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How to Sell My Homemade Food

Comfort food is king nowadays, leading to the rise of the cottage food industry. More and more states have hopped on board in letting people buy food from neighbors as long as they meet their reasonable restrictions. Known as cottage food laws, these restrictions help prevent people from getting sick while opening up the doors to people who want to sell their homemade food to the masses.

If that idea appeals to you, it’s possible to become a leading provider of homemade food near me by simply following a few key steps. You need to learn how to sell homemade food, for starters, and then set up your company for success. From there, it’s just a matter of finding customers and delivering winning dishes each and every time. Before you know it, you’ll become the go-to person for homemade comfort food that’s guaranteed to hit the spot.

Ready to get started on learning how to sell my homemade food? If so, just use this guide to learn all about selling your food online while abiding by your local cottage food laws.

How to Sell Homemade Food Online

A homemade food startup begins with food that everyone loves. Do you have a go-to dish that people request for all your get-togethers? Or are your coworkers always lamenting on how they wish they had your lunch instead of their own? If not, that’s okay. You can still think up baked goods, snacks, and other amazing treats that’ll make it worthwhile to get a license to sell food online.

Once you have a couple of homemade food items in mind, confirm that they’re allowed under your local cottage food laws. If so, write up your recipe cards and place them in a safe space, so you can scale up your enterprise later on down the road. On top of that, register your business name with the state, design your logo, and buy packaging for each homemade food item you plan to make.

Then, get ready to learn how to price homemade food to sell. To price your food well enough to turn a tidy profit, you’ll need to add up all your ingredients and other expenses, including your hourly rate, logo, packaging, and online marketing assets. Then, divide the price of each batch by the number of servings. After that, just increase the price by 20% to 50% to create your profit margin. Alternatively, you could use a food pricing calculator to bring it all together.

With that done, you’re ready to start selling baked goods from home. Before you create and package your first batch, you’ll need to set up your web presence, which is the only way you can dive deep into how to sell homemade food online.

You’ll need a website, online shop, and social media accounts to properly spread awareness of your brand all over the web. You might even want to look into using an app for selling home-cooked food. Make each of your online assets your own by adding your logo, putting up custom photos of your products, and displaying your brand story.

By this point, you can work on how to make money selling food from home by spreading word of your products far and wide. Post on social media often and encourage your followers to share your posts with their social circles. Hand out business cards with your web address to your friends, family, neighbors, coworkers, and anyone else you come across throughout each day.

Then, as orders come through, ask your happy customers for reviews and referrals, so you can watch your empire grow by leaps and bounds. Before long, you’ll be the one telling people how to start an online food business from home.

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Cottage Food Law

When selling food online in Texas, California, or anywhere else in the nation, you must abide by cottage food laws. Depending on your location, you may need a food handler’s permit for selling food from home or can skip it if you keep your revenues under a set amount per year. Rules vary from state to state, after all, leaving you having to look up the laws for your state before getting started.

To help you explore all the laws for selling homemade food in Virginia, Michigan, and many other locations, here’s a look at all the frequently asked questions about cottage food laws.

How to Sell Food from Home Legally?

Put quite simply, in order to see how you can sell food from home legally, you must take a good look at the exact Oregon, Illinois, or Virginia food laws in effect in your area. By doing so, you can see if you need a permit, what foods you can make, and how to operate your business without breaking the law. You might even find things like a Florida cottage food label template that helps you properly label and package your foods for public consumption.

Once you have all the laws in mind, it’ll be much easier to build your homemade food business and start selling your products online. Just remember to watch for changes to requirements about cottage food law labels, permits, and what is considered cottage food in Florida and beyond. The laws have the potential to change at any time as lawmakers decide do you need a license to sell baked goods from home in California and the like.

What is Cottage Food Law?

Cottage food law opens the doors to regular people selling their famous dishes to their neighbors without the need for a professional kitchen setup, licenses, and the works. Cottage food law verbiage answers all your questions about food operations that do not need permits and how to get started.

You can even search through the laws to answer questions, like “Do you need a license to sell baked goods from home in NY?” Or you might want to find out about Virginia’s new home kitchen food processing exemptions and cottage food law Florida sales tax specifics.

Do I Need a License to Sell Homemade Food?

The answer to do I need a license to sell homemade food in California, Wisconsin, and elsewhere is going to change depending on where you live. Do you need a permit to sell food from home Florida, for example? No, you do not.

