Jumpstart your online home cooked food business

Start and grow your business with the only website builder made just for food artisans.

Sign Up (It's Free!)

Your entrepreneurial journey doesn’t have to happen alone. Get advice and answers from some of the world’s best home-based cooks. Join the Community ⟶

Supercharge your independent food business with Castiron: the only platform built to streamline all the pieces you need to start and grow your business. Sign Up ⭢

Entrepreneurship is hard — and it can be lonely. In the Kitchen, you’ll make real connections with cooks who have also been in your shoes.  Join the Kitchen⭢

How to Sell Home Cooked Food Online

Did you know there is growing demand in the food delivery business for fresh, home cooked food made by skilled cooks in their own kitchens? With the right location and local demand, this can be an effective way to make extra cash or explore options for a catering business. Let’s take a look at how selling home cooked food works, and how you can get started!

Selling food from home may be easier than you think, especially if you have excellent food ideas to sell online. First, you’ll want to check your state laws to see if you are legally allowed to sell food from a home-based business and if you need certification (more on this below). Certain states, like California, make it very easy to sell home cooked food as long as you follow the law. Next, you will find a homemade food marketplace, learn how to sell your homemade snacks online, and start to create listings for potential buyers in your area to view.

It’s a good idea to settle on one specialty food item in the beginning, since this makes preparation easier and allows for more focused branding and sales. For example, if everyone you know loves your blueberry muffins (especially with the secret ingredients you add), it’s a good idea to simply give your muffins a classy name and start selling that one product. Don’t branch out too quickly, and only offer complementary foods when you do.

Once you’ve learned how to sell home cooked food online, you will need to make sure you have plenty of ingredients in stock, plenty of availability, and a schedule for delivering orders in a timely manner. That’s where technology comes in!

App for Selling Home Cooked Food

A home cooked food app is the perfect companion for selling homemade food online. These apps allow you to set up an account, make schedules, secure payments, add photos, set prices, and receive ratings. They can also suggest easy food to sell to make money and give advice on where to set prices.

If you’re interested in a home cook delivery app, here are several options to start with. Remember, it’s a good idea to check if the app is active in your area, and what restrictions or fees they may have before making a final decision:

  • Castiron: Castiron is a new player in the home cooked food space, allowing food artisans and entrepreneurs to sell their homemade food online. Castiron's cottage cook software integrates with social media accounts and simplifies the order taking and fulfillment process for cooks, canners, bakers, juicers, and all food artisans.
  • Yummit: Yummit is a newer service getting started at the ground level and currently taking applications from cooks.
  • Watscooking: This app allows home chefs to set schedules for when they are active and visible for hungry customers to book orders. The downside is that the app is not very active in North America at this time (but certainly an option for international cooks).
  • DishDivvy: DishDivvy, on the other hand, is particularly NA friendly, and in addition to helping cooks sell their homemade dishes, they can hook you up with the right training and requirements.

How To Sell Food Online From Home

Cottage laws are state regulations that often restrict food ideas to sell from home to only foods that are low-risk for problems like foodborne illnesses, which means selling dinners out of your home isn’t always an option (and some states ban all home food sales). Fortunately, allowed foods include many popular options like baked goods, jams and jellies, and pickled goods. Vegetable and meat dishes are not allowed.

Check the details of your cottage laws to see any restrictions involving kitchen space, pets, and refrigeration – laws can vary, and some are stricter than others. No matter the law, you will always need to keep your kitchen space immaculately clean and observe professional cleaning guidelines (gloves and hairnets are also a good idea). See if you need a permit to sell food from home, or specific training for selling home cooked food to the public.

States also have specific requirements beyond your kitchen and foods. Selling food from home Texas, for example, does not require a food license, but other states may require one. Selling food from home in California in 2020 is particularly easy with guidelines for Microenterprise Home Kitchen Operations (which include home inspections), but not all states have such guidelines, so it’s important to do your research!

Additional Resources

Customer Communication | Food Photography | How to Make Money Baking Cakes From Home | How to Price a Product | How to Promote a Home Baking Business | How to Sell Baked Goods From Your Home | How to Sell Food From Home | How to Sell Homemade Food | How to Sell Homemade Food Legally | Starting a Food Business Checklist

Sick of dealing with messy spreadsheets? Tired of wading through Instagram DMs? Manage your independent food business on Castiron, the only platform built to simplify the lives of cottage cooks and food artisans. Streamline ordering, customer communication, and set up an e-commerce website — it's 100% free.
Sign Up (It's Free!)