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MAKE MONEY WITH A FOOD-FOCUSED SIDE HUSTLE

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The side hustle has become a buzzword in our post-recession world. Diversifying your income stream becomes important in an uncertain economy. It’s the new unemployment insurance, and for many, their side hustle keeps them from living from paycheck to paycheck. A food-focused side hustle can be a great way to supplement your main income stream, fund your retirement, or even let you take the dream vacation on your bucket list. Perhaps you’ve always wanted to open a restaurant or bakery. Considering that only one in ten startups succeed, keeping your day job while testing your idea out on the marketplace is a smart financial move.

6 SIDE HUSTLE SUGGESTIONS TO HELP YOU GET STARTED

If you have culinary or baking skills, these top food-focused side hustles could line your pockets with a little extra cash.

  1. Online Bakery – E-commerce is the ultimate side-hustle. You don’t need to operate 9-5 and the demands of the business can be structured around your daily work schedule. Starting an online bakery or gourmet food business may require a little investment up front as you will need to meet the regulatory requirements of a commercial kitchen or in-home bakery. You’ll sell your goods through a website and social media.
  1. Food Truck or Food Trailer – Many food truck or food trailer owners get their start working on a part-time basis. Instead of operating your food truck or food trailer full-time, consider attending large weekend events, farmer’s markets, or contacting a sports venue during the season. Planning ahead is key to this side hustle. Make sure you have your vendor applications in early for weekend events. Know where you’re going to park each weekend to maximize the time you do have to work your food truck or trailer.
  2. Custom Cake Maker – Weddings, birthdays, corporate events, anniversaries, and other special occasions call for cake. Maybe you have a talent for sugar art, gumpaste, or fondant. Turn your cake wizardry skills into cash and let your friends & family know you can bake cakes or cupcakes on special order. Set up a website to showcase your creations, ask for referrals, and give local wedding venues your contact information with a small brochure or photobook of your designs.
  3. Personal Chef or Caterer – Once the domain of the uber-wealthy, the personal chef is moving into the family kitchen. Busy parents often lack time to plan, shop for, and prepare healthy, home-cooked meals. Many are willing to pay for the services of a freelance personal chef to take care of these tasks. A personal chef could be called for one-off events such as parties, special dinners, a date night, or holidays.  

You might be asked to cater a small private event or a large bash with hundreds of guests. Typically, a freelance personal chef will spend between 4-6 hours in the client’s home preparing dishes that can be frozen and reheated later in the week.

Becoming trained in preparing special needs diets, such as gluten-free meals, is an excellent skill to have as this is one of the top reasons people hire personal chefs to prepare their meals.

  1. Cooking Classes – The Food Network and the advent of Pinterest has inspired many DIY gourmands. Share your expertise by offering cooking classes. You could offer classes directly in your client’s homes and teach in their kitchen, rent out a commercial kitchen, or team up with a local cooking store to offer demonstrations.
  2. Sell on Amazon! – Did you know that when you’re an Amazon Seller you can sell your gourmet goods online? There are a few steps you have to follow to get the right permits set up and get approved through Amazon but in the end, you end up with an even wider audience to sell to and can streamline how you do online business. Plus, when you use the right tools to sell on Amazon, you can find new ways to expand your business. 

4 KEYS TO MAKING MONEY WITH YOUR FOOD-FOCUSED SIDE HUSTLE

  1. Online Bakery – E-commerce is the ultimate side-hustle. You don’t need to operate 9-5 and the demands of the business can be structured around your daily work schedule. Starting an online bakery or gourmet food business may require a little investment up front as you will need to meet the regulatory requirements of a commercial kitchen or in-home bakery. You’ll sell your goods through a website and social media.

 

  1. Accurately Price Yourself – Just because this is a side hustle doesn’t mean that you should undercut your prices. Factor in your material costs, time, and the myriad of other expenses you may face.
  2. Monitor Your Finances – Equipment and other start-up expenses may mean that your business runs at a loss for the first year or so. Keep careful track of your business activities so that the IRS doesn’t consider your side hustle a hobby instead.
  3. Take Advantage of Compound Interest – Pay yourself first and also pay your future self. Start socking away some of your extra income now, and you’ll thank yourself later when it comes time to retire.

 

Do you have a food-focused side hustle? Let FLIP know about it and give your fellow entrepreneurs tips and tricks on making money with your food-focused side hustle.

BY LYNDSEY LARSEN

Lyndsey Larsen is the Marketing Manager for FLIP and writes about business, marketing, entrepreneurship, and insurance.

Lyndsey Larsen is an experienced writer with a background in corporate communications and nonprofits, SAAS corporations, and nutraceutical companies. She has previously worked as a journalist for regional and national publications. In her spare time, she enjoys chasing butterflies, rockhounding, and spending time with her two kids in Utah’s mountains or deserts. Find Lyndsey on LinkedIn.

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