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Selling Food On Etsy

If you're wondering where can I sell my baked goods, opening your own Etsy shop for food can be a fun and worthwhile endeavor! To sell on Etsy, vendors must ensure they check with their local and state mandates and have a license if it is required.

Selling food on Etsy can be a great way to get your products shipped to lots of customers ordering food from Etsy on the internet. Starting your own Etsy shop might seem as easy as making food and then shipping it out. However, to sell on Etsy, you must first obtain a food cottage license if necessary, and even then you might not be able to ship your Etsy snacks or Etsy baked goods.

Also, according to different cottage food laws, using Etsy for food can be limited, as only certain non-perishable foods can be sold. If you are lucky enough to live in a state that allows the sale of Etsy food and allows you to ship goods out, to sell on Etsy fees can apply. These can include a $0.20 service fee for any listed items.

However, Etsy does have a big market for baked goods, making it a good outlet for bakers and artists alike. Top selling items on Etsy 2021 include baked goods such as scones, pies, cookies, and cake pops, and birthday cakes!

If you want to be a top-seller on Etsy, it's best to use shipping methods that include cooling, nationwide shipping, priority mail, and overnight shipping, as many top-sellers offer these shipping methods within the United States.

Keep in mind, certain states, such as Texas, do not allow you to sell food through the internet at all. California just changes its Etsy food and other online laws allowing people to ship food through the internet as well.

Selling Food From Home

If you're wondering can you sell homemade food online, the answer is yes depending on your state and whether you need a permit for selling homemade food online. Permits to sell food online are known as cottage licenses, and some states don't require one at all. For those that do, fees can vary from $50 up to $300, and some licenses also offer different privileges such as selling to a third-party or selling direct to a consumer.

Getting a permit to sell cottage food will vary state to state, and even county to county. A permit to sell food from home is known as a cottage license. If you're wondering how to sell homemade snacks online, contact your local health office to see if you need a cottage food license, what the fee is, and if you're able to ship your food.

It's not too difficult to obtain a license, and applications sometimes have to be submitted with additional paperwork. This can take months, and the district you are applying for might also require you to be a resident for a year before getting a cottage food permit.

However, once you submit your fee, application, associated paperwork, and take a food handler's course, it's easy to maintain your license to continue your online food business from home.

Best Selling Food on Etsy

A quick search of the best selling food on Etsy leads to products most people love, such as beef jerky, homemade fudge, candy, and even baked goods such as baklava!

Etsy is a diverse platform where you can sell food from home or a commercial kitchen. Keep in mind, selling food from home is strictly regulated, and doesn't allow for meat products, even jerky, to be sold on Etsy! If you see best-selling food on Etsy that is perishable, chances are they are made using a commercial kitchen or through a local restaurant.

However, you can still set up your business to sell the best chocolate on Etsy, as chocolate is non-perishable and can be stored at room temperature. Etsy might also be the website to sell baked goods, as evidenced by the tons of baked goods listed as best sellers and the amount of customers! For instance, one of the best cookies on Etsy has over 4,000 reviews!

If you're looking to sell food on Etsy from home, make sure it is listed as an accepted cottage food, and then check out the reviews to see what customers are raving about!

How to Sell Food on Etsy US

If you're wondering how to sell on Etsy successfully, it's a fairly easy process. You must first set up an account on Etsy and list all your appropriate information under the "open shop" option. Once you open your shop, you can list your items for a fee of 20 cents per listing.

Keep in mind, if you're wondering how to sell on Etsy for beginners, they have a community guide and loads of information on their website. However, it's also a good idea to check in with your local health department, as you must obtain a cottage food license if selling for from home before selling any food! Failure to do so can result in fines and legal issues.

Once you've obtained the right food permits to sell items such as non-perishable foods, you can begin your quest to be the best seller on Etsy! Start off by labeling food items properly, having a detailed listing of what's in your food items and what isn't, and offering great customer service including shipping options to customers.

In addition, if you're wondering how to sell food on Etsy after you've been told you need a commercial kitchen to do so, reach out to a co-op kitchen, church, or other licensed kitchen for options. Never sell your food on Etsy without a proper cottage food permit, or sell expired or perishable foods! Perishable foods, including meats, are heavily regulated by the FDA and as such have different standards than cottage foods sold from home.

Selling Food Online

If you want to sell cookies online, sell baked goods online, or anything else, the first thing you'll need is an organized kitchen, followed by a food license (either commercial or cottage for the home) and then the materials needed to package your food and ship it.

As we mentioned earlier, it's not worth getting an Etsy shop if your state does not allow food items to be sold on the internet. Selling food online in Texas is strictly prohibited, as food can only be sold directly to the consumer or through direct delivery. Selling food online Florida laws state that foods can only be sold within the state. You cannot use a platform such as Etsy, as after selling your food it must be hand-delivered to the buyer.

Check with your state or district and make sure you can legally sell food online through your Etsy shop. Once you find out you can ship food and get a license, prep your home kitchen by buying the best food organizers to prepare your food.

Keep in mind that kitchens must be sanitized, and every place that food is prepared and packaged in as well. In addition, certain states prohibit smoking from occurring in these same areas when selling food online from home.

After you've ensured your kitchen is sanitized and you've invested in proper packaging items and kitchen equipment, look at wholesalers to get the best price on goods such as flour, spices, eggs, and other ingredients you will now need in bulk.

It's also a good idea to look at reviews and see how your baked or other food goods can incorporate what customers want. Do they want more or less chocolate chips? Different colored cake pops? Sour candy? The possibilities for improvement are endless!

Finally, since this is a business, use Excel or a similar program and create spreadsheets to keep track of sales, materials costs, profits, and other business expenses. All this will be crucial when it comes time to file taxes. Keep in mind, certain states limit the amount of annual sales your online food from home business can have, such as New York limiting to $25,000 annually. 

Selling Food Online Laws

There are many laws to consider when selling food online. If you're wondering do I need a licence to sell food online, this is just one of many questions you'll have to answer through the help of your state or local health department. For the majority of states, you will need a selling food online license, with the exception of one state: New Jersey. This state prohibits the sale of any kind of homemade food, online or elsewhere.

Besides laws concerning permits for homecooks, also consider if your particular food is able to be sold across state lines. Foods that can commonly be considered cottage food and sold online include:

Finally, know that even if you have a license to sell homemade food and are making the right food, you will have to comply with laws in regards to properly labeling food for consumption, keeping a clean working kitchen, and also following good business practices such as reaching out to customers and fulfilling orders on time.

Selling food on Etsy is great for shipping your products to lots of customers. Find the requirements and rules for selling food on Etsy here with Castiron!

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.

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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.

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