Asked to provide occasional meals

Joined Jan 27, 2016
Hello Everyone, I love to cook and was asked to provide occasional meals, soups or a tray of lasagna to friends and friends of friends. I need some help as to how to go about my charges. Can someone help me please with how to calculate this after my food costs? Thanks so much.
Joined Apr 25, 2014
If you don't have a commercial kitchen, charge $0.   As soon as money changes hands, you better have a Health Department approved kitchen and a servsafe manager certificate and liability insurance
Last edited:
Joined Feb 8, 2009
  • BreakBread, Welcome to Cheftalk. This is what gets people started in a small catering business. I get the whole thing about the health dept not allowing it. I think these things go on anyway. I would watch on how far off the grid you go. Friends are fine but a friends neighbors friends sister who voted for Obamas brother in Uganda knows a person who wants your Lasagna may be a different story. Needless  to say people do it all the time, just don't get caught. In most cases the health dept worries more about you making food and then going to the farmers market and selling it to the public.
  •   Now for the costing. you need to get a ingredient cost. For the lasagna cost out the amount of meat, cheese, sauce, and  noodles that go into the size of the pan you make. You only really have to do this once then you have the cost. You also need to figure if shopping for the ingredients, gas and time spent shopping. The last time I figured out the cost for Lasagna it was $1 a cut out of a pan of 24 cuts. For you selling it to friends could be marked up 3 times to cover all your costs. That would make the Lasagna tray $75 or about $3 a cut to your friends. 
Joined Apr 25, 2014
If you live in a major city, chances are you can find an incubator kitchen.  It's an inspected commercial kitchen that is shared and you can rent part time. Work this additional cost into your pricing.  Yes, it costs more to do it right.  What is the price you put on ease of mind?  I don't trust people I know nevermind people I don't know.

Latest posts

Top Bottom