How to Set Up a Home-Based Bakery

Are you looking for a way to make extra money from home?  Do you love to cook and frequently receive compliments about how tasty your desserts are?  If so, you may want to set up a home-based bakery.

For several years now, my mom has sold pumpkin rolls and something she calls "ho-ho cakes" to friends and relatives at the holidays.  They buy the treats to serve at parties in their own homes or for parties where they have to bring a dessert; people are so busy at Christmas time that they don’t have the time to do the baking themselves.  My mom gets to do something she enjoys, and she makes a bit of extra money on the side to pay for Christmas presents.

Selling to your family and friends is one way to start your business, and you could make a nice part-time income depending on what and how much you sell as well as how cheaply you can obtain ingredients and how quickly you can work.  If you want to expand your business, there are some important considerations to make:
  • To operate a home-based bakery and sell your products commercially, you must adhere to your state’s Department of Health guidelines, which typically state that you can only use your kitchen for your baking business, not personal use.  Obviously, this is not practical for most home-based bakers, so there are some alternatives. 
  • To overcome the strict home-based bakery guidelines, one option is to consider selling at local farmers’ markets, as those markets often don’t have the same guidelines as other selling venues.  However, make sure to clearly label that your products were made in a home kitchen that is not inspected by the Department of Health.  (Check with your individual state to confirm you can sell home baked goods at farmers’ markets.)
  • Alternatively, as your business expands, you could rent a professional kitchen that is inspected by the Department of Health.  While it may cost more to rent a kitchen rather than using your own kitchen, you will have the ability to sell your baked goods through many different venues.
If you have a flair for baking and enjoy making treats others enjoy, you may be able to profit from your passion and skill.  Before you begin, carefully plan how you would like your business to grow.  This will help you determine the path to take as you expand your business.

Do you have a home-based baking business? Feel free to tell us about it in the comments!

*This is a guest post by Melissa, a mom to three little ones (ages 7, 3 and 1) who blogs at Mom's Plans.  She writes about living a fulfilling life on less and focuses on cutting expenses, budgeting, paying down debt, saving money and once a month cooking.

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