How to Start a Home Bakery and Sell Delicious Treats

Woman decorating cupcakes she baked

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It takes a special skill to bake the most perfect, yummy treats. If you have this delicious skill, then you are definitely in for a treat (pun intended) to learn how to start a home bakery business. You will have customers coming back for more if you can set up your business the right way.

Having a storefront bakery business is the traditional way of being a baker. However, we can see how beneficial it is for people to work from home, especially if they have a family to care for.

That being said, opening a bakery in your home can fulfill you in more ways than owning a bakeshop. You would be able to save on rent for a building plus any child care expenses, if applicable.

Take a chance on yourself and start a home bakery business to make life easier, profitable, and on your own terms. While this isn’t something you can put together overnight, start taking the steps now so that you can own your business sooner than later.

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What is a Home Bakery?

A home bakery is run by someone who has experience as a baker. A baker is someone who makes baked goods ranging from cakes to bagels and breads to donuts and other sweet treats. A home bakery is a smaller scale bakeshop and typically has a specialty like cakes, cupcakes, or cookies.

As a home baker, there are some limitations you might face versus having a bakery outside of the home. Your home may be smaller, which allows less space to make treats. You might also have a smaller oven to use to bake the treats. However, there are several benefits to having your own home bakery.

Does a Home Bakery Require a License?

In nearly all states, a license is required to operate a home bakery. Check with your local licensing office to establish what kind of license is required in your state. Some states require a business and food license while other states require a permit. Ensure you are in compliance by getting the license that is right for your state.

Related: Best Business Ideas for Stay at Home Moms

Other Home Bakery Requirements and Qualifications

To have a successful home bakery, you will need to have reliable kitchen utilities such as a functioning oven, sink, microwave, and cooking utensils. As a baker, you will need to have the skills to make yummy treats, the patience to wait between baking and cooling times, and the creativity to decorate the baked goods if required.

Home Baker Salary or Pay Expectations

According to ZipRecruiter, the average annual salary of a home baker in the United States is $60,089. There are some bakers who report making as high as $2,712 per week and others who report salaries as low as $279 per week. The area that you serve and your experience as a baker will determine your salary.

Related: How to Become a Coffee Taster

How to Start a Home Bakery Business in 7 Simple Steps

Woman decorating cupcakes she baked

Take a look at the following steps to get an idea of how to start a home bakery business. If this sounds like something you have a passion for and want to pursue, these steps will get you to your grand opening day.

1. Pick a Specialty

One of the fun parts of starting a home bakery is deciding what you want to specialize in. Do you have a passion for cakes and cupcakes? Do you prefer brownies and cookies? Maybe you want to be known for a specialized treat you invented.

Whatever you choose as a specialty, make sure it is something you have experience with and you’re willing to be creative with your presentation of the goods. Customers are visual buyers; if they see a uniquely decorated treat, they are more willing to purchase it.

2. Name Your Business

The other fun part of starting a home bakery business is choosing the name for your business. Take your time with this step as it will be the first thing customers will associate you with. Make it fun, quirky, a play on words, and obvious that it has to do with food. You will also need to have a business name before you can move on to the next step.

Related: 100 Name Ideas for a Food Blog

3. Apply for a License

Consult your local licensing office to understand what you need to apply for your home bakery business. You will need a business name and the address where your business will be conducted. Ensure you are prepared for any application and kitchen inspection fees associated so that you can budget appropriately.

4. Take Classes

Consider sharpening your baking skills by taking a course on by Apollonia Poilâne, a third-generation baker and CEO of a well-known Parisian bakery called Poilâne. Apollonia grew up in the family business of bread baking and was suddenly in charge of the family bakery at 16 years old when her parents passed away in a helicopter accident.

Learn the traditions Apollonia was taught that were passed down from her grandfather. Understand the patience and craft that it takes to make the perfect bread. Learn how to do it all by hand with her guidance.

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5. Practice

You know the saying “practice makes perfect.” While we aren’t looking for perfection here, customers want to know that you have experience. Practice your craft in baking, keep looking for ways to set yourself apart from other bakers in your area, and take pride in your work.

6. Advertise Your Business

When you are ready to open your business, don’t forget to tell everyone you know about it. This can be through word-of-mouth, social media posts, an email list, and so on. Create a Facebook and/or Instagram business account to help spread awareness about your business.

Don’t forget to share all the goodies you make on your page so that customers can see what you can do and what kind of baked goods they can expect from you.

Related: How to Become a Social Media Influencer

7. Ask for Reviews

One of the best compliments you can get in a business is the gift of a heartfelt review or testimonial. It reassures you that what you are doing is appreciated. It also helps grow your business when others see how happy previous customers were with your service and baked goods. Ask for reviews from customers and proudly show off the great work you do.

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Questions New Home Bakers Are Asking

Get an even better understanding of what it would take to start a home bakery business by learning from questions others are asking.

How much money does it take to start a home bakery?

The answer will vary depending on what items you already have in your home to complete the baking tasks. If you need an oven, you’ll likely spend a couple thousand dollars on one. However, if you already have one that works well, then you can allocate that money toward other items like baking pans, tins, and ingredients in bulk.

Before you begin your bakery, make a budget for the things you need so that you know how much it will cost to start your home bakery.

What are the most popular bakery items?

According to a poll conducted by Bake Magazine, the top bakery items are cookies and cakes. However, cakes are more profitable because you can charge more for them.

Do I need my own recipes to open a bakery?

No, you don’t need to own your own recipes. You can follow a box mix recipe if you want. You’re not selling recipes; you’re selling baked goods. If you have your own recipes, then use them to create unique takes on popular baked goods. However, don’t stress about not having your own recipes. Customers are willing to pay for the finished product rather than having to make baked goods themselves.

Related: How to Start an Etsy Shop

How do you price baked goods?

The first part of this equation is to understand how much the ingredients and materials cost you to make the product. From there, consider the time it takes you to complete a batch. Consider any other expenses your business incurs by baking in your home to add in any additional fees.

Moreover, consider a price that is fair to you and your customer. You have to be content with your prices and your customers also have to be willing to pay for the goods in order for you to turn a profit.

How can I make my bakery stand out?

Never stop exploring and getting creative with your baking. While you will want to hold onto classic items that keep people coming back for more, don’t be afraid to explore new things either. Stand out from the rest with new flavors, elaborate treats, and great customer service.

Related: Creative Small Business Ideas to Start From Home

Who Should Start a Home Bakery Business?

If you can see yourself working from home, baking with a passion, and selling successfully, then you should consider starting a home bakery business. There is quite a bit of work that falls on your shoulders to bake and run the business side as well. If you are up for a fun challenge that could have major rewards, then this is for you.

A home bakery business is not for someone who doesn’t want to put in the work or isn’t passionate about baking in the least. You have to have passion to see this new venture succeed. Without passion, it will be difficult to get up each day and bake to fill orders.

Starting a bakery business isn’t something that can be done in one day. Take the time to learn the right way to do it and set yourself up for success from the get-go. It’s a rewarding business and can be enjoyable. 

Baked goods are desired by customers all year round. Don’t miss your chance to get in on a business that could make a difference in your income and quality of life.

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