But in Washington State, you not only need a food handler’s permit but also complete safety training, get a business license, submit your business plan for review, and have your kitchen fully inspected. In Michigan cottage food law online training will get you up to speed on the food safety rules and prepare you to sell your homemade food online.

In regard to cottage laws, Virginia health department food regulations allow you to sell your homemade dishes door-to-door and at farmer’s markets. You cannot, however, sell your food online. So, as you can see, selling homemade food in Florida is a lot easier than in Virginia, but each place has its own rules to follow.

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Do You Need a License to Sell Baked Goods from Home?

In most states, you do not need a license to sell baked goods that do not require time or temperature control after preparation. So, the answer to do you need a license to sell baked goods from home in Texas is no, but that’s only if you’re selling baked goods that don’t need refrigeration.

In California, however, you do need a permit from the health department to abide by local cottage food laws. The type of permit you get depends on whether you want to sell to restaurants or directly to consumers.

How to Get License to Sell Food?

In states where you must have a permit to sell homemade food, you can usually get one from the county health department. As you explore how to sell food online in California, for example, you’ll have to decide what permit you want.

To sell directly to consumers, you need a Class A permit. Want to sell to restaurants and stores? Get a Class B permit instead. If you go with the Class A, expect to go through the self-certification checklist. For Class B, you must do the checklist and have your kitchen inspected each year. You could even get both.

In Texas, on the other hand, you must complete training every two years. You’ll then have your Texas cottage food law certificate and can move forward in selling your homemade snacks, baked goods, and more.

In the end, cottage food laws Florida 2021 differ from VA cottage food laws. In fact, Michigan cottage food laws 2021 will even differ from those in 2011 and 2031. The laws can change anytime, so it’s best to stay on your toes as you build your business.

If all else fails, you’ll just have to get a food vendor license Virginia or anywhere else you reside. As the laws change, you can, too, keeping your company going through the years.

By staying on your toes, you can count on always answering the question, “Can I sell cooked food from home in Florida,” with a resounding yes. You’ll undoubtedly get a great return on your investment as a result, so you can watch your homemade food company grow and thrive. So, hit the ground running and see just what you can accomplish when you build a business while abiding by local cottage food laws.

Learn how to start a cottage food business, what you need to know about cottage food laws, and how to start an online food business from your home.

Heather Brookshire

The Cake Whisperer


My business would not be the same without my Castiron website! It is an easy setup with lots of customization and tons of support! I am so glad I set up my shop last year before the holidays — it really helped increase my sales!

Amanda McMonigle

The Whimsical Cookie


Castiron provides me a professional site to my customers increasing my credibility and value while giving me the tools to effectively market and manage my business in an easy, user-friendly manner.

Kim Sims

Wesley's Treats Hallie's Sweets


Castiron has made my cottage bakery shine, and my business easy to manage. As a platform they care about my business as much as I do.

Katie Maschoff

Mill City Cooking Company


Before Castiron, I was taking orders really manually, through emails or texts or Facebook. Now I can send customers straight to my website, and I don’t have to worry about missing any details.

Daniella Smith

Oso Good Clean Eats


I couldn't run my business without the Castiron platform. It made it so easy to get my shop up and running — it truly removed a massive barrier to me getting started!

Ali Serpe

Kultured Kombucha


I realized that the barrier of having to DM or text me to order was holding a lot of potential customers back.

Now that I have a professional website and a simple ecommerce checkout, I'm seeing a huge increase in new customers and they appreciate how easy Castiron makes ordering.

Join Castiron 100% risk-free

Explore our tools for free during a 14-day free trial. Start building your website, create your custom order forms, even start taking orders and payments... then decide if it’s for you.

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Easy to start, created specifically for local, handmade food: Castiron’s website builder was created to help you grow. Create a website in minutes with our templates, sell where and how your customers want to buy, and look professional without being technical. Keep customers coming back with email marketing tools, customer records, and more.

The Best Fit for Your Food Business

Food entrepreneurs, this is your moment. Your community is more and more conscious about what they buy and where it is from. They want food made with love. With ingredients they can pronounce. And they want to support their community while doing it.

Castiron is the best fit for your food business because we're not a one-size-fits-all tool. Selling local food is different from pre-packaged warehouse products. Whether you sell cooking classes, need local pick up, utilize pre-sales to plan inventory, or need a fully custom order form — we got you.

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