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HOW TO START A PERSONAL CHEF BUSINESS.

Plan your Business

A clear plan is essential for success as an entrepreneur. It will help you map out the specifics of your business and discover some unknowns. A few important topics to consider are:

What are the startup and ongoing costs?
Who is your target market?
How long it will take you to break even?
What will you name your business?

What are the costs involved in opening a personal chef business?

A personal chef must purchase cooking supplies, food, food storage containers, rent/purchase space to prepare meals, obtain liability insurance, and invest in marketing efforts. One must pay a fee to obtain a license, permit, and Food Safety Certification.

What are the ongoing expenses for a personal chef business?

Personal chefs must pay for food, cooking supplies, a space for food preparation, utilities, high-speed Internet for recipe research purposes, liability insurance, rent, advertising, and labor. However, labor costs are typically non-existent or quite low when the business first starts. If you add a food prep assistant, they will likely earn between $10 and $15 per hour. If you opt to prepare meals from a space outside your home, monthly rent will likely run between $600 and $1,200 depending on the size and location. Utilities for such a food prep space will likely run $50 to $100 per month. High-speed Internet will likely cost around $50 per month.

Who is the target market?

The ideal customer is a wealthy individual who is willing to refer the personal chef to other wealthy colleagues and friends. Personal chefs tend to prefer cooking for individuals who enjoy a wide variety of foods and are willing to try new dishes. Businesses and other organizations are also coveted as clients as they are comprised of numerous individuals. An abundance of mouths to feed means more money for the personal chef.

How does a personal chef business make money?

Personal chefs make money by charging customers a fee for food preparation, on-site cooking, grocery shopping, and nutritional advice.

How much can you charge customers?

Most personal chefs charge between $35 and $50 per hour. Some charge a daily or weekly rate that hinges on the number of meals prepared. If you are particularly successful and secure the business of especially wealthy clients, you will likely be able to charge upwards of $75 or more per hour.

How much profit can a personal chef business make?

The average personal chef makes around $40,000 per year. However, those with years of experience and an expansive client base make upwards of six figures per year. The best of the best build a brand and earn several hundred thousand dollars or even millions of dollars per year.

How can you make your business more profitable?

Personal chefs can boost profitability by going out of their way to build new relationships with those who are interested in their services. Even befriending someone who is not a “foodie” can lead to a reference to an individual who is willing to pay top-dollar for a personal chef. Personal chefs can also bolster their bottom line by teaching others how to cook, writing cookbooks, operating a popular website, and making cooking videos for YouTube. It is also possible to sell old cooking equipment when upgrading to new cookware.

What will you name your business?

Choosing the right name is very important. We recommend checking if the business name you choose is available as a web domain and securing it early so no one else can take it.

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