwho enters it. Therefore, starting ahome food business can bealittle tricky formany people. Toenter thebusiness space, you need toconsider alot ofthings. Therefore, this article discussed every step you need totake tobesuccessful asahome-based food selling business owner. Follow thesteps above andyou will beable toadapt seamlessly tothehome-based food selling industry.

How To Start Selling Food from Home: A Beginner's Guide (1)

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  • How ToStart Selling Food from Home
  • What Permissions DoYou Need toSell Food From Home?


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