Are you interested in starting a bbq catering business from home? Do you need a sample bbq catering business plan template? If YES, then I advice you read on.

If you are so good at making barbecues that your friends and family have advised you many times to start a catering business, then heeding that advice might be the right step to take.

However, making the leap from hobby to business isn’t as easy as it might seem on the surface. You will need to invest in necessary equipment, complete the necessary paperwork, and get everything else right before launching your barbecue catering business. The whole experience can entail a lot of hard work, but once the business gets up and running, it can be very rewarding.

This article discusses the basics of starting a barbecue catering business as well as the steps involved.

Starting a BBQ Catering Company – Sample Business Plan Template

1. Write a business plan

Your first step towards starting and running a successful BBQ catering business is to write a business plan. This plan will detail every vital piece of information about your business including your goals and objectives, products, market analysis, marketing strategy, unique selling points, startup and running costs, estimated spending and income, and exit strategy. Here is a sample catering business plan template you can use for FREE.

A business plan will guide you through the process of starting your business and managing it successfully after launch. It allows you to understand the market and the challenges you are likely to face. Although having a business plan will not always guarantee the success of a business, not having one is a sure recipe for failure.

2. Fulfill legal requirements

No matter how well capitalized you are, you need to do things right. First of all, get a copy of the rules and regulations for your starting a barbecue business in your state, county, and city. Each jurisdiction might have its own rules and licensing.

The food code might be hard to understand, in which case you might need to hire a consultant or a seasoned attorney to help you ensure that you do things right. Find out about the required licensing and permits and obtain them all. Register your business, and get it insured.

3. Find a good location or facility

You need to approach the owner of a restaurant around you to see if they can allow you to use their facility while preparing for each event. You will most likely be charged a certain fee for this, but the convenience will be worth the price.

If you can’t find a restaurant to work from, you will need to find an alternative location or facility. You may consider renting kitchen space or dedicating some space in your home for this purpose. You can also prepare your barbecue at the event venue, if that would be convenient. However, you must bear in mind that your chosen location must be very clean.

4. Decide on your catering menu

The products mainly sold by barbecue caterers include burgers, hot dogs, chicken tenders, corn, ribs, and so on. But you don’t have to offer everything. You can choose only items you can prepare with confidence, even if it’s just one or two. You must also figure out how much you will charge for each item. Remember that to make enough profits, you will need to charge enough to cover foods costs, overhead, and employees.

5. Get the required catering equipment

You will need a large capacity cooker or smoker, eating utensils, cups, napkins, tables and chairs, and other supplies provided during a catered event. You will also need a truck or van for hauling food and pulling the cooker to events. If you cannot afford to buy yours from the start, you can rent your catering equipment each time you need it.

6. Find suppliers

You need to fund suppliers. You won’t make profits if you are buying your meat and other supplies at local grocery. You need to buy them where the groceries themselves buy them; from wholesalers. Even if you can’t pay cash for all the meat or other supplies you need for a big party, many wholesalers are happy to establish credit for you.

7. Define your limits

You will need to figure out what types of events you can offer, the maximum distance you will travel for an event, and the maximum number of people your catering service can serve at a single event. This will help you avoid disappointments.

8. Market your business

The only way to create awareness about your BBQ catering business is to market it aggressively, especially when you are just starting out.

Design and distribute flyers and handbills, and use word of mouth to market your business. Advertise in local newspapers and magazines. Rent booth space at local festivals, so people can get the chance to taste your food. And use online marketing tactics, such as creating a small website for your business, and reaching prospects via social media.