46 Cottage Food Business Ideas You Can Start At Home

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Food Cottage Laws are laws in many states that allow individuals to produce certain foods in their own home kitchen for sale to individuals in their communities.

These Food Cottage Laws in general allow individuals to sell only food that are low-risk in regards to food safety.

Because the Food Cottage Laws are all made at the state level, the rules and regulations vary by state. Here is a link to a good resource that shares an idea of what the laws are in each state.

List of Food Cottage Business Ideas

I’ve created a table for these Food Cottage Business Ideas with four columns of information.

The first is the Food Item.

The second column is the Complexity of preparing this food. I’ve kept it simple, just using three options: Low, Medium, High.

The third column is Profit Margin which I also use the Low, Medium, and High options.

Keep in mind that Profit Margin is a function of Selling Price minus Cost Of Good Sold. This means that you can have a huge impact on profit but creating a high-priced item through marketing.

For the purpose of this table, I’ve assumed the average cost of goods sold and the average sell price for this type of food product.

Finally, the last column is the food safety risk associated with this kind of food. Some states allow home-kitchens to sell higher-risk foods while other states only allow the lowest-risk foods.

You will have to check with your state to find-out what your state rules are.

Now let’s get to the table.

#FoodComplexityProfit MarginRisk
5Spice MixesSimpleMediumLow
6Smoked SpicesMediumMediumLow
8Flavored BreadMediumHighLow
11Hard CandiesHighMediumLow
12Jam & JellyHighMediumMedium
13Fudge CandyHighMediumMedium
16Flat BreadsMediumMediumLow
17Pizza CrustsMediumMediumLow
18Gluten Free BreadHighHighMedium
19Sugar Free DessertsSimple MediumLow
20Flavored OilsMediumMediumMedium
21Flavored VinigarsLowMediumLow
23Pickled VegitablesMediumMediumHigh
24Hot SauceMediumHighMedium
26Keto BreadHighHighMedium
29Trail MixMediumMediumLow
30Dried VegetablesHighMediumMedium
31Dried FruitHighMediumMedium
32Fruit ButtersHighMediumMedium
33Flavored PopcornMediumMediumLow
34Kettle CornHighMediumLow
35Marinade SauceMediumMediumMedium
38Tea BlendsLowMediumLow
39Granola BarsHighMediumMedium
40BBQ SauceMediumMediumMedium
41BBQ RubsLowMediumLow
42Dry Soup JarsLowMediumLow
43Dry Cookie In A JarMediumMediumMedium
44Cinnamon RollsMediumMediumMedium
46Dried PastaHighMediumMedium
Table of Cottage Food Business Ideas

Last Notes About These Cottage Food Business Ideas

I really want to stress that while all of these businesses would be legal in at least one state within the United States, they will not all be legal in every state.

The higher the risk, not only is the food-safety risk rising but the risk that they are not legal to offer in an unregulated fashion under a state’s Cottage Food Industry Law.

You must do your own research at your local level to make sure that your home-based food business idea is legal, not only in your state but within your county and city.

I also encourage you to carefully explore not just food safety rules, but visit with both your county and city zoning offices to make sure that you’re plan wouldn’t violate any of their rules.

I gathered information from every state in America help you find your local food regulator agency.


P.S. If you have thought of some other business ideas that would fall under the Cottage Food Laws in some states, please take a moment to leave me a comment below. Our goal here is to help people start their own food business, and your idea might be the key for someone.

Want To Start Your Home Based Own Food Business?

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With over 15 years of experience starting, running, and growing home-based food businesses, Stacey is the #1 home-based food business coach in America. Stacey is the author of the Advantage Meals: By The Numbers Book.

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